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Law and regulation is a major problem when you try to make technological progress. In the last google IO keynote, Larry Page responded a question about how to stay positive, and how we can make progress. (question starts here. Response below starts here)

The other problem [to make progress], in my mind, is also that we haven't built mechanisms that allow experimentation. There's many exiting and important things you could do that you just can't do because they're illegal, or they're not allowed by regulation. And that makes sense. We don't want the world to change too fast. But maybe we should set aside a small part of the world. I like going to Burning Man for example. [...] That's an environment where people can try new things, but not everyone has to go. [...] I think as technologists we should have some safe places where we can try out some new things, and figure out what is the effect on society, what's the effect on people, without having to deploy it to the normal world. And people who like those kind of things can go there and experience that. And we don't have mechanisms for that.

It's basically this idea but for for politics. Faster iteration.

I think that politics and economics are so complex that the only way to make sure an idea actually works is not debating about it for a long time, but actually try it out (For example, I would love to see what basic income yields at a large scale instead of arguing about it for ages).

So besides Burning Man, are there places, events or cities that function as a "law sand box", where the law is different or fast changing for the sake of experimentation ?

  • Agile Democracy? The problem would be getting congress to adopt SCRUM. Lawyers would hate that. ;) – user1530 Jul 15 '13 at 22:51
  • What do you mean by 'special laws'? Different places have different restrictions on what you can do by experimentation. Are those "special laws"? – DJClayworth Jul 16 '13 at 0:08
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    This is how the USA is supposed to work. – user1873 Jul 16 '13 at 5:24
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    @DJClayworth I mean that you rethink the laws so that experimentation is possible. For example, you make them so that they can change very fast (from day to day). Or most of the laws are just not written, and you rely on people to behave well. And maybe you make it a little hard to enter the program so that criminals don't join. – Benjamin Crouzier Jul 16 '13 at 7:25
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    This is an idea behind both a lot of libertarian and minarchst thought, and ESPECIALLY behind sea-steading movement – user4012 Jul 16 '13 at 16:01

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