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Marcin Jakubowski * Open Source Ecology, Inc. -- An Operational Model for a Replicable, Regenerative Development Social Enterprise (was: [ox-en] Conference documentation / Konferenzdokumentation)

Open Source Ecology, Inc.

Marcin Jakubowski [marcin at]

An Operational Model for a Replicable, Regenerative Development Social Enterprise

Introduction - History of Economics and Entry to the Information Age

To date, humans have not succeeded in providing basic human needs to
all people. In this paper, I will not debate whether such success is
possible or desirable, but propose an operational scenario wherein the
human species would have an option to meeting basic human needs of

Article 25 of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights
( states, "Everyone has the
right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being
of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and
medical care and necessary social services." Much of the third world
is missing these basic human rights; many in the United States of
America are missing access to medical care.

It is useful to provide a brief summary of world economics to date,
with respect to the provision of human needs. Conflict and warfare has
been a common route to securing life-meeting needs if resources of one
group were scarce, and today this trend is on an upswing. (ref) At all
times in history both the elite class and subsistence class was able
to meet all of their needs relatively well. Some people always had
more access to resources than others in non-indigenous populations.
Formerly, it was typically possible to find a new frontier for
resource base expansion. Today, physical frontiers are mostly closed,
with accompanying overpopulation and increased resource scarcity
pressures. This provides an opportunity for an increase in the quality
of resource use, as opposed to the quantity of resource use.

Today, the economies of the industrialized world are increasingly
specialized, where each member of society provides an ever decreasing
fraction of society's needs. One individual is typically not in a
position to produce all of any person's needs. In pre-industrial
times, before the deskilling and specialization of labor, each person
was more self-sufficient. The number of one's dependencies on others
today is hard to calculate. Craftspeople turned into well-defined cogs
in the industrial machine.

In a deskilled economy of specialization, access to information is
becoming more and more important due to the increased complexity and
interconnectedness of society. Access to information determines one's
ability to produce and market. This is called the Information Age.

Because of specialization in a complex world, one has a narrow focus
and a decreased ability to make connections or to determine
cause-and-effect relationships, such as connections between human
organizational structures, technology, and ecology. This explains the
need to be well-informed in such a society to cope with the
complexities of life in the Information Age.

In the information economy, access to information is access to
capital, is access to the means of production, is access to a
democratic foundation of society. This is where the need for
transparent access to information becomes an obvious democratizing

In the information age, the struggle for access to information is
analogous to various other resource struggles of yesterday and today -
slavery, independence, or other liberations. In the information age,
access to information is a heated struggle - visible in propaganda,
media control, and other mechanisms of manufacturing consent, as well
as trade secrets or proprietary information. Because of its economic
value, the most essential knowhow related to the productive
infrastructure for meeting basic human needs is kept under close
control - through patents or hard-to-access information, as well as by
more subtle mechanisms for creating "competitive advantage," such as
compulsory schooling or "jumping through the hoops" to join any
professional circle. These mechanisms of closed control are a dominant
feature that determines the access to and distribution of wealth in

Many do have access to wealth. Many don't. Most people have to work
long hours to make ends meet, and the first casualty in working on
something not consistent with one's passion is meaning and
perspective. Meaningful employment that helps one to evolve as a
person is in short supply in an economy where each member produces an
ever-decreasing fraction of their needs. Perspective is impossible if
one doesn't have time to reflect.

In response to the above, it may be more desirable to pursue and
promote modes of production and societal organization that are more
integrated and skilled, where time is liberated for other personal and
civic pursuits. A skilled worker in the information age is one who
tries to piece together the disconnected elements of societal
disorganization. They are social and civic entrepreneurs who strive to
acquire a broad set of skills and an integrated understanding of how
the system works in order to affect a change for the better.
Integrated learning towards these ends means that the student of the
system is crossing disciplinary boundaries, pursuing broad, applied,
experiential learning. This is the type of learning that we are
creating in our organization, Open Source Ecology, Inc.

Open Source Ecology refers to the integration of the natural,
societal, and industrial ecologies aimed at sustainable and
regenerative economics. Participatory models of production represent
the core of any truly democratic society. It is only in such a system
that a balance can be found between human activity and the sustainable
use of natural resources. Part of this process involves the
exploration of societal structures and productive activities to
determine what is truly appropriate to meeting human needs. The goal
is to provide human needs while liberating our time so that we can
engage in exactly that which each of us wants to be doing in this
life, instead of spending all of one's time on the necessities of

Open Source Ecology, Inc.

We have founded Open Source Ecology as a nonprofit research
organization developing a practical framework for the open source
method of economic development. Our goal is to develop a practical
framework for meeting human needs in a sustainable and regenerative
way by applying the principles of open source. We call this framework
open source economics - an economic system for providing products and
services based on:

o    Building on other peoples' work - openness and transparency as
     the key operating principles.

o    A participatory process - new players are welcomed without having
     to go through steep entry barriers, such as professional
     indoctrination in training or proprietary information in product
     development. A participative process welcomes the crossing of
     interdisciplinary boundaries. Access to capital is promoted by
     alternative mechanisms.

o    Quest for best design and best practice: when access to
     information is fully open, than any participant gains access to
     state-of-the-art information, allowing for a general increase in
     the quality of products and services

o    All information that is produced enters the public domain, so
     that the cycle of building on other peoples' work can continue.
     The functioning of society thus becomes transparent.

Essentially, open source economics is an operational model for
evolving the economic system, by building on past experience,
providing equal and open access to the economic process. This is a
feature of human behavior that is commonly known as sharing . Sharing
is a value promoted by most as a high ideal, yet it is violently
opposed in mainstream economic practice, outside of accepted
trickle-down events of wealth accumulation followed by controlled,
top-down distribution.

We believe that open source economics address several pressing issues
in society:

o    In a collaborative society, time is liberated by building on
     others' work. Today, people are working ever-longer hours.
     Because most business entities work essentially by themselves in
     order to obtain competitive advantage, the production of any new
     products or services suffers from long development periods.
     Gaining competitive advantage is frequently accompanied by the
     creation of wants via marketing. This results in a constant drive
     to create new products regardless of their true utility or
     service to society. By collaboration and wise choice of truly
     useful machines, we may get closer to realize the technological
     promise of machines helping people reduce time spent at work.

o    When time is liberated, people are in a position to follow more
     of their personal interests or take on civic duties. If people
     have time to enjoy, they are naturally led to creative pursuits.
     Also, having time to think may be dangerous, as we recognize that
     we can no longer tolerate modern insanities such as increasing
     frequency of warfare, the $1T of unsupported accounting entries
     by the DoD, or the present imprisonment of American citizens
     without access to a lawyer or a trial under the present national
     security crisis, etc.

o    Open source has a profound effect on distribution of wealth and
     the provision of basic human needs to all. It has built-in
     mechanisms for access to information and capital.

