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  • noahchonlee

How I Want My Kids to Live - The Long Term Plan for viaPrize

Updated: Mar 20

A World I Would Want My Kids to Live In

Imagine waking up in your own home, yawning, stretching, then stepping out your door. You splash the morning rays across your face as you squint around the community park that the houses surround.

"Goodmorning!" You wave to your neighbors with a smile and then join a yoga class in the park. After this, you read in your garden and on the way back inside notice some ripe tomatoes that you pluck to add to your fridge.

Your basic needs are provided for and you do not need to work, but you feel like creating something today. You wander to a computer terminal and look through the quests for the day.

In the community section there is a request to paint a mural on a new house to welcome a new member, and though you enjoy painting, today you switch over to the global section. You filter for quests that would require the skillset of prompt engineering and embedding for large language model applications and notice the intriguing idea for making an AI voice for a river. This would be trained on environmental research papers and give a playful, conversational, and educational way to interact with the findings of scientists and researchers.

You build it and win the quest experience points and donate some of the reward to another quest for building a swing set in your community and also buy some treats for your miniature husky.

Your reward accumulates and grows as more people use the platform and people socially recognize the impact of the project and congratulate it.

As well as this, impact is measured not just on profit, but on more holistic measurements of what improves well-being.

Making It Real

Try out a conversation with the river chatbot:

I'd recommend asking it, "what is love?"

We built this in a weekend and won this prize. We are presenting it to the government of Montenegro on May 15 who is interested in making the second ever river national park in the world after Albania made one of their rivers the first one only a month and a half ago. This bot is shockingly easy to build and I can release educational resources and tutorials so anyone who has an Internet connection may learn to build similar ones themselves within a day. But in order to know what people want to have built and to have mutual support among a group that teaches one another... we need community.

For the AI river project, we heard the idea during a presentation then immediately crowdfunded a prize (with several people contributing $20-$50) and then traveled to meet the river then assembled a team to build it--all within five days. This was possible because I am living in a two month long pop-up community called Zuzalu that assembles technologists, artists, and sociologists to co-live, co-work and co-build together. The two hundred residents are all within short walking distance of one another. We share breakfast together, attend lectures from guest speakers on a different emerging tech or social topic each week, build together during hackathons, also work our remote jobs, and organize our own activities by posting it on the community events board or by messaging it in the group chat.

The community intentionally prioritizes health and has yoga classes, cold plunges in the ocean, healthy food, and ways to opt in for health tracking such as glucose monitors. We regularly do surveys to ask what people want to see and have weekly town halls to discuss how we are co-building this community.

After exploring dozens of countries and intentional communities ranging from religious to hippie to tech and beyond, I asked myself, "what community would I want my family to live in?" That is when I envisioned the village described at the start of this post.

(Pausing writing this in the coworking space because now I'm joining a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu class, then met one of BJJ guys who is a lawyer and asked for his advice on setting up cooperatives, then hopped into hackathon and built and It's now 3pm.)

I realized we could make that vision a reality.

This Is The Beginning

This is only the beginning. Everyone needs a community. Everyone needs a space where they feel they belong. I did not begin caring about this because I wanted suburbanites to have slightly more comfortable lives. I cared about this because I grew up feeling that I did not have a neighborhood. Life felt meaningless, and only religion held my sanity together, and soon I even lost that.

I care about this because I have spent too long watching genocides occurring on a screen and I lost hope in humanity. But what restored it was found in the simplest things--in sharing a meal together with a family in Ecuador. With street performers in Chile going hungry in order to share the little bit of bread they had with me simply because sharing is what humans do.

I still cry when my friend in Syria sends me videos of children's bodies stacked in bombed out buildings, and I also feel inspired as I hear about how he does his best to take care of his own kids.

We have seen what happens when society collapses. But we have also seen what is there to catch us: community.

We are building tools for communities to self-organize and build a better future for themselves.

We are building a world our kids could be proud of.

The Future of viaPrize

We are building a community coordination toolkit consisting of five economic tools that also support two global socio-economic movements taking over the world.

The Toolkit

1. Crowdfunded Prizes (

The first tool consists of crowdfunded prizes which is fully functional on and public goods are currently being built that are winning prizes. Next, we will add easier voting for funders to choose winners and incorporate better web3 functionality in addition to fiat.

These are also known in academic literature as Inducement Prize Contests (IPCs.)

2. Pacts (

The first type of pact makes it easy to crowdfund assets and track contributions in order to award ownership and other benefits.

The person launching the pact sets the terms which state how the funds will be used, a target funding goal (ie: the price of the asset), and the deadline.

If the target funding goal is met, then the terms are enacted (ie: a predetermined transaction such as purchasing an asset occurs.) If the goal is not met by the deadline, then everyone is automatically refunded.

We built this mid to late April 2023 and won a prize in the Zuzalu Public Goods Hackathon. I expect this should be usable by the start of June.

This type of pact is known in academic literature as Dominant Assurance Contracts (DACs.)

There are further use cases utilizing mutual assurances and credible commitments (ie: "I'll do it if you do it") coordination mechanisms that I will describe in a later post.

3. Impact Certificates as a Philanthropic Stock Market

Impact certificates are shares in the impact of a project just like stocks are shares in a company. This will utilize raffles to award holders of impact certificates, discounts and VIP access benefits, speculation on how prices will alter as they are sold in a secondary market, and reputational rewards.

4. Prediction Markets and Futarchy

We will incorporate prediction markets which involve betting on whether or not an outcome will occur. For example, people may make predictions on how likely it is whether or not someone will win a prize, predictions on how much an impact certificate will be worth in one year, and predictions on what the impact will be of various projects. These predictions help inform our decisions and become a basis of Futarchy in which a polity bases its policies on predictions of the outcomes of the those policies. This will include retrospective and reward systems to award people for making accurate predictions that allow us to improve the calibration of our confidence intervals. In other words, impact certificates will help us look back on our decisions, projects, and policies whereas prediction markets help us look forward to guess at the future, and the two inform one another.

5. Community Mutual Funds for Insurance and Universal Basic Income

Finally, these tools all flow into Community Mutual Funds wherein members of a community may pool their resources in order to have co-owned insurance, investments in positively impactful social ventures, and dividends that are distributed through universal basic income.

The Movements

1. Decentralized AI

As AI automation continues to displace workers, we need alternatives offered through the tools described above in order to have our basic needs provided for and build towards a future in which we have the right to build up, travel to, and live in communities where we feel we belong.

2. Network Society Confederation

As the communities grow, they will coordinate among one another through a confederation of network societies.

All of this will be described in further detail in later posts.

Why I Care

I have spent too long watching coordination failures that led to inequality, violence, and corruption, wishing I could do something about it.

I have spent too much time trying to convince people who had every basic need provided for but no community that life is worth living.

We need to fight for our rights, we need tools to build our own futures, and we need a community, a sense of identity, and a sense of purpose and belonging.

I used to despair at being able to make a difference in a society full of so much pain.

But I see now that the path to change is to start with one community.

If you wish to be a part of this, feel free to join the viaPrize telegram group here:



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