A Newsletter That Pays You
Earn crypto for completing tasks and tutorials. Join a community of technological progressives.
• 5 min read
1729.com is the first newsletter that pays you. It has a regular feed of paid tasks and tutorials with $1000+ in crypto prizes per day, and doubles as a vehicle for distributing a new book called The Network State.
What's it about? Well, it's a newsletter for technological progressives. That means people who are into cryptocurrencies, startup cities, mathematics, transhumanism, space travel, reversing aging, and initially-crazy-seeming-but-technologically-feasible ideas. Basically, if you like @balajis' past work, you will enjoy this. Go subscribe here to receive daily updates, and follow @oneseventwonine on Twitter.
1729.com has a broader focus than just crypto, and some key differences from a typical newsletter or website.
💰 Tasks. First, the new site is not just a site, it's a bootloader that is meant to set up many other sites. So the first task is a meta task: earn $100 in BTC for running a newsletter for technological progressives at your own domain, as a way to begin incentivizing the decentralization of media. Specifically, we’ll pay $100 each for the best 10 submissions received by the deadline, for a total of $1000 in prizes. Both new and existing sites can qualify, with preference given to people that need a boost.
📖 Tutorials. Second, 1729.com is not just about tasks but about tutorials. The busy and the lazy alike tend to learn by surfing the web because they can't finish months-long MOOCs. Our alternative is regular bite-size lessons with incentives to complete them. Thus, the second task is a tutorial: earn $100 in crypto for completing three Elixir problems via Exercism.
🧬 Health. Third, this effort is not just about the mind but the body. With a startup you can end up sacrificing your health for the team. Miss a workout to close a deal, lose sleep to take a call. But this is a false economy, because missing daily workouts is physical debt that’s even harder to pay off than technical debt, and fitness is as good for cognition as it is for health. However, we need social adaptations to make that tradeoff apparent to all parties, a physiological duty of founders to maximize their health and that of their employees that’s analogous to a fiduciary duty. Enlightenment comes when we realize that we need to make health tracking part of the routine for whatever we do, not only for ourselves but for the community, and not only for personal health but because exercise is medicine and quantified self is on a straight line with transhumanism. So the third task is to submit a proof-of-workout to earn a little crypto. The idea is to attract a community of people who want to stay fit today and reverse aging tomorrow. Do you even lift, bro?
🌎 🇮🇳 International yet Indian. Fourth, we want to build an audience that's both international and Indian from the beginning, to show that you can build a global operation from an Indian base. Think about how Silicon Valley startups begin as "American" and then expand to the world. Now reverse that: we want to prove that you can begin anywhere in the world, like India, and then eventually expand to the rest of the world, including America.
That’s why we named 1729.com after Ramanujan’s number. Ramanujan made great contributions to India and to mathematics around the world. He was particularly renowned for his contribution to number theory, which underpins cryptography and hence crypto. And he represented something I’ve been thinking about for many years, which is how to use technology to help the dark talent in India and around the world rise as Ramanujan did. Thus the fourth task is to help identify those people and places where the best is outside the West, where the ascending world is surpassing the declining world.
☁️👋 Cloud Community. Fifth, underpinning the site is a community of technological progressives interested in things like this:
Joining the community isn't necessary to receive tasks and tutorials, but part of the purpose of 1729 is to enrich for the kind of person who wants to build this future. By way of analogy, just like there are many people reading Hacker News for every one person joining YCombinator, there will be many people subscribing to 1729.com for every one that applies to our community.
Because it's a cloud community, our meetups are held in virtual reality rather than in-person. Admission to the meetups is selective and based on positive-sum contribution, including completion of tasks and tutorials – and creation of them. That's why the fifth task is to earn $100 in BTC for creating an unfunded task that matches 1729's content and themes. If accepted, we will then provide funds for the task and post it to the site and newsletter.
💼 Distributed Sales. Sixth, while we believe in decentralization and the dark talent, and have allocated enough money to fund a full year of daily tasks, we do want to make this a scalable business where our users don't just passively receive tasks but actively attract new ones. Specifically, we want to find individuals and companies that want to post sponsored tasks for the 1729 community to complete, similar to what we did with Earn. So the sixth task is to earn $1000 in BTC for referring a friend or colleague who ends up creating a 1729 sponsored task.
🌐 🚩 The Network State. Finally, the purview of 1729.com is much broader than crypto. Digital currency pioneers like Hal Finney were Extropians, interested in crypto not simply as a tool to exit legacy systems but as a means to build entirely new worlds, where we can pursue cryonics, life extension, nuclear energy, and the future we were promised. Can we extend the ideas behind cryptocurrencies to cryptocountries? Can we level up from creating tech companies and decentralized protocols to founding startup cities and network states? I've been writing a book on this topic called The Network State, and the content will be released for free to 1729.com subscribers.
But it's not just a book, it's a bookapp, where individual chapters have embedded tasks to encourage people to do things. Think of it as being similar to a math textbook with exercises included, except those exercises involve the real world. The first such embedded task lets you earn $50 in BTC for writing a high-quality review of the introductory chapter of The Network State at your own domain. And thus we come full circle all the way back to the site you set up in task one.
That's the overview. To help you get started, here's the first batch of tasks in list form. Emails will go out as tasks go live.
Each task has an expiration date or condition; we will cut off submissions once that condition is hit. We'll then take a bit of time to evaluate submissions, and post the next batch of tasks. Remember to subscribe to receive regular emails, and to follow @oneseventwonine on Twitter.
Then go check out the first task here!