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paul wheaton
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(update: the challenge has been extended from september 10, 2016 to september 10, 2017. This post has been edited to reflect this change.)

This is a contest in self sufficiency and permaculture.

The first place award is a deep roots package (rent for life) or $10,000 cash (*).

The second place award is a shallow roots package. So free rent for 3 years.

Third place is one more year of rent.


This year we have a new program called "ant village". You can read the details about it here. Basically, this is as many as 12 people who will each have an acre to set up their vision in sustainability.

Judging will be on September 10, 2017.

Score will be based on:

40 points for the amount of food to get through the winter
30 points for quality of shelter / winter warmth
15 points for art, aesthetics and luxury
20 points for contributing to community infrastructure
20 points for community glue
10 points for documenting your progress on permies.com
15 points for energy conservation
20 points for innovation

There must be at least 6 contenders on September 10, 2017. And each of those contenders have been actively living on their plot for at least 12 months. This encourages a certain level of support from the ant community. So the latest a contender could start is in august, but I think it would be wise to start before june.



Qualifying minimums:

Food: on September 10, 2017, the ant must have a store of at least 300,000 calories of food to get a person through to March, 2018. This can be vegan or omni food. It has to have been harvested from the plot or from the nearby wild. It can be dried, canned, pickled .... any type of preservation that will make sure that there will be food through the winter. Tubers still in the ground can be counted.

Shelter: The ant must spend the winter living in a structure built on their plot. The structure must be a wofati, a debris hut, or something I have specifically approved of. Winter camping in a tent, tipi or yurt does not qualify. The internal living space must be at least 6x8 and six feet high. A source of heat is not a required minimum.


Scoring:

food: the more food that can keep through the winter, the higher the score.

shelter: structural integrity has the most weight. Size has no weight. Since this is a contest of sustainability, on one side, smaller is better. On the other side, demonstrating luxuriant comfort while being sustainable is also of value. Further still, something that is comfortable for three people to live in could be more sustainable than something that is smaller, but only one person would be comfortable in it. Points for luxuriant warmth. The structure should be as "earth integrated" as possible. Relatively invisible - including from satellite photography.

art: points for beauty and luxury.

infrastructure: there will be projects to build/maintain roads, trails and gates. Maybe animal systems. Maybe something with bringing water closer. Points for helping to improve things for the whole community.

glue: points for working to make this community a pleasant experience for the others. Points off for being a point of grief for others in the community.

documentation: points for posting quality information to permies.com

energy: I could see giving 10 points for a really excellent solar system that has 750 watts of panels. And I could see giving 0 points for a really poor solar system that has 750 watts of panels. I plan on leaning toward giving more points for smaller systems. Automatic 15 points for having zero energy use - but that would have to sacrifice the 10 points for documenting on permies.com (how would you post there without some energy use?). So I think optimal scoring might involve 200 watts of panels. Lighting from solar will score higher than lighting from fuel-based solutions (kerosene, wax, etc.).

innovation: I can't even guess what this might be. But what can I say, I'm a sucker for innovation.


Part of me wants to work in something about a kitchen and greywater systems and the like, but I think that could be part of a future challenge.

This thread is now the official announcement of the ant village challenge. Here is an earlier thread that discussed the idea.

(*) = The winner can have $10,000 in cash (well, actually, a check) in lieu of the deep roots package(currently valued at $21,000). If the winner accepts the $10,000, the winner forfeits the improvements on the plot and forfeits use of the plot beyond September 10, 2016.
 
Ryan Barrett
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paul wheaton wrote:
kitchen


Could this be part of the community infrastructure?
It is something everyone will need, after all.


 
paul wheaton
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Ryan Barrett wrote:
paul wheaton wrote:
kitchen


Could this be part of the community infrastructure?
It is something everyone will need, after all.


At this moment .... for the contest that is about to start, I think I won't judge on kitchen stuff. People could add kitchen stuff to their structure or not, but I won't add or subtract points for kitchen stuff.

If this year's event goes well and we decide to do this again, maybe kitchen stuff will be a component in the future.
 
Ryan Barrett
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I'm thinking more as a community project.
A kitchen/dining area everyone could share.
 
paul wheaton
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Ryan Barrett wrote:I'm thinking more as a community project.
A kitchen/dining area everyone could share.


I do think that something like that could add points for community infrastructure and community glue - depending on who did what to make it happen.
 
