Planetary Policy, Law & Regulation Week

The theme of Planetary Policy, Law, and Regulation encompasses not only the laws society is governed by, but also the laws with which planets are governed by. What would the best extraterrestrial governmental system be, and how would it relate to the systems still on Earth? What can the regulation of terrestrial ecosystems and beings teach us about the limitations of our species in space and on other planets? How would humans default rhythms be adapted while travelling through space? Who would own new planets?


For an in-depth look at the future of law, check out

Law as Data

an SFI Press publication


This week’s programming is generously brought to you by Jennifer & Bryan Murphy.

We are living in an age obsessed with intelligent systems. All walks of life are being transformed by machine learning, by software platforms that amplify human ability to manipulate mathematics and statistics, by the availability of Massive Open Online Courses, and by unprecedented access to data and collective insights through networks like Wikipedia and Stack Exchange. These innovations are changing both science and business. This week of programming will focus on the defining features of these complex systems and their ability to encode, store, process, and employ functional information. This feature encompasses the elementary gradient sensing capabilities of single cells, through to the large-scale perceptual and decision-making abilities of large populations of neurons. Complex intelligent systems are fundamentally collective, distributed, error-prone, and hybrid.

For further reading on this subject, check out 

Artificial Intelligence: A Guide for Thinking Humans

by Santa Fe Institute Professor Melanie Mitchell

The concept of time pervades everything that we know about the physical and biological universe. However, adaptive phenomena cannot be trivially reduced to the simple timescale of physics and chemistry. In adaptive systems, aging is explicitly viewed as a consequence of information gain (adaptation) and information loss (entropy). The Santa Fe Institute’s research, along with the discussions during this week of the InterPlanetary Festival, explores both living and non-living systems, including connected subsystems that operate concurrently at different scales and rates.

For a more in-depth look at this topic, check out 

From Eternity to Here: The Quest for the Ultimate Theory of Time 

by InterPlanetary Speaker and Santa Fe Institute External Professor Sean Carroll

Humans are resilient, but are we resilient enough to jump the hurdles of longterm survival — both on our planet and beyond? What can we learn about creating sustainable environments from the evolution of life on our planet, and can we apply those lessons to creating a self-sustaining system on other planets? What can we learn about inhospitable planets from our own inhospitable biomes, and what can we learn about organisms that manage to survive in those conditions?

For a foundation on the principles of ecology, check out the lectures

The Hidden Order of Complex Ecosystems and The Ecological Human

by Santa Fe Institute’s Vice President of Science and InterPlanetary Speaker Jennifer Dunne

The theme of cities, scaling, and sustainability is focused on organizational and dynamical aspects of biological and societal organizations, from our bodies, to our businesses, to our cities. This week brings together urban planners, economists, sociologists, anthropologists, and complex systems theorists with the aim of exploring the general scaling patterns in urban infrastructure and dynamics around the world, resource distribution networks in cities and their interplay with the city’s socioeconomic fabric, and issues of temporal acceleration and spatial density, and creating a rigorous framework for understanding the long-term dynamics of urban systems —  on Earth and beyond.


For a deeper dive into this topic, check out 

Scale: The Universal Laws of Growth, Innovation, Sustainability,

and the Pace of Life in Organisms, Cities, Economies, and Companies 

by Santa Fe Institute Professor and Science Steering Committee Member Geoffrey West

The theme of Motion & Energy Technology is all about how we get to wherever we’re going. What fuel sources will propel us? Would InterPlanetary travel require a fundamentally new technology? How would these technologies affect the transportation roadmap here on Earth? Will the spaceship of the future actually be a space-city, complete with trees and roads and its own gravity?


For a fictional take on the mechanics of future space-travel, check out


by InterPlanetary Speaker and Sci-Fi Author Neal Stephenson

Humans still struggle to engineer complex systems. Our position is that the engineering premise is fatally flawed when it comes to complexity and that we need a new paradigm. This week explores the ideas needed to inform this paradigm shift. Existing biological interventions offer some clues regarding necessary elements for such a framework. Like neuroprosthetics and vaccines, emergent engineering anticipates and exploits adaptation inherent in complex systems. This approach stands in contrast to traditional engineering which typically ignores noise and adaptation and seeks to minimize these elements.

For further reading on this topic, check out

Worlds Hidden in Plain Sight: The Evolving Ideas of Complexity at the Santa Fe Institute

The origin of life on Earth remains a hotly contested question among scientists. Maybe life began in the depths of the ocean, or with an electric spark, or in a small pond that repeatedly dried. Perhaps the answer to this question will be found through our understanding of the role that RNA played in the evolution of early life, or there are myriad ways for life to start.

Figuring out the source of all life on our own planet is tricky enough, but scientists are also setting their sights on the possibility of the existence of life in space. In this case, we don’t mean Laika the dog orbiting Earth, or human volunteers one day colonizing Mars, but life-forms that originated and organized their own way of life on other planets. While we might not yet know if life exists outside of own biosphere or solar system, in order to discover and identify other living beings in the universe, we must first understand how life itself originates.

When considering the origins (and possibilities) of life in space, there are many complex and interconnected questions to consider: How likely is it that we will find life in space? How to we even calculate that likelihood? Where do we look, and what are the best methods to use in our search? In the end, if we find life in space or not, what does that mean to us as a species and a planet?

InterPlanetary Programming from July 2nd to July 4th will explore these questions in further depth.

Read more about SFI’s Origins of Life research with NASA and the National Foundation of Science.

A roundtable discussion by the Projecting Particles (I=Universe) Team about Indigenous cultural values and Western values, their intersections, their distinctions, and how cultures can be shared widely without loss.

This roundtable discussion will be followed by story-telling sessions in the tipi, between Steven Tamayo and Steven Goldfarb, while Marcus Dominger live projects images onto the tipi.

This week’s programming is generously brought to you by Jennifer & Bryan Murphy.

What considerations should we take when writing a constitution for a newly established InterPlanetary settlement? What can we learn from the constitutions governing nations on Earth? Following on the heels of a closed meeting on the same subject, this panel will discuss what should be included in an adaptable governing document for a future settlement off-planet. Taking cues from the Constitution of the United States, constitutions of Micronations throughout the world, and the successes and failures in each, our panelists propose certain protections for the citizens of that new settlement, policies for those citizens in relation to earthlings and extraterrestrials, and the rights of the new settlement itself.

This week’s programming is generously brought to you by Jennifer & Bryan Murphy.

Specially introduced screening of The Lobster, a 2015 absurdist dystopian black comedy, co-written, co-produced, and directed by Yorgos Lanthimos. In the film’s setting, single people are given 45 days to find a romantic partner or otherwise be turned into animals.

This week’s programming is generously brought to you by Jennifer & Bryan Murphy.

Milagro Middle School has been invited to participate in a unique interdisciplinary and intercultural exploration of the universe as part of the Santa Fe Institute’s InterPlanetary Festival. (I=)UNIVERSE is a STEMarts Lab production in collaboration with multiple departments at SFPS, including Art, Science, Technology, and Native American Student Services. Under the guidance of artist/educator Agnes Chavez, these four departments are working with Milagro Middle School teachers and leadership to offer an intensive, hands-on workshop that includes digital technology, particle physics, and Native-Western science connections. Experts in all of these fields will serve as contributing scientists, artists, and storytellers throughout the project. The project includes a 2-week workshop with 60 students from Milagro’s new STEAM program led by Megan Avina and Grace Mayer with visits from Dr. Nicole Lloyd-Ronning, LANL astrophysicist, Shane Wood, Quarknet staff/ particle physics instructor, Steve Tamayo, Lakota artist/cultural specialist, as well as virtual visits from Geneva with Dr. Steven Goldfarb, CERN physicist and from Austria with Tagtool founder/artist, Markus Dorninger.

(I=)UNIVERSE culminates with the following student performances:

  • Innovation EXPO: Full STEAM ahead! A re-imagined and innovative take on the traditional school science fair. Santa Fe Convention Center. February 13, 2020, 5:30pm-7:30pm. Student projections start at dark.
  • Santa Fe Institute Interplanetary Festival. August 20,21,22. Tipi installation at the Railyard. Students live painting performance start at dark.


Workshop Sponsors: SFPS, Thornburg Investment Management, Quarknet, ATLAS@CERN

IPFestival Performance Sponsors: SFI’s Miller Omega Program, LANL Foundation, Jennifer & Bryan Murphy

Closed meeting on the topic of “Planetary Policy, Law, and Regulation” where invited participants will explore the creation of a Constitution for the establishment of a new planet.

This week’s programming is generously brought to you by Jennifer & Bryan Murphy.

Specially introduced screening of Phase IV, a 1974 science-fiction horror film. The only feature-length film directed by graphic designer and filmmaker Saul Bass, it stars Michael Murphy, Nigel Davenport and Lynne Frederick. After a spectacular but mysterious cosmic event, ants undergo rapid evolution and develop a cross-species hive mind and build strange towers and geometrically perfect designs in the desert. Except for one family, the local human population flees the strangely acting ants. Scientists James Lesko and Ernest Hubbs set up a computerized lab in a sealed dome located in an area of significant ant activity in Arizona. The ant colony and the scientific team fight each other, though the ants are the more effective aggressors.

