OSE Clubs

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OSE Clubs are a way for students and other dedicated groups to get involved in technology that matters. We are adding an environmental and social vision to STEAM education: getting involved in R&D for solving pressing world issues. We focus on opensourcing the critical infrastructure technologies of civilization, as described in the Founder's Global Village Construction Set TED Talk. We have inspired millions with the vision of an open, transparent, and inclusive world - and OSE Clubs are a way to take OSE work into classrooms across the world.

Our vision is to show that middle, high school, and university level students can take a meaningful part in shaping the world - right through their curriculum. Our goal is to produce tangible, open source products which can help to create local, prosperous economies. We believe that open source microfactories will be the new engine of production which includes cradle-to-cradle stewardship of resources. We believe that the only way for this to happen is for more people to be involved in producing the artifacts around them. This starts with a cultural shift, which we would like to inject into the school curriculum. We envision ordinary students producing extraordinary collaborative results - via a modular approach to collaboration where we build upon each others' work.

As part of a team effort, OSE Clubs will collaborate on open source product development - while learning principles of science and engineering. We teach design things king - while using fully open source tool chains. We use a construction set approach - meaning design using part libraries which once they are developed, they can be built upon as building blocks for more complex design. We pay attention to Modularity, as module-based design can empower poeple if they do not have to start from scratch.

Every year, we will host a Coopetition, incentivizing student ts to come and showcase their products. The final outcome is real products - that can be built and maintained for a lifetime - at a fraction of the cost. Thus, we include an entrepreneurial aspect - as making a better world requires an entrepreneurial mindset where we take what exists, and make it better.

OSE Clubs

OSE Clubs are groups at schools, universities, and other communities which get involved in OSE development. This is an ongoing involvement, at least for one development/challenge cycle. The goal is creating productive open source enterprises around the open source products that are being developed. Involvement includes:

  • Webinars - 1/2 hour per week
  • Minimum of 3 hours of Design Sprints or development time per person per week
  • Annual Incentive Challenges - where OSE clubs meet in a physical location and compete for prizes

The focus of Clubs is to work cooperatively, and then to 'compete' by building upon each others' work. We design products on the Critical Path of OSE - such as the open source microfactory - and larger products.

How does this relate to education? For any product, design thinking, basic physics, calculations, documentation, software, electronics and many other aspects come into play. This is merely applied physics, chemistry, engineering, biology, geology, agronomy, materials science, and more. Thus, school experiments can be closely related to real-life products. If we document and build upon each others' work.

Why can't students build engines, precision CNC tools, solar concentrators, solar vehicles, and more? This would bring the spark.back to education. To make this manageable - each Club can take a small part and build upon it over time - or teams can uild modules and then assemble.them together during Coopetitions. Thus, this teaches students about effective team collaboration - towards practical results.

Clubs get ongoing support from OSE for ongoing development - and participation in annual incentive design challenges where the goal is to develop an economically significant product every year. As such, the OSE Club has an entrepreneurial component - towards bringing production back to the community level - by teaching about open source design and collaboratively-developed, free enterprise.

The goal is to have many venues worldwide that engage in rapid parallel development - a public engineering effort. Because we teach entry level skills, use readily accessible open source software tools, and develop part libraries that people can build upon - we can engage a large audience of non-specialists in meaningful work.

Areas of Engagement

  • Scale Models of GVCS machines - making functional water-based, 3D printed hydraulic cylinder and motors. Making open source solenoids, electric motors, controllers, sensors, and more. Using these modules, along with structural 3D printed building blocks - to produce working, small scale prototpes that can be used for real prototyping - prior to the build of actual machines. The goal is to produce marketable kits that others can use.
  • Open source product development for the Open Source Everything Store.
  • Setting up plastic recycling to 3D Printing Filament production and printing of modular school chairs and desks
  • Developing OSE construction sets for education on various topics - Education Construction Sets

OSE Club Invitation

Would you like to start an OSE Club at a high school or college, or prison near you? We are looking for teams to carry on the design work of Open Source Ecology.

