Technology (18): Self. Sufficiency.

With just:

  • A tract of fertile land;
  • some bales of hay;
  • a few square meters of glass;
  • a few tens of meters of spun copper or aluminium wiring coated in plastic;
  • a wind or water turbine, or a smattering of photovoltaic cells;
  • a modest amount of PVC or other piping;
  • a range of steel tools;
  • more wood than you can probably grow on the land you have;
  • a mix of cotton and synthetic fabrics;
  • a few plants and animals selectively bred for for thousands of years to produce high yields;
  • a handful of how-to books…
  • … or better yet, the internet…
  • … for which you’ll need access to a several thousand miles of fibre-optic cable, hundreds of the most complex devices ever made by humans (i.e. microchips) and a range of closed- and open-source software;
  • modern medicine;
  • some kind of industrially produced vehicle;
  • a state that recognises your right to ownership of yourself, your land, and your posessions…
  • … and a police force and army to protect those rights…
  • … or a lot of guns and drones;
  • instagram;
  • and perhaps little help from your friends…

… you too could be entirely self-sufficient.

See also:

Carl Sagan on starting from scratch
Readymade and the alternative

I'd love to hear your thoughts and recommended resources...