“The Messengers”, is a CosmOpera for voice, fixed media (single channel video, two-channel audio, Plexiglas), and cosmic rays (2019) – The Messengers are cosmic rays. They come to us from the cloud of possible futures. They pass through its messaging system and bring to us voicemails of the future.

Live recording of the Santa Fe Institute’s Complexity Podcast, hosted by Michael Garfield.

Specially introduced screening of Primer, a 2004 American science fiction film about the accidental discovery of time travel. The film was written, directed, produced, edited and scored by Shane Carruth, who also stars with David Sullivan.

Specially introduced screening of Silent Running (1972), an environmental-themed post-apocalyptic science fiction film set in a future where all plant life on Earth is becoming extinct.

Specially introduced screening of Moebius, a 1996 Argentine science fiction film directed by Gustavo Mosquera and starring Guillermo Angelelli, Roberto Carnaghi and Annabella Levy. It is based on the classic short story A Subway Named Mobius, by Armin Joseph Deutsch. The film is set in a dark and dystopian Buenos Aires, where a 30-passenger convoy vanishes in the closed circuit of the underground system. Research will be initiated towards finding the cause of this dematerialization. A young topologist (surfaces mathematician) leads the investigation based on some lost maps and technical data sheets. He cannot find the whereabouts of the old scientist who designed the intricate weft of the subway web, until the unexpected aid from a young girl will ease the obtention of the first clues.

Closed meeting leading up to the InterPlanetary Festival “Architecture, Cities, and Scale” Panel, where participants will plan and design a functional Martian Outpost.

La Jetée is a 1962 French science fiction featurette directed by Chris Marker and associated with the Left Bank artistic movement. Constructed almost entirely from still photos, it tells the story of a post-nuclear war experiment in time travel.

This special screening will be live-scored by Rob Schwimmer (a.k.a Carlos Antenna), previous InterPlanetary performer, who has played for Simon & Garfunkel, Bobby McFerrin, the Boston Pops and more. He will be performing Theremin, Piano, and Hakan Continuum for this event.

MIT Associate Professor of Energy Studies Jessica Trancik speaks about sustainable energy technologies for this Motion and Energy Keynote Presentation.

Panel on the topic of “Motion and Energy Technology”, co-presented by Virgin Galactic.

Truth or Consequences is a speculative documentary about time and how we weave the past into the present and our possible future. Set in the small desert town of Truth or Consequences, New Mexico, the film takes place in the shadow of the world’s first commercial Spaceport. Subtly set in a near future when space travel has begun, the film follows five residents in the town. Combining documentary cinema, archival footage, experimental virtual reality images and an improvised score by Bill Frisell, Truth or Consequences is a lyrical meditation on progress, history, and how we navigate a sense of loss within ourselves and within a changing world. More at

Started in 2016, 72 Hours of Science is an SFI tradition that challenges postdoctoral researchers to produce an interdisciplinary publication in three days. In November of 2019, 14 SFI postdocs withdrew to an isolated research location to accomplish, in just 72 hours, a monumental task — decoding the first complex communication from an alien civilization.* For this event, we sit down with some of the SFI postdocs to discuss their experience over that 72 hours, and what happens when speculation fuels research…a novel inversion of science fiction, which typically takes a scientific principle or innovation, and follows it to its logical conclusion. What happens when fiction comes first?

For the benefit of humanity, the aliens managed to divert their spacecraft for enough time to transmit a scientific treatise on a fundamental difference between their complex biology and ours. They were responding to images on the Golden Record, which launched aboard the Voyager spacecraft in 1977, engraved with a cosmic introduction to Earth and its inhabitants. Among the record’s 115 encoded images were multiple depictions of the two-parent system of reproductive biology.

“The aliens were totally shocked by these images, because in their world children are conceived and raised by three parents instead of two,” says Albert Kao, an Omidyar Fellow and Baird Scholar. “For scientists who study complex, living systems, it brings up all kinds of interesting questions about why three-parent systems would arise and what that might imply for the evolution of everything from molecular mechanisms to social institutions.”

With combined expertise in biology, evolution, information theory, mathematics, physics, philosophy, archaeology, cognitive science, and economics, the postdocs were uniquely qualified to receive and interpret the wide-ranging alien treatise. In three days and with little sleep, they documented biological consequences of tri-parental reproduction at multiple levels — the braid-like combining of the aliens’ chromosomes, the size differentiation between their gametes, the coordination of “mating events” among three sexes, and the cultural implications of their family structures.

According to the postdocs, the aliens’ three-parent system confers a distinct evolutionary advantage over a two-parent one. Just as sexual reproduction protects organisms from the harmful mutations that proliferate in asexual species, like dandelions, the three-parent reproductive system adds another layer of protection and genetic diversity, especially on planets bombarded with high radiation, which can cause a high mutation rate.

Exactly why the aliens’ three-parent system came to dominate, as opposed to a 4-, 5-, or n-parent system, might be explained by the coordination costs and social ramifications of searching for multiple mates at once. In their treatise, the authors describe the exponential difficulty of finding a “soul triplet”— a perfect romantic combination in a sea of possibilities.

Other social consequences of the three-parent system include a heightened risk of disease transmission and a societal trend towards a uniform culture. According to Omidyar Fellow David Kinney, such a uniform culture is needed to avoid the cognitive overload caused by trying to juggle the cultures and languages of three parents, nine grandparents, and potentially dozens of partial siblings.

“There are so many social angles to explore in this system,” says sociologist Tamara van der Does, a Program Postdoctoral Fellow. “The number of biological sexes would have ramifications across all aspects of an alien culture, from gender inequality to institutions like marriage and religion. After 72 hours, we were just starting to scratch the surface.”

Omidyar Fellow Tyler Marghetis says imagining a three-parent system “is actually a really great way to gain insight into the origins and implications of our more familiar two-parent system… in the same way that experiencing other cultures can help travelers better understand themselves.”

“There are a lot of interesting questions that can be pursued in this model,” says archaeologist Stefani Crabtree, an ASU-SFI Center Postdoctoral Fellow. “One of the great things about being a postdoc at SFI is that you have expertise in one area, but you also get exposure to other fields that connect to it.”

After 72 hours of intense transcription, the postdocs steeled themselves to record the final transmission in the treatise — the core innovations of alien culture, including “hyperdrive technology, the unified theory of physics, and the meaning of life.”

Unfortunately, this final portion of the transmission did not arrive intact.

*The alien transmission is a fictional premise. Any resemblance to actual species, civilizations, or planets is purely coincidental.


Specially introduced screening of Ikarie XB-1 (released in the United States as Voyage to the End of the Universe), a 1963 Czechoslovak science fiction film directed by Jindƙich Polák. It is based loosely on the novel The Magellanic Cloud, by StanisƂaw Lem.

A panel discussion on life detection investigations deployed place today, what those technologies are seeking, what information we’re receiving, and what it all means.

This panel is partially supported by the National Science Foundation.

As part of Emergent Engineering Week, we converse with Joerael Numina about his “Mobilize Walls” project, which seeks to out-scale and out-(sm)art Trump’s proposed Mexican/American border wall. He’ll also discuss his piece “Voyager,” commissioned by the Santa Fe Institute for IP2020, and the various complex themes throughout the image.

Free, live music every Friday in the Railyard Plaza all summer long! Concerts presented by AMP Concerts, sponsored by Falling Colors, and additionally supported by the InterPlanetary Festival.

Free, live music every Friday in the Railyard Plaza all summer long! Concerts presented by AMP Concerts, sponsored by Falling Colors, and additionally supported by the InterPlanetary Festival.

Free, live music every Friday in the Railyard Plaza all summer long! Concerts presented by AMP Concerts, sponsored by Falling Colors, and additionally supported by the InterPlanetary Festival.

Free, live music every Friday in the Railyard Plaza all summer long! Concerts presented by AMP Concerts, sponsored by Falling Colors, and additionally supported by the InterPlanetary Festival.

Free, live music every Friday in the Railyard Plaza all summer long! Concerts presented by AMP Concerts, sponsored by Falling Colors, and additionally supported by the InterPlanetary Festival.

Free, live music every Friday in the Railyard Plaza all summer long! Concerts presented by AMP Concerts, sponsored by Falling Colors, and additionally supported by the InterPlanetary Festival.

Free, live music every Friday in the Railyard Plaza all summer long! Concerts presented by AMP Concerts, sponsored by Falling Colors, and additionally supported by the InterPlanetary Festival.

Free, live music every Friday in the Railyard Plaza all summer long! Concerts presented by AMP Concerts, sponsored by Falling Colors, and additionally supported by the InterPlanetary Festival.

Screening of Colossus: The Forbin Project (a.k.a. The Forbin Project), specially introduced by Santa Fe Institute President David Krakauer. The Forbin Project is a 1970 American science fiction thriller film about an advanced American defense system, named Colossus, becoming sentient. After being handed full control, Colossus’ draconian logic expands on its original nuclear defense directives to assume total control of the world and end all warfare for the good of mankind despite its creators’ orders to stop.

