“There are a lot of countries and cities that are worried about the sea level rise and are investing a lot of money into research and development for floating extensions of their cities. The Netherlands already does this. The technology to build floating cities is being developed regardless of Seasteading. I’m just saying, let’s take that technology and let’s use flags of convenience, and let’s run platforms as private cities.

I’m not trying to reinvent anything here. I’m just trying to bring together existing ideas and use them in a reasonable a legal and a practical manner to achieve freedom as quickly as possible.”

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Today on the podcast I present to you the first episode recorded at Liberty in Our Lifetime 2024. 

I had a number of conversations on my bucket list for the conference and one of those was speaking to somebody about Seasteading, something that I was fortunate enough to do on two separate occasions. One of those was with Joe Quirk, the President of the Seasteading Institute and the other was with today’s guest Mason, the brains behind Atlas Island, a project planning to create sovereign cities at sea.

Now, I feel that I should preface this show with a small plea to you all to forgive me for thinking out loud a fair bit in this episode. Those of you who follow the pod will know that my preferred style of investigation is very much to find out about things in real life from real people, something that I believe allows you the listener to join me as I work this stuff out in real-time. So, if you’re a hardened Seasteader then there may not be anything new for you here, but if, like me, you have a very specific set of beliefs about the viability of Free Cities in the ocean then I invite you to join me as I get me mind well and truly educated.

Mason is a great ambassador for both Seasteading and the Free Cities movement as a whole and I can guarantee you that this is the first conversation of many as this project evolves in the coming months and years.

Enjoy the conversation.

Automatically Generated Summary


Section Overview: The host introduces the podcast and mentions his recent trip to Prague where he recorded 16 podcasts. He expresses excitement about the Free Cities movement and the optimism among its members.

Excitement about the Free Cities Movement

  • The host is enthusiastic about what’s happening in the Free Cities world.
  • He highlights the overwhelming sense of optimism among individuals involved in creating new worlds.
  • Expresses gratitude for being part of this movement.

01:17 Recap of Prague Trip

Section Overview: The host shares that he will be releasing an episode recorded at the conference. He mentions having conversations with Joe Quirk and Mason Leschyna about seasteading.

Conversations at the Conference

  • The host had conversations with Joe Quirk, president of the Seasteading Institute, and Mason Leschyna, creator of Atlas Island project.
  • These conversations were on his bucket list for some time.
  • Emphasizes that these discussions will educate him and listeners about seasteading and free cities.

04:12 In-person Podcasting Experience

Section Overview: The host discusses his preference for in-person podcasting over online interviews. He mentions that Mason Leschyna is his first guest connected to seasteading.

In-person Podcasting vs Online Interviews

  • The host prefers in-person podcasting as it provides a different experience compared to online interviews.
  • Expresses excitement about reaching almost 50 episodes.
  • Highlights that Mason Leschyna is his first guest related to seasteading.

05:44 Introduction to Atlas Island Project

Section Overview: Mason Leschyna explains his involvement with Atlas Island project and how it relates to seasteading.

Atlas Island Project

  • Mason Leschyna is involved with the Seasteading Institute and primarily focuses on Atlas Island.
  • Describes Atlas Island as his project, which involves creating floating cities with multiple marinas in the ocean.
  • Differentiates it from a solid island, emphasizing its mobility.

06:24 Limited Knowledge of Seasteading

Section Overview: The host admits to having limited knowledge about seasteading before discovering Atlas Island. He prefers gathering information directly from real-life experiences.

Limited Knowledge of Seasteading

  • The host’s prior knowledge of seasteading was based on internet research and imagining floating pods.
  • Expresses excitement about learning more about seasteading through conversations with Mason Leschyna.

07:02 Mason Leschyna’s Background as a Physician

Section Overview: The host asks about Mason Leschyna’s background as a physician and how it relates to his involvement in seasteading.

Mason Leschyna’s Background

  • Mason Leschyna confirms being a physician.
  • Further details about his medical profession are not provided in this section.

Note: Timestamps are approximate and may vary slightly depending on the source material.

07:32 The Connection and Background

Section Overview: In this section, the speaker explains their background and how they became interested in science, technology, and politics.

Personal Background and Interests

  • The speaker has always been interested in science, technology, and politics.
  • They were involved in political movements when they were younger.
  • Their interests evolved from being a conservative libertarian to an anarcho-capitalist.
  • They became disillusioned with politics and started looking for alternative options to achieve freedom and liberty.
  • They discovered the concept of using technology to achieve liberty rather than relying solely on the political process.

08:26 Career Path and Separate Interests

Section Overview: In this section, the speaker discusses their career path in medicine while maintaining a separate interest in politics.

Career Path

  • After high school, the speaker studied engineering for their undergraduate degree.
  • They specialized in biomedical engineering but realized that pursuing a job in that field would require a PhD, which they were not interested in.
  • Instead, they chose to pursue a career in medicine while keeping their interest in politics separate.

09:03 Discovering Free Cities Concept

Section Overview: In this section, the speaker talks about discovering the concept of free cities as an alternative option for achieving freedom.

Discovering Free Cities

  • The speaker became disillusioned with traditional politics and started exploring alternative options for achieving freedom.
  • They came across organizations like the Sea Steading Institute and Free Cities Institute that promoted using technology to create free-floating cities operated by private companies.
  • These concepts resonated with them and led them to develop the idea of Atlas Island as a combination of seasteading technologies and free cities concepts.

09:58 Separation and Atlas Island

Section Overview: In this section, the speaker explains the separation from their colleagues and how Atlas Island became their project.

Separation from Colleagues

  • Initially, there was a group of individuals working on the concept of a modular city.
  • However, there was a disagreement about the end state, with some favoring a micronational approach with government involvement and others supporting a free cities model operated by private companies.
  • The speaker separated from their colleagues who preferred the micronational approach and focused on developing Atlas Island as their own project.

10:52 Custodian of Atlas Island

Section Overview: In this section, the speaker clarifies their role as the custodian of Atlas Island and emphasizes that it is a community-driven project.

