It's pretty simple, really. The speed with which these projects come on-line depends on the amount of support the projects receive. Here are some ways you can support the open-source research we're doing.
If you see the importance of enabling rural communities to meet their energy needs using environmentally positive technologies, we need your support. There is no paid staff working on this project, and the equipment gathered so far has been paid for out-of-pocket by volunteers who believe that this work needs to be done within an open source framework.
As this project moves from the conceptual stage into the working-model stage, that transformation will require an on-going capital investment which exceeds what we can do alone. We're not talking about huge numbers, and we understand that an injection of too much capital can derail a sustainability project in the same way that the application of too much chicken manure can kill a garden.
Even so, the timely availability of the funds needed to purchase the components that go into constructing computer-controlled hydraulic compressors, or the rebar and concrete needed for the Analog's foundation, is critical to moving this next phase of the project forward. We estimate that a support level of $1,000 a month will enable our volunteer researchers to move the project along in a timely manner.
Contributions go to purchase the materials needed to move this research forward, and True Fans have access to a detailed accounting of those expenditures. One of the reasons we're taking this work public now is our perception that the window of time in which this work needs to be put together and disseminated is closing. You can help make this project succeed more quickly by becoming a True Fan and committing to making a monthly investment in this work. Even small amounts add up.
Kurosawa's 1954 film Seven Samurai tells the story of an isolated village that is being repeatedly robbed by bandits. If this continues, the village will wither and die as the farmers either starve or have to abandon their land. Knowing that the bandits will return as soon as the next crop is harvested, the farmers are desperate.
The village elder advises them to journey to the city to find samurai who will fight to defend them from the bandits. Knowing they lack the money to hire skilled fighters, they ask the old man: "How can we find samurai we can pay with only rice?"
He counsels them to, "Find hungry samurai."
Rural villages today find themselves in a similar situation as the cost of non-renewable energy sources drains them of the capital they need to keep their community alive. Year by year, they have to sell off more resources to pay their energy bills, and watch as their young people leave to seek work and income elsewhere. Without some way to reverse this process, those villages will shutter their windows and die.
Who must do the hard thing?
‒ Those who can.
‒ Sicilian proverb
Lots of people understand that a social order founded on the increasing consumption of non-renewable resources will inevitably crash as those cheap resources become scarce, and an endless series of resource wars squander what is left. Before long the only resources that rural people will be able to depend on is what they can create themselves using sunshine, rain, and air.
There is another way, one that involves the wise stewardship of life and the living, but it will not be easy to find our way there from where we are now. Study and practice are needed since those who want to work effectively with nature have to be able to read the language that nature's stories are written in. They have to prepare themselves in order to see, understand, and work with what is truly there. These are not skills that are learned in a day.
Most college grads aspire to find jobs that will reward them for their educational investment; fair enough. But there are also a precious few who understand that they are stepping onto the world stage at a time when humanity will either change its relationship to nature, or die out.
We're looking for people who understand that their skills and resources can be used to continue grinding the earth into dust, but have determined to work instead to help humanity return to ways that create life.
We're looking for people who are hungry to fight for life and the living.
This is not an easy undertaking. Untangling the skein of life and then knitting together a new and durable fabric will require patience, focus, and commitment. There's an element of risk and no certainty of success‒only the opportunity to test ourselves against a challenge that is worthy of our best effort.
Open-source research isn't for those who are looking to become famous, or rich, or powerful; it's for people who feel called to do meaningful work for the common good. In short, we're looking for heroes. People who's names may not stand out, but who are heros just the same.
If you believe that you're such a person, or you know such a person, please get in touch with us; our email is