Open Source Economics in Practice

Open source software has already demonstrated that the open source
method is a viable route to product development. Linux, for example,
is a computer operating system, analogous to Windows or Macintosh
proprietary operating systems, which can be obtained either for free
or at a small cost compared to their proprietary counterparts. On many
accounts, such open source software is considered to be a superior
product in terms of stability and performance.

One may ask, then, where is the money? The development of Linux
started as a development project by a small group of volunteer
developers. It grew to a full operating system, now supported by
various foundations or corporations dedicated to open source
development. The Linux programmers get hired in Linux support and
other related services. Simply, Linux is an example of a volunteer and
publicly-supported effort, where economic returns arise mostly in the
after-market. The economic returns are there, except in a different

Open Source Ecology, Inc., aim to develop the open source economic
development process for the production of other physical goods and
services beyond software. Currently, Open Source Ecology is working on
the OpenFarm and OpenHouse projects, which are aimed at creating an
integrated infrastructure for regenerative provision of food and
housing needs.

Numerous other open source development projects are also under way.
One example is OSCar, or Open Source Car, the development of a state
of the art fuel cell vehicle which will be licensed freely to any
social entrepreneur and can be produced on a scale orders of magnitude
smaller than typical car manufacturers, such that it is appropriate
for regionally-appropriate development. (ref) Another example of open
source development is SolaRoof, a variable insulation and light
throughput and state of the art glazing system whose proponent
transferred relevant patents into the public domain to foster a
collaborative deployment effort. (ref) Another example is a project
which developed a $1 blood plasma dispenser for third world
applications, where people were formerly not able to afford the only
available devices, which cost $100. (ref) Open source development is
not a new idea. Its potential to become a dominant paradigm for doing
business is, given the drive for increasing the quality of life in a
world with closed physical frontiers but with open information and
communication superhighways.

Operating Principles of Open Source Ecology

The basic operating principle of Open Source Ecology, Inc., for
developing open source economics is that as nonprofit organization, we
are a research and development vehicle for products and services of
all types. Everyone obtains full access to the information generated,
and everyone is welcome to contribute at various support levels, up to
participation in business training internships for incubating
regenerative enterprise. By leveraging the collective development
power of individuals motivated by the desire for improved quality of
life and regenerative development, we put ourselves in a position to
use the contributions from many resources to generate a training
facility and support infrastructure for incubating new economic actors
in society. We focus on the incubation of regenerative enterprise, and
we avoid the short-term gain logic of typical corporations. We are
taking product research and development into the nonprofit sector in
order to assure long term, ecological, sustainable, and regenerative
ways of producing goods and services. We aim to create a viable
infrastructure for meeting human needs in a regenerative way, as a
parallel option that survives alongside the mainstream economic
system. We are creating this infrastructure from the bottom up by
training people for livelihoods in regenerative enterprise, which is
geared to rebuild the infrastructure for providing human needs with an
ecological and regenerative option.

The open source method is relevant to regenerative economics in that
it allows a large set of applied information to be collected as a
route to integrated economic models. Integrated economic models
require a large set of interdisciplinary knowledge, which may not be
easy to acquire in a system of extreme specialization. We believe that
the creation of truly sustainable systems is difficult, if not
impossible, within the mainstream economics framework, because the
components that are already available are hard to link due to various
boundaries to integration and collaboration. Difficulties within the
present system that make regenerative development difficult include
overspecialization, where too many "hands in the pie" drive costs up;
there is also proprietary information; a legal and financial system
which promotes specialized, short term gain; the general lack of
genuine wealth-distributing cooperation, and excessive overhead costs.
Moreover, there is a large number of dependencies on unsustainable
practices, since green chemistry, eco-industry, and ethics are in
short supply in the current economic framework. The creation of new
practices and new ways of organizing and linking these practices is
necessary, based on ecological principles. These new practices can
then serve to create the infrastructure for a sustainable and
regenerative economic system.

The goal of an open source economic development organization is to
develop and demonstrate working economic models for regenerative
enterprise. This includes all the applied science, techniques, and
knowhow involved in the provision of goods and services, including
components such as:

o    Background information

o    Tools and technologies used in manufacturing

o    Economic analysis

o    Strategic planning

o    Materials sourcing

o    Technical drawings, designs, blueprints

Particular to the open source economic development process are
additional support features that enable open source economics to

o    Regenerative design and replicability

o    Information architecture

o    Open Source Technology

o    Flexible manufacturing infrastructure

o    Training facilities for social entrepreneurs interested in open
     source economics

o    Financing assistance for startup

o    Social technology for collaborative financing

In particular, here is a simplified operational diagram for Open
Source Ecology. We are presently following this strategy:

** Unable to import figure Jakubowski.png **

As a nonprofit organization, we are in a position to accept public
support and donations to develop a farming operation. Presently, we
are putting 8 acres of donated land to use, and have access to a
tractor and a pull-type combine. We are using a seeder setup
consisting of 2 Earthway seeders on a drawbar, pulled by a tractor. We
will market salsa, popcorn, shelled pumpkin seeds, and squash as a
fundraiser, motivating our fundraiser as a route to generate capital
for the acquisition of permanent land. We are looking for 20-100
acres, which we will put under conservation status. The land will
serve as our organizational headquarters and research station.

Social Enterprise Development refers to our program of creating
regenerative enterprise. Our initial land acquisition will be
dedicated to our organization headquarters and research station. We
will perform research for our future involvement in land acquisition,
by developing a replicable model for conservation development
districts: for a given 40 acre plot, approximately 95% of the land
will remain as natural space or agricultural land, and the remaining
fraction will be developed with ecological housing. The undeveloped
land will be placed under permanent conservation status by
extinguishing its development rights.

We will use the land-based headquarters as a research and education
center for public-interest land acquisition and open source technology
development. This is part of our strategy for creating open access to
information and other forms of capital. Land transactions are
important because land is the most fundamental form of real capital.
Open source technology refers to all the knowhow required for the
provision of human needs in a sustainable and regenerative fashion. It
includes social technologies and hardware technologies. Social
technologies refer to human institutions such as finance, governance,
political and social organization. In particular, social technology is
used here to imply ethical routes of implementing these human
institutions. Social technology is relevant mainly to developing
organizational and financing strategies for conservation districts,
agricultural districts, energy projects, and others. Hardware
technologies include the techniques and applied science that are used
to provide the physical survival needs of people.

Social technology is relevant to regenerative enterprise in that, if
in conjunction with open source hardware technology, it can produce
public-interest enterprise for meeting human needs. Such social
enterprise can avoid:

o    The cost of competitive waste

o    Costs of marketing and manufacturing consent

o    Policing costs due legal complexity,

o    Socialization of private costs, and privatization or spoilage of
     public heritage assets such as the atmosphere, rainforest lumber,
     aquifers, or plant species.

By necessity, social enterprise must have a strong regional identity
and a sufficiently small size, such that feedback loops for its
ecological and social performance are visible.