Role as Custodian

  • The speaker sees themselves as the custodian of Atlas Island rather than its sole owner or creator.
  • They aim to bring together a community of like-minded individuals who share a vision for freedom and can work together to build the floating city.
  • Their role involves articulating the vision, ensuring legal frameworks are sound, and facilitating collaboration among various groups to make Atlas Island a reality.

11:24 Five Stages of Development

Section Overview: In this section, the speaker outlines the five stages envisioned for developing Atlas Island.

Five Stages of Development

  1. Establishing an International Community: Building an international community of individuals who believe in freedom and individual sovereignty.
  2. Leaving Behind Archaic Governments: Rejecting traditional governments that assert control over citizens.
  3. Creating a Floating City: Establishing a new floating city in the ocean using seasteading technologies.
  4. Achieving True Freedom: Demonstrating that true freedom can be achieved without voting or violence.
  5. Clear and Feasible Process: Developing a clear and feasible process to move from the current state to the ultimate goal of a free-floating city.

11:46 Description of Atlas Island

Section Overview: In this section, the speaker provides a description of Atlas Island based on their website.

Description of Atlas Island

  • Atlas Island is an international community that believes in freedom and individual sovereignty.
  • The community recognizes that freedom should not be subject to government control or majority rule.
  • Interactions within Atlas Island adhere to the principles of non-aggression and voluntary agreement.
  • The Sea Steading Institute has conducted extensive research demonstrating the feasibility of creating such a floating city within existing legal frameworks.
  • The goal is to establish a new floating city where true freedom can be achieved without voting or violence.

13:03 Vote with Your Boat

Section Overview: The speaker came up with the idea of “vote with your flippers” as a slogan for seasteading. They discuss the five stages of their plan and focus on stage one, which involves building an online community and clarifying the framework.

Stage One: Building an Online Community

  • Currently developing an online community of like-minded individuals interested in seasteading.
  • Goal is to ensure everyone is on the same page regarding laws, processes, ideas, and vision.
  • Around 500 people have expressed interest in joining the community through the telegram group and mailing list.
  • Majority of interested individuals are from America and Europe, with some from South Africa and Asia.
  • Most people in the community are land-based individuals who like the concept of seasteading but may not have boating experience.
  • Stage one focuses on bringing these individuals to a level where they are comfortable living on a boat.

13:55 Connecting with Boat Communities

Section Overview: The speaker discusses how they aim to connect with live-aboard boat communities that embrace individual responsibility and liberty. They also talk about the types of people who live on boats.

Types of People Interested in Seasteading

  • Many people in the community are land-based individuals who like the idea of seasteading but may not have boating experience.
  • Some members already have boating experience and are committed to seasteading, placing them in phase two of the plan.
  • Live-aboard boat communities consist of people who enjoy freedom provided by boats but may not express it in political terms.
  • These communities can be found by going into marinas and meeting people in person.

16:05 Aspirational Nature of Living on a Boat

Section Overview: The speaker discusses the aspirational nature of living on a boat and how it has become more prevalent in recent times.

  • Living on a boat has become an aspirational lifestyle, accessible even to those who cannot do it themselves.
  • Social media platforms like Instagram showcase the lives of people living on boats, allowing others to live vicariously through them.
  • The public perception of living on a boat has shifted, with more people finding it aspirational and desirable.

17:20 Stage Two: Acquiring a Vessel

Section Overview: The speaker explains stage two of their plan, which involves acquiring a vessel for seasteading.

Stage Two: Acquiring a Vessel

  • In stage two, community members will acquire vessels to live on.
  • A catamaran is considered an ideal vessel for seasteading, but any floating structure that provides mobility can be used.
  • Community members will choose locations around the world for their vessels, such as Florida in the United States or the Mediterranean.

Note: This summary covers key points from the transcript and is not an exhaustive representation of its content.

18:12 Building a Community in Phase 2

Section Overview: In phase 2 of the plan, the focus is on two main objectives. The first is to get people comfortable living on boats, and the second is to start building a community where people can meet and interact with each other. This community will also help in developing an economy within it.

Creating a Community

  • The goal of phase 2 is to build a community and make people comfortable living with like-minded individuals on boats.
  • By having a community, it becomes easier for people to connect, share services, and embrace the freedom associated with like-minded individuals.
  • Meeting like-minded people is one of the reasons why the free cities movement is gaining traction.

Challenges in Building the Community

  • Convincing people to sell their current properties or invest in a second accommodation and move to the marina can be challenging.
  • Other free cities like Prospera are currently at this stage, where they are trying to attract residents.
  • Initially, being one of the first few residents might be difficult, but as more people join and form a community, it becomes more appealing for others to join.

Progress in Phase 2

  • Within their group, there are already two or three individuals living on boats in different marinas around the world.
  • Some members are interested in getting their own boats soon.
  • Efforts are being made to design boats that are tailored for sea-steading and make them more accessible for everyone within their community.

19:37 Transitioning from Land Life to Boat Life

Section Overview: Moving from land life to boat life can be challenging. However, by acquiring necessary skills and experience through training courses and practical trips on boats, individuals can become comfortable living aboard. Ocean crossings may not be necessary for Atlas Island, as long as coastal cruising and marina hopping are possible.

Gaining Boating Skills

  • The speaker did not have any prior experience with boats until a year ago.
  • Over the past year, they have taken boat trips totaling about six weeks and obtained a Skipper’s license.
  • They continue to take additional courses to improve their boating skills.

Comfort Level on Boats

  • At this point, the speaker is comfortable taking a catamaran and navigating coastal waters.
  • While they haven’t done an ocean crossing yet, it may not be necessary for Atlas Island.
  • Coastal cruising and moving between marinas in regions like the Caribbean or Mediterranean can be achieved without extensive ocean crossings.

22:08 Vision for Atlas Island and Personal Vessels

Section Overview: The vision for Atlas Island includes a large floating structure with livable structures and slips for personal vessels. The goal is to make it accessible for middle-class individuals to afford their own vessel. Each person’s vessel may vary based on their affluence level.

Atlas Island Structure

  • Atlas Island will consist of a large floating structure with slips for personal vessels.
  • On the structure itself, there will be a marketplace and other amenities.

