Welcome to the Geo Web
The Geo Web is live on Optimism. Start exploring on the Cadastre!
The Geo Web is an open geospatial information network that creates augmented, shared reality.
The project is focused on the challenges and opportunities of the coming spatial computing era through the lens of the public good.
As we view the world through our smart devices, what should it look like? Can two people with smartglasses walking down the street see the same thing? Should in-person experiences be intermediated by attention-economy algorithms? Will monopolists (and their insatiable growth incentives) be left as the defacto rulers of our perceived reality?
The Geo Web's mission is to promote shared experiences, shared governance, and shared value in answering these society-defining questions.
Creating Augmented, Shared Reality
On the Geo Web, publishers can anchor digital content (images, videos, audio, 3D objects, games, etc.) to real world point-locations. Users discover the content through general-purpose browsers on their smartphones, smartwatches, smartglasses, etc. based on their geolocation and field-of-view (instead of through URLs or in siloed apps).
The Geo Web can be thought of as a persistent, virtual layer covering Earth that's experienced side-by-side with physical world. Like the physical world, there is effectively only one truth to what exists at a location at any time on this virtual layer.
While part of the magic of the internet is digital abundance, human time, attention, and the ability to coordinate all remain scarce. Each of us needs the universe of possible AR content to be filtered in some way to derive any value from experiences.
The Geo Web perspective is to embrace strategic scarcity at the foundations of a public network rather presenting each visitor with a algorithmic, isolating lens of the world. Personalized and private AR content clearly will have role in our spatial computing future. But if done right, these experiences can complement a shared reality foundation rather shattering it into billions of pieces.
Wanting this future does not mean we'll actually have it. The world abounds in coordination failures.
But, we believe that web3 with a public goods emphasis offers a credible path to accruing the network effects to pull it off. The Geo Web's network rules are enforced through public, open-source smart contracts. They are designed to promote credibly neutral access, useful browsing experiences, open innovation, and positive-sum public coordination——all attributes we believe necessary to out-compete the dystopian alternatives.
There are two distinct but complementary rule sets on the network:
- The Augmented Reality Commons (In Development)
- The Partial Common Ownership Digital Land Registry (Live on Optimism)
Augmented Reality Commons
The Augmented Reality (AR) Commons is the open, public publishing space of the network. It's the natural state of the world before fences and property rights.
AR Commons publishing is restricted to the publisher's immediate physical vicinity. Anchoring a 3D sculpture to a public square across the world sounds great in theory, but it would produce floods of spam AR content and render the Commons useless.
The AR Commons mimics the physical world by enabling permissionless content alterations and removals--not just content additions. Public competition and collaboration in the Commons will produce dynamism and surprising outcomes that siloed experiences can't replicate.
Partial Common Ownership Digital Land Registry
Partial Common Ownership (PCO) on the Geo Web complements the AR Commons by providing a productive way for publishers to take space out of the public domain while retaining a common benefit foundation. Publishers can set rules and add content as they personally see fit within the bounds of their digital land parcels.
Under the PCO system, a publisher must publicly declare their valuation to claim and maintain control of a land parcel. This valuation serves both as a smart-contract-enforceable sale price that any market participant can trigger AND the basis for a 10% annual fee contributed to the network treasury.
These opposing incentives encourage market participants to be honest about their valuations and maximize the productive use of their digital land. A market rival with higher value land use can always efficiently acquire it in the market and elevate the Geo Web's network effects in the process (a capitalist's dream!). Licensors fairly reimburse the public for effectively relinquishing their rights to publish within the bounds of PCO parcels (a collectivist's dream!).
The PCO market serves as a decentralized algorithm that allocates scarce land (and by extension human attention) in a way that incentivizes investment, entrepreneurship, and growth while maintaining the public good as the bedrock beneficiary of powerful network effects.
The Geo Web is a radical experiment.
We face an uphill battle to overcome OS/hardware lock-in, privatized network effects, and coordination failure——not to mention the inherent nature of building at the bleeding edge of tech. The whole endeavor sounds crazy and doomed to fail...
Until one day maybe it isn't.
You can choose to add to the legitimacy of the network. Claim land on the Geo Web that helps fund public goods. Participate in governance that decides where those funds go. Help us build, educate, create, and explore.
The Geo Web specifically is designed to tamp down rampant financial speculation, but that doesn't mean you can't speculate on a future you actually want to live in. Join us.