For a deeper dive into this story, check out the series of books it is based on 

Colossus by D.F. Jones

Seasteading Institute’s President, Joe Quirk, will be signing copies of his Seasteading: How Floating Nations Will Restore the Environment, Enrich the Poor, Cure the Sick, and Liberate Humanity from Politicians at the SFI press booth

Nova Spivack, Co-founder of the Arch Mission Foundation ( will tell the story of the Lunar Library – an ultra-long term backup of planet Earth that was crash-landed on the Moon in 2019. He will show how it was made, what it contains, how it got to the Moon, and where it is now — And many untold stories may be revealed in this, the first public talk ever given about the Lunar Library.
Nova has had a lifelong interest in space and the stars, perhaps in part due to the name his parents gave him, which means “new” in Latin, and also has an astronomical meaning. At a young age he attended an early Space Shuttle launch with his grandmother and nephews, as a gift from NASA, to his Grandfather, who at that time advised NASA. Nova conceived of, and is the co-founder and Chairman of the Arch Mission Foundation, a not-for-profit foundation working to backup human civilization.

He flew to the edge of space in 1999, and did zero-gravity training, with Peter Diamandis and Richard Garriott, with the Russian Air Force and the Russian Space Agency. He was a patron of the Commercial SpaceFlight Federation, and an early space angel investor in Zero Gravity Corporation (acquired by Space Adventures).

Nova earned a professional graduate-level certificate degree from The International Space University in Space Life Sciences, under the late Gerry Soffen, who pioneered the Viking Lander search for life on Mars at NASA. While with ISU he also interned to help design the Space Humanities Program under Overview Effect thought-leader, Frank White and ISU co-founder Todd Hawley, and he worked on The Space Solar Power Program international design project.

In his sophomore year of college, Nova interned as a production assistant at Paramount Studios, working on the popular television show, Star Trek, The Next Generation.

Electric, autonomous mobility provides an opportunity to rethink the sound of cities. Join Jake Harper, the Senior Sound Director at Zoox, to learn about the future of auditory urban design and find out why a group of sound artists and composers have teamed up with Zoox to solve the challenge of noisy streets.
Zoox is creating autonomous mobility from the ground up. Through a combination of automotive engineering, A.I. and design, Zoox is building a fleet of fully autonomous, battery-electric vehicles that will transform the way people move around cities. Based in Foster City, CA, Zoox employees are working to deliver safe, clean and enjoyable mobility for the planet.

Stop by the Podcast stage on Sunday afternoon to witness InterPlanetary interviews LIVE by SFI’s brand new “Complexity Explorers” Podcast.

Join Sean Carroll of Mindscape (and the Time Panel!) for a live podcast recording of his interview with chemist Kate Adamala!

Kiki Sanford and the crew from This Week in Science Podcast will be recording an episode of their seminal and scientific podcast live from the InterPlanetary Festival on June 15th. Join them at 4:15 as they update InterPlanetary Fest goers on the most interesting science advancements and announcements from that week, and interview Santa Fe Institute’s Vice President of Science, Jennifer Dunne.

InterPlanetary Partner Event:
NMPAS Presents “Music of Spheres” at the Immaculate Heart Retreat Center.

This very special program takes place on the same weekend as the Santa Fe Institute’s “Interplanetary Festival” and is an exciting event that incorporates several art forms and astrophysics.

Patricia Henning, a UNM astrophysicist and member of the New Mexico Bach Chorale, explores our place in the universe through a slide show that includes galaxies which she and her students have recently discovered. 

Artist Tina Mion exhibits some of her latest work, including an image of the blood moon. NMPAS Artistic Director Franz Vote leads a vocal quartet and an ensemble of 9 instruments and keyboard in music from Bach’s Art of the Fugue and a series of arias about the moon, astronomers, the evening star, and a total eclipse. Readings from Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice by the founder of the International Shakespeare Guild, Santa Fe’s own John Andrews, round out the program, which closes with Joseph Strauss’s amazing waltz, SphĂ€ren-KlĂ€nge [Music of the Spheres].

Note that there are two performances on Saturday, June 15th at 3 pm and again at 7pm

The Department of Physics and Astronomy at University of New Mexico in Albuquerque will host a Star Party at the Immaculate Heart Retreat Center following the 7 pm performance, weather permitting. 

Reserve your tickets to this event here.

Zero-gravity environments. Alien intelligence. Sustainable algae-based food. The next universe is the ocean. In fact settling the oceans is the best way to save this planet, and the best way to save us from ourselves. The sustainability department at NASA Ames watched The Eight Great Moral Imperatives of Seasteading video series and invited Joe Quirk to speak to their engineers.  Seasteading is not only a way to test space colonies at sea. It’s a way to end state political conflict forever and build sustainable societies on two-thirds of the worlds’ surface. Several companies have already begun.

Keep the party going after Itchy-O’s set ends by joining SFI at El Museo Cultural for the Official InterPlanetary Afterparty, hosted by CURRENTS New Media 2019.
Admission is FREE from 10:00 pm – 12:00 pm, so head over to experience the 10th anniversary CURRENTS New Media Festival Installation, enjoy a live musical performance by local DJ duo Spoolius MĂ©lange, and grab a drink at the Meow Wolf bar.


Ellen Jorgensen, CSO of Carverr, Inc., will be speaking about the future of food traceability by integrating digital and natural worlds. What if we could use microbes as small tracking and sensing devices to learn where our food goes and what happens to it along the way?

Free screening of Apollo 11, a 2019 American documentary film edited, produced, and directed by Todd Douglas Miller. It focuses on the 1969 Apollo 11 mission, the first spaceflight to land humans on the Moon. The film consists solely of archival footage, including 70 mm film that was previously unreleased to the public, and does not feature narration or interviews.
This screening will immediately follow a presentation by Nicholas de Monchaux on the Making of the Moonsuit.

The Area 21 Beer Garden is a new addition to the InterPlanetary Festival, and will be your one-stop-shop for an array of different beers, wines, and ciders. As the name suggests, the Beer Garden is 21+ and requires a valid I.D. to enter – so don’t forget your wallet at home! Vendors within the Garden are:
Second Street Brewery – Second Street has been brewing in beautiful Santa Fe since 1996 when we opened our first, and still very busy, brewhouse on Second Street. Since then we have expanded our taprooms and opened our 20 barrel production brewery on Rufina Street. We continue to expand our offerings to include seasonal and limited release beers, in addition to old favorites. You will find a variety of these brews in the Area 21 Beer Garden, as well as a brand new release and the signature beer of the 2019 InterPlanetary Festival!

Sierra Blanca Brewery

The uniquely cataclysmic outcomes that climate change, food shortages, and once-in-a-lifetime weather events will have on Black people is a question that recent history has already begun to answer. Hurricanes Maria and Katrina, the 2010 Haitian earthquake, among other crises have made it clear that Black people and people of color will shoulder the burden of these coming crises.

The question of what fate will befall human kind as our world struggles, and fails, to support us has sometimes been reserved for scientists. Creative Black Futures asserts that these are quandaries well suited for poets, artists, and writers as well. We will consider afrofuturism, afropessimism, the role of interracial solidarity, and the potential for intergalactic colonialism.

Creative Black Futures will feature poet and writer Cyree Jarelle Johnson; multidisciplinary artist Kiyan Williams; writer Ras Mashramani; artist Marcelline Mandeng; and poet, curator, and artist An Duplan.

Musical performance by Denver-based percussion-centered electronic performance group “Itchy-O“.
Itchy-O creates transcendent musical experiences by blending many cultural iconographies in an effort to provide a distinctive offering that dissolves familiarities, awakens possibilities, and employs the true nature and power of hive-minded ceremony. With a performance troupe of over 50+ musicians, dancers, puppeteers, and special effects experts itchy-O creates a space where the performer and audience co-create an ecstatic artistic experience.  Shaking all tenants of tradition, the percussive rhythms of the drum battery and taiko drums intermingle with unique custom-crafted electronic devices, providing a primal-futuristic spiritual immersion.

Co-presented by AMP Concerts

Performance by “The Family Stone” featuring Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Inductees and Original Founding Members of Sly & The Family Stone, Jerry Martini and Greg Errico featuring Phunne Stone.

Co-presented by AMP Concerts

In the early days of the space race, Los Alamos National Laboratory played a critical role in developing sensors for satellites to detect nuclear explosions in space—but it also paid huge scientific dividends. Those sensors ultimately led to important astronomical discoveries, including the discovery of gamma-ray bursts and insights into solar storms and their impacts on the Earth and spacecraft. In addition, Los Alamos’ expertise in all things nuclear led to the development of nuclear-powered rockets (such as Project Rover) and nuclear fuel for spacecraft (RTGs, which currently power spacecraft probing deep space), as well as today’s development of nuclear reactors for powering future space colonies (known as Kilopower).
This panel of experts from Los Alamos will talk about the discoveries—both accidental and intentional—that were made then and how they’ve influenced both our understanding of the universe and how we utilize space today, as well as the evolution of the use of nuclear power in space.

Musical performance by Santa Fean “Tone Ranger” (AKA Alex Simon), dance music that embodies the magnetic and supernatural beauty of the American Southwest. Blending deep house rhythms with ethereal instrumentation (lap steel, harmonica, whistling, voice), he has earned a reputation as one of the region’s most original and sought-after live electronic acts.