Gilbert Fritz
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Why would solar power be rated above wax?

Beehives and soy plants could theoretically be used to harvest solar power till the sun burns out. Solar panels can only be used to harvest power till our current industrial civilization is destroyed or falls apart. (Which will happen long before the sun burns out, no matter how optimistic or pessimistic one might be.)

Also: appropriate tech: by oneself, one could theoretically produce candles indefinitely. By oneself one could not produce a solar panel at all.
 
paul wheaton
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Gilbert Fritz wrote:Why would solar power be rated above wax?


I like the idea that if this works, then maybe 20 different permaculture farms all over the world will do similar things. And each farm will score based on their values.

For me, I value self-reliance, sustainability/abundance, and luxuriant off-grid living moving away from "low impact" and toward "positive impact". And while all of the other permaculture folks that host something like this will agree with all of these things, they will each have their own set of value that they will score higher or lower.

So, this is a personal preference. And I think of it as an air quality issue. The "smoke" or "exhaust" or "residue" from the candle is not vented outside. So as it burns, the oxygen in the room is depleted and toxins are mixed into the air.

There is a lot to be said for candles made from beeswax. And I think they make a lovely plan B for an off grid scenario. But I think they make a poor plan A for luxuriant, off-grid lighting.

 
Sam Boisseau
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In my view an ant that can survive the winter in Missoula without any heating is as interesting as an ant that can build a system that uses only 1/8 th of a cord and provide good warmth.

The best of both sides might be the one who builds a very efficient heating system, but doesn't need to use it as much as the average person would.


Is there no disqualifying maximum as to how much firewood an ant can use? What's a sustainable harvest on a one acre plot, given that part of the plot might be cleared for food production?



 
Gilbert Fritz
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Air quality is definitely a problem with paraffin candles; I agree. Probably even with soy.

But there is some research to suggest that beeswax candles actually clean the air. There is also some research to suggest that electromagnetic fields from light bulbs, switches, batteries and wiring are bad for at least some people. And there is the possibility that the solar panels, inverters, and batteries decreased the air quality where they were manufactured.

But, of course, as you pointed out these ants are trying to live up to your standards. And that's good. Paul Permaculture standards are probably a couple of thousand notches higher then suburbia standards.

Just trying to throw some thoughts out there.
 
paul wheaton
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Please help me learn more about how air quality may be improved with beeswax candles. Perhaps you have a favorite link?
 
Gilbert Fritz
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I don't remember where I read it initially, I think in a book. I did a quick search and here is a link. Of course, they sell beeswax candles. . .

Basically, negative ions released clean up positively charged allergens. There is still the oxygen to CO2 issue, of course, but we humans do that too.

Link: http://empoweredsustenance.com/beeswax-candles-and-allergies-an-effective-solution/

Quote:

Beeswax releases negative ions when it burns. Pollen, dust, dirt, pollutants, and any other junk in the air all carry a positive charge, and that is how they can be suspended in the air. The negative ions released from burning beeswax negate the positive charge of air contaminants, and the neutralized ions are sucked back into the burning candle or fall to the ground. Many air purifiers and water filters harness this effective negative ion technology.
 
Gilbert Fritz
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Of course, candles can be a fire hazard too!
 
paul wheaton
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There are only twelve spots available for the ant village and, thus, the ant village challenge. For details on getting started, see here.
 
Mike Cantrell
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Gilbert Fritz wrote:I don't remember where I read it initially, I think in a book. I did a quick search and here is a link. Of course, they sell beeswax candles. . .

Basically, negative ions released clean up positively charged allergens. There is still the oxygen to CO2 issue, of course, but we humans do that too.

Link: http://empoweredsustenance.com/beeswax-candles-and-allergies-an-effective-solution/



I don't want to derail here, but I'm skeptical. I started a new thread: http://www.permies.com/t/44902/toxin-ectomy/Beeswax-candles-clean-air-ions#356793
 
Su Ba
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If I weren't already well established on my own homestead, I'd love to take the challenge. Even at my age I bet I could give a decent showing. Last night before falling asleep I found myself fantasizing about doing the challenge....... Shelter. Root cellar. Pit greenhouse. Rain catchment. Solar. Fuel. Food production. Small livestock. Soil prep and amendments. Tool inventory. Work schedule. Hunting/foraging. Gee, I was really getting psyched. Woke up this morning all hyped and used that energy to get a lot done on our farm.

 
evan l pierce
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I'm strongly considering this. I haven't listened to hardly any of the podcasts, so I'll be sure to start that asap. The first 300, you say? It'll be good to have something to listen to on the long trip out there. And I'll be sure to take notes so that I can be prepared to live under the cob-encrusted boot-heels of wheaton-style eco-tyranny.

