Empires have risen and fell in the natural cadence of history, and chief before the rest is the claim that somehow they had rested on their laurels and given up on innovation.
We don’t claim to be immune to failure, but we refuse to fall prey to this most miserable demise.
In biology, you have the concept of neoteny. Creatures who have evolved to stay, more or less in their infantile state, unable to mature into the grown adult form. In its stead, the infantile creature develops an entire contracted lifecycle, creating a new kind of adulthood out of eternal childhood.
It’s argued that we, humans are somewhat neotenic creatures, relative to our ape brethren, we share much more in common with a fetal ape than one who has grown, in all stages of our life. But we have a mature state, an adolescence and a puberty which marks the transition from young to old, but not from human to ape, from child to man. They’re adaptations to survive while remaining forever young.
And so Protobowl is an experiment with something analogous to that. It’s a project stuck as an overdeveloped infantile state, a permanent prototype.
This is another post that I wrote 5 years ago and never ended up publishing.