Exploring the unknown can be hard, intimidating, like you’re grasping in the dark for something you strongly believe but do not truly know is there. Or an archaeologist digging up little artifacts, trying to imagine how they might fit together into a larger whole. Well, these are the places I want to dig.
In the 90s, the interface of a “tech tree” began to emerge in real-time strategy games of the likes of Mega-Lo-Mania and Sid Meier’s Civilization, allowing one to plan the order in which new technologies are researched and developed— sometimes over the course of thousands of years of human history. Each technology depending those which came before, reducing your focus to a small handful of possible avenues of research and the paths which might draw you closer to your goal.
So I set out to make my own tech tree, not of the past but looking into the future. Not merely a hypothesis of the steps and pieces working towards a greater overall vision and project, but also a tool, a tool which helps me to channel my energy into the pieces of a larger project most relevant to me at any given moment. To not look out and see the vastness of an ambitious project that feels impossible to overcome, but to understand it as a set of smaller steps leading up to that greater vision.