Website 2014

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To Do

  • Add newsletter signups.
  • Add Getting Involved to answer all involvement questions granularly while feeding emergy into the program. Includes Fellows, site manager, hiring, etc. As well as terms of Open Source and Social Contract.
  • Restore the look above with slider.

OSE Website Information Architecture Spreadsheet

Marcin, In the meantime you should add a link to the wiki from the frontpage because people have no idea (example)



Optimizing Wordpress

  1. 15 Easy Ways To Speed Up WordPress
  2. Best Practices for Speeding Up Your Web Site
  3. GTMetrix WP Optimization Guide
  4. WP Discussion Thread
  5. WP Discussion Thread
  6. WP-Optimize Plugin
  7. Revision Control Plugin





Completion Graphic


Timelines and Spreadsheets Information

Collaborators Timeline

True Fans Timeline


  • Website was optimized for databases., receiving A's on all but HTML. Using 35MB of the 40 allocated. Speed is unacceptable. Requsted Hetzner increase from 40MB to 128MB on 2/22/14.

Website Sections - Community



The Open Source Ecology project is fueled by a community of countless contributors - motivated by the open source ethic of collaborative development. We are lowering the barriers of participation so that anyone can join: in areas spanning design, engineering, art, communications, video, writing, enterprise - and on to tangible outcomes of hands-on builds and pilot projects. We are building on commonly-available tools and creating processes that allow people with little prior experience to generate sophisticated results - using an integrated, interdisciplinary development process. We care about systems and ecologies - where we value generalist skills that transcends the limits of siloed thinking. Our goal is to show that anyone, provided access to tools and techniques - can tap amazing productivity, creativity, and power - on a transition from consumer culture to a new level of responsibility. Our goal is to create a cultural revolution - where you can Build Yourself - and build the world around you. We offer Design Sprints, 3-day immersion workshops, and the summer of extreme design/builds. Our work is geared at students, professionals, and social entrepreneurs - and anyone looking to make a change in the world, reskill themselves, and collaborate in a growing community creating the collaborative economy. Our goal is to create a kernel for a Civilization Starter Kit, and to create a formidable, open source development platform to create the next economy. We are testing the limits of collaborative innovation fueled by open processes and open hardware - to accelerate innovation - to make a better world - and to leave nobody behind.

Develop + Organize + Support

'Call to action + contact info'

Development on the GVCS occurs both on site at Factor e Farm and remotely via Design Sprints, university collaborations, pilot projects, immersion workshops, and other development opportunities. We publish Requirements and Requests for Proposals and encourage anybody to apply either to work remotely or on-site. On-site work includes prototyping, infrastructure buildout, Immersion Workshops, agriculture, and other education opportunities. Our unique approach is creating not single machines, but instead - modular, scalable construction sets for building any machine - to Build Yourself - to Build Civilization.

For further information or to begin working on one of the following opportunities, please contact us at info at opensourceecology dot org.


  • Design Sprints - We have held a number of Design Sprints where collaborators gather around a Google Hangout and work in real-time on collaborative documents for conceptual and technical design. The potential here lies in - for example a group of 20 mechanical engineering students working for 2 hours to generate CAD on 10 different modules of a machine - given that Requirements are provided and given that the event collaboration architecture is defined precisely. With team leaders emerging, we envision running such events in parrallel with a number of groups. For example, we envision 10 groups of 20 students coordinating development for 2 hours on a Saturday - to generate an equivalent of . Our University Tour is intended to identify and recruit groups for such work. If you are involved in a student group - such as ASME, AIST, ASABE, ASCE, SAE, AIME, TMS, EWB, ESW, AIAS, ASLA, IEEE, IACES, NAEA, AIGA, TAGA, IGAEA, Habitat for Humanity, Architecture for Humanity, public service, alternative spring break, or other groups anywhere in the world, please contact us to get involved in OSE Design Sprints.
  • Requests for Proposals - we are publishing RFPs for key development priorities. We will explore the limits of crowd development and crowd funding - so that all interested stakeholders have a platform for developing and funding key developments in a collaborative way. To get started, see our current RFPs and Submit a Work Offer.
  • Internships - Summers of Extreme Design/Build - with the Learning Factor-e Model. Most of OSE's development occurs at Factor e Farm near Kansas City, Missouri, USA. We have offered Dedicated Project Visits in the past year-round, and in 2014, we are focusing our development efforts on the summer - such that we pull together as a larger, interdisciplinary team. Anyone is welcome to apply. For university students - this is a great opportunity to gain practical experience, make a difference, or build your skill set and resume. See information about what the development process looks like at Development Method - we will be engaging in a process where we prototype a module or machine every week - spending most of our time on design and preparation, and one day on the build.
  • Alternative Spring Breaks - currently we have a March 9-14 Alternative Spring Break trip. Interested in changing the world rather than going to the beach? Join us - [3].
  • Dedicated Project Visits and Group Visits - You can plug into the Summers of Extreme Design/Builds, into our alternative spring breaks. If you are a special group interested in doing work on site, we can organize other special opportunities.
  • Residency Program - We are looking for rock star open source developers of hardware and systems to join us for a 3 month program, currently under development. OSE supports the individual in collaborating with us on site at Factor e Farm, plugging into our development process - to take technologies to product release in the framework of our immersion workshops model.