To promote widespread access to capital, we are creating a social
enterprise incubator. We will offer intensive residential training
internships in regenerative enterprise. We will perform research in
and teach about open source technology for various appropriate
technology enterprises, starting with food and shelter and moving to
transportation, health, and other infrastructures for meeting human

The infrastructure creation refers to the generation of a support
framework for regenerative enterprise. This includes:

o    The collection and dissemination infrastructure for open source
     technology knowhow using information and communication
     technology, such as a wiki for collaborative web authoring

o    Open source technology laboratory for developing appropriate
     technology relevant to housing, agriculture, transportation,
     health, and other technologies

o    On-site demonstration projects showcasing state-of-the-art
     examples of agricultural, housing, transportation, and other

o    Seed bank and plant propagation facility for developing
     regionally adapted species and for assistance with startup of new
     farming operations

o    An appropriate technology teaching and demonstration equipment
     pool including tractors, a combine, earth moving equipment,
     construction equipment, and other tools

o    On-site production workshops where people have a chance to
     participate in plant propagation, manufacturing of vehicles,
     production of buildings, food processing, and other topics
     relevant to the regenerative provision of human needs

o    Development of a social process for collaborative financing of
     regenerative development projects, such as conservation districts

Putting our Principles into Practice

Our basic goals are regenerative design and replicability. To assess
the regenerative design aspects of the projects we engage, we have
defined a basic set of guiding principles relevant to the creation and
replicability of regenerative enterprise. We call this the
Regenerative Enterprise Index (REI):

o    The economic model leaves the world in a better place than it was

o    The intention of any undertaking is participation in the
     productive mechanisms of society for meeting human needs

o    The development process is open source

o    The time-line for considering projects and their effects extends
     to the farthest foreseeable future, consistent with the infinite
     lifetime of our corporation

o    Fostering access to information and promoting sound use of land
     are our highest priorities

o    Agrees with the principles embodied in the Hannover Principles,
     Agenda 21, The Natural Step, Industrial Ecology, Regenerative
     Design, Biomimicry, UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights

o    Solar Design: our economic models are fueled by the sun or as
     close derivatives of solar energy as possible

o    Cyclic: materials are recycled and reused as feedstocks. This
     includes modular design, design for disassembly

o    Utilizes flexible specialization manufacturing, where less
     specialized machinery requires more skilled labor, instead of
     repetitive work numbing the human spirit

o    Uses and produces appropriate technological choice for the
     provision of needs

o    The economic model is replicable: capital non-intensive,
     information intensive, where access to information is unlimited

o    Focuses on open source alternatives to intellectual property, via
     licenses such as Public Domain, Creative Commons License,
     Copyleft, and Open Source Ecology License

o    Operates at the systems level

o    Helps individuals to liberate time for personal interests
     consistent with their deepest values

The Open Source Ecology License states that:

o    The teleological aim of work and projects undertaken is the
     provision of physical human needs in a sustainable and
     regenerative way, congruent with the Regenerative Enterprise
     Index, and is pursued by creating the necessary, fundamental
     features of societal infrastructure for providing access to such
     provision of human needs, towards generating a healthy option for
     living to anyone interested in such a path

o    Results, techniques, information, business plans, and all other
     information generated shall enter the public domain, and a routes
     to easy access to this information, in the form of distilled
     information architecture, shall be pursued actively via media
     such as the Internet or the publishing of physical copies,
     congruent with achieving the highest level of the Open Source
     Index (below)

o    The public domain status is assured by publication in at least
     the medium of the Internet, with on-demand publishing of
     materials as necessary

o    Publishing shall follow the principle of open publishing. See
     Appendix B for the OSE Open Publishing Policy

The aspect of openness and replicability demands particular attention.
This is motivated by our belief that open collaboration, absolutely
free of proprietary or special-interest influence, is the only route
to optimal collaboration and to equitable distribution of goods and
services. To this end, we have defined an Open Source Indicator which
helps us to assess the level of openness and transparency that is
present within respect to the access to information or the functioning
of other organizations. The OSI also assesses the possibility of
making best practice the norm. We believe that the only route to
raising the ecological performance of all productive actors in society
is by open access to leading techniques and technologies. This avoids
the relative mediocrity that is enforced with patented or proprietary
intellectual property models: when one protected group uses state of
the art techniques, everyone else is mediocre in comparison. We
promote an open, participative, and replicable R&D infrastructure
which allows all actors to utilize state of the art developments.

The OSI is defined as a level of openness, where each number
corresponds to a score. The index begins with an assessment of access
to basic information, and stretches to well-defined economic models
and the presence of an infrastructure for startup and replication. The
higher the score the more open and replicable the productive model.
Each Open Source Level is cumulative, and a given Level Score
indicates that all prior OSI criteria are met. Note that we believe
that one should not pay for information, only for physical products or
services. The OSI is an indicator that assesses the level of access to
the production of goods and services via regenerative enterprise.

o    -1. Information is proprietary, private and privileged
     information, effectively patented, under nondisclosure agreement,
     or otherwise privatized.

     Comment: Proprietary access contributes to wealth
     maldistribution, competitive waste such as wasted time and
     "reinventing the wheel." Many groups promote confidential or
     proprietary routes of "eco-enterprise." Though such efforts may
     be environmentally sound locally, but issues such as equitable
     distribution of income, effect on overpopulation, overall effects
     on resource consumption may be questionable.

o    0. Information is non-proprietary, but communication vehicles
     (hard copy, online publications, courses) are accessible only at
     a fee.

     Comment: It becomes difficult for integrated business models to
     be created when the learning resources have monetary costs
     associated with them, simply because a large number of resources
     is needed and the costs add up. Hence we believe that free access
     to information is a generally desirable service to society, and
     it is desirable to create alternative mechanisms for funding
     access to relevant information other than income generated from
     sales per se. We see Level 0 as the standard level of access at
     which most of society operates, and, while it is a useful
     resource for those who can pay for it, it does not proactively
     inspire a regenerative structure of society.

o    1. Access to information is free, such as online publications and
     multimedia content.

     Comment: This is the Open Source Level which begins to inspire
     and encourage regenerative tendencies.

o    2. Easily-printable, free electronic copies of publications exist

o    3. Supporting information for generating integrated economic
     models exists.

     Comment: this is where regenerative routes to livelihood become
     obvious to those ready to engage them.

o    4. The organization has a dedicated effort to the distilling and
     free dissemination of information as organized resource guides
     and other forms of distilled information architecture.

o    5. The organization has a willingness to engage in meaningful

o    6. The organization has the means to engage in meaningful

o    7. The organization has a mechanism in place to accept students
     interested in learning a given topic area of productivity.

     Comment: explicit training and preparation for regenerative
     enterprise becomes an option.

o    8. Experiential learning, experimental facilities, and hands-on
     training is available.

     Comment: OSE goals include the creation of such a facility by
     Year 3 of operation.

o    9. Financing assistance, partnerships for enterprise startup are
     readily available. OSE work includes the generation of
     bootstrapping finance mechanisms and necessary support
     infrastructure necessary for regenerative enterprise.

Does Open Source Economics Work?

