SLDI & The Lost Symbol

Terry Mock, SLDI Co-founder

By Terry Mock
Follow Terry on Twitter: @SustainLandDev

October 2009

Just two weeks after launch, Dan Brown’s new book, “The Lost Symbol,” is the fastest selling adult novel of all time in both hardback and eBook versions, eclipsing the initial global success of Brown’s earlier book, The Da Vinci Code, which ultimately sold over 80 million copies. This sequel (and the movie, which is already scheduled for release in 2012) is guaranteed to cause a tremendous and lasting groundswell of public interest in the book’s subject matter – which intertwines the history of Washington D.C., the secrets and symbols of Freemasonry, and the hidden meaning of George Washington’s life – each of which have deeply rooted connections to land development.

Even as the book’s clever and fast-paced plot concludes, what may not be apparent to many readers is the connection between the SLDI mission and the meaning of “The Lost Symbol” – The Apotheosis of George Washington – painting on the ceiling of the Capitol Rotunda.

According to Brown’s story,

This ceiling’s spectacular collection of images was indeed a message… The founding fathers had envisioned America as a blank canvas, a fertile field on which the seeds of the mysteries could be sown. Today, Washington – a soaring icon – the father of our country, ascending to heaven – is hung silently above our lawmakers, leaders, and presidents…a bold reminder, a map to the future, a promise of a time when all people, like George Washington, would evolve to complete spiritual maturity.

“The Lost Symbol” connects the meaning of George Washington’s life to the achievement of our human potential as creators on earth. Now this is something to which we in land development can relate and aspire! Interestingly, SLDI made that very same connection almost four years ago. As first written in the December 2005 Land Development Today magazine article by SLDI entitled, “Breaking New Ground”:

When you look at the history of our industry in America, one is hard pressed not to conclude that George Washington, the Father of our Country, also grew to become what can only be described today as the Father of our own land development industry, as well as a visionary prophet of sustainability.

Further, the May 2007 SLDT magazine article People, Planet, & Profit, which originally unveiled the need and concept for SLDI, again documented George Washington’s unique leadership qualities, and addressed the multitude of problems facing our profession with this advice – “What Would George Washington Do?… Understanding the life and times of perhaps our country’s greatest hero, George Washington, can help to light our way down a path of true sustainability – one where people, planet, and profit all are considered equally in a decision model.”

Now, once again following the visionary philopsophy of George Washington, SLDI is pleased to be able to disclose the world’s first sustainable land development best practices system – The SLDI Code.™

Your participation and comments are welcome.

The SLDI Code™

The SLDI Best Practices System is symbolized as a geometrical algorithm that balances and integrates the triple-bottom-line needs of people, planet and profit into a holistic, fractal model that becomes increasingly detailed, guiding effective decisions throughout the community planning, financing, design, regulating, construction and maintenance processes while always enabling project context to drive specific decisions.

December 2005 LDT Cover
George Washington Masonic National Memorial
The Apotheosis of George Washington
TODAY Videos and Clues
Official Destination DC Website
Official Dan Brown Website
How to party like Dan Brown

Sustainable Land Development Initiative

For the latest SLDI tweets, click here.

The 21st century will overturn many of our previously-held assumptions about civilization. The challenges and opportunities land development stakeholders now face – to fulfill the needs of society and achieve a favorable return on investment without harming the environment – have vast implications on the sustainability of our communities around the world.

SLDI - Sustainable Land Development Initiative is a stakeholder social media association now positioned to help transform the industry that creates the very infrastructure of our civilization. SLDI is dedicated to delivering sustainable land development technology and knowledge resources to promote and enable fully integrated sustainable land development worldwide.

How do we develop a sustainable civilization?
By delivering the "holy grail of sustainable decision making" - a universal geometrical algorithm that balances the needs of people, planet and profit - The SLDI Code™
The World’s First Sustainable Development Decision Model is symbolized as a geometrical algorithm that balances and integrates the triple-bottom line needs of people, planet and profit into a holistic, fractal model that becomes increasingly detailed, guiding effective decisions throughout the community planning, financing, design, regulating, construction and maintenance processes while always enabling project context to drive specific decisions.

2400 Green Street, Suite 201
Dubuque, IA 52001

SLDI Co-founders:
Terry Mock
Tony Wernke

Read The Fractal Frontier - Sustainable Development Trilogy.
Read Developing a Sustainable Endgame for the Global Economy
See history and evolution of SLDI @ SLDI Foundational Articles

5 responses

  1. UPDATE:

    Oct 20, 2011
    Mark Romanek Getting Into the Dan Brown Business

    Mark Romanek spent two decades directing some of the best, most distinctive music videos the genre has ever know. Occasionally, he makes movies, the next of which would be something of a departure, to say the least.

    Romanek is said to be the frontrunner to helm “The Lost Symbol,” the third book in the Dan Brown trilogy about symbologist Robert Langdon, reported Deadline. He’d be taking over the franchise from Little Opie Cunningham, who directed the first two, “The Da Vinci Code” and “Angels & Demons.”

    Here’s a chunk of the synopsis from Brown’s website:

    A disturbing object–artfully encoded with five symbols–is discovered in the Capitol Building. Langdon recognizes the object as an ancient invitation… one meant to usher its recipient into a long-lost world of esoteric wisdom.

    When Langdon’s beloved mentor, Peter Solomon–a prominent Mason and philanthropist–is brutally kidnapped, Langdon realizes his only hope of saving Peter is to accept this mystical invitation and follow wherever it leads him.

