"All the work we do, all of our celebrations, contributions, and sacrifices - at the end of the year every one of us is just another row of expenses on an executive's spreadsheet during comp season."
I had spent the prior two years building a new analytics team focused on operations research, workflow management, and process design for a global Fortune 500 company. My boss - a savvy, fast-rising young leader - recognized my ambition and pulled me into his office for a sober dose of reality. That day I got a lesson in organization dynamics and career management that I'll never forget: success relies on forming relationships to bring your name off the screen and into the culture and success of the org. 
Yet I left that role, and most recently the next one, for a trajectory to web3, with all of its adjacent possibilities. I believe a new system, where autonomy, shared value, individuality, and techno-futurism-for-good is possible.
Lately I wake up and indulge in a morning routine. I make a large pot of French press coffee, greet my Weimaraner, and then log into a technological universe to see what amazing energy in the form of bits transpired between minds, machines, and spirits while I slept.
Web3 is a living colony mind of creativity, excitement, and support for one another to build, create, and act on inspirations to harness the adjacent possible.
The Spirit of the DAO is alive, and it is changing me.
5 minute read
With DAOs, the principles of self-organization, creativity, and complexity in natural and biological systems can be used to dramatically change how we work.
I log onto my computer and open Discord to see what my DAO cohort has been working on overnight. This organization never stops; it runs 24 hours a day across the globe, building applications, protocols, and data pipelines on top of a distributed blockchain network to move tokens and crypto through a network representing an ecosystem of ideas, desires, and innovation.
I’ve never met these coworkers in real life, nor do I know their names. All I know about them is their avatar, past votes and proposals, and their immutable transaction history on the blockchain. Some of their iconic representations of self cost more in ETH than the down payment to my home. And yet I trust them to contribute to our mission, respect their knowledge, and learn from their perspectives.
With my eyes closed and mind wide open I listened as our lecturer unraveled a journey of innovation, economic forces, and human evolution.
He summarized thousands of years of complex dynamics with a single, simple equation - The Theory of Adjacent Possible, stating that dynamical systems making incremental changes over time explode into an exponential realm of possibilities, and within, a profound order that governs evolution.
A spark of curiosity ignited within me on that cold January day and so did a burning question: how can I apply the principles of complex systems to understand dynamics of collective decisions, self-organization, and the adjacent possible within teams, organizations, and society in today’s world?
That lecturer was Stuart Kauffman, theoretical biologist and expert in self-organization of complex systems, and I was at the New England Complex Systems Institute (NECSI) for the 2019 Winter School at MIT to learn about complex systems science, research, and computer modeling. I was so moved by the ideas he put forth that I reached out to Stu to learn more and try to understand my place within this mesh of interests, ideas, and intuition I was developing. He encouraged me to pursue the PhD I was interested in, and invited me for coffee at his home in Santa Fe to talk and share ideas. His succinct advice for me, the intellectual wanderer: "take your curiosity seriously."