We claim that there are inherent threats to the democratic process
that are embodies in a proprietary intellectual property model. We are
not indicating that private property should not exist, but that access
to it should be equitable. We are trying to make a case that only if
the best designs are developed collaboratively and shared freely, the
development costs can be reduced drastically, time could be liberated
for other endeavors, and equitable distribution of wealth may come
closer to reality.

We claim further that the limit of an economy as information and
capital access barrier are removed is a sustainable, regenerative
economy, where market inefficiencies - poor product design,
overspecialization, overproduction, legal difficulties, overhead
costs, poor distribution of products - are removed. These
inefficiencies should be assessed in terms of possible solutions
introduced by open source development:

Poor design

     Collaboratively developed and shared designs allow all players to
     be productive while avoiding poor design engendered by access
     barriers of non-collaborative, private, or proprietary design


     Market actors are forced to seek more and more narrow niches to
     fill because of the access barriers and protectionism associated
     with existing enterprise; with open source development, access
     barriers are not there, and increasingly integrated economic
     models can arise


     Open source information fosters integrated business models that
     provide a larger fraction of one's needs, such that one is less
     dependent on other products for survival, and one does not need
     to overproduce to gain the extra income necessary for survival

Legal difficulties

     Overspecialization breeds additional laws, and decreasingly
     essential products bring about increased liability. Open Source
     Development uses more proven and accepted techniques and
     reintegrates society, such that legal proliferation is avoided

Overhead costs

     There are "too many hands in the pie" in any sphere of economic
     activity. Overhead costs are reduced when functions are shared in
     integrated business models.

Poor distribution

     Gigantism fosters poor distribution, where small players are
     discounted. Open source economics operate at a smaller, more
     localized, and more appropriate scale, which facilitates
     distribution patterns.

Most people, nonetheless, do not believe that open source is a viable
route of economic development. Common objections that are raised

1.   How will one make a living when the next person can replicate
     your idea after years of your development?

2.   What provides the incentive for innovation when no-one can claim
     exclusive monetary benefit?

3.   This must be some happy hippy in the woods phenomenon. How can
     quality products arise?

4.   The bigger the better. How can lower technology and smaller
     scales of production work?

Answers to these questions require deep soul-searching, but some
immediate points can be made. Question 1 is the most difficult to
answer, because it assumes a solo development process. In the open
source route, collaborative development is invoked, such that one
person does not have to struggle with "years of development," and the
final product is more integrated. What about creative work? Open
source economics assumes that creativity is not for sale, and that one
should be supported only by productivity related to basic human needs.
However, open source economics aims to show that survival, with wise
use of technology and open access to information, allows one to
survive with minimal effort, such as perhaps a 10 hour work week,
where the rest of the time can be dedicated to true creativity, in the
absence of economic pressure. The 10 hour work week will be elucidated
in Section XX [not part of this text - the editor].

Point 2 can be answered easily by invoking the Linux example: a model
where a combination of pure passion on the side of the developer and
nonprofit foundation support for keeping a project alive can result in
superior, affordable products. For example, Elumisoft, Inc. in
Madison, Wisconsin, provides technical assistance for converting small
business to open source computing, saving money for the business while
providing meaningful employment to open source developers at

Point 3 is answered readily in that a shared base of open design is an
effective route to disseminating best practice, and that in fact it is
the proprietary route that leads to inferior design by all except the
"top dogs" in a given field.

To address point 3, one can invoke an example of mega-farm agriculture
vs. smaller scale farming as a case in point. In this case, 5 John
Deere tractors from the 1950's at $1000 each (which are still in wide
use today), can do the equivalent work of a $200K modern tractor.
(ref) The modern tractor depreciates rapidly and is more difficult to
maintain. Labor costs are higher in the former case, but they are a
renewable input. Also, it can be shown that the income from corn
planted at maximum closeness with the intense use of fertilizer and
pesticide will yield ~$100/acre in net profits, while corn planted at
twice less density with cultivation between rows will yield ~$250/acre
in net profits. (ref)

Organizational Structure and Operation of OSE

At this point, we can turn to the particular work that we are engaged
in to demonstrate how we are approaching the open source economic
development process for meeting human needs in a regenerative way.

We are a publicly supported organization with a board of directors and
advisors. We are incorporated as a nonprofit organization in the state
of Wisconsin, and are currently applying for tax exempt status under
Section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. We operate from a
home office and have one full time director and one half-time
volunteer project coordinator.

We are currently operating entirely on donations and a bootstrapping
financing mechanism. We have a computer suite of 3 laptops with
Mandrake 10 Linux, as well as a desktop Linux machine, printers,
scanners, a fax, donated from the Forest Products Lab, a government
facility which donates used equipment to nonprofit organizations. Our
operating budget for the half of this year includes $7020 in
donations. We will be soliciting for funds from the State later this
year, but our main fundraising focus relies on a bootstrapping
approach, where we are using a donated total of ~10 acres of land in 3
locations to grow crops as part of our research and as part of a
social marketing fundraiser in partnership with community groups. Our
aim is to raise about $40K by marketing our concept to community
groups. The concept is that we will use the proceeds to pay our
expenses and utilize ~90% of the earned income in land acquisition of
a 20-100 acre property that we obtain via a rent-to-own creative
financing arrangement. Our goal this year is to demonstrate that we
can use this self-funding mechanism to finance a rent-to-own
arrangement for land, where we motivate our fundraising by our
interest in conservation. We will be using the land as an operations
base and research center for OSE. We are placing the purchased land in
permanent conservation by a restriction of development rights, in a
region of the country undergoing extensive urban sprawl on prime
agricultural farmland.

We have several aims in our activity, where we are applying principles
of open source economic development in all aspects of our operations.
We are engaging in two main projects, OpenFarm and OpenHouse, as part
of this work. Our deliverables for the 3 year period until the end of
2006 are:

1.   Acquire land for our research center by the end of 2004, via a
     bootstrapping financing mechanism. The purchased land will be
     preserved permanently by extinguishing development rights. This
     includes the ongoing generation of income from agricultural
     value-added production combined with social marketing.

2.   Build a Sustainable House Demonstrator by August 15, 2004.

3.   Acquire and convert a diesel pickup truck to dual diesel/straight
     waste vegetable oil fuel by August 15, 2004. This requires a fuel
     line switching valve, settling of waste oil by gravity, and a
     second tank for oil, to be used above freezing, with diesel
     operation in winter.

4.   Demonstrate the operation of the research center with ~12 full
     time residential interns with a yearly monetary budget of
     approximately $38K by the end of 2005. Develop a curriculum for
     OpenHouse and OpenFarm, as well as initiate an Open Source
     Technology program, by the same date. Residential internship
     includes designing an building of modular dwelling additions to
     the OSE main building. The core OSE building will be based on
     concepts embodied in the Sustainable House Demonstrator.

5.   Graduate the ~6 interns upon successful acquisition of
     rent-to-own contracts for land totaling ~250 acres by year 3 of
     operation (year end, 2006), thereby demonstrating the
     replicability of the OpenFarm concept.

