Stewart Brand (born December 14, 1938) is an American writer, best
known as editor of the Whole Earth Catalog. He founded a number of
organizations, including The WELL, the Global Business Network, and
the Long Now Foundation. He is the author of several books, most
recently Whole Earth Discipline: An Ecopragmatist Manifesto.
2 Native American
3 Merry Pranksters
NASA images of Earth
5 Douglas Engelbart
6 Whole Earth Catalog
7 CoEvolution Quarterly
9 The WELL
10 Global Business Network
11 Whole Earth Discipline
12 The Long Now Foundation
14.2 As editor or as co-editor
15 See also
17 Further reading
18 External links
Brand attended Phillips Exeter Academy. He studied biology at Stanford
University, graduating in 1960. He was married to Lois Jennings, an
Ottawa Native American and mathematician. As a soldier in the
U.S. Army, he was a parachutist and taught infantry skills; he
later expressed the view that his experience in the military had
fostered his competence in organizing. A civilian again in 1962, he
studied design at
San Francisco Art Institute, photography at San
Francisco State College, and participated in a legitimate scientific
study of then-legal LSD, in Menlo Park, California.
Brand has lived in
California since the 1960s. He and his second wife
live on Mirene, a 64-foot (20 m)-long working tugboat. Built in
1912, the boat is moored in a former shipyard in Sausalito,
California. He works in Mary Heartline, a grounded fishing boat
about 100 yards (90 metres) away. A favorite item of his is a table
Otis Redding is said to have written “(Sittin' On) The Dock
of the Bay”. (Brand acquired it from an antiques dealer in
Through engaging in scholarship and by visiting numerous Indian
reservations, Brand familiarized himself with the Native Americans of
the West. Native Americans have continued to be an important cultural
interest, one which has continually re-emerged in Brand's work in
By the mid-1960s, Brand became associated with author
Ken Kesey and
the "Merry Pranksters". With his partner Ramón Sender Barayón, he
produced the Trips Festival in San Francisco, an early effort
involving rock music and light shows. This was one of the first venues
at which the
Grateful Dead performed in San Francisco. About 10,000
hippies attended, and
Haight-Ashbury soon emerged as a community.
Tom Wolfe describes Brand in the beginning of his 1968 book, The
Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test.
NASA images of Earth
Earthrise, by William Anders, Apollo 8, 1968
Earth from space, by
ATS-3 satellite, 1967
In 1966, Brand campaigned to have
NASA release the then-rumored
satellite image of the entire Earth as seen from space. He sold and
distributed buttons for 25 cents each asking, "Why haven't we seen
a photograph of the whole Earth yet?". During this campaign, Brand
met Richard Buckminster Fuller, who offered to help Brand with his
projects. In 1967, a satellite, ATS-3, took the photo. Brand
thought the image of our planet would be a powerful symbol. It adorned
the first (Fall 1968) edition of the Whole Earth Catalog. Later in
NASA astronaut took an Earth photo, Earthrise, from Moon
orbit, which became the front image of the spring 1969 edition of the
Catalog. 1970 saw the first celebration of Earth Day. During a 2003
interview, Brand explained that the image "gave the sense that
Earth’s an island, surrounded by a lot of inhospitable space. And
it’s so graphic, this little blue, white, green and brown jewel-like
icon amongst a quite featureless black vacuum."
In late 1968, Brand assisted electrical engineer Douglas Engelbart
with The Mother of All Demos, a famous presentation of many
revolutionary computer technologies (including hypertext, email, and
the mouse) to the
Fall Joint Computer Conference in San
Brand surmised that given the necessary consciousness, information,
and tools, human beings could reshape the world they had made (and
were making) for themselves into something environmentally and
socially sustainable.
Whole Earth Catalog
During the late 1960s and early 1970s about 10 million Americans
were involved in living communally. In 1968, using the most basic
approaches to typesetting and page-layout, Brand and his colleagues
created issue number one of The Whole Earth Catalog, employing the
significant subtitle, "access to tools". Brand and his wife Lois
travelled to communes in a 1963
Dodge truck known as the Whole Earth
Truck Store, which moved to a storefront in Menlo Park,
California. That first oversize Catalog, and its successors in the
1970s and later, reckoned a wide assortment of things could serve as
useful "tools": books, maps, garden implements, specialized clothing,
carpenters' and masons' tools, forestry gear, tents, welding
equipment, professional journals, early synthesizers, and personal
computers. Brand invited "reviews" (written in the form of a letter to
a friend) of the best of these items from experts in specific fields.
