Home | Third Culture | Digerati | Reality Club

What's unrecognized about Stewart is that he's a designer. He designed The Well to be something that wouldn't require his running it. He designed the Whole Earth Review and the Whole Earth Catalog to be self-sustaining communities. We need more mavericks like him. The world has become too much of an intellectual monoculture of people who belong to corporations and who don't question the established way of doing things.

(Howard Rheingold)

Stewart Brand

The Scout

"The peculiarity of the new devices on the Internet is that you've got a double acceleration or a double instability. First there's Moore's Law, the fact that the number of processors on a chip, and thus computer power, keeps doubling every eighteen months, decade after decade. Then there's Metcalfe's Law: the value of a net goes up as the square of the number of people on that net. That is to say the Net itself or any net - even one made up of faxes or cellular telephones - increases dramatically in value the more people are on it. You've got a double-runaway phenomenon. Throw into that the tools that suddenly turn up, like the World Wide Web, Mosaic, and later Netscape Navigator, which also can become dramatically empowering in short order. The Net is a major social event. Culture's got to change."

Stewart has evolved into a legendary figure, historic even, who is, year in and year out, the most interesting and influential thinker I know.

STEWART BRAND is founder of the Whole Earth Catalog, cofounder of The Well, cofounder of Global Business Network, and author of The Media Lab: Inventing the Future at MIT (1987) and How Buildings Learn (1994).