Co-presented by AMP Concerts

“All these things that may seem big and impossible 
 We can do this. Peace on Earth — No problem. It gives people that type of energy 
 that type of power, and I have experienced that.” – Anousheh Ansari, one of the earliest space tourists in history.
Seeing the earth from space is one of the most transformative experiences a human being can have, but to-date, fewer than 600 people have been to space. You’re currently more likely win a Nobel prize than to go to space.
But change is upon us – truly, this time. And it has implications.
Join Rachel Lyons, the Executive Director of Space for Humanity, as she leads a discussion on the rapidly evolving world of space travel, the impact that it’s had thus far, and what the future could mean for us as individuals, as well as society as a whole. What would it be like if you saw our planet from space? How would it change you? And how would you make an impact using your spaceflight?
Learn more about Space for Humanity at their booth in our Innovations & Ideas Expo!

In the wake of Google’s AI Go victory, filmmaker Oscar Sharp turned to his technologist collaborator Ross Goodwin to build a machine that could write screenplays. They created “Jetson” and fueled him with hundreds of sci-fi TV and movie scripts. Building a team including Thomas Middleditch, star of HBO’s Silicon Valley, they gave themselves 48 hours to shoot and edit whatever Jetson decided to write. Jetson then re-named himself “Benjamin.”

Time often feels like it’s moving at a different pace. Five minutes can feel like an eternity when you’re waiting for the heat from a habanero pepper to fade, but three hours can feel like no time at all when you’re having dinner with an old friend. Children seem to grow up at an astonishing rate, while under the same roof, our own grey hairs and wrinkles slowly appear, year after year. To a mayfly, one day is a lifetime, but to a planet, millennia are gone in a blip. Scientists have even discovered a species of jellyfish that reverts, phoenix-like, to an immature stage of life instead of dying. What does time mean to an immortal jellyfish?

Memories, traditions, and history might lend human beings a semblance of immortality, but we are constantly reckoning with the effects of time. Through technology, medicine, and even the creative arts, human beings have invented ways to slow the effects of aging, increase life expectancy, and appreciate the time we have on earth. To us, time might feel like a relentless arrow hurtling forward towards an unreachable target, but to our ever-expanding universe, time isn’t composed of a clearly delineated past, present, and future. Death comes for us all, as they say, but as our understanding of time shifts, perhaps it will no longer be considered the end.

This unscripted panel discussion with physicist Sean Carroll, chef Mark Miller, and molecular biologist Coleen Murphy will explore time from physical, experiential, and biological perspectives, using current scientific understanding as a springboard for to imagining how we might live, and die, in an interplanetary civilization.

Using our innate senses of creativity and invention, we can tell stories about all kinds of places that never were and might never be. We can talk about what life is like in a human colony on Mars or chronicle what would happen in an alternative history where World War II never took place. We can give people the ability to turn invisible or invent an Earth whose air has become unbreathable. We can describe a society that has made wealth illegal or create a world where humans don’t even exist. The limits are only as narrow as our imaginations.
World building requires consideration of the many different elements that make up complex systems. Geography, culture, government, technology, and even supernatural abilities are all in conversation with each other, connected like the threads of a spider web. Changing even one small component in an otherwise familiar construct can send ripples throughout these systems and alter the entire world in profound and unexpected ways.


The World Building panel discussion will tackle the issues and process of constructing imaginary worlds and what we can learn from them. This unscripted conversation features literature professor Michael Drout, speculative fiction writer Rebecca Roanhorse, and fantasy authors Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck, who collectively write under the pen name James S.A. Corey, and moderated by SFI Professor Cris Moore.

Screening of Powers of Ten (1977), a scientific short film depicting the scale of the Universe (by factors of ten). Written and directed by Charles and Ray Eames. In 1998, Powers of Ten was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”.

Screening of A Trip to the Moon (originally Le Voyage dans la Lune), a 1902 French silent film directed by Georges MéliÚs. It features an ensemble cast of French theatrical performers, led by MéliÚs himself in the main role of Professor Barbenfouillis, and is filmed in the overtly theatrical style for which MéliÚs became famous.
The film was an internationally popular success upon its release, and was extensively pirated by other studios, especially in the United States. Its unusual length, lavish production values, innovative special effects, and emphasis on storytelling were markedly influential on other film-makers and ultimately on the development of narrative film as a whole.

The origin of life on Earth remains a hotly contested question among scientists. Maybe life began in the depths of the ocean, or with an electric spark, or in a small pond that repeatedly dried. Perhaps the answer to this question will be found through our understanding of the role that RNA played in the evolution of early life, or maybe there are myriad ways for life to start.
Figuring out the source of all life on our own planet is tricky enough, but scientists are also setting their sights on the possibility of the existence of life in space. In this case, we don’t mean Laika the dog orbiting Earth or human volunteers one day colonizing Mars, but life forms that originated and organized their own way of life on other planets. While we might not yet know if life exists outside of own biosphere or solar system, in order to discover and identify other living beings in the universe, we must first understand how life itself originates.

The Building Life from Scratch panel discussion will feature biologist Chris Kempes, journalist Alexandra Witze, botanist David Baum, and chemist Kate Adamala, who will address one approach to the origins of life question: building new and different types of life from scratch.

Orangutans, octopuses, and ravens might appear to have little in common, but they are among the most intelligent species on Earth, capable of recognizing faces and using tools. For animals of lesser individual intelligence, they often make better decisions by using the collective wisdom of the entire group. Flocks of birds rely on group intel to find the best trees at dinnertime, and herds of elk improve their chances of survival by communicating with each other about the presence of dangerous predators.
But not all intelligence is biological. Advancements in AI and machine learning demonstrate a level of comprehension and problem solving that is rapidly approaching human-level brainpower. Computers are already able to win chess games against champions, make mathematical computations at warp speed, and mimic our language and conversations. Even networks like the Internet, the stock market, and the health care system are all forms of complex intelligence. And as we venture further into the universe, perhaps we will find forms of extraterrestrial intelligence that are biological, artificial, or something else altogether.


The Diverse Intelligence panel discussion will tackle the wide-ranging scope of intelligence, from the evolution of the human mind to the complex systems our technology has birthed to forms of intelligence that are yet to be invented or discovered. This unscripted panel features SFI President David Krakauer, anthropologist Erica Cartmill, sociologist Jacob Foster, and filmmaker Oscar Sharp.

As people continue to flock to cities, new developments in urban design, architecture, and technology are transforming how we live, work, commute, eat, and learn in urban environments. The rapid rise of the Digital Age has all but reinvented our day-to-day urban lives, as breakthroughs in science and technology muddy the waters between the physical world and the cyber world. There’s no doubt the New York, London, and Buenos Aires of today would shock city-dwellers from a century ago, who traveled without checking directions on an iPhone, lived in apartments insulated with asbestos, and had never heard of recycling plants.
But 21st century cities face new obstacles every day, which require bold solutions that will upend urban life once more. Population increases, housing crunches, food and water shortages, the spread of disease, and the onset of war are all problems accosting our rapidly-growing cities. Meanwhile, climate change is already starting to impact metropolises across the globe as rising temperatures and weather phenomena cause financial, infrastructural, and societal devastation. In the not too distant future, we will all be living in cities confronted with extreme environmental, social, and political challenges. We might even build cities on other planets altogether, where we will have a clean slate to plan ethical, resource-efficient, and eco-conscious urban spaces.


The Extremophile Cities panel discussion with urban designer Nicholas de Monchaux, architect and former astrophysicist Ann Pendleton-Jullian, urban soundscape designer Jake Harper, and business strategist Suparno Banerjee will address the complex issues and collective solutions of urban life in severe environments, from cites that might be underwater in a few decades to those we might create on other planets.

Check out the Food Truck Lot for tasty treats all throughout this year’s InterPlanetary Festival! Participants include:
Bang Bite Filling Station

Freezie Fresh – Everyone loves ice cream, but there are more ways to enjoy this sweet treat besides the traditional scoop and cone. Thai rolled ice cream — named after the distinctive rolled shape of the ice cream — first originated in Southeast Asia and has long been a popular dessert throughout the region. It only just started becoming available in other countries around the world like the United States, so now you can enjoy this globe-trotting treat on hot Santa Fe summer days!

Gracias Madre – “Taqueria” Gracias Madre brings the authentic recipes from Zacatecas, Mexico. We use only the best meats, poultry, vegetables and Mexican spices.

Mafe Café – This food cart draws upon the exotic flavors of West Africa, using fresh, locally sourced ingredients whenever possible. Moustapha, Mafe Café’s owner and operator, enjoys combining the flavors of Africa, the Middle East, and New Mexico for delicious dishes and homemade cool beverages. As a student of sustainable agriculture, he is supporting both his education and family (which consists of his wife and two young boys) through his food business. He is always innovating with new recipes and ingredients from regional growers. Come by and try Moustapha’s “Mafe”, which means food for special occasions!

Patrick’s Soda

SoCal Mobile Café – Coffee trailer serving locally roasted coffee drinks, chai, hot chocolate, fruit smoothies, and more! Also offering fresh local pastries, breakfast burritos, sandwiches + snacks.

Santa Famous Street Eatz

First Panel Discussion of the 2019 InterPlanetary Festival.
How do we prepare – physically and psychologically – for impossible, exhilarating, and terrifying feats? What goes through the mind before a solo trek across the South Pole, a free climb up a seemingly insurmountable mountain, a manned mission to Mars?



The Santa Fe Institute, along with AMP Concerts and the Santa Fe Railyard Community Corporation kick off the second annual InterPlanetary Festival with a Free, outdoor public screening of 1968’s Planet of the Apes, introduced by Jonathan Rinzler, New York Times best-selling author of the critically acclaimed Making of the Planet of the Apes.