Affordability of Personal Vessels

  • The goal is to make it possible for middle-class individuals who can currently afford a house in North America or Europe to also afford their own vessel.
  • Depending on one’s affluence level, the appearance of personal vessels may differ.

Note: This summary covers key points from the provided transcript.


Section Overview: The speaker discusses the concept of a floating city on the ocean, where people can live on catamarans and dock at different platforms for various services and amenities. The goal is to maintain independence and competition between governance providers.

Vision of a Floating City (t=1406s)

  • The idea is to create a floating city on the ocean with platforms that provide electricity, water, and various services.
  • People can dock their boats at these platforms, go shopping, have businesses, restaurants, and community events.
  • The ultimate goal is to maintain independence by allowing residents to choose which platform to dock at based on service quality, prices, and regulations.
  • If a platform’s governance deteriorates or becomes unfavorable, residents can simply unhook their boat and move to another platform.
  • This vision ensures competition between governance providers for residents’ benefit in terms of services and price.


Section Overview: The speaker explains how the floating city concept prevents the gradual deterioration of freedom into socialism. They also draw parallels between living on the ocean and future space colonization.

Preventing Deterioration towards Socialism (t=1438s)

  • Each platform in the floating city will have its own governance solution in place.
  • Private companies running these platforms would be ideal but even other forms of governance could work.
  • Unlike physical locations like Prospera, where changing taxes can affect real estate investments, changing taxes on a platform won’t impact residents who live on catamarans as they can easily move away.
  • This provides a strong ongoing incentive for good governance practices and prevents deterioration towards socialism.

Parallels with Space Colonization (t=1522s)

  • Living on the ocean is considered the closest thing we have to living in space currently.
  • To prepare for space colonization, becoming independent on the ocean is seen as a starting point.
  • The speaker’s vision of the catamaran includes solar power, water generation through reverse osmosis, and connectivity through Starlink.
  • This mobile house concept allows for independence in everything except food supply.
  • The speaker believes this is the closest one can get to living in space without leaving Earth’s atmosphere.


Section Overview: The speaker discusses stage two of the floating city plan, which involves finding existing marinas or cities with marina facilities. This allows residents to have access to city amenities while being part of a smaller community.

Stage Two: Access to City Amenities (t=1642s)

  • In stage two of the floating city plan, instead of building from scratch, existing marinas or cities with marina facilities will be utilized.
  • Even if the community is small initially, residents will still have access to all the amenities provided by nearby cities.
  • This ensures comfort and convenience for residents who may want to visit coffee shops, supermarkets, or other establishments in nearby cities.
  • It also provides opportunities for professionals like physicians to work until the community grows larger.


Section Overview: The speaker discusses future possibilities of making a living within the floating city concept and mentions their personal desire for independence.

Making a Living within the Floating City (t=1671s)

  • While not explicitly mentioned in this section of the transcript, it can be inferred that making a living within the floating city is possible as communities grow and develop.
  • As more people join these communities and businesses are established on platforms or nearby cities, employment opportunities will arise.
  • Professionals like physicians may find employment options once there is a sufficient population size.

Note: Timestamps are approximate and may vary slightly depending on video playback.

28:20 Stage Three: Building a Floating Marina

Section Overview: In this section, the speaker discusses stage three of the project, which involves building a floating marina in a sheltered environment close to a city. They explain that this stage focuses on bringing infrastructure onto the water and constructing floating platforms.

Building a Floating Marina

  • 28:38 Stage two involves trying out the project in a marina.
  • 28:53 Stage three is about building a floating marina in a sheltered area with calm waters.
  • 29:08 The speaker clarifies that they are not referring to building traditional marinas but rather floating ones.
  • 29:25 Finding an area of sheltered water, around 100 feet deep and close to shore, where no existing marina exists is essential for constructing the floating marina.
  • 29:58 The advantage of having a floating infrastructure is the ability to relocate it if issues arise or negotiate favorable deals with different countries.

30:14 Designing a Floating Harbor

Section Overview: In this section, the speaker talks about their progress in designing a floating harbor and discusses potential technologies and considerations.

Technological Progress

  • 30:32 The speaker mentions that they have discussed designing a floating harbor with others but have not started engineering work yet.
  • 30:48 Various technological options are available for creating the infrastructure, such as floating platforms or large domes enclosing an entire area.
  • 31:03 The feasibility of these options depends on funding and market demand.

Addressing Storm Concerns

  • 31:24 The speaker acknowledges storm concerns and explains their phased approach to mitigate risks. They plan to start in marinas with smaller waves, then move to coastal regions before venturing into the open ocean.
  • 31:41 They also consider geographical locations with less severe storms, such as equatorial regions with minimal wave activity.
  • 32:11 Another option is constructing a large floating dome that encloses the marina area and protects it from the elements.

32:47 Conclusion

Section Overview: The speaker concludes by emphasizing the potential of building a floating harbor and highlights the flexibility and adaptability of the project.

  • 32:47 The speaker believes that a combination of concrete and other materials would be a viable option for constructing a floating harbor.
  • The ability to relocate the infrastructure and negotiate favorable deals provides flexibility for the project’s long-term success.

33:16(t=1996s) Exploring the Floating City Concept

Section Overview: In this section, the speaker discusses the concept of a floating city and its resemblance to science fiction elements like the Death Star. They also highlight the potential benefits of establishing such a city in international waters.

The Floating City Concept

  • The speaker describes how the docks and buildings within the floating city resemble scenes from science fiction, particularly mentioning the Death Star. 33:16
  • They express their fascination with space and how it relates to the idea of doors opening and ships docking with the floating city. 33:32
  • The speaker reflects on how sci-fi often showcases interesting concepts before they become reality, making the alignment between a floating city and these narratives thought-provoking. 33:49

Diversity and Opportunities

  • The speaker draws parallels between visiting a bar on a strange planet in a sci-fi story and experiencing diverse cultures within a floating city. They emphasize that people from various backgrounds could come together due to their lack of fixed abode. 34:08
  • Two aspects of Atlas Island are highlighted: one being an opportunity for individuals from developed Western countries seeking freedom, while the other is providing opportunities for those coming from more oppressive countries to build a future for themselves. 34:28
  • The ability to establish a floating city in international waters would allow people who face restrictions due to their government or limited visa options to make use of their abilities and talents, benefiting both themselves and society as a whole. 35:02

Example of Stateless Community

  • The speaker recalls being part of a documentary about Baja sea gypsies who lived on boats without passports or nationality. These individuals moved around different areas, relying on hunting and gathering for sustenance. This example highlights how living on a floating city could provide opportunities for those without access to Western countries. 36:07

Adaptation and Stability

  • The speaker mentions the phenomenon of land sickness that individuals experience when spending too much time at sea. They explain how people on Atlas Island would need to adapt to this sensation upon returning to land. 37:47
  • The idea of using catamarans as a stable option for the floating city is discussed, as they have minimal rocking motion. Combining this with an enclosed harbor could further reduce movement and discomfort. 38:02


Section Overview: In this section, the speaker discusses the stability and comfort of catamarans compared to monohull boats.