6.   Develop a regenerative housing enterprise by a collaborative
     effort of ~6 interns. This development enterprise integrates
     housing, agriculture, and conservation in a new development, with
     a first 40 acre development by year 3 of operation.

The land acquisition is the main thrust of our effort since this will
provide the land base for permanent income generation via agricultural
production, and it will be the base of a research campus which houses
our experimental and demonstration facilities with associated
personnel. Our operational strategy is to minimize overhead costs by
structuring operational activity in the form of internships (check on
4th world movement model), where agricultural production provides 90%
of our diet, the remaining 10% coming from barter economics. Housing
will be provided on site, and our energy needs will be based on
renewable energy sources. Our research program will be based on
subsistence activity, including the development of flash-steam solid
fuel combustion systems based on dry feed corn, as well as waste
vegetable oil, on-site grown vegetable oil. We are investigating
hydrogen internal combustion or external combustion engines as a
longer-term option.

The research campus will feature food production by an on-site open
source farming and food provision team, where the food is part of an
integrated agriculture package that includes grains, legumes, poultry,
fish, dairy, fruits, nuts, root crops, vegetables, oil crops, seed
crops, and others. Other research topics will be handled by the
remaining ~5 agricultural interns.


The proposed time-line of this project is:

1.   Year end 2004:

     o    Erection of OpenHouse Demonstrator (see appendix A for

     o    Permanent land acquisition of 20-100 acres via rent-to-own
          arrangement for OpenFarm project

     o    Core OpenFarm headquarters building erection

     o    Continuing OpenHouse multimedia education and design

2.   Year end 2005:

     o    Agricultural intern program evolved to 12 residential
          interns, where interns build their own shelter.
          Collaborative research and curriculum development program:

          o    OpenFarm (5 interns):

               o    Bioregionally adapted crop research

               o    Local product development

               o    Marketing research

               o    Legal and financial literacy program development

               o    Sound land use and conservation program

               o    Appropriate technology research for farm machinery
                    and processing

               o    Development of open source technology flexible
                    manufacturing demonstration facility

               o    Development of year-round, full diet, CSA package,
                    and establishment of first customer base of ~10-20
                    people for the 2006 season.

               o    Curriculum development for OpenFarm training, such
                    that larger classes may be offered to the general

               o    Development of a business plan for an Integrated
                    Food and Waste Management System on the OSE
                    campus, (ref) using SolaRoof variable insulation
                    glazing technology. (ref)

          o    OpenHouse (3 interns):

               o    Sustainable housing building demonstration
                    projects and local sourcing development of
                    cementitious materials, composites, fly-ash
                    cement, and sustainable forestry

               o    Work continuing on OpenHouse educational interface

          o    Appropriate Technology (3 interns):

               o    Bioplastic packaging development

               o    Continuing work on hybrid electric
                    generator-electric motor propulsion systems,
                    including flash steam and compressed hydrogen

               o    OpenWind project development for megawatt scale
                    turbine installation open-sourcing and open source
                    smaller scale technology manufacturing

          o    Holistic Health Program

               o    Development of free workshop course offering for
                    an Integrative Transformative, Health Practice

               o    Holistic medicine program development, with
                    associated emergency clinic, medical emergency
                    fund, and reduced-cost MD and ND services for

3.   Year end 2006:

     o    Curriculum developed for OpenFarm Integrated Agriculture
          course; OSE Institute opens doors to the general public for
          OpenFarm and OpenHouse

     o    OpenFarm

          o    Development of a local General Corner Store in Madison,
               WI, in participation with a neighborhood group

          o    Replication of land acquisition by ~3 of the interns,
               and startup of an economically viable community
               supported agriculture operations, with year-round, full
               diet offering and seasonal extension greenhouses

          o    1 of the interns graduates to a teaching position at
               OSE Institute for Open Farm course offering

     o    OpenHouse

          o    Develop a hands-on crash course in sustainable building
               for OpenHouse development participants. This is a short
               course for future inhabitants of OpenHouse cluster
               integrated developments, which are the practical end
               point of the OpenHouse project. These are multi-acre,
               conservation/agriculture/housing subdivisions.

          o    Graduation of OpenHouse intern group after successful
               design, land acquisition, and ground-breaking of an
               integrated 40 acre agriculture, conservation, and
               housing development

Discussion of the OSE Open Source Development Process

The operational economic model that we follow is a hybrid between an
"earned income" model and a pure charity. The combination of our
OpenFarm and OpenHouse, in so far as it leads to working economic
practice of production-financed integrated
agriculture-conservation-housing projects, can be called a
Conservation Generator Program. The key steps in our procedure are:

1.   Donations: Donated land, equipment, and machinery, with farm
     management by OSE, on a startup budget of under $2,000 for the
     management of 10 acres.

2.   Production: We engage in agricultural production to generate

3.   Social marketing: We get the full worth of our work, or realize
     our donated and produced assets, by a social marketing strategy
     that focuses on sales to civic groups, local businesses, and on
     replacing existing fundraisers with a locally-grown alternative.

4.   Land acquisition assistance: We are documenting and defining a
     land acquisition strategy, which assists both the seller and us
     in navigating complex property transaction issues.

5.   Proven business model: By engaging in the economic process
     directly, we are defining and testing a bootstrapping, open
     source business model that any interested individual or group can
     replicate, either with us in the form of an internship or

The above projects and goals embody the open source method of economic
development in the fullest sense. The entire process of development is
designed to be open and collaborative, where all of our research
results enter the public domain. The projects are developed by teams.
Low overhead is maintained by an internship organizational structure,
tax exemption from property taxes due to the public benefit research
and education aspect of the land holding, and autonomous food, energy,
and transportation systems.

We are working on providing an economic alternative to the mainstream
food and housing industries, where our products uphold high standards
of ecological and regenerative enterprise. We are committed to
thorough transparency and openness, and will minimize our use of any
proprietary technology, because such technologies come with strings
attached, increase costs, and prevents effective collaboration from
happening. We believe that the open source development method will
succeed in rapid substitution of many proprietary technologies with
open source, ecological equivalents. Thus, we aim not to partner with
anyone who requires nondisclosure or secrecy.

Furthermore, we believe that the last word in economic theory is open
source knowhow and technology. We also see a step beyond open source
technology: the organization of transparent systems and modes of human
organization that uphold highest ethical ideals and promote democracy.
We call that next combination of human systems Open Source Ecology,
and hence our organization's name.

The economics of such systems need to be demonstrated. We point to the
economics that we are developing, and we compare open source economics
results to the mainstream economics for computing, housing, and
agriculture in Appendix A.

Addressing Pressing World Issues and Generating Leadership for Correcting Market Inefficiencies

Reducing Market Inefficiencies

Here we argue that gross shortcomings of our economic systems, which
economists call market inefficiencies, can be overcome in an open
source framework of doing business. These market inefficiencies
include concentration of wealth and power, environmental degradation,
poor distribution of wealth, or the gap between the rich and poor.

