Marcin Jakubowski: Open-sourced blueprints for civilization

Using wikis and digital fabrication tools, TED Fellow Marcin Jakubowski is open-sourcing the blueprints for 50 farm machines, allowing anyone to build their own tractor or harvester from scratch. And that’s only the first step in a project to write an instruction set for an entire self-sustaining village (starting cost: $10,000).

To watch the TED short click here.


New how to guides for community renewables, food, AD, re-use, transport, hydro, wind

Local United – Diffusing practical initiatives in response to climate change and peak oil

Local United brings together and supports community activists who are setting up social enterprises to address the challenges of peak oil and climate change. It aims to speed up the rate at which good ideas are adopted by community groups motivated to build low-carbon economies.

NESTA initially provided funding for the development and dissemination of the attached diffusion packs which have been written and reviewed by people with first-hand knowledge of the community and climate action sectors they work in. Often the authors will have been involved in the conception of the project idea and in many cases they would now be regarded as experts in their fields.

If you are downloading these packs because you are (or aim to be) a social enterprise who wishes to use, adapt or develop these diffusion packs then please send your contact name and e.mail to with LOCAL UNITED in the title of the e.mail. At Local United we are aiming to develop a mutually-supporting group of social enterprises; initially providing an “incubator space” for social enterprises and co-ordinating our search for finance for successful social enterprise models:

  1. Energy Farms – Anaerobic Digestion (2.7Mb)
  2. Community-led Food Initiatives (6.0Mb)
  3. Energy Performance Energy Services Company (1.6 Mb)
  4. Community-led Hydro Initiatives (3.5Mb)
  5. Sustainable Community loan Fund (2.7Mb)
  6. Community-led Wind power (0.9Mb)
  7. Community-led Reuse of Resources (1.4Mb)
  8. Community-led Transport Initiatives (5.1Mb)

Please note: some of these files are quite large and may take time to open depending on connection speed.

Of course, any information provided is only as up to date as the day it goes to print. Many of the specific examples have worked so well because of the people involved, the skills they possess or the resources that were available to them. Thus these examples will predominantly serve as an inspirational call to arms. However, many of the packs contain useful ‘how to’ guides, copies of legal templates or list of regulations, all of which may be useful to community groups wishing to set out on their own project. All of the packs contain notes or links on where to find more help.

More information email:
Useful links:  NESTA