First published on Bitcoin Magazine.
I am an anthropologist and economist who went down the Bitcoin rabbit hole. I wrote this paper to clarify my thoughts around why these two disciplines respond so differently to Bitcoin.
Anthropology is a social science that is concerned with understanding culture through participatory observation, or ethnography: cultural immersion in the social worlds being studied. This research method is at the heart of the discipline, and it forces practitioners to “get out there,” to expose themselves, and to experience the culture being studied as a local.
Balinese cockfights and cryptocurrencies, can you think of two more unrelated topics? You’d be surprised then to discover that at closer inspection, looking beyond blockchains and metal spurs, the social dynamics taking place around cockfight rings can help us understand those around cryptocurrencies.
As an anthropologist, I take the view that for outsiders to understand different world views, such as those of indigenous populations, or entirely new phenomena, such as crypto communities, taking a one-glance-view is simply never enough. To better understand these worlds, we must instead suspend our biases and (dis)beliefs to truly observe what’s happening within. With this…
The lockdown isn’t challenging roles and professions in themselves. It’s challenging their flexibility and resiliency. This is also true for us UX Designers and Researchers, for whom collaborative face-to-face exercises such as workshops are an important part of work life.
There is this myth going around about how workshops are a ‘real-world’ activity that cannot be replicated virtually. Having successfully run a digital workshop myself, I’d like to debunk this myth.
Here I show how I ran it using Figma, a free collaborative design tool used primarily for creating and prototyping interfaces, such as websites or mobile apps. Although Figma…
A A deep and complex underground network runs under our feet. This network provides plants and trees with beneficial nutrients, enables them to communicate with each other through chemical stress-signals, and shields them from external pathogens (New York Times 2016).
This is a fungal network, made up of root-like filaments called mycelium. Without this underground network forests would be nutrient-poor, more prone to suffering diseases and each plant siloed from one another.
Can you think of any similar network existing in our lives?
Well, this network is called the ‘wood wide web’ for a reason. It takes its name from…