Questions for Paul:

If I send you $800, and less than 6 people sign up by X date, (thus making it impossible to succeed in the challenge,) do I have any recourse? Ant village without enough other ants would be a bummer.

How soon can I start? Once the podcasts are listened to and the payment is made? When the snow melts? When the ground thaws?

Questions for everyone else:

Anyone else crazy enough to try this? Maybe we can work together at first on a single plot and then decide by Sep '15 whether to buy in as another ant/plot/$800 or not.

Adopt-an-ant? Sponsorship? Any sponsors out there? What would you want from me in order to consider sponsoring my ant-ness?
 
paul wheaton
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evan l pierce wrote:The first 300, you say?


Yup.



If I send you $800, and less than 6 people sign up by X date, (thus making it impossible to succeed in the challenge,) do I have any recourse? Ant village without enough other ants would be a bummer.


I would like to think that I will think of something. But, officially, the only recourse you have is that you will have built a home for yourself and you will be growing a lot of food for yourself. And I think that there would be some documented notoriety - that would probably be of some value. And, if you wanted to sell your improvements, I suspect that there would be buyers. And if you didn't want to sell your improvements, then it would seem that there are a variety of ways to bask in the glow of your own work for pretty damn cheap rent.



How soon can I start? Once the podcasts are listened to and the payment is made? When the snow melts? When the ground thaws?


The ground can be worked in a week or so. It would be time to plant your peas.


Another thought:

If you pick a spot such that you have ants on either side of you, you might be able to reduce the total amount of fence to build.
 
evan l pierce
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I'd like to know more about these 12 plots of land and the surrounding land. Is there a map of the lab somewhere on here that I just haven't seen yet? Is it top secret?

How wooded is the land? How rocky? What existing species of plants and animals are already present? I know you mentioned deer, turkeys, douglas fir.

What about solar orientation? Topography? Soil types? depth? ph? etc.?

How similar are the different plots to one another? How different? Roughly.

edit: Also, can I buy all 300 podcasts at once, along with the ant plot. I'll just send you $800 for the ant plot (+$25 for the podcasts? how much would you sell me all your podcasts for?)
 
Stephanie Meyer
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I am willing to sponser an ant for a small monthly amt, anyone who meets Paul's requirements and pays their fee (skin in the game). Ant village challenge is just such an awesome idea, if I can't be first hand, I would love to experience it vicariously/support it
 
paul wheaton
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paul wheaton
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I updated the awards to include awards for second and third place.
 
paul wheaton
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For the ant challenge, i want to make it clear that some ants will arrive with a lot of money in the bank. They will hire out things to be done on their plot. They might hire out some construction, some of the horticultural efforts .... who knows what. This still qualifies. The ant MUST live on the plot, but the ant could job out 100% of the construction (even though that seems very unlikely at this point).

The scoring is about what was accomplished.

The upside of the work being jobbed out is that some ants might need the income.

 
Fred Tyler
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I have a seasonal business (harvesting pecans) that would require me to leave the lab for December and January. I'm pretty sure that would disqualify me for the challenge, but what if i had a substitute ant living in the structure through that part of winter?
 
Jocelyn Campbell
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paul wheaton wrote:This is a contest in self sufficiency and permaculture.

The first place award is a deep roots package that is currently valued at $21,000. So, effectively, rent free for 20+ years.

The second place award is a shallow roots package. So free rent for 3 years.

Third place is one more year of rent.


This year we have a new program called "ant village". You can read the details about it here. Basically, this is as many as 12 people who will each have an acre to set up their vision in sustainability.

The "ant village challenge" is designed to award one ant a deep roots package.

Judging will be on September 10, 2016.

For those new to the wheaton labs forum, there are some background details here:
deep roots - long term canvas
shallow roots - 3 years

See Paul's first post in this thread for more details on the ant village challenge (I did not quote his full post here).
 
paul wheaton
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Fred Tyler wrote:I have a seasonal business (harvesting pecans) that would require me to leave the lab for December and January. I'm pretty sure that would disqualify me for the challenge, but what if i had a substitute ant living in the structure through that part of winter?


