Seasteading is the concept of creating permanent dwellings at sea, called seasteads, outside the territory claimed by any government. The term is a combination of the words sea and homesteading.
Modern seasteading began around 2008 when Patri Friedman began highlighting his idea in Silicon Valley to build seastead communities where you could essentially “vote with your home”. This would allow for more experimentation in governance structures and advance governance in the same way that cell phones progress due to consumers having the ability to choose their cell phone.
Initially Patri teamed up with Peter Thiel to found The Seasteading Institute (TSI).
With Mr. Thiel’s initial donation TSI began exploring ways to make seasteading happen. They did many studies, held contests for various designs and branched off different projects. The plans have usually revolved around building large cities which were very costly and were never able to obtain the financing necessary to get off the ground.
Early designs mainly used oil rigs as inspiration working toward building structures high above the waves. Then around 2012 the idea was put forward to do a phased approach of building in a protected waterway of a host nation under a special economic zone as a Phase 1 approach. This would be followed by Phase 2 where the seastead is moved 12 nautical miles out into the ocean where the seastead could enjoy relative sovereignty (barring oil and mineral rights). The third and final phase would be to move out into the open ocean 200 nm out to sea in international waters.
The phased approach would take decades and is currently being pursued by Blue Frontiers. They are working on getting permission from French Polynesia and have several other countries in the works.
We are taking a different approach with the spar design, taking our inspiration from oil rigs, pursuing the initial idea of being able to vote with your house.
There have been many people working in many different ways to get seasteading moving forward and we hope to include as many people in this wonderful endeavor as possible. It is our hope that our first seastead sends a message to the rest of the world that seasteading is finally happening and that they should come to our seastead to put their ideas into action.
I know that by now you are probably wondering about the waves. You really want to know about the waves right? If so, then move along to the next section to find out how we plan to deal with the waves.
What about the waves!?!