Shortcomings of "pure market forces" refers to the incomplete
effectiveness in terms of economic systems to provide for human needs.
It should be noted that there is no "pure market forces," or some
abstract power that guides the economic process. Instead, economies
are guided by human will. Features that make economic systems
ineffective are part of overall system design or of executives'
decisions. True, the executive powers are forced into unethical
behavior by system design - such as making big returns or a company
would collapse from competition. System design is where open source
thinking can be utilized.

If information is fully available, as fostered by open source
transparency - then feedback on issues of performance - ecological or
social - is available. Issues such as pollution, inequity,
overpopulation are acknowledged, as downstream effects of
environmental degradation and inequity are visible. If
cause-and-effect relationships can be understood, there is a chance to
correct systematically recurring negative features of our economies.
Transparency of the underlying cause-and-effect relationships can be
fostered via interdisciplinary, open source learning. This learning
can occur at the level of our educational systems or at the level of
an informed population. Skills necessary to correct or address these
causal relationships can be attained if barrier-free,
interdisciplinary, applied rapid learning is nurtured. This is the
goal of open source learning, while trade secrets, propaganda
machines, advertising, patents, scholastic disciplinarity, and other
barriers stand in the way.

What is a completely educated individual? It is our opinion that the
absence of abundant disincentives to holistic understanding, mentioned
above, would result in individuals who know how to grow food, produce
their shelter, and become involved in other creative endeavors that
are fundamentally related to the human psychological stability. We are
not promoting a life of toil, because we have enough knowhow and
technology to remove survival pressures from dictating our political
choices. We can have a generally enlightened society, or a society
that is significantly more wise than today.

There's a catch here. We assume that people, the economic actors,
care. That is, we assume that if they have a complete information base
for making wise decisions, they will make ethical and ecological
decisions. Many would agree that such care is in short supply in
today's world. This is a matter of speculation, since this can not be
proven one way or another, given the presence of human will. Humans
have a choice to make decisions, if free from abject poverty that
reduces their choice to base survival. Since it is not the abject poor
that control our economy, but instead by those with ample means for
survival, we can hope that these leaders will make wise decisions.
Yes, you can choose to care or not to care about something.

Systematically, our choices are being narrowed down when we are
overworked, in which case we are reduced to a state similar to the
abject poor, who are reduced to the most simple and brute means of
survival. We need to rest when we are overworked, we make simple
decisions, and not think about making a better world. Competition can
be dangerous when we lose perspective as we race ahead without having
time to reflect. Absurdities - such as the $1.1 trillion of
unsupported accounting entries by the pentagon (ref), local
overpopulation or resource degradation, or ongoing arrest of American
citizens without trial due to the Homeland Security Act - are allowed
to thrive in such a state of society.

It may be said that the limit of an economy, in the (1), presence of
complete knowledge flows, and (2), availability of time for people to
reflect, is a sustainable, regenerative economy. We noted that the
economy is controlled only by a small fraction of the population. Most
people are interested in following opinion leaders. Thus, to say that
"most people don't care" may not be relevant to the possibility of a
sustainable, regenerative economy - since only the small percentage of
people make far-reaching decisions that guide the progress or regress
of society. This at least introduces hope that a small fraction of
civic and social entrepreneurs in society can have profound effects in
addressing pressing world issues.

Open source economics is particularly relevant to the creation of an
improved economic system, through its focus on barrier-free
participation in the economic process. It is the goal of OSE to invite
those interested in developing their capacity to do "good world work"
- to acquire the broad set of skills to be potent free agents in
society, or those guided not by group-think but by their capacity for
constructive critique of the System. These people are capable of
guiding projects from a creative, as opposed to reactionary,
perspective. We are interested in nurturing such freethinkers, while
avoiding the indoctrination process common to many professional

On Competition

Competition, as used in reference to today's economy, is a misnomer.
In reality, it refers to the annihilation of competitors, in that
market players aim to do anything to prevent others from doing
something as well as they are. Frequently, an uneven playing field is
created to keep outsiders where they are: excluded from the economic
process. We call such practice dysfunctional competition, as opposed
to healthy competition. Healthy competition works when inspiration,
not protectionism and its underlying motivation of fear, is the basis
of an economic process, which implies the presence of a level playing

Dysfunctional competition engenders general mediocrity, where a small
group controls the leading technologies and practices. From the
perspective of open source thinking, a clear solution arises: to share
best practice openly, to raise the overall performance of all market
players. This introduces the possibility of best practice becoming the

The practical implementation of an open source product development
process can manifest as a foundation or nonprofit research institution
which generates the knowhow that is freely available for all to use
and build upon. The foundation or nonprofit organization can be funded
publicly, while anyone can privatize resulting income by engaging in
productive activity. However, no one can privatize the information
itself, and an equitable governance should encourage further
developments to be placed in a common pool of open source knowledge.
This has been demonstrated in the Linux model of open source software
development, and we are engaging this method for developing products
and services at OSE.

As a counterexample to the open sharing of pu, consider the
privatization of public resources that goes largely unnoticed and
accepted as a way of doing business. The National Renewable Energy Lab
is one example, of many, where a government-supported institution
holds patents that it developed with public money. At one point, we
called NREL to inquire about access to one of its clean thin-film
photovoltaic technologies, and we were informed that it would cost us
$1M to acquire the patent rights. Since the financial barrier limited
our participation with NREL, we decided to pursue the Open Source
Photovoltaics project, a research and development effort for small
scale photovoltaics production facilities that could be licensed
freely to any community that wants to manufacture its own

Towards Import Substitution and Generation of Local Wealth

People have long observed that poor regions or nations typically
import more than they can afford or else are terribly deprived because
they fail to produce wide ranges of things for themselves. (J. Jacobs,
Cities and the Wealth of Nations: Principles of Economic Life, Vinage
Books, NY, 1985, p.35). Open source economics is relevant to local
prosperity in so far as improved knowledge and access to a wide range
of open source production technologies, such as the Open Source
Photovoltaics project, can lead to increasing wealth. Even if a region
is materially poor, access to and creative use of knowhow can realize
much wealth.

A general trend in human history is that groups and regions were not
self sufficient. Trade routes and merchant commerce were present for
thousands of years, and the current phenomenon of globalization is the
limit of such exchange, where electronic transactions can travel
across the globe in a fraction of a second, and physical products can
travel to the farthest reaches of the earth in a fraction of a day.

Because all human knowledge can be collected in any location rapidly
by information and communication technology, and because technologies
are increasingly efficient in producing goods and services, there now
exist conditions under which high levels of prosperity and wealth can
be the norm in just about any region of the world. We call this
autonomy, the self-determination of regions free from pressures such
as random global market forces or the necessity of war.

The conditions for such autonomy are several:

1.   Sustainable management of regional resources exists to the point
     that the local population stabilizes according to its regional
     resource base.