Fred, let's suppose that your "substitute" is named "Bob" (with one "o"). So I would suggest that you set up Bob as the ant. Bob is there for the whole event. And then at the end of the event, Bob transfers his ant stuff to you. Bob gets the glory, you get the artifacts.

An alternative is that you do the ant village thing, you are the ant, and you send Bob away for two months. This way you get the glory and the artifacts.

Another alternative is that you do the ant village thing, but not the ant village challenge thing.

I think stepping out for 14 days in the middle of winter is okay - but I'm going to officially draw the line at 14 days.
 
paul wheaton
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If there turns out to be less than six ants in the challenge come Sep 10, 2016, the ants that made it that far will be allowed to participate in the ant challenge for the following year - and they will have a one year head start over the others.

 
Cassie Langstraat
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Any updates on the ants? Do you have several wanting to do it? I'm just curious.
 
paul wheaton
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Cassie Langstraat wrote:Any updates on the ants? Do you have several wanting to do it? I'm just curious.


We have one person that paid and is on their way here. We have three more that say they will do this but have not put up funds yet. I suspect that by the time july 1 rolls around, there will be about eight people.
 
kadence blevins
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Is there any rules/guidelines as to ants and animals/livestock on other parts of the lab? Ie not their ant spot. Just a thought.
 
paul wheaton
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kadence blevins wrote:Is there any rules/guidelines as to ants and animals/livestock on other parts of the lab? Ie not their ant spot. Just a thought.


I think at some point somebody is going to start keeping larger herds on the lab. We would need to work out an arrangement. I encourage it! I like the idea of paddock shift systems covering the lab. I also like the idea of salatin-style fiefdoms where there might be several business models using the land.
 
Stephanie Meyer
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Now that the first ant has arrived and is posting, is there a way to sponser/send donations towards an ant or general ant fund? It would be cool to be able to "reward" ants for posting....
 
M Johnson
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I like that idea, maybe a post that has donation links for each person. Sort of like voting for American Idol by texting a certain number, except this is actually a worthwhile cause

Just don't deliver them by floating little parachutes...
 
paul wheaton
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I created a new thread for sending stuff to ants: http://www.permies.com/t/45973/labs/ant-love

I like the idea that lots of great stuff comes in for Evan for being the very first ant.
 
paul wheaton
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So a few more deep root hypotheticals...if say you wanted me to part ways would I still be able to sell the package? Would any of this be guaranteed by anything more than our word between each other? It just seems from a legal standpoint you'd have all the rights regardless of our deep roots agreement and if push came to shove you'd technically own the works regardless of the work that may have been put in.

I certainly understand your position, i just would find it hard to really build a sweet homestead without any possibility to win legal protection of my work. $800 to camp out and lazily homestead for a year in montana is a sweet deal but don't think that's what your fishing for. You want awesome homestead and permaculture development to go down. That is going to take lots of work and so how do I as a potential ant see the advantage of going the extra mile and building something great when there is no possibility for security of ownership?


Let me be perfectly clear: You have utterly zero legal ownership. None. Zip. Nada. Everything is mine. I could kick you off and keep everything.

Either party has the right to terminate the relationship at any time. You leave, I keep everything.

HOWEVER: If things are smooth, I would be open to a variety of possibilities. Including the idea that you can sell your improvements. And if you have a deep roots package, you could even sell that. Of course the buyer has to meet my criteria which can change over time.

So far, one deep roots person has sold their spot. They bought the spot for $20,000 and sold it for $26,000. Jocelyn and I took care of the paperwork at no charge.

There would be a document drawn up that is part of the deep roots stuff (as we have done for all deep roots packages) that would spell out a few things. Mostly the whole thing about how this is basically a long term rental and at your parting, I own all improvements.

This is the function of the podcasts: listen to the podcasts and come to your own conclusion on how things could turn out. If it sounds like you will be perfectly lovely and I will be perfectly awful, then don't do this! Your alternatives are to buy your own land, or enter into a similar relationship where decisions are made by, probably, consensus.

A handful of crazy people seem to value my word. This offer is for those people.

Here is how this is of value to you:

1) If your neighbor is behaving poorly, I can ask them to leave.