If you have organizational skill and you are interested in working more closely with the core OSE team - help us organize:

  • University Lectures - or other speaking engagemnents. This is a great form of outreach, intended to recruit participants to build the OSE team from within. We are continuing to find strong stakeholders with our College Tour - and we are actively pursuing Design Sprints, Summer Internships, and student projects with the new contacts.
  • OSE Chapters - We are currently working on the first OSE University chapters The requirements are hosting one design sprint per month. To organize an OSE Chapter, see the guidelines at the OSE Chapters.
  • Team Projects, Senior Projects, Capstone Projects, Design Teams, Competitions, Social Enterprise Challeges - many universities have team projects, and we would like to explore how OSE can be a client. If you are excited about the work of OSE - and if you are a faculty, staff, or a student and you would like to organize an opportunity with OSE - we would like to establish creative partnerships with you where students work on tangible projects that make a difference. There is a lot of momentum around distributed manufacturing, open collaborative processes, integrated design and systems optimization - and we'd like to work with you to push the limits in all of these areas.
  • Organize In-Kind Donations - Do you have a friend or family member who owns a company that can donate goods to OSE? See the OSE Wish List. Companies and individuals can donate materials and get tax advantages.


OSE's roots lie in crowd funding. When the founder became broke because his tractor kept breaking down - he turned to crowd funding to bootstrap the project. He would simply blog and post videos (see Distillations Series all that he did, and then he put up a ChipIn to collect funding - on the order of $1-2k at a time. Then he turned to the 1000 True Fans (links to the True Fans subpage on site) concept to gather a group of supporters who fund the project with a small monthly donation for 24 months. We have since gotten our 501(c)3 nonprofit status, and continue to collect donations and foundation funding. However, in order to scale the project to the next trillion dollar economy by distributing economic power to many stakeholders - we intend to publish open enterprise models - with which a social entrepreneur can start up a lean enterprise with zero outside investment. That is the true test of our work.

Here are our donation options:

(subscribe as a True Fan, Flattr, Bitcoin, donate, etc)

Since the Distillation Series, we have doffed our suits, put more dirt under our fingernails, and continued to build. We believe that dogfooding all of our work is a way that we gain deep understanding all that we do - including innovative ways to pay for work bids via crowdfunding. We are experimenting whether crowd funding can be integrated with our RFPs to reward contributors in our innovative, open design/build process. We post an RFP - then put up the work bids for crowd funding. Read more about our Extreme Crowd Funding, and contribute to our existing challenges:

(insert a crowd funding basket for our first RFP reward - a modern equivalent of Chipin, Flattr, etc. First RFP will be for developing an Extreme Crowd Funding Template acccording to our specifications.)

We also accept In-Kind Donations. You can receive tax write-offs for donations of material items - such as right now - we are looking for a van to take our students on field trips and to remote design/documentation events as part of our swarming development method. See our Wish List.


Over the years, hundreds of collaborators have made OSE what it is today. Here are some of them.

(Featured Collaborators)

Collaborators Timeline

From the time that OSE was initially conceptualized in 2003, the project has moved from Madison, Wisconsin, to Osborn, Missouri, in 2005, to its present site in Maysville, Missouri, in 2006 - home of Factor e Farm and headquarters of the Global Village Construction Set. Check out who has contributed, and what motivated them to take part.


The timeline is evolving continuously. Because we are a distributed project with many contributors, we may have missed some people. If you are a contributor and would like to be put on the timeline, please email us at info at opensourceecology dot org.

(hidden link (such as a linked period) to spreadsheet for future management)

See Timlines Management section above for more details.

Review and Comments

Site posted Wed, Feb. 26, 2014. Comments:

  • Nice website, Marcin. A huge step up. Quite professional, IMO.-MJN


I have had three people ask me a question approximately of the form 'where are the blueprints on the site'

This suggests to me, that to the uninitiated it should be more obvious perhaps, as people seem to have very little patience for getting to the content.

-ans - Very good point. Blueprints are under GVCS - Machine Index - Select Machine - Documentation. Do you think this is easy to find?


Yay for a new website! Looks like you're using WordPress and the Ultimate Coming Soon plugin.  :)

I hope you're planning to use CiviCRM as a contact management backend. It's WordPress integration is quite good and has ton of useful features (newsletter, donations, campaigns, petitions, event ticketing, etc) and useful new features like a volunteer management module - I've used CiviCRM for a few organizations and they really like it.

If you or your web people have any questions let me know. Happy to help.

See Also

Known Bugs

  • Need to fix dating scheme so article date appears on all blog posts