Juan David Campolargo

Let Startup Cities Create Themselves

Many cities have tried to create Silicon Valley 2.0. They’ve tried and no one has really succeeded. This time might be different as the new rise of the “startup cities,” like Austin and Miami, continues to develop. Instead of talking about creating the next startup city. Let’s talk about the most important question every human asks themselves, the “What Should I Do with My Life?” question.

What does this question have to do with startup cities? Silicon Valley’s secret sauce is talent. The unique accumulation of top ambitious talent of engineers, scientists, and entrepreneurs who wanted to build the future. That’s Silicon Valley.  

Were they regular people? They were usually the cream of the top of the very top. If there was a cream you would eat, and then it takes you to space, connects you with anyone in the world, and puts the world’s information in your pocket. This would be it. 

We shouldn’t be concerned about trying to create these hubs. We should be more worried about what made these “talented” people talented, and what made them gather in one specific area. This is because of the equilibrium between talent and vocation. 

Talent, talent, talent. 

Why are these people “genius”? Is it because they “think different”? One reason is that they found the equilibrium between talent and vocation. 

Talent is what you practice to get better. Vocation is that thing you are simply great at. For the history of civilization, there has been a huge surplus and shortage of talent and vocation of people not knowing their hidden vocation, working in the wrong field, doing less than what they are capable of [1]

Many janitors can become engineers. Many cooks can become scientists. Many dishwashers can become scientists and many many more. Why are they doing what they’re doing, and not what they could? 1) They got unlucky and need to make ends meet, 2) They didn’t try and have no idea, 3) They didn’t have the vision or were careless. These are fair excuses, but in this world, they should not be, we simply can’t afford to. That’s why we need to create systems where people can know what, where, and how they’re good at what they are.

The biggest try-out place is the educational system where you put people through a series of tests to see what they’re good at. All of them take classes, others get involved in extracurricular activities while others were stubborn (or open-minded) enough to try a bunch of random stuff. 

This is the reason you have an idea of how good you are at mathematics, basketball, or dancing. You tried it and know where you stand [2].

We need a bigger system where people can try as many things as possible at a low cost and accurately tell them where they stand. The goal should be knowing exactly what people are good and not so good at. No one have will have doubts or what if’s. This, combined with predictive analytics, can become one of the biggest developments in the history of human civilization [3]. We’ll go from 0 to ∞.

If everyone knows what they’re good at, they’re doing the thing they’re most capable of, and they’re enjoying it. We won’t have to worry about creating cities to gather talent. We’ll have engineering cities or crypto cities or biology cities, and others where it’s simply a melting pot of everything. Cities will create themselves depending on a few factors such as the type of problems, how collaborative their work is, and extra perks of the physical place.

We’ll have cities focused on the Pseudonymous Economy and the Metaverse. While others will focus on making life multi-planetary, and others where we will have a little bit of everything. This development will allow us to become radically specialized while enjoying a satellite view to overcome any problem.

I envision a future where everyone knows their talent and their vocation and is able to fully explore their curiosities. I envision a future where there won’t be work because everything will feel like play. I envision a future where we won’t have to create cities because the cities will create themselves. 

 

 

Notes

[1] It’s important to mention that this is a relatively new phenomenon when people have the chance to think about what they wanted to do with their life. In the past, people were forced to do whatever their families did, or whatever was available to them to do, or even worse, what their owner told them to do. Now, we have the luxury of choosing.

[2] The educational system does this pretty well. But pretty well isn’t enough. A bad teacher, the way it’s taught, in-placed incentives, overemphasis on tests, and parental and societal pressure have the potential to give you a completely inaccurate assessment. 

[3] How do we make this happen? 

A startup would be an interesting way. I’ve thought of creating a peer-to-peer learning platform where people would teach other things they’re good at. This educational company would be the front of a much bigger goal which is figuring out a way to know what people are good at, and having a company along with this research would allow me to get funding, do things quickly, and have aligned incentives. Watch this video where I roughly explain the idea. 


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