2) If they leave gracefully, then I am probably going to be okay with them selling their improvements.

3) Your new neighbor will also need to meet my standards.

Deep roots is not ownership. Deep roots is not a lease. Deep roots is a long term rental.

If you win the deep roots package, then you can stay as long as we are both cool with it. For nearly everybody in the world, this will be a terrible idea. For a very few, this will be better than direct land ownership or other community offerings. I don't need billions of people to live here - just a few people that are bonkers about permaculture.

The mission here is to have 20 different people express their vision in seed and soil. The result being that permaculture is moved forward. I would like to think that ten years from now there will be a thousand people hoping that a spot opens up for deep roots - so they can be part of this mission. As opposed to the idea that a person can sell their spot to just anybody because it is their legal right - and the next person loves to spray roundup and smash beer bottles on the road.

If you want clear, legal ownership with legal protection for your creations, buy land.

If you want to be part of my project and are utterly certain that this will benefit you greatly, then by all means pony up $800 and have a go at the ant village challenge.
 
paul wheaton
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Nick made a suggestion today which I just now added in: the winner can choose between the deep roots plot or $10,000 in cash.

 
Jesse Grimes
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paul wheaton wrote:I think stepping out for 14 days in the middle of winter is okay - but I'm going to officially draw the line at 14 days.


Hi Paul. I've been listening to the last 6 podcasts and becoming more and more interested in the Ant Village and the challenge. Got some questions for you, forgive me if any of them were covered already, there was a whole lot covered in the podcasts and these threads:

What is your idea of leaving the site too much? I get not being able to leave for a long time in winter, as the challenge is to live through the winter, but what about at other times of the year? Would I be able to leave for, say, a week at a time during the spring/summer/fall to do things like visit family, visit my Girlfriend in Canada, attend a regenerative agriculture Design course, or attend the spiritual gathering I go to every June? I know this would put me at a disadvantage as far as getting work done before the winter, but would it disqualify me from the challenge?

How do you feel about using materials from off of the land, like recycled materials scrounged from Missoula? In particular I am thinking pallets, untreated of course, for building things like decks, shelves, interior walls, _____? Of course, it would all have to adhere to your requirements of being non-visible and non-toxic, and I'm certainly not looking to fill my acre up with junk. I have just learned from the homesteads I have worked on that towns can be an excellent source for free materials that would otherwise end up in a landfill.

Would it be ok to arrive with a cab-over camper on a truck and live out of that until the wofati is built? Would I be able to store the camper, camouflaged of course, or would I need to sell it once I move into the wofati?

If I didn't win the deep roots package in the challenge, but built a bunch of artifacts on my acre, could I sell the artifacts to someone who wants to buy the acre as a deep roots package? So, they would pay you the $20,000 for the deep roots package on that acre, and pay me separately for all the artifacts that exist there. In this hypothetical situation, I would continue to rent the acre until a buyer was found.

Of course, all of these questions are hypothetical, and not solid intentions of what I would do. I would just like to get more information to base my dreaming and scheming on. I suspect I would't know what I was going to do until I got on the acre.
 
Jocelyn Campbell
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Jesse, I'm/we're glad you're considering this! I'm going to answer just a couple of your very good questions as Paul is roped into some projects and visitors today. Hopefully, he'll answer more soon.

Jesse Grimes wrote:What is your idea of leaving the site too much? I get not being able to leave for a long time in winter, as the challenge is to live through the winter, but what about at other times of the year? Would I be able to leave for, say, a week at a time during the spring/summer/fall to do things like visit family, visit my Girlfriend in Canada, attend a Regenerative Agriculture Design course, or attend the spiritual gathering I go to every June? I know this would put me at a disadvantage as far as getting work done before the winter, but would it disqualify me from the challenge?

A big part of the leaving is the traffic it creates: wear-and-tear on the dirt roads, dust, let alone the overall fossil fuel use that we're trying to reduce, and the lifestyle that we're going for, which is why we discourage the idea of a daily commute kind of job. Ideally, we'd have most everything a person would need (get that girlfriend to move here! ) such as food, social stuff, classes, art/other enrichment, wilderness next door to explore, etc., and there wouldn't be a big need to be going other places.