The information also described where these things could be located or
purchased. The Catalog's publication coincided with the great wave of
social and cultural experimentation, convention-breaking, and "do it
yourself" attitude associated with the "counterculture".
The influence of these Whole Earth Catalogs on the rural
back-to-the-land movement of the 1970s, and the communities movement
within many cities, was widespread throughout the United States,
Canada, and Australia. A 1972 edition sold 1.5 million copies,
winning the first U.S.
National Book Award in category
To continue this work and also to publish full-length articles on
specific topics in the natural sciences and invention, in numerous
areas of the arts and the social sciences, and on the contemporary
scene in general, Brand founded the
CoEvolution Quarterly (CQ) during
1974, aimed primarily at educated laypersons. Brand never better
revealed his opinions and reason for hope than when he ran, in
CoEvolution Quarterly #4, a transcription of technology historian
Lewis Mumford’s talk “The Next Transformation of Man”, in which
he stated that "man has still within him sufficient resources to alter
the direction of modern civilization, for we then need no longer
regard man as the passive victim of his own irreversible technological
The content of
CoEvolution Quarterly often included futurism or
risqué topics. Besides giving space to unknown writers with something
valuable to say, Brand presented articles by many respected authors
and thinkers, including Lewis Mumford, Howard T. Odum, Witold
Rybczynski, Karl Hess, Orville Schell, Ivan Illich, Wendell Berry,
Ursula K. Le Guin, Gregory Bateson, Amory Lovins, Hazel
Henderson, Gary Snyder, Lynn Margulis, Eric Drexler, Gerard K.
O'Neill, Peter Calthorpe, Sim Van der Ryn, Paul Hawken, John Todd,
Kevin Kelly, and Donella Meadows. During ensuing years, Brand authored
and edited a number of books on topics as diverse as computer-based
media, the life history of buildings, and ideas about space colonies.
He founded the Whole Earth Software Review, a supplement to the Whole
Earth Software Catalog, in 1984. It merged with CoEvolution Quarterly
to form the
Whole Earth Review in 1985.
From 1977 to 1979, Brand served as "special adviser" to the
California Governor Jerry Brown.
In 1985, Brand and
Larry Brilliant founded
The WELL ("Whole Earth
'Lectronic Link"), a prototypical, wide-ranging online community for
intelligent, informed participants the world over.
The WELL won the
1990 Best Online Publication Award from the Computer Press
Association. Almost certainly the ideas behind the WELL were
greatly inspired by Douglas Engelbart's work at SRI International;
Brand was acknowledged by Engelbart in "The Mother of All Demos" in
1968 when the computer mouse and video conferencing were
Global Business Network
During 1986, Brand was a visiting scientist at the
MIT Media Lab. Soon
after, he became a private-conference organizer for such corporations
as Royal Dutch/Shell, Volvo, and AT&T Corporation. In 1988, he
became a co‑founder of the Global Business Network, which explores
global futures and business strategies informed by the sorts of values
and information which Brand has always found vital. The GBN has become
involved with the evolution and application of scenario thinking,
planning, and complementary strategic tools. In other connections,
Brand has been part of the board of the
Santa Fe Institute
Santa Fe Institute (founded in
1984), an organization devoted to "fostering a multidisciplinary
scientific research community pursuing frontier science". He has also
continued to promote the preservation of tracts of wilderness.
Brand listening in Sausalito, California, in 2009.
Whole Earth Discipline
Whole Earth Catalog
Whole Earth Catalog implied an ideal of human progress that
depended on decentralized, personal, and liberating technological
development—so‑called "soft technology". However, during 2005 he
criticized aspects of the international environmental ideology he had
helped to develop. He wrote an article called "Environmental
Heresies" in the May 2005 issue of the
MIT Technology Review, in
which he describes what he considers necessary changes to
environmentalism. He suggested among other things that
environmentalists embrace nuclear power and genetically modified
organisms as technologies with more promise than risk.
Brand later developed these ideas into a book and published the Whole
Earth Discipline: An Ecopragmatist
Manifesto in 2009. The book
examines how urbanization, nuclear power, genetic engineering,
geoengineering, and wildlife restoration can be used as powerful tools
in humanity's ongoing fight against global warming.