Club Mentors

Each club must include general membership (students or others) as well as a Mentor or Organizer. The Mentor is required to take a 3 day Professional Development Training Program in order to provide leadership consistent with the goals of Open Source Ecology. This means basic training in design using open source CAD software, and the Collaborative Literacy that enables teams to work in a coordinated fashion that enables building on each others' work. This means using open tools and common protocols (wikis, taxonomies, work logs, team meetings).

The first outcome of the Training Program is building the OSE 3D printer for Club use. The printer is used in rapid prototyping.

The OSE 3 day training for mentors is a prerequisite to starting an official OSE Club.

Mentor Training and Cost

The cost structure for the 3 day immersion program is $2000. The cost is per team of up to 2 educators running one OSE Club, and includes a build of the OSE 3D printer to keep for their school or OSE Club. The OSE 3D printer is a modular design which students can modify or improve - so it is part or the curriculum.

Can't afford the cost? No problem - we can help you secure the funding from supporting organizations and individuals.

The 3 day program can be used solely as a professional development option - but it also adds the dimension of meaningful involvement with OSE by qualifying to start an OSE Club. To start an OSE Club - the Mentor must commit to at least one semester of mentorship for their club - and must form a team of 6 or more students/members.

Open Source Product Development

See the Open Source Microfactory Narrative for a brief overview of the Microfactory as a practical step towards the Open Source Economy.

For example - a cordless drill, aerial drone, different CNC machines, Raspberry Pi cell phone - as well as simple things such as 3D printed pens or 3D printed rubber mallet - these are all things that can be made with the open source microfactory 3D printer, laser cutter, and CNC circuit mill.


The promise is to increase involvement with design that matters. We will offer other microfactory tools as turnkey workshops in the future - see options at https://microfactory.opensourceecology.org/workshops/. Our work means that teachers are incentivized to do something much bigger than what they do in their own school - by becoming involved in important world work. OSE work fosters both STEM/STREAM learning - as well as social entrepreneurship. OSE has the benefit of a construction set approach. For example, our Universal Axis is a robotics construction set - and can be scaled from rods that are 8 mm to 1" to 3". Imagine kids beginning to build heavy duty machining tools - to bring unleashed productive capacity back to communities - while taking care of the environment.

Mentor Roles

Mentors are expected to collaborate in any of these ways:

  1. Weekly training meeting with OSE via a webinar - for project details and continued skills training
  2. Weekly working meeting with students to provide guidance on current projects
  3. Helping to define the quarterly development projects
  4. Collaborating on defining incentive challenges to run parallel with quarterly development projects
  5. Helping to fundraise for incentive challenges and Extreme Builds by finding local sponsors or other resources
  6. Mentoring students in preparing One Million Cups presentations
  7. Developing Part Libraries for their specific clubs
  8. Maintaining a wiki page, including Part Library page for their specific club.
  9. Taking students to a quarterly Extreme Build Coopetition
  10. Inviting other teachers and serving as ambassadors to other educators
  11. Guiding students to keep their work logs and time sheets. Setting up a Club Timesheet.
  12. Working with students on additions to their Open Source Everything Store for fundraising for club activity
  13. Producing video instructionals and tutorials to improve current materials on an ongoing basis.

Mentor Score Card

  1. Development hours logged by their club
  2. Number of part library entries generated by their club
  3. Number of Open Source Everything Store products developed by the club
  4. Number of other club mentors recruited to start OSE clubs
  5. Revenue generated from their Open Source Everything store as produced via their Club Microfactory
  6. Number of tutorials generated by their club


Initial Email for Interested People

Great! To start an official OSE Club, we require a 3 day training camp. On the first day, we teach you to build a 3D printer that you keep for your school, then we move on to design using open source software with our distribution of OSE Linux prepackaged with all the software we use, and then we teach you how to collaborate as part of a larger team. The cost for this 3-day course is US$2k, and we would have to cover travel as well. Do you know other teachers who may be interested? The cost includes participation by 2 educators - and it would be good to invite more educators from other schools or libraries. Currently we are doing a design coopetition - building a 3D printed cordless drill. You can see a former announcement at https://microfactory.opensourceecology.org/professional-development/



(Add workshops interest mapping)