Stability and Comfort of Catamarans

  • Catamarans have a design that consists of two submarines underwater with sticks coming up from them and a platform above the water.
  • This design provides stability in small waves, making it comfortable even in rough conditions.
  • Unlike monohull boats that constantly rock back and forth, catamarans have minimal movement.
  • Living on a monohull boat requires constant grabbing of things due to the rocking motion, while on a catamaran, everything remains stable.
  • Catamarans provide a stable platform for everyday life, with glasses and plates not moving around even in the ocean.
  • While encountering bad weather is rare for the speaker, they would choose not to go out in exceptionally bad weather to ensure safety.


Section Overview: In this section, the speaker discusses floating structures and their construction.

Floating Structures

  • The speaker mentions the possibility of creating heavy structures that can float by incorporating pockets of air or foam encased in cement.
  • The strength of the material used may be less important for stationary floating structures like a 1000ft diameter harbor since thicker walls can compensate for any lack of strength.
  • Oil rigs are given as an example of existing floating structures. They are designed with massive floating platforms that can withstand large waves in places like the North Sea.
  • Oil rigs use different designs such as spars (a post filled with air at the bottom) or semi-submersibles (floating platforms below water surface with large posts holding the top side).
  • These designs minimize wave action by allowing waves to pass through small posts while providing significant flotation below and structure above.


Section Overview: In this section, the speaker discusses the floating nature of oil rigs and their drilling process.

Floating Oil Rigs

  • Most oil rigs are floating structures due to the depth of water in which they operate, making it challenging to anchor them to the seabed.
  • Building a structure tall enough to reach the seabed and support its weight would be difficult in deep waters.
  • The drill from an oil rig is solid and extends from the rig to the base, providing stability during drilling operations.
  • Some oil rigs use spar designs with weights at the bottom that act as pendulums, ensuring stability by pulling back if tipping occurs.
  • Semi-submersible designs have a floating platform below water surface and large posts holding the top side, allowing waves to pass through while maintaining stability.
  • The ability of oil rigs to keep their position within a meter or less is crucial for preventing damage to wells during rough weather conditions.


Section Overview: In this section, the speaker discusses the importance of keeping the pipe in place once a well is established and mentions that oil rigs use anchors to maintain their position during storms.

Keeping the Pipe in Place

  • Once a well is established, it is important for the pipe to remain in place.
  • The pipe may be flexible to some extent.
  • Oil rigs use anchors in all directions to provide tension and keep them in place during storms.


Section Overview: The speaker talks about how oil rigs operate 24/7 regardless of storms and mentions the challenging weather conditions in the North Sea. They also discuss designing structures that can withstand minimal waves without capsizing or sinking.

Operating Oil Rigs

  • Oil rigs operate 24/7 regardless of storms.
  • Storms in the North Sea around the UK are particularly severe.
  • Designing structures for minimal waves (1-5m) requires them to withstand movement without capsizing or sinking.


Section Overview: The speaker explains that designing floating structures for living purposes requires lower standards compared to those designed for oil rigs. They mention that with proper technology and incentives, it is possible to create such structures.

Designing Floating Structures

  • Designing floating structures for living purposes has lower standards than those designed for oil rigs.
  • Technology makes it feasible to create these structures.
  • Market demand and incentives are necessary factors for making it happen.


Section Overview: The speaker suggests that existing technology used by oil rigs could potentially be utilized for creating floating living platforms. However, they note that aligning with Atlas Island’s concept of individual vessels may not work well with traditional oil rig designs.

Utilizing Existing Technology

  • Existing technology used by oil rigs could be repurposed for floating living platforms.
  • However, aligning with the concept of individual vessels may not be compatible with traditional oil rig designs.


Section Overview: The speaker discusses the limitations of using an oil rig as a station to dock boats due to the lack of stability at water level. They mention that others could explore alternative options such as using containers on a platform or creating sovereign nations on oil rig-type platforms like Sealand.

Limitations and Alternative Options

  • Using an oil rig as a station to dock boats is limited due to lack of stability at water level.
  • Alternative options include using containers on a platform or creating sovereign nations on oil rig-type platforms like Sealand.


Section Overview: The speaker briefly mentions Sealand, an independent principality established on an abandoned military fort in international waters. They explain how it was initially left unclaimed by the UK and later resisted attempts to reclaim it.

The Story of Sealand

  • Sealand is an independent principality established on an abandoned military fort in international waters.
  • It was initially left unclaimed by the UK.
  • Attempts were made by the UK to reclaim it but were resisted by its occupants.


Section Overview: The speaker explains that stage four involves moving the floating structure from a sheltered harbor to an area exposed to waves, about five miles offshore. This serves as a final checkpoint before venturing into international waters.

Moving the Floating Structure

  • Stage four involves moving the floating structure from a sheltered harbor to an area exposed to waves.
  • This location is about five miles offshore.
  • It serves as a final checkpoint before venturing into international waters.


Section Overview: The speaker discusses the importance of having businesses and services on the floating platforms. They mention that during the first four stages, businesses will still need to follow the laws of the country in whose territorial waters they reside.

Importance of Businesses and Services

  • Having businesses and services on the floating platforms is crucial.
  • During the first four stages, businesses must comply with the laws of the country’s territorial waters where they are located.