Synopsis: An astronaut crew crash-lands on a planet in the distant future where intelligent talking apes are the dominant species, and humans are the oppressed and enslaved.

With InterPlanetary Festival Director Caitlin McShea and Santa Fe Institute President David Krakauer.

Seasteading provides solutions to challenging global problems in the realms of governance, economics, sustainability, engineering, and society. The Seasteads we develop will create much needed competition in governance, use blockchain technology for more transparent interactions, and bring thousands of jobs and millions of dollars of investment into their local regions. Seasteading is one of the quickest, most sustainable, and cost-effective solutions to sea level rise, which will affect millions of people over the coming decades.

In early 2017 we signed an MOU with the government of French Polynesia and completed a series of feasibility and impact studies. Following the Varyon ICO we will begin the next phase of the project in which we will acquire legislation for a SeaZone, finalize the location of the first seastead, construct a land base and begin building the first functioning seastead.

Cosmos celebrates of humanity’s fascination with the vast expanse beyond Earth’s boundaries. In this group exhibition, six diverse photographers focus on heavenly bodies as a means to convey sublime notions of time, scale, and splendor. Cosmos reminds us how tiny, quick, and precious life is while engaging a fundamental curiosity. Collectively, these works create a place for reverence and wonder. Photo-eye gallery will host extended hours, 10 am to 7 pm for both days of InterPlanetary.

Bryant Austin – Austin’s minimal and atmospheric landscapes are portraits of

the sun while it traverses the sky on a specific day at a specific time.Kate Breakey – Cosmos will feature Orotones leafed in 24kt gold from

Breakey’s Golden Stardust series.
Linda Connor – Rich renderings on printing out paper from California’s Lick

Observatory captured during the late-19th and early-20th Centuries.

Alan Friedman – Friedman crafts striking, high definition images of the sun, what he calls “our neighborhood star.”

Chris McCaw – Using handmade cameras and vintage silver-gelatin paper, McCaw tracks the sun’s movements in his unique solarized prints.

Beth Moon – With star-lit backdrops, Moon’s African tree portraits blend the visible and invisible to reveal something truly magical.

The presentation “The Future of Human Exploration on Mars” will outline the current strategies and mission architecture for future human exploration of Mars using two NASA-recognized exploration zones: Mesopotamia and Protonilus Mensae (Gallegos and Newsom, 2015).

At the Royal Society in London on July 20, 2015, Yuri Milner, Stephen Hawking and Lord Martin Rees announced a set of initiatives — a scientific programme aimed at finding evidence of technological life beyond Earth entitled ‘Breakthrough Listen. In addition, atop the One World Trade Center in New York on April 20, 2016, Breakthrough Starshot was announced, an interstellar programme to Alpha Centauri. These are the first of several privately-funded global initiatives to answer the fundamental science questions surrounding the origin, extent and nature of life in the universe. The Breakthrough Initiatives are managed by the Breakthrough Prize Foundation.

Keynote by Pete Worden

Presented by Rutgers University’s Haym Benaroya

What might a habitat on the Moon look like? Even though we are a couple of decades from a permanent settlement on the Moon, we have been considering and studying what the habitats might look like since before the Apollo era. Initially, they will be pressurized cylinders, like the modules of the International Space Station. Later, they will be inflatable structures with larger volumes, making living inside more Earthlike and pleasant psychologically. If they are on the surface, we will need to cover them with regolith in order to shield against radiation and temperature extremes, along with the periodic micrometeoroid. Eventually, habitats and lunar cities will be underground, perhaps within the newly discovered lava tubes. But these will be so large, well lit, and Earthlike that we will hardly know we are under the lunar surface. This presentation provides an overview of the engineering, physiological and psychological issues and how we may address these.

Sustained space occupation will necessarily involve putting people under prolonged stresses that will challenge physical and mental resilience. There are a vast array of tools available today to alter and improve our cognitive and metabolic well-being, efficiency, and physical performance.

Sound, vibration, and light offer a dynamic method to entrain cortical brainwaves of working teams to the timing of the environment. Similar techniques are currently used by Navy Seals and others to promote collective “flow states”, improving emotional stability and resilience under prolonged high-stressful conditions.

The IRIS “Sensorium”  engage participants in an “alter-state experience” illuminating the effect of light, vibration, and sound on the human psyche. Monitoring the EEG of participants provides baseline insight into the dynamic nature of brainwaves, which govern our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. Common vernacular related to altered states of consciousness do not currently exist. The panel will explore Collaborative Interactive Evolutionary theory as a possible avenue toward new vernacular.

My WISC project is a book called Engineered for Greatness, about Raye J. Montague, a “hidden figure” of the Navy. Montague is unique in her achievements in a male dominated field. When she graduated high school in the 1950’s, minorities were not allowed to study engineering at the University of Arkansas. After graduation from college with a degree in business, Montague was hired as a civilian by the U. S. Navy as a clerk typist. Although she never received an engineering degree, she is credited with being the first person to design a naval ship on a computer, revolutionizing the design process for naval ships and submarines. Her work developing the CAD/CAM process is being used today in many areas of manufacturing from automobiles and dentistry to laptops and smart phones.”

Tomas O’Halloran will play an awesome set during the Opening Day of the InterPlanetary Festival.
Check out some of his mixes on his SoundCloud, deejaytomas.

What is the best operating system to run a planet? Who governs? Who owns? Who rewards and punishes? How can we evolve law and regulation to reflect the larger systems within which we live? What can the regulation of terrestrial ecosystems teach us about our opportunities and limitations as a species in stewarding each other and the earth? In stewarding other planets? Can we learn/teach fundamentally new social norms? What are the rights of non-human species and ecosystems? How many rules do we really need? What are you optimizing when you think about laws? Our own behavior? Maximum benefit to the society? Minimize extreme events? Creating long term stability and order? How can we universalize legal benefits linguistically or symbolically? What responsibilities and rights exist with regard to our interactions with planetary systems? What does policy and regulation that reflects relationship rather than ownership even look like?

“Beautiful, mystical and poetic.” – New York Times

“Downtown cool from Lou Reed to Deborah Harry to The Strokes all in one!” – Wall Street Journal

JiHAE ‘s latest LP ‘Illusion of You’ features her co-write with the legendary Leonard Cohen and Dave Stewart (Eurythmics) on song, ‘It Just Feels’.

During her burgeoning artistic career, JiHAE (which means “wisdom” in Korean) has released 4 albums, written and produced a multimedia rock opera based on her 3rd concept album, ‘Fire Burning Rain’ with Academy Award-winning playwright John Patrick Shanley, performed at the London Olympics, Cannes Film Festival and the United Nations, and become heavily involved with a variety of nonprofits, including work with Hillary Clinton’s 2012 Hours Against Hate global initiative, the Willie Mae Rock Camp and Let’s Come Together, a creative platform she founded to unite people for human rights. JiHAE also runs a music for production/label, Septem.

In this sequel set eleven years after “The Terminator,” young John Connor (Edward Furlong), the key to civilization’s victory over a future robot uprising, is the target of the shape-shifting T-1000 (Robert Patrick), a Terminator sent from the future to kill him. Another Terminator, the revamped T-800 (Arnold Schwarzenegger), has been sent back to protect the boy. As John and his mother (Linda Hamilton) go on the run with the T-800, the boy forms an unexpected bond with the robot.
This special screening will be introduced by Scott Ross, who at the time was the Vice President and General Manager of Lucasfilm’s Industrial Light and Magic, the company responsible for Terminator 2’s visual effects.


Schwimmer also recently completed 2 commissions from The Metropolitan Museum while Polygraph Lounge has received and performed 2 commissions from Carnegie Hall for full length concerts. Among the long list of artists Schwimmer has worked with are Simon and Garfunkel,Wayne Shorter, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Stevie Wonder, Bobby McFerrin, Willie Nelson, Paul Simon, The Orchestra of St. Luke’s, Gotye, Chaka Khan, Laurie Anderson, Bette Midler, Queen Latifah, producer Arif Mardin, Adam Guettel, Gotye’s Ondioline Orchestra, Mark Morris Dance Group,  producer Peter Katis,  Paul Bley, The Boston Pops, Mary Cleere Haran, T-Bone Walker, Sam Rivers, Ethan Iverson, Marc Shaiman, David Krakauer,  Christian Marclay, Matthew Barney,  Ang Lee, Maria Schneider, Michel Gondry, Mark Morris Dance Group, Trey Anastasio, The Klezmatics, Bernie Worrell, Sxip Shirey, Nels Cline, Annette Peacock, Gwyneth Paltrow, Marshall Brickman, Karen Black, Larry Campbell, Teresa Williams, Josh Groban, Mabou Mines, Geoffrey Holder, John Cale, Steve Buscemi, Iva Bittova, Theo Bleckmann, John Stubblefield, Burt Bacharach, The Roches, Jack Quartet, Scott Robinson, Edie Brickell, producer Teo Macero, Hal Willner, Vernon Reid, The Everly Brothers, Ethel, James Emery, Bela Fleck, Lenny Kaye, Kurt Vonnegut, Tamar Muskal, Anjani Thomas, Odetta, Drepung Loseling Tibetan Monks, Sussan Deyhim, producer John Simon, Joseph Jarman, Fred Anderson, Alwin Nikolai/ Murray Louis Dance Company, Marc Ribot, Frank London, C&C Music Factory and Sammy Davis Jr. among others.

