Rapid Learning Facility

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Submission 2023

  • Submission - [1]
  • RLF budget - [2]
  • 2023 P&L NoVo Budget - [3]


The budget proposed helps us arrives at a replicable capacity to build 1300 sf Seed Eco-Homes in an operation capable of producing 50 homes per year, and part of a longer immersion program for solving pressing world issues. Our goal is that our builders end up taking our continuing education opportunities, so they can rise in responsibility, with options starting on the factory floor and moving on as high as post-doc equivalent in systems design and transformation work. It starts with learning how to build a house, then how to build a village, then how to build an improved civilization. All content is open source, so that anyone can do this. 

In terms of sequencing, the first phase is developing a microenterprise model that works with 6 builders, and then increasing the build team to 24 people as a viable small enterprise. This $500k funding helps us in the early stages of the above, and additional funding and build revenue will allows us to complete the development of the ambitious 24 person model - of each house built in only 5 days. From the point of the 24 person enterprise, we will develop a medium enterprise at the scale of 240 builders, which is capable of cross-subsidizing the startup of a full learning campus 'village' - similar to a university campus -  with intent of providing world-class impact in transforming society to regenerative equitability by providing opportunities to graduates to work on changing the world for a living. This may sound like usual university advertising, but we are different. We are teaching inclusive, open collaboration for mutually assured abundance - as opposed to methods of proprietary waste and power concentration - to deliver the yet-unrealized promise of open source.

The current work of OSE is building an Apprenticeship program for the Seed Eco-Home to develop a core model for a 24 builder crew. Given the robust build cost of $85k in materials and labor (75% proven) for a 1000 person-hour build of a quality Seed Eco-Home - 3 bedroom 2 bath at 1300 sf - at $60k materials budget that includes the 6kW of rooftop photovoltaics - we expect this system to be highly scalable. The 24 person crew is expected to produce about 50 homes per year, a package that can be replicated rapidly in different locations to reset the supply of housing stock to abundance, whether in infill or new development. Results are likely to include:

  1. Urban renewal without gentrification
  2. Financial security opportunities as part of distributed workforce generation
  3. First time home buyers building equity 2x their investment, for the American dream that can grow as a family grows
  4. Solving waste plastic issues by recycling waste plastic into 3D printed materials for $10k materials cost savings per house
  5. Beginning to tackle global warming with solar concrete production
  6. Solving the thermal energy storage for heating and cooling without using electrical batteries

The funding focuses on recruiting staff and an apprenticeship program, with the Rapid Learning Facility being the core enabling feature for the integrated skill set required. Our goal is to increase learning and performance rates by integrated, multimodal, hands-on, interdisciplinary learning.

We are designing a 4 year OSE program with intent of continuing with OSE on a program of lifelong learning to replicate OSE campuses worldwide. The program is opt-in - where students have an opportunity to build Seed Eco-Homes as a stable revenue stream - and revenue is used to fund ongoing R&D to improve the Seed Eco-Home product ecosystem. We believe that in order for this program to potentially scale in an unlimited way, and to develop an open sector enterprise capable of providing housing as a universal basic asset - it must have a built-in revenue stream for self-funding. Moreover, this addresses the disconnect where students are forced to give up their ideals and dreams as soon as they enter the workforce.

The scope of the greater Seed Eco-Home integrated product ecology is comprehensive, and hence our 4 year program, which serves as the basis for graduate study of an additional 4 years thereafter. The overall curriculum focuses on learning how to learn, learning how to think in an interdisciplinary way, how to solve problems - collaboratively - and injecting moral intelligence into the equation as a source of deep purpose and meaning. We start with the person, and move on to technology. Technology includes design and build of open source machines that are used in construction and materials production. It includes renewable energy, starting with the existing PV system, moving on to thermal heat and cooling storage for extended periods without the sun - so that this critically important breakthrough is achieved in global energy systems without relying on electrical battery storage. On the materials production front, we include 3D printers, solar concrete production, and solar steel production. The Each of these development areas need large budgets, and our students will participate in this R&D work directly after learning the prerequisite design-build skills. 

Rapid Learning Facility

The Rapid Learning Facility (RLF) is a facility of about 16 dedicated bays for learning, documentation, data collection, efficiency measurement, and production. It is part of a visual workplace that enables rapid learning via meticulously prepared environments where assembly and disassembly of modules and submodules can take place in the most effective way possible, either with teachers on with independent guidance. With each workstation containing a time lapse video setup, data logging, video broadcasting, and augemented reality QR codes on parts - students can learn rapidly either in a guided, online-guided, or independent study fashion while documenting their progress with time lapse videos and build logging. This is indispensible for rapid learning, continuous quality improvement, and multimodal. 3D printers are available to integrate 3D printing of specific parts from waste plastic using high temperature heated enclosures, using off-the shelf plastic shredders and filament makers along with the OSE 3D printer with high temperature printing enclosure capable of printing up to 9000 lb of building materials per week using the 3D printer infrastructure of the Rapid Learning Facility. By integrating practical production using 3D printers within the learning process, we are making the learning process tangible and productive. Because the RLF includes quality control procedure documentation capacity - useful parts can be made. The RLF allows for remotely-guided and independently-executed quality control procedures to be used, with protocols that leave clear documentation such as pictures and measurements for later analysis, continuous learning, and certification - part of a distributed quality control infrastructure that allows for industrial productivity on a small scale. This means that students are participating actively in open source product development. We will apply for various product certifications - such as UL listing, ETL, ANSI, NFPA, structral engineering approval, etc. - for any 3D printed products that we develop and publish - as part of our work in promoting distributed production.

