Strategic Plan 2 Ambitious

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For update, see Strategic Plan 2015
About Open Source Ecology

Abstract: This is a plan for creating the Open Source Economy (see Definition). The program begins with developing the open source Global Village Construction Set. The GVCS is defined as a minimum set of technologies necessary to create advanced civilization from locally-availabe 'dirt and twigs' with 12 people and 1 year of time starting with a container-load of GVCS tools. In the process of developing the GVCS, we will be developing a scalable, open source product development platform - the Distributive Enterprise Platform. We intend to grow the organization to 3000 facilities worldwide by 2028 by training Distributive Entrepreneurs who then take integrated production capacity back to their communities. The goal is to create economies capable of being powered by local resources. The intended sociological effect is to allow people the autonomy to pursue mastery consistent with higher purpose - as a possibility for the next step of humanity's evolution. The current state of OSE is transition from vision to institution, fed by learnings about the need for solid organizational and development infrastructures as immediate priorities.


The mission of Open Source Ecology is to create the Open Source Economy - an economy that optimizes not only production, but distribution - while promoting environmental regeneration and social justice.


Open Source Ecology will not rest until the barriers to human evolution are toppled. Our platform is

  • Eliminating Material Scarcity - 50 machines of the Global Village Construction Set - a Village in a Box
  • Freedom for All - The elimination of war, and conflicts over resources
  • Enabling the Human Spirit - community of 12 people, 2 hrs. per day to reach a modern standard of living from local resources - an ultimate standard of human potential
  • Open Invitation - The benefits of Open Source are bigger than software.


Our goal is to create a parallel Open Source Economy that captures 0.1% of the global market share of all physical production by 2028. This production includes food, energy, housing, fuel, transportation, electromechanical technology, and microelectronics. An Open Source Economy is defined as an efficient economy - where Efficiency means access to open source design and openly-published business models/enterprise templates (Distributive Enterprise). An open source economy is a prerequisite to sound governance - where sound governance is defined as efficient production combined with radical transparency.

All wealth comes from sunlight, rocks, soil, plants, and water - the abundant feedstocks of modern civilization. We are creating an open source toolkit that allows people to convert these resources directly to a modern standard of living - at a cost of no more than 2 hours of work per day. This is an ultimate standard of human potential.

An open source economy involves unleashing access to enabling know-how anywhere in the world - implying relocalization of economic production.

The OSE plan for achieving the above involves:

  • Distributive Enterprise Platform - Developing a scalable, open source product development methodology by year-end 2013.
  • Civilization Starter Kit - Developing the Global Village Construction Set (GVCS) in 2014 and 2015 to demonstrate the development of 6 parallel projects via the Distributive Enterprise Platform.
  • Immersion Curriculum for Distributive Enterprise Fellows - Creating a curriculum for distributive entrepreneurs to build OSE economic hubs worldwide. The first training campus - called OSE Incubator - will be built in 2016, with the first class of 12 Fellows graduated by 2018 after a 2 year immersion program.
  • OSE Incubators - New OSE Incubators will be developed on 3 year cycles from start of immersion training, to reach 144 OSE Incubators in 2022.
  • OSE Campuses - The OSE Incubators will train other entrepreneurs who are interested in starting productive facilities within their own communities. These new facilities are known as OSE Campuse. They focus on the production of all tools relevant to creating a complete economy. Our goal is to incubate 12 OSE Fellows per class. These Fellows start Campuses world-wide, to reach over 3000 in 2028.

The GVCS consists of these tools:


For each of the 50 GVCS machines, we build several prototypes - and we iterate on improvements to get them to full product release. The prototypes built to date are (Note: All entries in the following graph are hyper-linked. Click Edit below the graph and then click twice on any icon to access the link):



We intend to fund our operations via a combination of grants and production earnings. We have a half-time Director of Development. The Factor e Farm workshop is a 4000 square foot flexible fabrication facility, with 12 production bays - capable of producing at least 4 large machines at a time. We aim to reach a $20k/month production earnings level by December, 2012 - by selling 4 CEB Presses per month at a net earning level of $5k/machine. We aim to attain $80k/month by December, 2013 - by selling 16 machines per month - after adding several further machines to our Full Product Releases.

Impact Scaling Strategy


See our Critical Path for the major milestones.

It took MacDonalds about 20 years to scale to 5000 branches from start-up. We are aiming to match this rate for startup of open OSE Incubators and OSE Campuses by achieving about 3000 branches in 12 years from the first OSE Incubator. An OSE Incubator is a training facility for training the distributive entrepreneurs - those who will train others to replicate further Incubators. We intend to, first, create 144 Incubators - and these incubators will train entrepreneurs who then build open source ecology in their respective communities. The distinction between Incubator and Campus is that the explicit role of the Incubator is to train distributive entrepreneurs (OSE Distributive Enterprise Fellows) - while the role of the Campus is to unleash entrepreneurs (OSE Fellows) dedicated to community economic development, without the explicit role of training other distributive entrepreneurs.