The Long Now Foundation
Brand is co‑chair and President of the Board of Directors of The
Long Now Foundation. Brand chairs the foundation's Seminars About
Long-term Thinking (SALT). This series on long-term thinking has
presented a large range of different speakers including: Brian Eno,
Neal Stephenson, Vernor Vinge, Philip Rosedale, Jimmy Wales, Kevin
Kelly, Clay Shirky, Ray Kurzweil, Bruce Sterling, Cory Doctorow, and
Stewart Brand is the initiator or was involved with the development of
Whole Earth Catalog
Whole Earth Catalog in 1968
CoEvolution Quarterly in 1974
Whole Earth Software Catalog and Review in 1984
Whole Earth Review in 1985
Global Business Network (co-founder)
The WELL in 1985, with Larry Brilliant
The Hackers Conference in 1984
Long Now Foundation
Long Now Foundation in 1996, with computer scientist Danny
Hillis—one of the Foundation's projects is to build a 10,000 year
Clock of the Long Now
New Games Tournament (was involved initially, but left the project)
In April 2015, Brand joined with a group of scholars in issuing An
Ecomodernist Manifesto. The other authors were: John
Asafu-Adjaye, Linus Blomqvist, Barry Brook. Ruth DeFries, Erle Ellis,
Christopher Foreman, David Keith, Martin Lewis, Mark Lynas, Ted
Nordhaus, Roger A. Pielke, Jr., Rachel Pritzker, Joyashree Roy, Mark
Sagoff, Michael Shellenberger, Robert Stone, and Peter Teague
II Cybernetic Frontiers, 1974, ISBN 0-394-49283-8 (hardcover),
ISBN 0-394-70689-7 (paperback)
The Media Lab: Inventing the Future at MIT, 1987,
ISBN 0-670-81442-3 (hardcover); 1988, ISBN 0-14-009701-5
How Buildings Learn: What Happens After They're Built, 1994.
Clock of the Long Now: Time and Responsibility, 1999.
Whole Earth Discipline: An Ecopragmatist Manifesto, Viking Adult,
2009. ISBN 0-670-02121-0
As editor or as co-editor
The Whole Earth Catalog, 1968–72 (original editor, winner of the
National Book Award, 1972)
Last Whole Earth Catalog: Access to Tools, 1971
Whole Earth Epilog: Access to Tools, 1974, ISBN 0-14-003950-3
The (Updated) Last Whole Earth Catalog: Access to Tools, 16th edition,
1975, ISBN 0-14-003544-3
Space Colonies, Whole Earth Catalog, 1977, ISBN 0-14-004805-7
As co-editor with J. Baldwin: Soft-Tech, 1978, ISBN 0-14-004806-5
The Next Whole Earth Catalog: Access to Tools, 1980,
The Next Whole Earth Catalog: Access to Tools, revised 2nd edition,
1981, ISBN 0-394-70776-1
As editor-in-chief: Whole Earth Software Catalog, 1984,
As editor-in-chief: Whole Earth Software Catalog for 1986, "2.0
edition" of above title, 1985, ISBN 0-385-23301-9
As co-editor with Art Kleiner: News That Stayed News, 1974–1984: Ten
Years of CoEvolution Quarterly, 1986, ISBN 0-86547-201-7
(hardcover), ISBN 0-86547-202-5 (paperback)
Introduction by Brand: The Essential Whole Earth Catalog: Access to
Tools and Ideas (Introduction by Brand), 1986, ISBN 0-385-23641-7
Foreword by Brand: Signal: Communication Tools for the Information
Age, editor: Kevin Kelly, 1988, ISBN 0-517-57084-X
Foreword by Brand: The Fringes of Reason: A Whole Earth Catalog,
editor: Ted Schultz, 1989, ISBN 0-517-57165-X
Foreword by Brand: Whole Earth Ecolog: The Best of Environmental Tools
& Ideas, editor: J. Baldwin, 1990, ISBN 0-517-57658-9
Phil Garlington, "Stewart Brand," Outside magazine, December 1977.
Sam Martin and Matt Scanlon, "The Long Now: An Interview with Stewart
Mother Earth News magazine, January 2001
"Stewart Brand" (c.v., last updated September 2006)
Massive Change Radio interview with Stewart Brand, November 2003
Whole Earth Catalog, various issues, 1968–1998.
