February 2019

A digital construction kit

Computers and the internet are all around us. You probably use one at work and have one at home. Most of us even have a small connected device in our pocket at all times. Even though computers have become so universally available, we tend to use them in only very limited, preprogrammed ways.

A lot of the initial developers of the internet saw it as a democratic system where everybody could contribute equally, a system that would help us understand and solve the complex problems our society is facing. But even though modern social media claim to make the web more accesible, in practice they are addictive skinner boxes whose only purpose is to collect as much of our data as possible.

Programming isn't called a "21st century skill" for nothing. To truly harness the power of networked computers, you must learn to program. Then again, just knowing how to program is not enough. Currently, creating even a simple webapp requires you to learn about a whole stack of esoteric languages and complex technologies.

I believe that computers and the web have to potential to become a powerful tool for thinking, that can contribute to solving the complex problems of our society.

The goal of Field is to make the power of programming accessible to all. What if we could all program our own web, without having to complete a degree in computer science? What if making a webapp was as easy as writing a document?

Field is a programming environment built around the way humans think, not how machines work. It allows people to solve their own problems, without having to become a professional programmer.

“If you want to teach people a new way of thinking, don't bother trying to teach them. Instead, give them a tool, the use of which will lead to new ways of thinking.”
― Buckminster Fuller

Field is an ongoing experiment. I'm planning to publish on this development log every month, so you can follow the progress.