OSE Incubator

We intend to spend 2016 creating a curriculum for a 2-year replication training immersion program for social entrepreneurs - and specifically, for OSE Distributive Entreprise Fellows. We intend to start the first class of Fellows in 2017, with 12 graduates by 2019. During the course of their immersion curriculum, Fellows will participate in production runs and capture their productive value as capitalization assistance for their future startup. Upon graduation, these Fellows will work closely with OSE International to set up 12 Incubators by 2020, and 144 worldwide by 2023. This includes:

  • Recruiting Incubator staff
  • Building Incubator infrastructure with the Staff, with capitalization assistance of $100-150k as above ($80k/month net production model from OSE Microfactory)
  • Recruiting a class of 12 further Fellows

The established Incubators will work closely with the Fellows to reach the 144 Incubator milestone. Upon these being established, the function of the Incubators will shift from training OSE Distributive Eneterprise Fellows to OSE Fellows. The distinction is that the latter are agents of open source economic development in their communities, as opposed to trainers of new Fellows.

Foundation for the Open Source Economy

Each OSE Incubator is intended to generate $1M/year of net earnings, most of which will go to capitalization assistance of further OSE Incubators. Once we build 144 Incubators, we project $100M/year revenue for supporting open economic development. Our intent is an institution that encourages proprietary enterprise to adopt open culture in order to accelerate the rate of innovation while lowering barriers to entry of new economic players. The scope of products is everything, deployed strategically based on need and human benefit for addressing pressing world issues.

OSE Campus

An OSE Campus is defined an a land-based, autonomous entity with a 4000 sq ft workshop which clears approximately $1M of value generation per year and serves as a economic engine and responsible development hub within a surrounding economy. OSE Incubators train OSE Fellows - the startup entrepreneurs who build the OSE Campus.

The design of the OSE Campus is intended to be scalable on a month replication time scale, such that the OSE Campus may scale its operation readily. Because Campuses are autonomous in operation, they may scale as the centers of a networked economy in a world where nation states have diminished in their relevance as political centers of organization. The OSE Campus is intended to be an economic hub of a regional, resource-based economy.

10 Month Development Roadmap

We currently have a $440k budget for the next 10 months. Upon hiring 3 Machine Designers, we intend to raise our prototyping rate to 3-4 machines per month (currently by March 1, 2012)


10 Month Budget


Scaling Strategy: Organization

Our first step is to define our product offering clearly - to determine the appropriate deployment strategy. See the different product offerings under evaluation - Offer.

Team Development

Our team development sequencing strategy is (blue is existing team, green is gaps):


The numbers correspond to sequence, with this Team Sequencing Rationale.

Development Scenarios: 5 and 15 Year

Note: The cost for all 50 prototypes has been determined by estimating man-hours required based on average salaries. The total was determined to be $2.2M [1], or about $40k/product release on average (not including organizational overhead).

Here are our assumption for determining the possible development rates:

15 Year Development Time

  • We currently have a $440k budget for the next 10 months, which we plan on burning down to produce 28 new prototypes as above (about $16k/prototype, or $48k/product relase after 3 prototypes). In this budget, we are securing volunteer support on branding and business support/development via the TED network, and we are paying for key support and core development (prototyping) work as in above budget.
  • The key development rate-limiting step is managing the development of our infrastructure - physical, development platform, and organizational development.
  • Key priorities on infrastrucure are:
    • Physical Infrastructure: Stabilize physical infrastructure by completing energy, housing, and water infrastructures; develop agricultural and energy-production operations.
    • Development Platform. Developing a scalable, open source product development methodology. Keys to this development are a streamlined process for crowd-sourced solutions, such as Flash Mobs. This includes a robust methodology for assuring that design, CAD, prototyping, testing, video, technical writing, and other aspects can scale - by providing both tools and organizational inrastructure/process.
    • Organizational. This involves support staff and process, such as:


  • Our budgeted salaries for the key people are about 1/2 the market rate. The assumptions here are $4k per month for a Master Prototyper. An average hourly rate for a fabricator is $20, which is low for a Master Prototyper - who is expected to have a broad fabrication skill set. For a Machine Designer, the average hourly rate is $40 (link) - which means our Machine Designer budget of $4000/month is one half of a competitive rate.
  • We assume that we can recruit stellar candidates - but this may be difficult - and is a risk factor in our development plan.
  • We rely on volunteers for many roles.