48:44(t=2924s) Embracing Agorism and Serving the City

Section Overview: In this section, the concept of agorism is discussed, which involves interacting freely regardless of laws. The potential for businesses on Atlas Island to serve both residents and people from the surrounding city who want to transact in cryptocurrency or support agorism is also mentioned.

Embracing Agorism

  • Agorism is the concept of interacting freely regardless of laws.
  • It involves practices such as accepting cash payments to avoid taxes.
  • Businesses on Atlas Island could embrace agorism by providing services that support cryptocurrency transactions and agorist principles.

Serving the City

  • Businesses on Atlas Island could potentially serve not only residents but also people from the surrounding city who are interested in transacting in cryptocurrency or supporting agorism.
  • This expands the customer base and potential revenue streams for businesses on Atlas Island.

50:06(t=3006s) Business Opportunities and Avoiding Fringe Elements

Section Overview: This section focuses on discussing potential business opportunities on Atlas Island and addressing concerns about attracting fringe elements.

Business Opportunities

  • Businesses on Atlas Island have an advantage over micronations as they don’t rely on democracy or laws but rather focus on profitability.
  • Investors putting millions into building a floating platform will prioritize their business case and choose services that are profitable and low-risk.
  • Core services that are widely accepted will be prioritized over fringe businesses.

Avoiding Fringe Elements

  • While there may be some individuals attempting to run fringe businesses, they would likely operate separately from other platforms on Atlas Island.
  • The majority of businesses would distance themselves from such activities to protect their investment, reputation, and comply with regulations.
  • Any negative consequences resulting from fringe activities would be attributed solely to those involved, not reflecting upon the rest of the community.

51:03(t=3063s) Stage Five: Full-Blown Seasteads

Section Overview: This section discusses the concept of full-blown seasteads and the importance of negotiating with host governments to ensure a peaceful existence.

Full-Blown Seasteads

  • Full-blown seasteads refer to advanced floating platforms that serve as permanent residences or business hubs.
  • The location and distance from land are not specified in this discussion.

Negotiating with Host Governments

  • To avoid interference, it is crucial to have negotiations with the host government.
  • By informing them about intentions and operations, there is a higher likelihood of being left alone.
  • Although international waters technically do not belong to any country, there are international laws governing maritime activities.

52:14(t=3134s) Legal Considerations for Seasteading

Section Overview: This section delves into legal considerations for seasteading, using an example off the coast of Thailand where a floating platform was shut down due to legal issues.

Legal Issues Off the Coast of Thailand

  • A floating platform built off the coast of Thailand faced legal challenges because it was not flagged in any country.
  • International law allows any country to interrogate, examine, impound, or destroy unflagged vessels in international waters.

Flagging Vessels for Legal Protection

  • To overcome legal challenges, every vessel should be flagged in a specific country.
  • Flagging a vessel provides protection under that country’s laws and regulations.
  • Other countries are less likely to hassle vessels flagged in another nation as long as they comply with their flag state’s laws.


Section Overview: This section discusses the flagging of cruise ships and their compliance with laws.

Flagging of Cruise Ships

  • Most Royal Caribbean ships are flagged in the Bahamas, despite not frequently traveling to the Bahamas.
  • These ships are built in Europe and sail from ports in America to various countries.
  • In theory, they obey the laws of the Bahamas, but in reality, they follow their own rules as long as they are not egregious.
  • The Bahamas tolerates this arrangement because they receive a large amount of money for flagging these massive vessels.
  • Smaller vessels can be flagged for a more reasonable cost, ranging from $500 to $10,000 per year.


Section Overview: This section explores the concept of cruise ships as floating villages and potential docking at Atlas Island.

Cruise Ships as Floating Villages

  • Cruise ships can be seen as floating villages with a large permanent population.
  • Docking at Atlas Island could become a highlight of such trips, attracting tourists and generating docking fees.
  • Running a profitable business on a cruise ship requires careful management due to high maintenance costs.


Section Overview: This section compares maintenance requirements between cruise ships and smaller vessels like fiberglass catamarans.

Maintenance Comparison: Cruise Ships vs. Smaller Vessels

  • Cruise ships require significant maintenance due to their size and complexity.
  • Fiberglass catamarans have lower maintenance needs compared to cruise ships.
  • The proposed platform for Atlas Island would be designed for long-lasting durability with minimal maintenance requirements.
  • Concrete structures suitable for seawater can last centuries without much maintenance.
  • Since there are no engines involved, many mechanical problems associated with boats are eliminated.


Section Overview: This section discusses the advantages of building a floating city like Atlas Island, including avoiding the need for roads and dealing with flooding.

Advantages of a Floating City

  • Building a floating city eliminates the need for traditional infrastructure like roads.
  • The issue of flooding is also minimized since there are no land-based structures to be affected.
  • Canals would not need to be built; instead, focus would be on constructing facilities adjacent to existing canals.


Section Overview: This section explores the potential viability of an offshore casino as part of the Atlas Island project.

Viability of an Offshore Casino

  • An offshore casino could be a viable business model for Atlas Island.
  • Gambling laws vary, and many people still want to gamble despite legal restrictions.
  • Creating designated zones or areas for gambling is common in many places.
  • The long-term vision for Atlas Island includes multiple platforms with different focuses, such as conservative docking areas, tourist attractions, and potentially gambling-related activities.


Section Overview: This section discusses the future vision for Atlas Island as an archipelago of platforms with various offerings.

Future Vision: Archipelago of Platforms

  • The long-term plan for Atlas Island is to create an archipelago of platforms with distinct characteristics.
  • Each platform could cater to different preferences and interests, such as quiet docking areas or tourist-oriented attractions.
  • These platforms would operate independently but coexist in close proximity, allowing visitors to choose between them and enjoy the best features each has to offer.

59:17 Living Life and Mobile Library

Section Overview: The speaker reflects on the idea of living life on one’s own terms, comparing it to a spontaneous trip to Vegas. They recall running a mobile library in the past, where they would collect interesting book collections. One collection included plans for floating cities, which they initially dismissed as too far-fetched.

  • The speaker compares living life on one’s own terms to taking a spontaneous trip to Vegas.
  • They mention running a mobile library in the past, collecting interesting book collections.
  • One collection included plans for floating cities, which they initially dismissed as unrealistic.