How do individual students design actual products? They don't - they work as a team that documents and builds upon prior work with all the other students - because our program is designed explicitly for this. However, this is more about collaboration protocol and discipline - which is the core outcome of our program. We call it success when a person learns the mindset - and skillset - of designing and building as part of a much larger process where they know how to track everything to be able to build upon former work. Instead of doing like every other company - reinventing the wheel because all the cutting edge know-how is proprietary.

Our teaching approach is unique. Because a growth mindset of collaborative inclusion is critical for our program - and indeed for the future of the planet - we are taking deliberate steps to assure that we can teach the mindset not only of growth, but of abundance. First, we start with the art of possibility - learning how to learn, learning how to think, how to develop accurate mental models. We study a survey of all known mental models across all disciplines of human endeavor - and always relate them to the practical question of solving economic distribution - ie, leaving nobody behind, and the beginning of a collaborative, abundance mindset. This is a discipline that sees the larger picture, and a transition of the economic system out of artificial scarcity. This is a foundation for learning about pressing world issues, and expanding one's mind to meet them. We move into the practical tools by teaching integrated design - essentially applied physics and moral philosophy in one. All of this is to keep clear about why we are here on this planet - for a purpose much larger than ourselves.

For developing the abundance mindset, we will track each student's development with both psychometrics for the mindset, and raw performance data on individual and collaborative builds. Can any person's learning ability be improved significantly through a measurable psychology of collaboration and inclusion? Can an abundance mindset be taught? Of course we can do better - but exactly what are the limits and how much can we learn and participate in creating a world that we would want to live in? We will study this question carefully, as we think the future of the world relies on it. We are including a development psychologist to help us find out. On the performance front, the data collection capacity of the RLF encourages students to set their own pay for the work portion. Students set performance goals where competency is documented transparently for each aspect of the build in the 16 bays of the Rapid Learning Facility.

Students collaborate with a technical writer and produce AI-assisted video instructionals on the builds of modules, such that each student is contributing to the development of content and design guides for continuous quality improvement. Over the 4 year persion, students branch into design, 3D printing, machines, and welding - to form a well-rounded skill set for engaging in the house build process in an integrated way.

The RLF is designed to provide the most diverse and integrated productive education in the shortest time frame possible - with the assumption that many resource-based problems can be solved simply with effective production. However, we believe that it is even more important to make technology more humane - and that requires a mindset of collaboration that leaves nobody behind. For this reason, the apprenticeship starts with socratic learnings sessions that teach people a collaborative, inclusive culture - a we mindset of possibility and win-win relationships. We start with how to learn, mental models, psychology, pressing world issues, and moral phiposophy as a basis for becoming an integrated human and a global steward. We start with culture.

Because students can learn rapidly, they can transition to designing things. Designing is made possibly by first understanding how to build things, and using a modular approach along the lines of Construction Sets. From computer aided design to printing real commercially-viable parts and designing machinery - this is a real immersion with tangible results.

How do we measure improved learning ability? First, we claim an improvement of '10x' by our claim that in the time it takes a person to learn 1 trade, our students are effectively learning 10. A tangible measure of this would be that any graduate (after 4 years in the apprenticeship) is capable of running a crew of 24 builders- including the ability to create full, custom, solar-energy powered homes with significant recycled plastic content and solar concrete.

This budget reflect cutting edge innovation. This includes innovation on the materials front: 3D printed building material production + its certification with international standards organizations, as well as the beginning of solar concrete production. On the energy front, solar concrete is a first, and the facility runs on solar power. On the social innovation front, we are pushing forward the limits of distributing enterprise. On the transformation front, we are solving housing by creating an ample supply of homes. In terms of integration, we are designing in the production of our own heavy equipment. On the education front, we are providing Integrated Education that leads to an Inegrated Enerprise. At the root of it, we are creating a self-funding mechanism for solving pressing world issues.

Once the single operation of 24 work-study crews is demonstrated, then this enterprise-level module is available for widespread replication to other communities worldwide. Local builder/teachers and students can be recruited, while the cultural learning can be provided by the original OSE facility.

After the 24 person model is developed within 12 months - we are moving on to the 240 person campus model. It is the Apprenticeship continued, where students can take another 4 years of 'grad school.' The focus will be village building, as opposed to house building. Students will learn the capacity to build an entire infrastructure for thriving (living and working) as part of the 4 year 'graduate level apprenticeship'. The goal is to replicate OSE Campuses, or start new economies from scratch, or redevelop broken economies worldwide. The aim of this - by showing how to create prosperity from scratch, with open knowhow - we can inspire the world to transition to a mindset of abundance.

There are several bigger questions that we aim to answer:

  1. How do we make human enterprise both more productive, and humane - at the same time?
  2. How can the abundance mindset be learned? Can it be a foundation for the next society, literally a world without poverty and war, with peace and prosperity as the new norm?
  3. Is Distributed Market Substitution possible, and can we prove it with housing? Ie, does open source hardware in its grand promise of abundance - actually work?
  4. Can distributed solar concrete and steel production in communities reduce the carbon footprint of these industries to zero?
  5. How do we implement the Universal Basic Assets concept to housing?


See Budget [4]

16 Bays of the Rapid Learning Facility

Microfactory Rapid Learning Facility Visual Workplace - 16 bays of rapid learning and production content for:

  1. carpentry/tools/measurement/techniques/safety
  2. electrical
  3. plumbing+water system
  4. PV
  5. Concrete and foundation work
  6. hardscaping and landscaping
  7. siding and roofing
  8. Finish carpentry
  9. Appliances
  10. 3D printing
  11. welding
  12. Solar concrete learning with lime rotary kiln
  13. Plastic Recycling + 3D Printing
  14. Power Cube - fuel and solar energy vehicles and machine systems
  15. Automation and remote control of machinery
  16. Machines and Heavy Equipment - all supporting machine and equipment development. Welder, torch, and CNC torch table are the main tools here.