     Undoubtedly, this point requires the reduction of scale such that
     patterns of resource use are held at a sustainable level by
     transparent feedback mechanisms with respect to shortages,
     environmental abuses, or poor distribution patterns. Such a
     decrease of scale is possible when a region produces all its
     life-supporting services in as small an area as possible. For
     nonlocal, nonrenewable materials, such as metals, a reuse and
     recycling capacity should be built into the local community to
     extend the life of these materials as long as possible.
     Strategies such as design for disassembly, modular components,
     and a best practice database for optimal design, could contribute
     to this strategy. For example, stainless steel and aluminum have
     a lifetime of 500 years, and many other metals can have
     protective coatings to extend their life.

2.   Educational and other institutions support an agenda of
     sustainable and regenerative resource use. This relies on open
     access of individuals to the economic process, and calls for an
     end to dysfunctional competition with the introduction of open
     source best practices.

     The local politics require a transition to open source thinking
     in its education, economic, and governance structures. This is a
     hard point to sell to the mainstream, dysfunctional-competitive
     society. We aim to create an educational facility at OSE that
     teaches such stewardship economics. We believe that appropriate
     governance structures will arise from the economic infrastructure
     that is created. Best practices can enter common use if
     educational structures focus on collaborative development of a
     common repository of knowledge, free of the influence of
     proprietary contributions.

3.   The appropriate use of technology is a prerequisite to generating
     autonomous regions. Inappropriate technology choices will not
     save time or money when all costs are considered.

     High technology choices require an extensive infrastructure for
     their production and upkeep. For technology to truly serve human
     needs, it needs to be used wisely for it to save time and
     increase the quality of life. The level of technology should be
     such that it genuinely increases the quality of life, instead of
     leading to the "myth of the machine:" that misguided notion that
     machines always save time. It appears that the general present
     trend is unwise technological choice: people work long hours,
     even when the level of technology is sufficiently high that with
     proper management, the time it would take for all human needs to
     be taken care of could be reduced many-fold, simply because a
     machine can do the labor of many people. For the machine to be
     used wisely, the requirement is that it takes less time to
     produce, use, and maintain it than it would take to perform a
     given task without the machine. Apparently, unwise technological
     choice is rampant in the USA, because people are working
     increasingly long hours. Poor distribution of wealth and
     inefficient governance accounts for some of the longer hours, but
     a lot of the trouble stems from poor technological choice.

     For example, it can be shown that 5 John Deere tractors from the
     1950s, costing $1K each, which are still in common use today, can
     do the equivalent work of a $200K modern tractor. Moreover, the
     modern tractor depreciates rapidly, while the old tractors retain
     their value. This represents a savings of $195K, which translates
     to a liberation of a huge financial burden and a corresponding
     reduction in working time for purchasing the tractors. The high
     capital inputs in these case can be replaced by labor (4 extra
     tractor operators), which are a renewable resource.

A. Appendix A - Basic Financial Analysis of Open Source Economics

A.1. Show me the Money: Open Source Economics in Computing

Disclaimer: these economic models are part of our ongoing experiments.
They are based on a large set of assumptions, which are presented
explicitly and should be kept in mind when a surprising level of
affordability arises.

One can show a basic comparison for the cost of equipping a home or
office with a full office and productivity suite using Microsoft
Windows on the proprietary computer operating systems side, and Linux
on the open source side. (ref)

Table 1

Costs                  Linux operating system  Microsoft operating
...................... ....................... ......................
installation cost,     0 if downloaded, $40 if $0 if pre-bundled,
home                   purchased on CD         $400 if bought
updating cost, home    0                       $300
installation cost, 5   0 if downloaded, $40 if $2000
user business license  purchased on CD
updating cost, 5 user  0                       $2000
business license
technical support      consulting fees         consulting fees

Table 1 indicates that a business using proprietary, Microsoft
software spends thousands of dollars on the software license, while a
user of Linux needs to spend up to $40 for any number of users

A.2. Comparison of Open Source Economics in Housing

Let's consider an example of typical cookie-cutter development and
OpenHouse-style development.

A rough breakdown of development costs for urban sprawl development
and OpenHouse development can be shown, using an example of a 50 acre
parcel with 200 single family residences, as found in the area of
Madison, Wisconsin. We are considering a cluster OpenHouse development
where up to 5 acres is dedicated to housing at a high density of 40
people per acre, which is livable only via the use of vertical space
such as in ziggurat structures (ref), and is made tolerable and
pleasant by ready access to natural areas which are only a few steps
away from any dwelling.

Table 2

Costs                  OpenHouse cluster       Mainstream urban
                       development             sprawl development
...................... ....................... ......................
Land acquisition       $500K                   $500K
Infrastructure (roads, $1,000K (includes 500W  $8,000K
water, sewer,          of solar energy and 500
electric)              W of wind-power per
                       household, on site
                       biological water
                       treatment in using
                       IFWMS technology (ref),
                       and partial rainwater
Permits and legal      $1K                     $10K
Design and planning    $1K                     $10K
Building materials and 200 homes at $5K each,  200 homes at $40K
labor                  $1,000K                 each, $8,000K
Interest costs         -                       $125K
Total costs            $2.5M                   $16.6M
Total cost to consumer 200 homes at $15K each: 200 homes at $150K
                       $3M                     each: $30M
Profit                 $498K                   $13.4M

The open source process relies on background laid out by the OpenHouse
multimedia education and design interface, as well as by a crash

The above numbers show a spectacular difference in cost and profit.
The land costs the same in each case. The low infrastructure cost is
explained by ziggurat-like cluster development in the OpenHouse case,
with rest of the space dedicated to natural areas and agriculture.
Assuming that a lean open source organization such as OSE acts as the
project integrator, it can fetch a good deal on permitting and legal
costs via legally literate interns and in-house design and planning
capacity developed as part of the OpenHouse project.

The building materials cost is harder to explain because it includes
sweat equity lumber production using a hired lumberjack, as well as
sweat equity house deconstruction materials acquired with the aid of a
qualified deconstruction organization. In particular, it can be shown
that a hired lumberjack team with a portable bandsaw is capable of
generating lumber at 1/4 the cost of lumberyard wood. (ref). Combined
with deconstructed, scavenged, and sweat-equity based on-site
generated building materials, the cost of the materials is reduced
drastically. The other main difference is that the Builder's Yard
model (ref) is invoked to involve the sweat equity of future
residents, under the guidance of a master builder. The economics of
such a model have been previously demonstrated (ref).

The sweat equity model may be hard to explain to financing institution
or other mainstream agents, but it does rely on a fundamental need of
humans to shape their own environment, and as such remains a viable
option in spite of the industrialization of house building. The
economics of such an arrangement are motivated by the builders'

The operational model that would allow such building to occur involves
a design process which involves the future residents. Such basic
design capacity is teachable to most people (ref), and computer aided
tools exist to help with that process. The design process also
includes firm adherence to the principles of regenerative design, as
introduced earlier, and is based on a basic layout established under
the direction of the master builder. Participants to the process agree
to adhere to the best judgment of the master builder for the general
layout that provides coherence to the entire building project, where
individuals' creativity enters in the details of the construction
methods chosen.

Note that the interest costs for the open source route are zero. This
is because up-front payment is required as part of the OSE philosophy
of paying up front to avoid the usury of interest rates. We promote
borrowing from family members and close friends.