59:37 Tip-offs about Interesting Book Collections

Section Overview: People would tip off the speaker about interesting book collections during their time running the mobile library. One such tip led them to a collection left behind by someone who had passed away. This collection contained plans for floating cities and other fascinating research.

  • People would inform the speaker about interesting book collections during their time running the mobile library.
  • They received a tip about a collection left behind by someone who had passed away.
  • This particular collection contained plans for floating cities and other intriguing research.

01:00:10 Initial Dismissal of Floating Cities Idea

Section Overview: When the speaker came across the plans for floating cities, they initially thought it was too far-fetched and unlikely to happen. They expected to discover some sort of missing texts related to future living but ultimately did not know what happened to those plans.

  • The speaker initially dismissed the idea of floating cities as too far-fetched.
  • They expected to find groundbreaking information but were disappointed with what they discovered.
  • The fate of those plans remains unknown.

01:00:46 Realistic and Practical Nature of Floating Cities

Section Overview: The speaker reflects on their conversation with the interviewer, realizing that the concept of floating cities is more realistic and practical than they initially thought. They express how it offers a sense of newness and attraction while also being normal and feasible.

  • The speaker acknowledges that the concept of floating cities is more realistic and practical than they previously believed.
  • They highlight that the idea is not just weird and wonderful but also very normal.
  • The speaker mentions that advancements in technology have made it possible to consider such projects now.

01:01:18 Rising Sea Levels and Floating City Investments

Section Overview: The speaker discusses how rising sea levels have led many countries and cities to invest in research and development for floating extensions of their existing cities. They mention examples like the Netherlands, which already implements this concept. The speaker proposes using existing technology, flags of convenience, and private platforms to establish floating private cities.

  • Rising sea levels have prompted countries to invest in research for floating city extensions.
  • Examples like the Netherlands demonstrate successful implementation of this concept.
  • The speaker suggests utilizing existing technology, flags of convenience, and private platforms to create floating private cities.

01:02:11 Legality as a Tool for Establishing Free Cities

Section Overview: The legality aspect plays a crucial role in establishing free cities or communities. The speaker emphasizes its importance within the free cities movement. They inquire about any precedents where legal challenges were tested successfully, providing a good route for establishing such communities.

  • Legality is an essential tool for establishing free cities or communities.
  • Precedents where legal challenges were tested successfully can provide guidance for future endeavors.
  • The speaker seeks examples where legality has been proven as a viable route for creating free cities.

01:02:52 Seasteading and Atlas Island

Section Overview: The speaker explains the concept of seasteading, which involves permanently living on the ocean. They mention that Atlas Island applies seasteading to anarch capitalism and combines it with the idea of free cities. The speaker highlights cruise ships as a precedent for living on vessels in international waters.

  • Seasteading involves permanently living on the ocean.
  • Atlas Island applies seasteading to anarch capitalism and free cities.
  • Cruise ships serve as a precedent for living on vessels in international waters.

01:02:34 Flipping the Script with Flags of Convenience

Section Overview: The speaker discusses how flags of convenience can be used to gain autonomy and freedom in establishing floating private cities. They explain that countries compete for registration fees from cruise ships, and if more people choose to live on vessels, governments will have to cater to their demands for freedom and autonomy.

  • Flags of convenience can be used to gain autonomy and freedom in establishing floating private cities.
  • Countries compete for registration fees from cruise ships, creating an opportunity for negotiation.
  • Governments may need to cater to the demands of those seeking freedom and autonomy if more people choose to live on vessels.

Note: This summary is based solely on the provided transcript.

01:04:35 The Importance of Flagging Fees and Freedom

Section Overview: In this section, the speaker discusses the significance of flagging fees in achieving freedom from government control. They emphasize that they are willing to pay these fees for the governance, legal cover, and sovereignty provided by a chosen country’s flag.

Flagging Fees and Escaping Government Tyranny

  • The speaker values escaping the tyranny of governments and achieving freedom more than the symbolic perspective of which flag flies on their boat.
  • They view flagging fees as payments for services rather than taxes.
  • Paying a fee to fly a certain country’s flag provides governance, legal cover, and sovereignty.
  • Changing to another country’s flag is possible at any time, making it a voluntary choice.

Advantages of Flagging with Small Countries

  • Choosing small countries for flagging can put individuals further down the ungovernable spectrum.
  • If an individual is flagged with a powerful nation like the United States, there may be concerns about government interference.
  • However, if flagged with smaller countries like Liberia or the Bahamas, which are eager to earn business and less capable of enforcing laws, there is less worry about government intervention.
  • As long as one maintains decorum and avoids obvious criminal activities, smaller countries are unlikely to interfere with running businesses or living freely on boats.

01:06:00 Living on Boats and Joining the Movement

Section Overview: This section explores how billionaires already embrace living on boats as a means of achieving freedom. The speaker also shares their goal of designing an affordable catamaran that offers independence while still being accessible to middle-income families.

Billionaires Embracing Boat Living

  • Many billionaires already travel around the world on large boats, enjoying a circuit between the Mediterranean in summer and the Caribbean in winter.
  • Boat living provides a sense of freedom and flexibility.
  • The speaker mentions knowing people embedded in the billionaire boat-living world and hearing interesting stories about their lifestyles.

Designing an Affordable Catamaran for Freedom

  • The speaker is personally working on designing a catamaran that is as independent as possible while remaining affordable for the average person.
  • The goal is to create a catamaran that can generate its own electricity, manage water supply and sewage, and have satellite internet connectivity.
  • This catamaran should be able to accommodate a family of four to six people and cost around $500,000.
  • The aim is to make this lifestyle accessible to middle-income families who can sell their houses and join the movement.

01:08:19 Concerns about Outlawing the Movement

Section Overview: In this section, concerns are raised about powerful nations outlawing movements like living on boats. The recent push for corporate minimum tax is mentioned as an example. However, the advantage of boat living over traditional land-based approaches is highlighted.