Rob is a featured ondioline/keyboards/theremin soloist (as well as playing keyboards and theremin) with Gotye’s Ondioline Orchestra which has played to acclaim from National Sawdust and Roulette in NYC to Moogfest (Durham, NC) to Tasmania and The Sydney Festival (both in Jan 2018.) Rob also did arrangements for Gotye’s upcoming release. Rob is also a leading player of the Haken Continuum fingerboard. Recent recording sessions on Continuum include Paul Simon, Esperanza Spalding and Trey Anastasio.

A founding member and co-director of The NY Theremin Society, Rob is one of the top theremin virtuosos in the world and has been featured on CBS Sunday Morning, The NY Times, Wall St Journal, WNYC, WQXR and the popular PBS series “History Detectives”.  Rob is the thereminist for Ethan Iverson’s (The Bad Plus) “Pepperland,” a full length dance piece for The Mark Morris Dance Group which premiered in Liverpool in 2017 as part of Liverpool’s “Sgt. Pepper at 50” celebration. His appearances as theremin soloist include The Orchestra of St. Luke’s at Caramoor (which included Rob’s theremin arrangement of Bernard Herrmann’s “Scene d’Amour” from Vertigo,) The Boston Pops in a world premier of  “Nosferatu” at Symphony Hall,  The Moab Music Festival, The Little Orchestra at Lincoln Center, with Bobby McFerrin at Carnegie Hall and Simon & Garfunkel’s world tours (including the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 25th Anniversary show at Madison Square Garden) where he also played keyboards and sang. In addition to his CD Theremin Noir (with Uri Caine and Mark Feldman,) Rob has performed as featured thereminist on Trey Anastasio’s CD Traveler, Matthew Barney’s epic movie Cremaster 3, the 2009 R.W. Goodwin feature Alien Trespass, CBS television series Now and Again and A&E’s Breakfast With the Arts. He was chosen to perform in a sold out concert at the Disney Concert Hall (LA) as part of legendary The 10 Piece Theremin Orchestra. Rob was recently interviewed by Faith Salie (Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me) for CBS Sunday Morning and The NY Theremin Society concert was filmed as part of the same segment about the resurgence of the theremin. Schwimmer premiered a new silent movie soundtrack (The Fall of the House of Usher–1928) featuring live theremin at The NY Theremin Society’s recent residency at Bucknell University and given its NYC premiere at The Tribeca New Music Festival.

He composed the score for Cynthia Wade’s 2008 Academy Award winner “Freeheld” in the Documentary Short category as well as collaborating on David Frankel’s Oscar winner “Dear Diary” for Dreamworks (their first Oscar) in the Live Action Short in 1997. Rob’s compositions have been featured in theater, television series and movies, silent films, documentaries and feature films as well as Rob’s continuing series of solo concerts.

He has performed at venues all over the world including Carnegie Hall, the Concertgebouw (Amsterdam), Weiner Konzerthaus, Tokyo Dome, Madison Square Garden, The Kennedy Center, The Sydney Festival, The Metropolitan Museum, The Stone, The Museum of Modern Art, The Blue Note, CBGB’s, The Stone and the Colosseum (Rome).

All life on earth is social life, what are its limits? Are our social institutional systems the best there are? Could you have one planet that was one nation? How can we optimize equality, efficiency as a function of system architecture and size? Are terrestrial institutions the best that the universe has to offer? Do we expect aliens to have discovered capitalism or Marxism?Are there alternatives to money? What is the family unit like (if there is a family unit) in space? What social system would be the most effective colonizing strategy for other planets?

Image: Baer Tierkel via flickr

Biophysicist Shawn Douglas and designer Chaim Gingold discuss their inspirations and strategies for building computational tools that introduce new ways to play and think. Recently, they have been collaborating on Gelbox, a simulation and visualization tool for teaching Gel Electrophoresis—a notoriously hard to learn yet foundational tool in biology. This project grew directly out Shawn’s earlier work in making computational tools to transform laboratory practices (e.g. Cadnano, a CAD tool for DNA nanostructures), and Chaim’s work in designing interactive simulations and games (e.g. Earth: A Primer, a science book you play with).

How do we get there? How do we get there without using the earth as our fuel? What is the ideal fuel source? Will InterPlanetary travel require fundamentally new motion and energy technologies? Is nuclear tech a realistic solution? Why? Should space crafts be autonomous vehicles? Will space cities be planetary establishments or will we live our lives in the confines of a space ship?Where is the interplanetary dump? Dyson spheres? How can we mitigate energy increases with our growing population?

As Adm. James T. Kirk (William Shatner) and Capt. Spock (Leonard Nimoy) monitor trainees at Starfleet Academy, another vessel from the United Federation of Planets is about to try out the planet-creating Genesis Device in a seemingly deserted portion of space. In the process, two of Kirk’s officers are captured by Khan (Ricardo Montalban), an enemy Kirk thought he’d never see again. Once more, Kirk takes the Enterprise’s helm, where he meets Khan’s ship in an intergalactic showdown.

Since its inception in 1995, innovation and creativity have defined Ozomatli. Hailing from Los Angeles, the group found a way to represent the city’s eclectic culture through music that appeals to the local community and the world beyond. Ozomatli’s success is exemplified in an impressive variety of genres from classic to modern Latino, urban, hip-hop and other world styles. The “Dioses del Baile,” or “Gods of Dance,” have created one of the most exciting, captivating and flat-out fun live shows touring today. They continue to harness their musical instincts by conceiving new concepts and forging new sounds that keep fans on their toes and the world dancing.

The latest recording is an album of classic Mexican hits reimagined with a reggae feel. Titled Non-Stop: Los Angeles ? Mexico ? Kingston, it pays homage to the band’s Latin roots, allowing them to personalize songs that defined their youth and in turn, become part of Latin and Pop music lore. Produced by drum & bass reggae legends, Sly & Robbie (Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones, Peter Tosh, Jimmy Cliff, Madonna, No Doubt) and featuring various high profile guest vocalists, the album recreates the magic of classic Latin hits with a reggae dancehall vibe that only Ozomatli could make feel as natural as waves rolling in the Caribbean sands.

The album was born from the group’s desire to pay tribute to the Mexican styles that influenced their youth. Originally conceived as a tribute to mariachi and Norteño, the band decided to expand the concept and include old and new artists and cover more eras all under the umbrella of reggae. Pairing reggae dancehall instrumentals with the already eclectic variety of Mexican music spoke to the band’s desire to do something uniquely authentic for its 20th anniversary. The album includes classic Mexican songs such as “Sabor a Mi” and “Besame Mucho,” but also songs by contemporary Mexican acts like Cafe Tacuba and Mana, Mexican-American greats like Selena, and classic legends like Santana. Ozomatli has always brought people and cultures together with their music and that is exactly what this album embodies, merging Jamaican influences with Mexican roots to lend an original Ozo sound to songs we all know.

Prior to paying respects to the classic Latin catalogue, Ozomatli was creating its own repertoire adored by fans and critics alike. The band catapulted to the top of the live music scene with its first eponymously titled album. The impact of the then 10-piece band’s album was felt throughout the music world, and earned them the opportunity to open for Carlos Santana on his Supernatural tour. Following the success of its first album and touring with Santana and Mana, Ozomatli released its sophomore album, Embrace the Chaos, which garnered a Grammy award for Best Latin Rock/Alternative Album. The follow up album, Street Signs, won both the same award and the Latin Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album in 2005.

Ozomatli takes firm stances on various social justice issues. Their work focuses on giving voice to Latino culture, opportunity to children, fighting for workers’ rights, and promoting global unity and peace amongst people, cultures and nations. Ozomatli were named Cultural Ambassadors for the U.S. State Department in 2006, was the first musical group to speak at the TED Conference in San Francisco, and performed for President and First Lady Obama at the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute’s 32nd Annual Award Gala.

In addition to politics and social issues, Ozomatli emphasizes the importance of family and children. Ozomatli has strived to make music to be shared through the generations and have even recorded music specifically targeted towards children and families. Their 2012 release, Ozomatli Presents OzoKidz, features all original children’s music that captures the innovation and liveliness that Ozo fans have become accustomed to, while educating children on the values of nature and knowledge. The band continues to perform the album at special OzoKidz concerts, where parents and children alike dance and play along on OzoKidz kazoos.

With Non-Stop, Ozomatli continues creating music for entire families and communities. By recreating these classic Latin songs, Ozo redefines their meaning and reimagines their beauty for generations to come. As Ozomatli percussionist and MC, Justin Poree, puts it, “Anyone who is eight or 80 will recognize “Sabor a Mi” or “Besame Mucho.” These rhythmically and melodically rich songs bridge the generational gap, captivate all who listen, and beautifully mesh a variety of rich cultures.

Meet Luna City is an immersive experience that brings its audience face to face with people who live on the Moon in the year 2175. Through this dialogue, the audience explores a rich reality of humans in space and the challenges of forming habitat and society beyond the Earth.

