Recovery Plan

Recovery Plan from Open Source Ecology on Vimeo.

Dear True Fans and Supporters – I vlogged about our plans in the last blog post, and the expected $60k construction grant did not arrive yet. Without this cash we will NOT deliver on our stated construction goals (5000 square foot off-grid fabrication facility and 10 superinsulated living units) – so we are proposing a recovery plan. WE NEED $20k in the next 7 days to remain on schedule, with groundbreaking on September 15, 2011.  I am moving proactively to address this, and now every day counts as winter is coming.

I got on the phone, and found a $10k commitment already. We need $10k more within 7 days to deliver on our existing plans (construction materials and additional equipment such as open source tractor-mounted cement mixer).  I am putting up a 7-day Chip-In for crowd funding for $10k.

This is for only 7 days – so chip in now if you’re considering it at all, and spread this through your networks. We need over $1k/day to succeed on this. If the $60k comes in, we’ll jump in joy – but we cannot rely on this dependency if  at this time if we want to meet our construction goals for this year. I am committed to making this happen, so we can carry on a substantial parallel GVCS development effort both at Factor e Farm and with remote prototyping. It would be nice to have a warm roof over our heads this winter…

We’re in our final push for construction, finishing fabrication of our open source CEB presses and tractors by next week. What else? We’re building the first prototype of the Dimensional Sawmill for lumber for this construction season. We will be baling with our own baler – together to demonstrate the feasibility of super-insulated housing at $2 per square foot material costs – from local materials while meeting industry-standard construction schedules – using our open source tractor and compressed earth brick presses.

If you think this is worth demonstrating – this season as opposed to some time in the future – then chip in today. I am Tweeting this and putting it on Facebook, plus sending this to all donors from the last year of this project.


To ground this recovery plan,  if we don’t have at least $1-2k by tomorrow, or as needed, I will:

  1. Take to  the phone for further support. Call up Call up former major donors for support.
  2. Mine my emails for all donors from over the last 5 years
  3. Recruit 3 supporters to do some calling, emailing, and posting (can you volunteer?)
  4. Spend 1/3 of my capacity on this, eliminate all other tasks, to retain 2/3 of my energy on completing the equipment preparation.
  5. Post on the TED Fellows blog and P2P blog regarding an update, with this as the pressing present condition.
  6. Dig up a few contacts from my journals that I forgot I ever had, and thereby bring my relationships up to date.
  7. Request 10 of my best supporters to commit to 6 dedicated hours on this over the next 7 days.
  8. Invite 100 leading supporters as needed to email their friends, committing one dedicated hour to this. See sample Recovery Plan Email that you can send to your friends.


  1. David

    If so much money is needed to create the first Global Village, istn’t a proof that it’s not possible to replicate it without similiar amount?

    1. Marcin

      To develop the first village and document for replicability should take about $5M + lots of labor. To replicate, I now estimate that it should take $10k + lots of labor once power generation, precision machining, and induction furnace are available. The goal of our experiment is to show real data points as benchmarks. Our entire thesis is that drastic cost reduction occurs once access to low-cost, high-performance, enabling machinery is available. This, however, still does not substitute for the skilled operator.

  2. LucasG
  3. anon

    Donated! I hope others join me, I was thinking of upgrading my true fan subscription a little anyway, so I guess an extra $50 from me right now instead isn’t such a big deal.

  4. Paul

    I donated $50, I urge fellow true fans to do the same. We can make this happen.

  5. Robert

    I joined the true fan thing yesterday, sorry I don’t have more cash to spare at this time.

    I’m curious, how do you propose to deal with regulatory aspects of this equipment manufacture? I’m not trying to be a naysayer, just curious. I know that zoning laws exist partly to protect the construction trades, and I would expect that compliance with OSHA and UL and other such agencies must constitute an obstacle to building the GVCS gear either for sale or by the end user.

    What I’m getting at is that laws exist even to prevent my wife from burying me herself, in order to protect the funeral parlor business, under the guise of “public safety”. It’s hard for me to imagine that the OSE and GVCS model will not face serious obstacles from the established order if your efforts move beyond single site, small scale use…? Right off the bat, I would think the tractor industry alone would start working politically behind the scenes to interfere with your efforts?

    Very exciting though, and I’m pulling for you! Good luck with the immediate funding issue! 🙂

    1. Marcin

      Just for a high level answer: today’s legal institutions apply to an outdated model of operation, not based on open source economics, and not based on the interests of distributive enterprise. Once a realistic alternative to centralized production is created, the outdated legal forms related to such production will undergo a reboot. Those aspects of the legal framework which serve true human needs will and should remain, while those aspects that serve the interests of the old system will be removed. This will create an environment in which distributive enterprise and open source economic paradigms will flourish.

      The only hope for the realization of the new economy is responsibility: that embodied by an increasingly aware and capable population. Responsibility trumps institutionalized violence. It’s up to You to take the red pill and make this happen.

  6. anon

    David, you’ve got to remember, the first village currently is unable to build many of the advanced parts/materials on it’s own. Stuff like engines, hydraulics, computers, aluminium sheeting.

    To be able to build those things you need the full 50 construction set. But since the first village simply doesn’t have those machines yet it has to buy them in, thats why it’s so expensive to begin with.

    However once the first village is built it can use its full construction set to rebuild the entire set for another village without having to buy anything in apart from scrap steel (at least in theory, there may yet be some parts the unforseen that cannot be built with the 50 machines).

    Also, the first village goes through many prototypes to perfect it machine. New villages will not need to expend time/wealth on this process they will only need to build the last design for each machine.

  7. Marcin

    Thanks everybody – we are seeing unprecedented progress in crowd funding here – $10k + $3.4k (in Chip-In basket) + $1k after day 1- see my thank you note:

    Recovery Report Day 1 from Open Source Ecology on Vimeo.

  8. josef’s Blog

    […] this @OpenSourceEcology 7 days crowdfund effort * pls RT Like this:LikeBe the first to like this […]

  9. Roey

    Hi been reading over this website with much interest for the last month or so. I find it quite fascinating. Also a quick introduction. I run a company based in Kampala, Uganda which manufactures micro home solar systems, and the idea of production of afforadable ‘open source’ technology is something that happens everyday in Africa, by shear necessity. People refer to it as the Jua Kali Economy,(swahili for working in the hot sun). You can read about the way make ultra low cost machines here:
    and here:

    It would be fascinating to create a program to replicate your Village in Africa. Frankly I think your costs might be lower and the ingenuity, well, its very much already there.

  10. […] True Fans, thanks for your support. The Recovery Plan for continuing construction has yielded $15k in 3 days of crowd funding, and we are 75% of our goal. Chip in if you […]

  11. Patrick

    I’ve been following your progress for a bit, and think it’s a noble goal. Here is another tool that you may or may not be aware of, but would be an excellent contribution to the cause:

    Just making you aware. 🙂

  12. […] Source Ecology makes the Global Village Construction Set. They kick lots of ass. Help them.http://blog.opensourceecology.or…This answer .Please specify the necessary improvements. Edit Link Text Show answer summary […]