Potential Outlawing Efforts by Powerful Nations

  • There is always concern about powerful nations attempting to outlaw movements like living on boats.
  • Recent efforts include pushing smaller countries with zero tax rates to establish minimum taxes, which may affect individuals seeking tax advantages.

Advantage of Boat Living over Traditional Approaches

  • Atlas Island offers an advantage over traditional free city approaches built on land.
  • With land-based projects, there is a risk if governments change their positions or policies, potentially jeopardizing projects.
  • However, with boat living, if one country becomes unfavorable or imposes restrictions, it’s possible to move to another country by changing flags.


Living on boats offers individuals the opportunity to escape government control and achieve freedom. By paying flagging fees for services provided by small countries, individuals can enjoy governance and legal cover while maintaining independence. Billionaires already embrace boat living, and the speaker aims to design an affordable catamaran for middle-income families to join the movement. Concerns about outlawing the movement exist, but boat living offers advantages over traditional land-based approaches in terms of flexibility and adaptability.

01:09:38 Flag Theory and Cruise Ships

Section Overview: This section discusses the concept of flag theory and how it applies to cruise ships. It explains that a country does not need sea borders to issue a flag, but rather needs to be a sovereign nation. Many smaller countries outsource their flagging registry to private companies who pay them a fee in exchange for licensing their flag. Cruise ships often use flags from different countries to avoid certain regulations and labor laws.

Flag Theory and Issuing Flags

  • Countries do not need sea borders to issue flags; they just need to be sovereign nations outside the 12-mile limit. Private companies can run the flagging registry on behalf of these countries.
  • Smaller countries often outsource their flagging registry to private companies who pay them a fee in exchange for licensing their flag.
  • Cruise liners, like Norwegian Cruise Line, typically do not have flags from the country they are associated with (e.g., Norway). This is because having a Norwegian flag would require following Norwegian labor codes and paying Norwegian wages.

Benefits of Flag Theory in the Cruise Ship Industry

  • The cruise ship industry takes advantage of flag theory by using flags from different countries. For example, a cruise ship may be built in Scandinavia, flagged in the Bahamas, and have crew members from the Philippines.
  • People working on cruise ships benefit from this arrangement as they earn more than they would in their home countries.
  • Cruise ship itineraries are designed strategically to include stops in multiple countries. This allows them to follow the laws associated with their flagged country instead of adhering solely to one country’s regulations.

Challenges and Unlikelihood of Change

  • Changing maritime law, which forms the foundation of flag theory, is difficult due to established treaties that require unanimous consent from all participating countries.
  • The vested interests of countries benefiting from selling flags make it unlikely for significant changes to occur.
  • The cruise ship industry, shipping industry, and private boat industry would all be affected if maritime law were to change.

Floating City Project

  • There have been attempts to create a floating city on a cruise ship. However, living on a cruise ship long-term is not practical due to limited space and amenities.
  • The cost structure of operating a cruise ship also poses challenges for such projects.

01:13:24 Challenges of Creating a Floating City

Section Overview: This section discusses the challenges faced when attempting to create a floating city on a cruise ship. It highlights the limitations of living on a cruise ship permanently and the financial considerations involved in such projects.

Limitations of Living on a Cruise Ship

  • Cruise ships are designed for vacations rather than long-term living. Living in small cabins 24/7 can be cramped and uncomfortable.
  • Cruise ships provide extensive services and amenities during vacations, but these may not be suitable for permanent residents.

Financial Considerations

  • The cost structure of operating a cruise ship makes it challenging to sustain as a floating city.
  • Projects aiming to create floating cities face difficulties in terms of financing and maintaining the necessary infrastructure.

Note: This summary provides an overview of the discussed topics related to flag theory and creating a floating city on a cruise ship. For more detailed information, please refer to the corresponding timestamps provided in each section.

01:14:34 Challenges of Converting a Cruise Ship

Section Overview: The speaker discusses the technical and legal challenges associated with converting a cruise ship into a permanent residence.

Technical Problems

  • Maintenance costs of approximately $2 million per year.
  • Uncertainty regarding responsibility for maintenance fees and potential loss of investment if people refuse to pay or if something goes wrong.
  • Potential for freeloading and increased maintenance problems in a large condominium-like setting.

Legal Perspective

  • Flagging a vessel requires classification by a society and insurance coverage.
  • Insurance companies are hesitant to insure cruise ships that are no longer cruising due to concerns about safety, regular inspections, and integrity.
  • Difficulty in ensuring the safety of residents staying in one location instead of moving to avoid storms.

Existing Examples

  • There are already existing cruise ships like “The World” where people buy condos instead of small rooms.
  • These ships have a few hundred residents who live on board and vote on their itinerary.
  • It is unclear whether these types of ships fall under the concept of seasteading or not.

01:15:53 Viability and Comparison with Existing Models

Section Overview: The speaker discusses the viability of seasteading as a business model compared to existing models such as time shares on cruise ships.

Viability Concerns

  • If seasteading were a viable business model, cruise ship liners would have already implemented it.
  • Some existing models already offer similar concepts, such as buying condos on cruise ships or time shares for rooms.
  • Current examples primarily attract wealthy retired individuals who want to travel rather than building permanent communities.

Different Approach

  • Seasteading aims to create permanent and growing communities rather than just retirement opportunities.
  • It has an ideological stance focused on freedom and community-building beyond what traditional models offer.

01:17:04 Timeline for Seasteading Prototypes

Section Overview: The speaker provides a prediction for when seasteading prototypes may become a reality.

Realistic Timeline

  • Building a floating platform, even in a harbor, is at least 10 years away.
  • Looking at the development timeline of Prospera on land can provide an estimate for seasteading.
  • It may take 10 to 20 years to have a platform in a protected harbor and another 10 years to have one in the ocean.
  • Initially, the structures may not be massive but could eventually evolve into large floating domes attracting visitors worldwide.

01:18:30 Comparing Seasteading with Colonizing Outer Space

Section Overview: The speaker compares the cost and ease of living at sea through seasteading with colonizing outer space.

Cost Comparison

  • Creating colonies in outer space involves significant costs compared to creating spectacular colonies on the sea.
  • Living at sea through seasteading offers more comfort and is relatively easier to achieve compared to outer space colonization.