With the above assumptions, we can foresee the following development pattern:

  • Current prototyping rate of 1 per month
  • Stabilizing organizatinal/physical/platform infrastructures by end of 2013
    • Can this be accelerated? Not likely, since infrastructure-building takes time. At the end of this time, we develop a rapid development platform that we can scale to 6 projects at one time - which is the max possible under 1 executive and operations manager. To increase the rate of prototyping, a higher organizational complexity would be needed.
  • Let's say that we can stabilize by end of 2013 - then we have assured $20k/month earnings in 2012 and $80k/month in 2013.
  • We would then have $1M/year budgets as such. Then it takes us 2 years to finish the GVCS - to cover a cost of $2.2M. This assumes no further grant funding.
  • Then in 2015, we begin developing curriculum, and we develop Incubators and Campuses according to the 15 year plan.

Can this be accelerated?

5 Year Development Time

With professional assistance on all fronts of organizational, physical infrastructure, HR, process, and technical aspects - we can potentially accelerate development like this:

  • Solve all infrastructure issues on a 6 month time scale with professional Construction Manager
  • Solve all organizational/business structuring issues within 3 months - Fortune 500 business development assistance
  • Recruit an entire team within 3 months - HR Director
  • Develop basic product development platform in 3 monnts - 1 person full time
  • Develop all organizational processes in 3 months
  • Begin full development process by Q2 of 2013 for 6 prototypes/month.
  • Scale up to 12 prototypes/month by Q3 of 2013, and finish GVCS by mid-2014 (1.5 year acceleration)

The budget for this would have to be:

  • Doubled from $2M to pay competitive salaries
  • Multiply by 1.5 to account for increase of organizational complexity
  • Doubled for unexpected developments

Thus, the $2M turns to $12M for GVCS development by mid-2014.

  • Curriculum development could accelerate to 1/2 year with additional curriculum developers - so school can start in 2015
  • Startup of Incubators and Campuses will still take the 3 year cycles, so time savings are possible through larger class size - which may be difficult on grounds of organizational scaling.

In summary, the GVCS may be developed in about half the time, and the first incubator may be online in 2015 instead of 2017. The time to change the world via scaling of Incubators and Campuses may decrease from 12 to 6 years if class size were to increase from 12 to 144 people. This would allow for a total of 8 years instead of 16 years to complete the development to 3000 Campuses worldwide.

Development Cost

Results to Date

Infographic of prototypes built and total OSE budget to that point.

Cost Predictions

We have calculated development cost predictions of the entire GVCS to be $2.2M. This calculation involves a development process with labor cost predictions based on average competitive salaries, and it does not include organizational and management overhead. The updated cost, including cost overrun insulation, is this:

infographic of average development cost including management/financial/operations overhead and 4x insulation for success

Performance Metrics


  • Number of Prototypes Built (24), Number of Unique Prototypes Built (15), Beta Releases (4), and Full Product Releases (0)
  • Cost performance of Full Product Releases compared to industry standards. Typical goal: 5x cost reduction or better.
  • Number of machines replicated independently (8)
  • Total sales volume of GVCS Machines ($45k)
  • Size of permanent staff and volunteers on site
  • Funding level ($450k for next 10 months, graph of overall funding)
  • Technical Blog Posts (prototype builds)
  • Control Panel Steps Completed per project (needs to organize Control Panel)
  • Prototypes/month development rate by OSE Headquarters
  • Flash Mob member numbers


  • Pilot projects with use cases
    • Feedback sought: effectiveness of local production; we do not provide machines
  • Publicity and Honors attained
  • Number of wiki edits by top 10 contributors
  • TF numbers
  • Twitter, FB followers
  • YouTube subscribers, views
  • money spent per prototype built
  • money spent per Distributive Enterprise
  • Earnings, Donations, Grants
  • Loal Food produced on site
  • Local Energy Produced On Site - kW-Hr/month
  • Web hits - main site, wiki, blog, TED Talk

Theory of Change

Our theory of change has several steps:

With each Campus netting $1M/year, the value generated by this social enterprise should net $3B by 2029. This does not count the numerous independent replications and other forks that occur via the open source nature of this project.

Other Sections

From Strategic_Plan_for_DRKF_June_2012

  1. Overview of Need
  2. Leader Overview
  3. Landscape
  4. Programs
  5. Results to Date
  6. Scaling Strategy: Budget
  7. Income/Fundraising Strategy
  8. Milestones
  9. Evaluation

Future Strat Plan Work

I see the next steps:

  1. Market survey for distributive entrepreneurs - can we really find the 144 Incubator starters - and if so - can we find them now? Imagine 144 Marcins leading the development. I think we should think hard about this.
  2. Market survey for equipment buyers - if we do the $80k/month funding model by leveraging our social capital
  3. More specific definition of budget by defining cost per product more clearly - linking more closely to the inner workings of our development procedure. We propose industry standard development technique in 2.2M budget - but we should also be leveraging further crowd-based models and other platform dev in what we really want to do to create a veritable open product development pipeline.