CoEvolution Quarterly (in the 1980s, renamed Whole Earth Review, later
just Whole Earth), various issues, 1974–2002.
^ "Bio..." Retrieved 2014-05-20.
^ Brand 2009, p. 236
^ Stewart Brand. "Big Think Interview With
Stewart Brand - Big Think".
^ a b c Lewine, Edward (April 19, 2009). "On the Waterfront". The New
York Times. Retrieved 2009-11-02.
^ Brand, Stewart. From Counterculture to Cyberculture: The Legacy of
the Whole Earth Catalog.
Stanford University Libraries via Google.
Event occurs at 32:30. Retrieved 2009-11-07.
^ a b Brand, Stewart. "Photography changes our relationship to our
planet". Smithsonian Photography Initiative. Retrieved
^ a b Brand 2009, p. 214
^ Leonard, Jennifer. "
Stewart Brand on the long view". Retrieved
^ The front cover of the Fall 1968 edition of the Whole Earth Catalog
showing the AST-3 image of 10 November 1967
^ Turner, Fred. From Counterculture to Cyberculture: The Legacy of the
Whole Earth Catalog.
Stanford University Libraries via Google. Event
occurs at 19:00. Retrieved 2009-11-07.
^ a b Kirk, Andrew G. (2007). Counterculture Green: The Whole Earth
Catalog and American Environmentalism. KSBW. University Press of
Kansas via Amazon.com. p. 48. ISBN 0-7006-1545-8.
^ "National Book Awards – 1972". National Book Foundation. Retrieved
There was a "Contemporary" or "Current" award category from 1972 to
^ Katie Hafner, The WELL: A Story of Love, Death and Real Life in the
Seminal Online Community:(2001) Carroll & Graf Publishers
^ "(5:26:00)". Youtube.com. 2007-08-21. Retrieved 2011-10-29.
^ "Environmental Heresies".
MIT Technology Review.
Stewart Brand (2009). Whole Earth Discipline: An Ecopragmatist
Manifesto. Viking. ISBN 978-0-670-02121-5.
^ "An Ecomodernist Manifesto". ecomodernism.org. Retrieved April 17,
2015. A good
Anthropocene demands that humans use their growing
social, economic, and technological powers to make life better for
people, stabilize the climate, and protect the natural world.
^ Eduardo Porter (April 14, 2015). "A Call to Look Past Sustainable
Development". The New York Times. Retrieved April 17, 2015. On
Tuesday, a group of scholars involved in the environmental debate,
including Professor Roy and Professor Brook,
Ruth DeFries of Columbia
Michael Shellenberger and
Ted Nordhaus of the
Breakthrough Institute in Oakland, Calif., issued what they are
calling the “Eco-modernist Manifesto.”
^ "Authors An Ecomodernist Manifesto". ecomodernism.org. Retrieved
April 17, 2015. As scholars, scientists, campaigners, and citizens, we
write with the conviction that knowledge and technology, applied with
wisdom, might allow for a good, or even great, Anthropocene.
^ [dead link]
^ "Bio". sb.longnow.org.
^ PDF Archived May 18, 2005, at the Wayback Machine.
Binkley, Sam. Getting Loose: Lifestyle Consumption in the 1970s.
Durham: Duke University Press, 2007.
Brokaw, Tom. “Stewart Brand.” BOOM! Voices of the Sixties. New
York: Random House, 2007.
Kirk, Andrew G. Counterculture Green: The
Whole Earth Catalog
Whole Earth Catalog and
American Environmentalism. Lawrence: Univ. of Kansas Press, 2007.
Markoff, John. What the Dormouse Said: How the Sixties Counterculture
Shaped the Personal Computer Industry. New York: Penguin, 2005.
Turner, Fred From Counterculture to Cyberculture: Stewart Brand, the
Whole Earth Network, and the Rise of Digital Utopianism. University of
Chicago Press. 2006. ISBN 0-226-81741-5.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Stewart Brand.
Wikiquote has quotations related to: Stewart Brand
Works by or about
Stewart Brand in libraries (
Stewart Brand at
Stewart Brand at TED
Stewart Brand Papers housed at
Stanford University Libraries
Whole Earth Catalog
Ken Kesey (Guest)
Whole Earth Software Catalog and Review
Whole Earth Review/Whole Earth
Whole Earth Access
Whole Internet User's Guide and Catalog
Long Now Foundation
ISNI: 0000 0001 2283 8697
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