Steady Growth

We have been supported 100% by crowd funding, and one month ago we announced the doubling campaign for the 1000 True Fans subscription program. We are now at 132 True Fans, as of Sep. 13, 2010, or a 32% increase over the month:

The red dot marks the announcement of the Doubling Campaign one month ago. This is inspiring growth – as we have gained as much support over one month as we did over almost a year when we first started the 1000 True Fans – 1000 Global Villages campaign at the beginning of 2009. Help us build a better future – subscribe to the 1000 True Fans.

One way of phrasing our goals is:

What if technology could be tapped to deliver on the promise of unprecedented quality of life, with 2 hours spend on ‘making a living’, and the rest of one’s time liberated for pursuing one’s true passions? Furthermore, what if this could be done without any compromise, personal or geopolitical?

Another way to phrase our work is, as inspired by Permakent:

We are building an advanced industrial economy in a box that can be deployed inexpensively anywhere in the world. This indicates closing of the industrial divide.

On seminal work regarding the industrial divide, have you read Michael J. Piore from MIT –¬† The Second Industrial Divide? Here’s an excerpt from the Introduction:

The times are troubled indeed when good news is almost indistinguishable form the bad. Economic downturns no longer seem mere interruptions in the march to greater prosperity; rather, they threaten to destroy the world markets on which economic success has depended since the end of World War II. Meanwhile, upturns avert disaster without solving the problems…

But amid the confusion, two things are generally counted as near certainties. First, diruptions in the supply of natural resources – primarily, sources of energy – are seen to have slowed economic growth. And second, the modern welfare state’s efforts to control the pace and consequences of growth are seen to have obstructed industrial development (surprisingly enough, there is agreement on this across political lines). However, they differ in their analyses and prescriptions for improvement…

This book takes a different tack. We argue that the political intervention in the economy – ranging from the formation of a cartel of oil exporters to the operation of the welfare state – has at worst aggravated a crisis that has other, deeper causes. These causes lie in the economies of the advanced capitalist countries. Our claim is that the present deterioration in economic performance results from the limits of the model of industrial development that is founded on mass production: the use of special-purpose (product-specific) machines and of semiskilled workers to produce standardized goods. We argue that the technologies and operating procedures of most modern corporations; the forms of labor market control defended by many labor movements; the instruments of macroeconomic control developed by bureaucrats and economists in the welfare states; and the rules of the international monetary and trading systems established immediately after World War II – all must be modified, perhaps even discarded, if the chronic economic diseases of our time are to be cured…

Here comes Factor e Farm with general-purpose, lifetime design machinery of fabrication and production…

The plan is to use True Fans donations to bootstrap the revolution Рbut that has its limits. Getting the word out is slow, and while there are hints of meteoric rise in our True Fans numbers, we are at 132 at present. Miracles do happen, though, and our crystal ball tells us to build real productive capacity in tandem. Thus, the updated plan of action Рto be started this building season Рis a new 3000 square foot workshop to accommodate 4 full-time fabricators. It takes 2 weeks to produce a CEB or tractor Рbut we believe that if we complete our open source  CNC torch table and other tooling optimization Рwe can get down to one week in our new flexible fabrication facility. We can earn $5k per device produced Рso with 4 people, that would be $80k/month bootstrap earnings to pump into the rapid deployment of the complete Global Village Construction Set.

Prerequisites for the above are completion of the torch table, upgrade to 4 MIG welders, increase to 40kW of off-grid cottage-industrial power, Full Product Release of LifeTrac on top of the CEB press, and possibly full product releases of the torch table and modern steam engine, as well as other improvements indicated here – all by spring of next year.

Prerequisite for the open source torch table is an open source, 3-6 axis stepper motor controller. For recasting civilization from scrap we need help on the induction furnace power supply design, and to help the world get off-grid via local biomass – we need help on the modern steam engine. These are just a few things on the plate. Contact us at opensourceecology at gmail dot com if you are a subject matter expert on any of these topics.

Back to the True Fans – we now have 2 Platinum subscribers ($50/month commitment for 2 years), as well as a number of Gold ($20/month) in addition to the standard $10/month subscriptions. Several existing True Fans have upgraded to higher subscriptions, which we encourage for our existing True Fans. We have hints that it’s desirable to add $30 and $100/month subscriptions, so that is reflected in the subscription button above and below, and you can also subscribe at the wiki. Thanks for all of your support. Evolve to freedom.


  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Open Source Ecology, FSCONS. FSCONS said: Live: Steady Growth: We have been supported 100% by crowd funding, and one month ago we announced the doubling cam… […]

  2. LucasG

    It truely looks like an epidemic curve to me. Like a fire, it spreads because each new tree sets its neighbours on fire too. At least the “susceptible”, dry ones.

    Also, there’s one question for folks who have recently started acting as true fans: what motivated you? New information, a personal appeal, the sight of the momentum that seems to be going on, the fact that this time you can really make a difference to the whole outcome, something else?

    How do we make the curve take off vertically?


  3. LucasG

    Ok, done. Just subscribed via paypal with a higher option (not telling you which so you’ll have to figure out what you can do yourself, *grin*), then cancelled the old subscription.

    Thanks for the show, folks! Some of us empty our small pockets every now and then, but you’re the ones, all who help in whatever way!

  4. Matthew

    I’m very pleased to see the progress and the increase in support. I’ve been a “True Fan” since the beginning of the year.

    I view it as an investment. I can see the practicality of the Open Source Ecology technologies for myself and others. My funding it now will increase the speed of development, which is a better result for everyone.

    This would be different if OSE was about talk and philosophy only. However, seeing the real physical progress inspires confidence in this project. I wish that I could contribute more (especially in time).

    Keep up the good work!

  5. Glenn Poston

    So what else are we to do in helping? i see projects that need volunteers. i must be missing the part of how to go about helping. Why do you have two forums, with nothing much on either?

    You have done a lot, and i thank you, but how will you get people to help? How will you get more people period? Most dont have time or knowledge of whats going on in our world. second attention span, is where we need to be.


    1. Marcin

      We are currently working on a facelift to our web presence, to clarify our work and facilitate involvement. Factorefarm is a dead site as it is today, and will be replaced. There is a faulty install issue that we have not fixed yet.

  6. Glenn Poston

    The should read Five second attention span.
    Oh i see why my comment waits moderation, advertising on forums, that sucks!

  7. Stewart Easton

    Hi Marcin, I was exposed your work through listening to VTV’s show in the archives. I have a background in biology, but I work in finance, so I have taken the route of “those who can not do, help”. The help in my case is money and I will spread the word of your work as I spend much time on other forums debating the merits of an RBE, and I always use your organization as an example of people building the technology to advance the concept.

    I am part of the Vancouver Chapter of the Zeitgeist movement and I think the work you are doing is great and we as a movement need to do more to help you with your goals. You are building the technology that is going to make an RBE possible.

  8. Anders O

    Time to update this page? It’s still refered to from the main “support” page.