In the framing fiction of Meet Luna City, by means of a quaint device, we are able to communicate through time with people on the Moon in the future. However, to avoid “timesnap” (affecting that future), the audience must pretend to also be living in the year 2175 – in a small colony on an asteroid, for example, or on Mars. Meet Luna City thus engages its audience with questions about living their own lives away from Earth: what’s good, what’s necessary, and what can be left behind.

“In Meet Luna City, the audience gets to meet some citizens of Luna City who are living on the Moon a hundred and fifty-seven years from now, and chat with these citizens about life in the moon community: what it’s like and how it came to be. But first they need to prepare their own alternate reality: where do they live in the year 2175? What sort of community do they live in? Are they also living off-Earth? In so doing, we bring up intriguing questions about the sorts of lives we want to be living, and the positive futures we want to be living them in.

“People may be surprised to hear that the Moon is not a cold and sterile place, but a real human community, with ritual, conflict, ecology and human connection at its heart.” – Kenneth Ecklund, artist of games and play, currently an artist-in-residence at the School for the Future of Innovation in Society at Arizona State University.

This installation is jointly presented by the School for the Future of Innovation in Society, the Center for Science and the Imagination, and the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts at Arizona State University.

This installation is made possible by the Baruch Blumberg Astrobiology Scholarship.


Presented by SFI and Meow Wolf. Absolutely Free

Max Cooper has carved out a unique position for himself as an artist interested in creating multi-sensory experiences across emotional dance floor experimentation, fine art sound design and visual artefacts created to understand and process the insights of science through works of art.

When considering the origins (and possibilities) of life in space, there are many complex and interweaving questions to find the answers for. How likely is it that we will find life in space? How to we even calculate that likelihood? Where do we look, and what are the best methods to use in our search? And in the end, whether we find life in space or not, what does that mean to us as a species and a planet? Columbia University’s Director of Astrobiology Caleb Scharf, and biologist and complexity scientist Chris Kempes discuss these thought provoking questions, and offer specific insight into what we can expect as this search for extraterrestrial life continues.

How different will our day to day be on another planet? Will it be on another planet or in a spaceship? What will we endure physically to live in space? Who says it will be any different than life on earth? Where can we live? What will we eat? Will it be comfortable or uncomfortable? What will the family unit look like in space? Will technology allow for easy communication? Will distance make communication difficult? What is the optimum number of humans for a colony? What architecture would provide optimal city performance? What’s the smallest functional human society in space? Pets? What becomes most important to bring along?

What is intelligence? If we as humans consider ourselves to be the pinnacle of intelligence, at least in terms of tangible accomplishments as a species, do we expect to find this same level and occurence of intelligence mirrored in any extraterrestrial life we come across? Do we expect that intelligent life to be organic, or artificial? If we find life on other planets, do we expect it to be intelligent?

Watch Michael Garfield‘s generative notes for this panel, too.

Do we have the intelligence, socially and technologically to save the earth? Is it too late? Do climate scientists have to become climate engineers? Do we have to radically change the way we live and consume to allow for continued life on earth, or will technology save us? Is talking about interplanetary travel irresponsible? Is not talking about interplanetary travel irresponsible? How can we change the incentives to live sustainably on earth? Human long term thinking is a newer and newer thing, what would change as humans think of humanity in terms of a 10,000 year plan? How will knowledge of climate and atmosphere on Mars help us understand the atmosphere of earth? What can we learn about inhospitable planets from inhospitable biomes? To survive a trip to Mars, you’d have to be super sustainable, so why are we sustainable tourists but bad locals? Does our treatment of the earth now indicate our readiness to leave it?

The Illegal Aliens are a Punk/Metal band focused on having fun and making sweet tunes. They address politics and other issues in their songs in a humorous and energetic way.

In the 23rd century, a New York City cabbie, Korben Dallas (Bruce Willis), finds the fate of the world in his hands when Leeloo (Milla Jovovich) falls into his cab. As the embodiment of the fifth element, Leeloo needs to combine with the other four to keep the approaching Great Evil from destroying the world. Together with Father Vito Cornelius (Ian Holm) and zany broadcaster Ruby Rhod (Chris Tucker), Dallas must race against time and the wicked industrialist Zorg (Gary Oldman) to save humanity.
This special screening will be introduced by Scott Ross, digital media pioneer (Digital Domain, Inc.) responsible for this film’s visual effects, and cameo appearance actor in the film!


Life Support Systems at Stake: Motion and Energy Technology, Social and Economic Engineering.

I have reset the sensors to scan for frequencies outside the usual range. By emitting harmonic vibrations to shatter the lattices. We will monitor and adjust the frequency of the resonators. He has this ability of instantly interpreting and extrapolating any verbal communication he hears. It may be due to the envelope over the structure, causing hydrogen-carbon helix patterns throughout. I’m comparing the molecular integrity of that bubble against our phasers.

The Sticky is a live funk collective from Santa Fe New Mexico consisting of creative artists at the top of their craft. Their mission is to use the essential tools of layered harmonies, killer horns, heavy grooves, and subsonic motion to assist all in ascending from the hips.  40 years of Revolutionary Funk & Soul anthems as well as Evolutionary originals are delivered with Funky Diva Realness, Tribal Tightness, and a Dedication to the Preservation of the P!

What is the nature of time? Is time real? Is time an invention? Can we control time? Is the universe aging? Will it die? Could we live forever organically? In simulation? How could/will the Singularity affect human time? Is consciousness infinite? What’s the half-life of a civilization? What’s the half life of planet? How can we cope with Einstein’s law, now that society has managed to become near light-speed? How do you deal with the fact that your daughter might actually be the age of your grandmother? How will our conception of time be changed after years in a tube, in darkness? What is human? How do we decide when we become people? How can we tell when an organism makes things? Thinks about things? Becomes things? How do cultures change? How quickly? Why?


In this sci-fi classic, a spacecraft travels to the distant planet Altair IV to discover the fate of a group of scientists sent there decades earlier. When Commander John J. Adams (Leslie Nielsen) and his crew arrive, they discover only two people: Dr. Morbius (Walter Pidgeon) and his daughter, Altaira (Anne Francis), who was born on the remote planet. Soon, Adams begins to uncover the mystery of what happened on Altair IV, and why Morbius and Altaira are the sole survivors.  Shakespeare lovers will be pleased to know that this film is a take-off of Billy’s last play, The Tempest.

For an out of this world introduction by Jonah Nolan.

Life Support Systems at Stake: Intelligent Systems and Cognitive Assistance, Social and Economic Engineering, Motion and Energy Technology

SITE Santa Fe’s grand re-opening exhibition, Future Shock examines our dynamic and decisive moment in global history and looks to the challenges and possibilities of the future. Future Shock is a large-scale exhibition of works by international artists that articulates the profound impact of the acceleration of technological, social, and structural change upon contemporary life. Future Shock takes its title from Alvin Toffler’s prophetic 1970’s book, in which he describes the exhilaration and consequences of our rapidly advancing world. With Toffler’s predictions and warnings as a backdrop, Future Shock will bring together the work of ten artists whose works imagine a range of visions of our present and future.
The exhibition is comprised of works by 12 international artists, including Dario Robleto, artist in residence at SETI, who is also participating in the Art and Imagined Futures Interplanetary panel. Enjoy his Setlists for the Setting Sun (The Crystal Palace), and Will the Sun Remember at All. Pop into the learning lab to watch the collaborative creation of a time capsule, buried in May, by the Dario, Joanne LeFrak and students from New Mexico School of Arts students.

Life Support Systems at Stake in this exhibition: Complex Time Design, Social and Economic Engineering, Autonomous Ecosystems, Motion and Energy Technology, Art and Imagined Futures.

Is art the best means to communicate with others? Is art the most effective means of communication in general? Visually? Musically? Linguistically? Should we send an artist into space? Should we bring art with us at the risk of precious and expensive payload? Should they have brought a poet? Was Jodie Foster right? Do other species make art? If we encounter another species without art, should we be worried? Is art belonging only to intelligent species? What do the history of themes in art reveal about humans? Imagination and counterfactual realities in mind, how has the artistic representation of space forged our ideas about space? When we imagine space, are we remembering artistic representations we’ve encountered before?

Come peruse the InterPlanetary Cosmodity Market for all manner of out-of-this-world wares. Located along the Ramada Walk adjacent to our Food Truck Court, the Cosmodity Market is the perfect opportunity to pick up a trinket (or three)!
This year’s Cosmodity Market features vendors including:

Cheryl Art CasdenOriginal artworks and wears by Cheryl Casden – artist, educator, and creativity advocate.

Dreams Lost In TimeSince 2008, Sam Stevens has been one of the founders of hand-stitched 360° Panoramic photography, having developed his own unique techniques to produce some of the highest resolution 360° artwork. Each panorama is hand-stitched from hundreds to thousands of photos and lots of love. His 360° artwork is pressed on classic vinyl records, printed on metal, tapestries, pendants, and VR.

Little ET, The Interstellar Feller (The Art and Imagination of Amy CĂłrdova y Boone)Little ET, the Interstellar Feller, materialized from the imagination of Santa Fe artist and award winning children’s book illustrator, Amy CĂłrdova y Boone. Far from the menacing depiction of Alien life, LITTLE ET, is inquisitive, receptive, and happily engages in many Earthly and Un-Earthly delights. One may find him dancing with a Jackalope under moonlight, or holding hands with a Bigfoot, as in “Summer of Love”. Little ET likes to communicate with others who hail from paradigms we cannot comprehend. Brilliant color buddies up with a unique and celebratory vision. Original art, prints, cool caps, and other stellar items!

