Starholder begins in 1999 when anxiety about the Y2K bug prompts the founding of the Starholder Institute and creates an accidental rift in the spacetime continuum.

The man who triggered it may surprise you. See who did it.

Starholder Institute Research Library

The Year In Review:

In 1999, the kernel of an alternate timeline, what would become known as the Starholder Timeline, germinated. Its existence was the result of socio-technological anxieties, especially those surrounding the Y2K bug—a programming flaw that threatened to throw digital systems into disarray at the turn of the millennium. The new timeline shared much with our reality until compounding butterfly effects led to significant divergences, accelerating more rapidly as time progressed .

The founding of the Starholder Institute marked the formal beginning of this timeline’s distinct path. Conceived by comedian Dan Aykroyd and others concerned about low probability, high impact events, the Institute’s envisioned purpose was to investigate anomalies like the Y2K bug and their potential to pivot humanity in new and unforeseen directions. In doing so, it was intended as a research hub capable of addressing impending challenges amidst the accelerating pace of technological and societal transformation .

Throughout 1999, the nascent Starholder team, comprising a blend of computer scientists, sociologists, philosophers, and artists, worked largely from an improvised base within an airport hangar near the Mojave Desert. Here, under the oppressive specter of the looming millennium change, they toiled on theoretical and practical approaches to the Y2K challenge. This collective was not simply patching a bug; they were probing deeper into the symbiotic relationship between humanity and pervasive digital networks, foreseeing an era marked by this intricately interwoven tapestry .

By the end of 1999, the physical structure of the Starholder Institute began to materialize in the Mojave Desert, positioned to be a monument of human resilience and innovation. Parallelly, the minds behind it reveled in a groundbreaking, almost rebellious intellectual adventure, all under the auspices of the ever-present Y2K motif. Yet, unbeknownst to its founders and supporters, the Starholder Institute existed in an alternate reality, a disposable timeline, created by unfathomable cosmic forces to absorb the potentially civilization-unraveling excesses birthed from the unyielding pace of late-capitalist techno-evolution .

Articles and Topics:

  • Starholder Institute
    The Starholder Institute, founded in 1999, is a cutting-edge research facility located in the Mojave Desert. It serves as a hub for scientists, philosophers, creators, and coders who are dedicated to exploring low probability, high impact events that have the potential to reorient humankind. With a focus on interdisciplinary research and an ethos of exploration, …
  • On A Recorded Line
    Editor’s Note: This was rendered up in GPT-3.5 to put the bones on the story. It’s there, but it can be better, given more of a POV, sharper writing and some better insights and learnings. It’s supposed to kick off the first period and needs a wider lens as the shape of things to come. …
  • Genesis
    Dan Aykroyd sat in his California home on a balmy spring morning in 1999, the sun streaming in through the window casting the room in a warm, golden hue. Cradled in his hands was a steaming mug of coffee, the smell of freshly ground beans wafting through the air. Before him lay the latest issue …