    Romanek hinted at this development a couple of weeks ago, by posting a photo of producers Brian Grazer and director Ron Howard.

    Romanek has only directed three other films, “Static” in 1985, “One Hour Photo” in 2002 and last year’s under-appreciated “Never Let Me Go”–it would be fair to say he leans toward art-house fare. When he last tried to go big budget, it was on “The Wolfman,” but he bailed just weeks before going into production over a dispute with Universal regarding–what else?–money and creative vision.

    For an overview of just how great his career as a video director has been (Fiona Apple’s “Criminal” remains one of the dirtiest things we’ve ever seen on MTV), check out this list or watch this montage…


  2. Danny Strong Set to Adapt Dan Brown’s THE LOST SYMBOL
    by Adam Chitwood    March 1st, 2012

    The adaptation of Dan Brown’s The Lost Symbol is becoming a surprisingly interesting project. After Ron Howard opted out of directing a third film focusing on symbologist Robert Langdon, immensely talented director Mark Romanek (Never Let Me Go) became the frontrunner to take the helm. Now Danny Strong, who penned HBO’s Recount and the upcoming 2008 election-centered HBO film Game Change, has been tapped to write The Lost Symbol. Steven Knight (Eastern Promises) took the first stab at the script after which Brown himself did a pass,
    but now it looks like Sony is handing the project off to Strong. Hit the jump for more on the follow up to The Da Vinci Code and Angels & Demons.

    I didn’t much care for Da Vinci or Angels & Demons, but the films’ grosses ($758 million and $485 million worldwide, respectively) imply that I’m in the minority. If anyone can elevate Brown’s source material to an engaging and smart feature, it’s Romanek. He’s come close to directing a major feature twice now, as he passed on The Wolverine and dropped out of The Wolfman over creative differences just before production was set to begin. I really, really liked Never Let Me Go, and I’m eager to see what Romanek will do with a larger, studio film.

    Tom Hanks hasn’t yet signed on, but Deadline’s report on Strong’s involvement mentions that he’s expected to reprise the role of Langdon. Given the series’ worldwide appeal, he’s sure to
    reap a major financial benefit from a third outing. Though Howard isn’t directing The Lost Symbol, he’s still set to stay on in a producing capacity alongside Imagine partner Brian Grazer. It’s not clear why the previous scripts for the film weren’t up to snuff for Sony, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Romanek had a hand in choosing Strong to pen the rewrite.


  3. Thoughts on Dan Brown’ new book….

    An Inferno for Our Times? –

    Although skillful and clever throughout, Dan Brown’s Inferno is finally more of a gateway argument on behalf of population control than a simple thriller about Dante, Florence, or bioterror. Considered as a whole, the novel serves as something like a “gateway to the Posthuman age,” as the seeming villain of the novel says when describing the goal of his plot. While the gateways in Dante lead either to Hell and self-knowledge or to Mount Purgatorio and a climb to the stars, this novel leads the reader into a brave new world of genetic engineering and suggests that we embrace the new means required to “save the world,” even if we find them “uncomfortable.”

    Dan Brown on His Latest Novel: ‘I’m trying to write something exciting’ –

    “I’m trying to write something that’s exciting,” he told me, “and leaves people with an intellectual curiosity to learn more about a subject that I’m excited about; that’s all I’m trying to do.” How could anyone possibly object to that?

    Connecting the dots…

    Secrets Of The Lost Symbol – Part 5 Video Interview –

    @ 4:23 Matt Lauer asks, “What was, in your opinion, the most fascinating, code, puzzle, symbol in this book?”

    Dan Brown responds, “The most fascinating code I left out of this book.”

    Matt Lauer – “Why”

    Dan Brown – “It was too complicated. It was just too tough to use.”

    Matt Lauer – “You can’t tell me that and not now tell me about it.”

    Dan Bown – “Well, I’m not going to tell you about it. It’s in the next book…..”

    Matt Lauer – Just as Brown says his current book builds on his previous ones and asks the reader for something more, as well. – “There’s a call to action in this book where you challenge the reader to take what you’ve just told them over the course of the previous 500 pages and decide what he or she wants to do with it. Did you set out to write that ending or did that just happen?”

    Dan Brown – “In some ways it just happened. Uh, the amount of research and intellectual growth that went into writing this novel rather led to that hopeful ending and thank you for, thank you for seeing that it is a call to action….”

    1. Publisher’s Weekly
      Week of July 1, 2013

      Dan Brown’s Inferno is still the bestselling book in the country, but after its strong first week, print sales have slowed substantially. It was the same story in 2009, when The Lost Symbol was published, though its first-week print unit sales of 1.1 million dwarfs Inferno’s 367,545. It’s safe to assume a big chunk of the difference can be attributed to e-books; after all, a Kindle cost $299 and the iPad didn’t exist when Symbol hit the shelves.

    2. ‘Inferno’ Adaptation Will Pair Ron Howard And Tom Hanks
      July 17, 2013 –

      ….Sony has previously announced that it had started developing an adaptation of the 2009 novel in the series, The Lost Symbol, but it has apparently put that on hold in favor of Inferno.

      ….Back in May, author Dan Brown said he had not doubt that Inferno would be made into a movie, it’s a classic Robert Langdon adventure, more so than Symbol…. At that point The Lost Symbol had gone through four screenplays, including one from Brown.

      “It’s a very complicated plot,” he said of Symbol,about a kidnapper in Washington, D.C., who uses Masonic symbols as clues.,,,

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