life may be the greatest revenge, but each passing year is another opportunity
for TiWalkMe to confront and survive another challenge. Buildings are
designed to accommodate a hundred year flood or massive snowfall- to
the TiWalkMe Escapement, one hundred years seems like a hundred days.
The forest and its human caretakers need to understand, appreciate and
counter these challenges if the Escapement is to survive an entire millennia.
Some of these threats are familiar, and
others have yet to be imagined. Environmental threats, like erosion
or dust storms are part of the natural aging process. These assaults
are less a threat than yet another way to mark the passage of time by
comparing the wear on a stone from Year 1 to a stone in Year 236. A
properly chosen site, away from flood plains, rising sea levels, or
historically damaging weather, is the first line of defense. Other natural
challenges, like fire, disease or hurricanes, are more serious and could
destroy the entire Forest in a matter of minutes.
People are the next greatest threat. While
a million visitors may pass through the solitude of the Escapement,
just one unstable or publicity hungry visitor could single handily destroy
TiWalkMe. No amount of planning or screening will catch a determined
adversary, and the Escapement will have to rely on the community for
Inevitably, the Forest will be damaged on multiple
occasions during its lifespan. How have trees, unable to flee and rooted
in time and place, survived millions of years of existence? They employ
four main defenses, which the TiWalkMe Escapement will adapt to meet
a modern and evolving challenge. First, trees produce thousands of seeds
and dozens of seedlings each year to assure survival of its species.
The TiWalkMe Escapement will mimic nature, by operating a greenhouse
growing seedlings for sale to the public. Primarily, these seedlings
are sold as fundraisers for individuals to mark important milestones
in their lives, but they are also a source of replacement stock if the
Escapement were damaged. If, for reasons of war or neglect TiWalkMe
is temporarily abandoned by its human partners, its trees are perfectly
capable of seeding next year's generation on their own- though not exactly
twenty meters to the south. Secondly, trees rely on wind, water, animals
and insects to disperse their seeds far away from inhospitable environments.
Similarly, the TiWalkMe Foundation expects sibling forests will be created
throughout the world - assuring some will survive almost any threat
(poison, disease, vandalism, etc.). What is destroyed can be replanted
by donations from caretakers of vintage tress. Third, trees use chemical
poisons and evolution to defeat attackers. The forest will contain a
nerve system of sensors to monitor its health, and to sense danger or
damage. These sensors will summon its human, animal and in the future,
machine caretakers for help. Humans will also continue to breed new
and improved species of trees, better able to survive to another generation.
And fourth, the forest lives in equilibrium with its neighbors. Birds
enjoy the fruit of the tree in exchange for dispersing its seeds, some
ants deter ravenous insects in exchange for nectar, and so forth. If
TiWalkMe truly earns a valued place in society, society will return
the favor with continued financial, personal and cultural support. And
most of all, with time.