I've heard Paul say that leaving once a month or so isn't a big deal (when it's not the winter). Right now, I'm going into Missoula weekly to see the chiropractor (and in the past have gone in weekly just for groceries!) though we combine trips whenever possible, and I hope to be reducing that travel very soon as well. Emily and Tony loved to go hiking, exploring, or to hot springs on the weekends, and often took other folks from here with them when they went. So while leaving weekly for errands or day trips has been okay, it just makes it much more aligned with what our goals are if it's, say, a car load of 3 - 5 people, or errands for projects for a handful of people, instead of just a one-sy, two-sy kind of thing.

I'm going to let Paul address your other questions.

Jesse Grimes wrote:Of course, all of these questions are hypothetical, and not solid intentions of what I would do. I would just like to get more information to base my dreaming and scheming on. I suspect I would't know what I was going to do until I got on the acre.

Dream and scheme, Jesse! And I hope others are dreaming and scheming, too!
 
paul wheaton
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Leaving too much: this area is riddled with homes that are empty all winter. People live in the warm climate through the winter and come here for the summer. But the ant village challenge is about something where people are comfortable here through the winter. As for the warm months - I'm fine with people being gone for a month or two during the summer. That sorta shows off how resilient their food system is.

Then there are people that talk about getting a day job in missoula and they would commute. That is not the spirit of what we are trying to do here. I like the idea that people build in such resilient systems that they might go to missoula once or twice a month to take in the culture that missoula offers. Not once or twice a week to get groceries or propane or to work or something.

How do you feel about using materials from off of the land, like recycled materials scrounged from Missoula? In particular I am thinking pallets, untreated of course, for building things like decks, shelves, interior walls, _____? Of course, it would all have to adhere to your requirements of being non-visible and non-toxic, and I'm certainly not looking to fill my acre up with junk. I have just learned from the homesteads I have worked on that towns can be an excellent source for free materials that would otherwise end up in a landfill.


We just picked out the spot on the lab for the bone yard: for unsightly stuff that we might re-use sometime in the next ten years.

Re-use is a great thing. Although I think using materials that occur naturally on the land have ten times higher value - there are some things that just don't occur naturally. And re-use is great! Currently, we are using used billboards for any tarp needs or for the waterproof layer in the wofati.

When September 10, 2016 rolls around I would put a lot of weight on aesthetics - so having all that extra stuff neatly tucked away in a berm shed would be good.

Would it be ok to arrive with a cab-over camper on a truck and live out of that until the wofati is built? Would I be able to store the camper, camouflaged of course, or would I need to sell it once I move into the wofati?


Yeah - I kinda expect something like that for this year. But come this winter, folks should be living in whatever they built.

Selling it is best. Second best would be parking it in some sort of berm shed.

If I didn't win the deep roots package in the challenge, but built a bunch of artifacts on my acre, could I sell the artifacts to someone who wants to buy the acre as a deep roots package? So, they would pay you the $20,000 for the deep roots package on that acre, and pay me separately for all the artifacts that exist there. In this hypothetical situation, I would continue to rent the acre until a buyer was found.


Yes.



 
Jesse Grimes
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Thank you Paul and Jocelyn for the quick response during this super week. I'm curious as to how that went.

I'm sure I'll have lots more questions, but for now I'll just keep dreaming. I am going to my gathering in Utah on June 13th, so I might "swing by" Montana on my way out there. It's only twice as far from California, haha. Either way, I would be coming back up for all or part of the PDC and starting on my acre then. I'm becoming more and more sure that this challenge is what I want to do with the next year, but I have to sit with it for bit. Just a week ago I was getting ready to move to Sebastopol for a 12 month immersion program, but that got canceled. It's kinda nice to have no obligations now. Even my own self chosen obligations were poisoning me a bit with stress.

I just want to say to anyone that is considering taking on the Ant village challenge, that I would be very willing to help out the other Ants with their projects. I have a lot of building experience and other practical knowledge to share. I certainly don't want to try to build an entire house by myself, and I think the contest aspect of this challenge is more about who's ideas are most effective, not who can work the hardest. I think that for anyone to make it through the winter, all of the Ants are going to have to help each other out, and the more Ants there are the easier everything will become. That's the whole concept of a village, everyone helping each other to survive and live better, and is one of the most appealing aspects of this challenge for me.

And if you are worried about putting in a ton of work and then not winning the contest and having to move on, while I certainly can't speak for Paul, I do know that at his point in the project he is very motivated to keep hard working passionate people around.
 
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