Focus on Vessel Design

  • The priority is to design vessels that are attractive for people to live on rather than primarily focusing on sailing capabilities.
  • Most existing boats and catamarans designed for living aboard prioritize sailing, while seasteading aims for comfortable living spaces.

01:19:10 Designing Floating Houses vs. Boats

Section Overview: The speaker emphasizes the difference between designing movable floating houses for seasteading and traditional boats designed for sailing.

Difference in Design Approach

  • Seasteading aims to create movable floating houses primarily designed for comfortable living rather than focusing solely on sailing capabilities.
  • Most people would prefer not sacrificing comfort when choosing a permanent residence at sea.

01:19:40 The Importance of Competition and Market Development

Section Overview: In this section, the speaker discusses the importance of competition in driving market development for their concept of living on vessels permanently.

Fostering Competition

  • Competition is welcomed as it encourages more companies to enter the market with similar concepts.
  • The speaker envisions a future where thousands of people around the world are living on these vessels.
  • Once there is a significant number of people living permanently on these vessels, it will create a market that drives platform development.

Virtual Prototypes vs Physical Prototypes

  • Currently, all designs are virtual prototypes simulated through wave simulations.
  • Building physical prototypes has limited value from an engineering perspective.
  • Digital prototypes provide more accurate and useful information compared to physical ones.
  • However, the first vessel built and sold will still be considered a prototype, with design refinements expected over time.

Hypothetical Scenario: Changing World Dynamics

  • If the world changed dramatically and land living became less oppressive or restrictive, the speaker would consider adjusting their plans.
  • The decision to live at sea depends on various factors such as autonomy, freedom, and practicality.
  • While there is a cool factor associated with living at sea, it may not be the ultimate goal if other favorable conditions exist on land.

Profitability and Business Opportunities

  • The speaker distinguishes between community building (non-profit) and business ventures related to platform design, building, and operation (for-profit).
  • The solar electric catamaran project mentioned earlier will be a for-profit business but open-source in nature.
  • Floating platforms anchored near free cities could serve as additional real estate opportunities for expansion or recreational purposes.

01:21:11 Balancing Autonomy and Business Endeavors

Section Overview: This section explores the balance between pursuing autonomy and freedom while also considering potential profitability as a business venture.

Ideal Free Cities and Coastal Locations

  • The speaker acknowledges that many free city advocates prefer coastal locations for easy access in and out without crossing land.
  • An offshore platform could serve as a strategic location, potentially even integrated with weaponry if needed.

Non-Profit vs For-Profit Ventures

  • Community building itself is seen as a non-profit endeavor, while the design, building, and operation of platforms are considered for-profit opportunities.
  • The speaker mentions the possibility of Atlas Island members congregating at a marina in Prospera, serving both as a gathering place and a marina for other boaters.

Offshore Platforms for Expansion

  • Offshore platforms could provide additional real estate options for landlocked free cities looking to expand their territories.
  • The speaker has explored potential locations for marinas or floating platforms near Prospera, considering its coastal nature and popularity for activities like diving.

01:22:46 Considering Business Opportunities and Future Plans

Section Overview: This section delves into the business aspects of the project and discusses plans for community building and platform operations.

Balancing Community Building and Profitability

  • While community building is not intended to generate profits, certain aspects like the solar electric catamaran project will be run as a for-profit business.
  • Similar to open-source projects like Arduino, hardware sales can generate profit while maintaining an open-source approach.
  • Designing, building, and operating platforms are expected to be profitable ventures.

Floating Platforms Near Free Cities

  • The speaker expresses interest in having floating platforms anchored off the shore or connected to free cities like Prospera.
  • These platforms would serve multiple purposes: validating the concept, providing additional real estate options, and supporting existing infrastructure.

Potential Use of Offshore Platforms by Prospera

  • Given Prospera’s coastal location with reefs followed by deeper waters after the reef line, offshore platforms could be strategically positioned based on specific needs.
  • The speaker mentions exploring the possibility of building a marina in Prospera as part of their stage two plans, benefiting both Atlas Island members and other boaters.

Note: The transcript provided does not cover the entire video, and these summaries are based solely on the available content.

01:24:57 Living on a Catamaran: A Feasible and Enjoyable Idea

Section Overview: In this section, the speaker discusses the feasibility and appeal of living on a catamaran. They explain that while they are not personally fond of sailing, they believe that living on a stable catamaran could provide a unique and practical lifestyle option.

Living on a Catamaran as an Alternative Lifestyle

  • The speaker finds the idea of living on a catamaran to be funny and cool.
  • They acknowledge that building such a catamaran and finding the right community would be essential.
  • Despite not being a fan of sailing, they see the potential in designing a stable catamaran suitable for inland waters.
  • Instead of flying or driving between cities, one could sail along the coast and dock in various European cities accessible by waterways.
  • This alternative lifestyle would allow individuals to live in different cities without buying or renting apartments.

Overcoming Concerns about Sailing

  • The speaker admits to having reservations about sailing based on their previous experiences.
  • However, they mention that their concept focuses more on navigating inland waters rather than open seas.
  • They highlight that barges already exist for transportation purposes, including trips from the UK to Amsterdam.
  • For those who prefer not to sail across certain bodies of water, hiring someone to transport the catamaran is an option.

Making Living on Water Enjoyable for Non-Sailors

  • The goal at Atlas Island is not necessarily to make people love sailing but rather to make living on water enjoyable and practical.
  • The speaker expresses their personal interest in trying out this alternative lifestyle if given the opportunity.
  • While they may not have the means to buy a catamaran themselves, they anticipate that Atlas Island tourism could become significant if this concept becomes reality.

01:27:08 Conclusion and Future Prospects

Section Overview: In this section, the conversation concludes with a discussion about the potential future of Atlas Island and the speaker’s interest in staying connected.

Potential Business Model and Future Plans

  • The speaker suggests that Atlas Island tourism could be a significant part of their business model if the concept becomes a reality.
  • They express their willingness to participate in Atlas Island tourism themselves.
  • The conversation ends with gratitude for the opportunity to discuss these ideas and an anticipation of keeping in touch.

Note: The transcript does not provide any relevant information during the music playing at [1:27:34].