Linda Storm Art “We are Stardust” cut-out photo opportunity, and original paintings for sale.

Love Gardens (Sharon Rodriguez) – Unique hand painted rocks, colored pencil drawings, cards to give to your friends and family, specialty earrings, and a fairy garden giveaway.

Cosmico (Richard Morrow)

Sean Wells ArtSean is a 5th generation Spanish Colonial artist who celebrates the stories and characters of the Southwest through art. Sean has an affinity for science fiction and the legend of the Roswell Alien, imaging him in paintings that were featured on New Mexico Lottery scratchers!

Santa Fe Institute – Swing by the SFI Booth (right next to the Main Stage) to grab a program, an IP sticker, or a limited edition festival t-shirt (in kids, women’s, and men’s sizes!).

SW Regenerative – Informative booth offering visitors an opportunity to talk with New Mexico’s premier physician in regenerative medicine.

Inspire Taos

Two Stoned Betties – Two Stoned Betties make out of this world jewelry to inspire others to think outside the box and stay tuned to their hearts. Two Stoned Betties paint everything, even people! They will be offering face paint and body art at their booth.





IRIS merges rhythmic sound, pulsating light, and vibrational resonance, induces bodily experience beyond the boundaries of the intellectual mind.

Engineered by top-tier scientists, creatives, and programmers, the IRIS sensorium hovers at an electric intersection of neuroscience, art, and entertainment. “Three parts neurobiology and one part magic,” says creator Stephen Auger, “each IRIS encounter generates a custom creation of wonder and awe.” Light, color, sound, and story guide each adventurer on a journey unique to their biology, synchronizing their senses and reconnecting them to the magic of forgotten experiences.

Auger invites participants inside a small space where they are introduced to both sound and light frequencies, which induce visualizations of spirals, fractals, waves, radials, zigzags, honeycombs, pinwheels, and “seed” patterns.


In 1819, Jan Purkinje, the father of modern neuroscience, first described the swirling geometric visual patterns brought on by diffuse flickering light as phenomena of perception rather than a supernatural encounter. Profoundly influential experiences are found through all recorded time from cave art, shamanistic trance to Pythagorean geometry. Adepts and seekers have long seeked the night sky, caves, and sacred spaces,  at specific seasonal moments, to elevate shafts and particles of light into visionary encounters. 

When the human visual system encounters specific frequencies of diffuse flickering light, most people experience beautiful swirling colorful geometric patterns. The dynamics of the patterns are related to altered neuronal activity between the thalamus and the visual cortex, but there is still much that is not well understood. The phenomena is an interesting hack, which reveals the inner workings of the human visual system without the need for pharmacological assistance.

The development of IRIS has been made possible with support from Harvard Medical School, MIT, and UC Berkeley. Following its debut at Axle Contemporary, this project will be presented at Burning Man in the Black Rock Desert in Nevada in September 2018.


For those seeking deeper insight into the inner/outer-cosmos experience, Stephen Auger will join Santa Fe Institute Fellows Artemy Kolchinsky, Vanessa Ferdinand, UC Berkeley Chronobiologist Dr. Benjamin Smarr, and Bio-hacker Mikey Sklar for a provocative panel discussion on “Future Evolution of the Brain-body on Earth and Space.” The panel will take place at The Santa Fe Institute’s InterPlanetary Festival on Friday, June 8th at noon.

The IRIS experience is produced by Axle Contemporary and will premier at The Santa Fe Institute‘s InterPlanetary Festival and at the CURRENTS New Media Festival. Learn more about Futurition Santa Fe.

Appointments last about seven minutes.  Appointments can be booked in advance on Axle Contemporary’s website, beginning on May 22. IRIS can accommodate 1–4 people at a time.


Thurs, June 7:  11:00 am–8:30 pm in Farmer’s Market shade structure. Part of Santa Fe Institute’s InterPlanetary Festival.

Fri, June 8:      11:00 am–11:00 pm in Farmer’s Market shade structure. Part of Santa Fe Institute’s InterPlantery Festival & CURRENTS.

Sat, June 9:     3:00 pm–11:00 pm in Farmer’s Market shade structure. Part of CURRENTS.

Sun, June 10:   Noon–7:00 pm in Farmer’s Market shade structure. Part of CURRENTS.

Thurs June 14:  4:00 pm–10:00 pm at Meow Wolf.

Fri, June 15:      5:00 pm–8:00 pm in Farmer’s Market shade structure.

Sat, June 16:     5:00 pm–8:00 pm in Farmer’s Market shade structure.

Thurs, June 21:    3:00 pm–8:00 pm at Meow Wolf.

Friday, June 22:   5:00 pm–8:00 pm in Farmer’s Market shade structure.

Sun: June 24:  Noon–5:00 pm in Farmer’s Market shade structure.

What’s the minimal requirement for a self-sustaining ecosystem? Ecosystems crash all the time, closed ones included, what does a fully closed, man-made, functional ecosystem look like? What processes lead to living planets? What’s required for stable ecosystems and long-term stability? Are we capable of building an autonomous ecosystem? Are there general signs of the impact of intelligent species on ecosystems? What leads to stable planetary habitability? Can a non-living planet be turned into a living one? How can a living planet be turned into a non-living planet?

Panel on “Emergent Engineering” featuring Jonathan Blow, Jessica Flack, and Stephanie Forrest.

As part of the InterPlanetary Festival, the Innovations & Ideas Expo features interactive and experiential booths with participants from academia, to AR/VR, to biotechnology. June 15th & 16th from 12-6PM, in the Expo Tent!

Participating Booths

InterPlanetary Podcast Stage – Some of the best science-oriented Podcasts will be recording episodes live from the Expo Podcast Stage! Submit questions to the speakers, tell us why you’re here, what you love, what you hate, what you think about our InterPlanetary Future.

Arch Mission

BEMER Vascular Therapy – Recharge your body! Come experience an 8-minute BEMER energy session and enhance your general blood flow. The BEMER (Bio-Electro-Magnetic-Energy-Regulation) wellness device uses a pulsed electromagnetic field to deliver a patented therapeutic signal which assists the heart in delivering blood to the smallest vessels in that body.

Cyber Hero LeagueCYBERHERO LEAGUEŸ is a new edtech brand that turns kids’ playtime into real world heroic action. Kids become real world heroes using the tools of digital technology to develop empathy and compassion for others while becoming globally-aware activists. Cyberhero League gives kids the opportunity to learn about and achieve the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

Complexity Explorer

Heart Mind Connection – The interactive art piece “Heart Drum” will be in the center. Visitors and participants will wear an ear clip that measures their heart rate, the signal of which controls a bass and snare drum to be played in response to the rhythm. Bongo drums are provided so participants can play a duet with their own heart. There will also be two mixed media sculptures from my brain series on pedestals, and a glass wall relief illustrating various brain waves.

InterGalactic Cultural Relations Institute – Imagine being an intergalactic diplomat or cultural attachĂ© – what would you share with aliens? What would you want them to share with you? What is cultural diplomacy? What if you could be part of the first Space Nation formed by human beings – Asgardia? Do you have an alien or UFO experience to share with others who are genuinely interested in friendly and respectful encounters? Stop by the InterGalactic Cultural Relations Institute booth to imagine the role of art and culture in future interplanetary and intergalactic cultural relations, meet the InterGalactic Ambassadors and Dr. Howard, and get a free sticker!

Laboratory for Playful ComputationJoin the Laboratory for Playful Computation from the University of Colorado Boulder in crafting  postcards from places in space, real or imagined, using a combination of low tech craft materials and high tech electronics. Take your postcard home or add it to the postcard gallery on display. No experience with electronics or art making is necessary. The Laboratory for Playful Computation is an interdisciplinary research group that believes learning should be a creative process, informed by approaches from many disciplines, driven by curiosity, and full of joy. We create and study new learning experiences and technologies that realize these values.

Los Alamos National Labs/Bradbury Museum of ScienceHands on science demonstrations. (Los Alamos)

MAKE Santa Fe – MAKE Santa Fe will have two installations. First, right outside the entrance to the Expo Tent, a giant orrery made out of up-cycled parts by volunteers from the makerspace. Real functionality for nerds of all ages to turn the crank and see the planets move! Second, inside in the MAKE Booth, a Ruben’s Tube made from recycled materials to demonstrate a standing wave with fire. Make will also have a 3d printer in use and laser cut giveaways.

Oculus VR Booth – Come test out the Oculus VR experience!

Santa Fe Children’s MuseumSATURDAY ONLY – The Stargazer Portable Planetarium – Learners of all ages enter the dome of the planetarium, and through the high definition magic of Stargazer, travel to distant galaxies. Each planetarium show offers bilingual programming featuring cultural tales, star talks, and interplanetary travel. (Santa Fe)

Seasteading Institute – Come learn how humanity’s future lies out at sea on environmentally restorative, floating islands. Peruse the book: “Seasteading: How Floating Nations Will Restore the Environment, Enrich the Poor, Cure the Sick, and Liberate Humanity from Politicians”.


Space for Humanity

UNM Swarmathon – SUNDAY ONLY – Demo & hands-on play with autonomous robotics systems.