Monday, September 28, 2009

Fuller Philosophy

I heart Bucky. I was turned onto him through the phenominal retrospective of his life's work put on by the Whitney last year. Here are some spinet's of info just on his philosophy, edited down from his large wiki page. Keep in mind this man was born in 1895:

Buckminster Fuller was an early environmental activist. He was very aware of the finite resources the planet has to offer, and promoted a principle that he termed "ephemeralization", which Fuller coined to mean "doing more with less". Resources and waste material from cruder products could be recycled into making more valuable products.

Buckminster Fuller was one of the first to explore principles of energy and material efficiency in the fields of architecture, engineering and design, while considering the systemic world-overview.

He cited Fran├žois de Chardenedes' opinion that petroleum, from the standpoint of its replacement cost out of our current energy "budget" had cost nature "over a million dollars" per U.S. gallon (US$300,000 per litre) to produce. From this point of view, its use as a transportation fuel by people commuting to work represents a huge net loss compared to their earnings.

Fuller was concerned about sustainability and about human survival under the existing socio-economic system, yet remained optimistic about humanity's future.

He defined wealth in terms of knowledge, as the "technological ability to protect, nurture, support, and accommodate all growth needs of life,"

He was convinced that the accumulation of relevant knowledge, combined with the quantities of major recyclable resources that had already been extracted from the earth, had attained a critical level, such that competition for necessities was not necessary anymore.

He deduced cooperation had become the optimum survival strategy. "Selfishness," he declared, "is unnecessary and hence-forth unrationalizable.... War is obsolete."

Fuller also claimed that the natural analytic geometry of the universe was based on arrays of tetrahedra. He developed this in several ways, from the close-packing of spheres and the number of compressive or tensile members required to stabilize an object in space.

Fuller also introduced synergetics, a metaphoric language for communicating experiences using geometric concepts, long before the term synergy became popular.

In his 1970 book I Seem To Be a Verb, he wrote: "I live on Earth at present, and I don’t know what I am. I know that I am not a category. I am not a thing — a noun. I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process – an integral function of the universe."

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