Note that $498K of profit remains. $200K of that goes to the
installation of a wind turbine, and the remaining $298 goes towards
establishing agricultural


Table 3

Item                               Cost
.................................. ..................................
5 1950 John Deere or equivalent    $10K
1 acre SolaRoof greenhouse (ref)   $200K
for integrated agriculture using
IFWMS (ref)
2 pull-type combines               $1K
Vehicle fleet of 20 hybrid open    $20K
source technology transportation
Machine shop and portable saw mill $5K
Other agricultural implements,     $12K
buildings, and supplies
Medical facility and medical       $50K
emergency fund
Total                              $298K

As such, a largely autonomous community that provides its own food,
energy, shelter, maintenance, and health needs is created. In
conjunction with the practical educational support of OSE, such
communities may become a norm within an ecologically minded customer
base. Members of the community take on roles after becoming stewards
of the various operational aspects of this planned unit development.
The design of the entire community is aimed to be largely integrated
with nature, such that the schism between urban and rural areas tends
to disappear.

A.3. Comparison of Open Source Economics in Agriculture

In the above example, little was explained about the economics of food
provision. A comparison of American mega-farming of corn and soybeans
provides a pitifully weak example of land management, where incomes on
the order of $100 accrue in the presence of industrialized, heavy
input agriculture (ref). In the integrated OpenHouse development,
where all of one's food can be grown on site, an equivalent income on
the order of $5,000/acre is likely to obtain. The assumption here is
that an acre is sufficient to feed 4 people on our hypothetical 50
acre example, and each person would spend at least $1000 on food each
year. (ref}

The point that we are exploring in the OpenFarm project is the
demonstration of an integrated agricultural operation that provides a
full, year round diet with complete protein, grain crops, legumes, oil
crops, and so forth, utilizing seasonal extension and involving food
processing as part of the operation. We are studying the economics and
ergonomics of such an operation, while defining an appropriate
technology supporting equipment list for both field machinery and
processing equipment using the organic method. We aim to show that a
single person well-equipped with the necessary technology can easily
provide an entire food package to approximately 100 people.

Some indications of the ergonomics are indicated by considering the
amount of time it takes to produce a full diet for on-site residents
who can participate in some aspects of the production process. While
one farmer might find it difficult, a combination of the farmer's work
with the labor of all food recipients at a minimum amount of effort
shows that one person could do the following, if equipped with a
tractor, combine, and a few agricultural implements. The calculation
here is for feeding 100 people. A basic rule of thumb is that one
person requires 1/4 acre, such that 100 people require 25 acres. If a
farm tractor is used, then it is easy to work a 25 acre parcel.

Table 4

Crops                              Time Requirement per person
.................................. ..................................
wheat, oats, amaranth, sesame,     farm manager only: 4 days to
flax, barley, rye, canula growing  broadcast
beans, lentils, soybeans           1 day to plant
cabbage, kale, carrot, beet, napa  1 day to plant
peanuts, potatoes                  1 day, with help of a team of 10
pumpkins, squash, corn             1 day, with help of a team of 10
onions, garlic, chives             5 person team plants and harvests
salad greens                       self-growing
dairy                              cow duty: each of 100 people
                                   spends 4 hours per year, doing 4
                                   days of milking
chickens, fish                     self-picking
fruits and nuts                    self-picking
harvesting                         2 days of combining and winnowing
processing: oil expression,        1/2 day sessions for oil, seed
hulling, milling                   crops; bread: 4 days per year
canning, drying, root storage      1 work day of 6 hours per year; 20
                                   different products

The above table, which is a rough calculation, shows that the farm
manager needs to be involved directly for about 35 days of the year,
while other activities are aided by minimal effort on the part of the
residents. Operations such as milking, fruit collection, self-growing,
require minimum effort on the part of the farm manager if a
well-defined infrastructure for meeting all the needs exists: jars,
code kitchen, processing equipment on hand and storage well-organized.
Then the only major tasks are equipment maintenance, seed saving,
pruning, electric fencing, and other minor tasks.

The above example relies on a heavily integrated and sizeable
knowledge base, which can be attained only via rapid learning of zero
access barrier material, such as found in an open source knowledge
base. Basic hands on training will be available for OpenFarm skills as
part of Open Source Ecology operation, and new social organization
patterns based on regenerative living communities fueled by open
source knowledge, appropriate technology, and low-impact living.

B. Appendix A

[The original text had two "Appendix A" which is reflected in the
header while the numbering scheme is sequential - the editor]

B.1. Sustainable House Demonstrator

Open Source Ecology, Inc., has received an in kind contribution of
space to build a 200 square foot studio building demonstrator. The
particular design features of the demonstrator are:

o    SolaRoof ( glazing technology - sandwich
     glazing system with variable insulating properties (r=1-30) and
     variable light shading

o    Closed Loop Water Cycle - roof water catchment, water storage,
     water purification via a wet compost system, plant filter, sand
     filter, carbon filter, and UV light. Indoor waterfall for air

o    Autonomous Energy - 100 watts of photovoltaic energy; Stirling
     engine electric generator running off the wood stove at a later
     phase; 3 fluorescent lights and a laptop computer office are
     included; 300 watt hours of battery storage; 12, 24, 120 V DC, or
     120 V AC operation.

o    Passive solar design - zero energy house, with passive cooling
     and heating

o    Earthen Wood stove - space heating, water heating

o    Design for Disassembly - bolted wood members

o    Local materials - includes earth berm, self-made cellulose/borax
     insulation, lath from recycled pallets, earth plaster wall;
     earthen floor; self-manufactured 4x4s; possibly locally harvested

o    Biological house - includes plants for air filtration and
     year-round food production

C. Appendix B: Open Source Ecology Open Publishing Policy

Open Source Ecology (OSE), Inc., is committed firmly to open access to
information. OSE finances its information collection and publications
via its nonprofit fundraising.

Users have cost-free access to:

o    Any materials and publications on our web-site. This includes
     publications that may be downloaded and printed by the user. A
     voluntary donation is welcome but in no way required.

A fee will be requested for:

o    On-demand publishing to cover the cost of printing materials
     (duplex laser printer and others, binding) and the time it takes
     to print our materials.

This fee may be waived by request, to account for easy access to
individuals or groups with tight budgets. We also offer our printing
facilities to those who want to print materials themselves, where we
charge only for the at-cost value of materials used (paper, printer

D. Appendix C

o    Econ of Eco-Friendly Land Development

o    Rose Companies: Sound Developer Network?

o    TPL Contacts:

o    From TPL Web-site: Greenprinting n. a smart growth

     Strategy that emphasizes land conservation to ensure quality of
     life, clean air and water, recreation, and economic health.

     v. to employ a greenprinting strategy for growth

o    Social Venture Network

     "earned income" model, which means that most revenue came from
     business ventures.

o    Environmental Law Clinic at Stanford - 650/725-8571 - if
     interested in Public Interest Legal Course

o - import
     substitution is an accepted term

Organization: projekt

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