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Topics that have been spun off to other pages[edit]



Older discussions can be found at Archive1, (older) Archive2, Archive3, Archive4 & Archive5 (more recent discussions). If you wish to continue those discussions, please start a new section on this page - do not add new comments to the archive page.

Here are direct links to the conversations in the archives:

A plan for Appropedia to go places in 2013/14[edit]

Here's a stab at a strategic plan - what do you think? --Chriswaterguy 00:28, 19 September 2013 (PDT)

I think its a good start. I added some comments on the Talk page there. --PatSunter (talk) 19:08, 12 March 2014 (PDT)

Thanks and good luck[edit]

I'm outa here, folks. Good luck with everything. Joe

We've chatted by email, but again, many thanks for your great work, Joe. I wish you all the best with your next adventures. --Chriswaterguy 17:53, 14 October 2013 (PDT)

Pages that advertise green businesses[edit]

I removed the {{delete|advertising}} from Beyond Building Energy. We have been allowing sustainable businesses to have pages about themselves. I like having such pages, especially where they have information that might be valuable to a reader, but we need to work out clearer limits. E.g. is Beyond Building Energy the sort of page we want to have on Appropedia? --Chriswaterguy (talk) 21:35, 19 November 2013 (PST)

  • Maybe there is a need for a template for sustainability-oriented businesses or organisations? I.E. not a delete template, but something to the effect that it is a business, Appropedia does not endorse businesses or their products, but allows relevant ones a page, so the reader should do their own research etc. I also think its ok, as long as they don't try to start inserting lots of "advertorial" style content in more Encyclopaedic pages (an issue we had a while back on Public transport). --PatSunter (talk) 21:06, 14 March 2014 (PDT)
Thanks Pat, good approach, I think. --Chriswaterguy (talk) 04:58, 17 April 2014 (PDT)
Yes, good approach. Here's another wiki's page on the topic: [1]? Pashley (talk) 10:57, 17 April 2014 (PDT)


Hey I am sorry but I face the spam problem too. I've tried change the content of the page Cshr25, and I was sure I got logged in. No idea why it treated me as a spammer.
I couldn't even leave a message on the supporter's page. comment by Cshr25 , 21 January 2014.

(For the record, this was resolved. --Chriswaterguy (talk) 04:46, 17 April 2014 (PDT))

Exemplar city?[edit]

An article [2] on work in Huntsville, Alabama on tornado resistance, "micro-grid" energy sources, sustainable tech, ... Pashley (talk) 11:18, 15 April 2014 (PDT)

That's very cool! I wonder what it would take to find students interested in developing pages on this. This touches on a bunch of important topics. --Chriswaterguy (talk) 04:36, 17 April 2014 (PDT)

Solar at Canadian latitudes?[edit]

An Indian reservation with a solar project. This is a fairly isolated community; I do not think it is on the electric grid or that it is reachable by road. It is not in the far North, only Northern Ontario so laititude below 60. Pashley (talk) 19:59, 17 April 2014 (PDT)

New type of axe for splitting wood[edit]

Where does this fit in? Inventor & press make some rather strong claims for it. Pashley (talk) 16:03, 22 April 2014 (PDT)

Content types[edit]

I can tell there's been a lot of effort to organize Appropedia by topics/ subject matter. But I'm wondering if there's been much in the way of organizing by content type? Appropedia's content is much broader than traditional wikis. From what I can see there's: 1) articles, 2) manuals/ how-tos, 3) specific project/ experiment write-ups, and 4) raw data. Maybe we could have a convo about if this kind of organization would be helpful for users and if so how to do it. --Ethan (talk) 19:06, 22 April 2014 (PDT)

Agreed - a good start would be clarifying the exact classifications for pages we have. "Designs" seems like another type of content, but perhaps these will fit into projects or how-tos. --Chriswaterguy (talk) 02:00, 23 April 2014 (PDT)
Another kind of content is essays. These may be high in narrative or experience, e.g. Reversing Soil Degradation of Agricultural Lands. These are about the topic, but probably should stand alone, separate from a topic page. I'd like to have a naming convention, so they can be easily recognised. Should they start with "Essay:"? Should they be capitalised? --Chriswaterguy (talk) 05:28, 21 August 2014 (PDT)
As I was organizing the permaculture category, I realized that designs are an essential area to work on. Perhaps we could use custom namespaces. I see that there's already Original: , but that seems to have more to do with attribution than content type. Another option might just be to use categories, but I don't know if it would make site navigation feel messy to have content types and subject matter organized that way. --Ethan (talk) 10:18, 17 May 2015 (PDT)

Food crops & nitrogen-fixing bacteria[edit]

Three teenaged Irish girls got the top prize at a Google Science Fair with work that looks rather interesting:

Is anyone interested in a guide to Greenwashing?[edit]

I would like to make a page on the practice of companies presenting themselves as environmentally friendly when they are not in reality (a.k.a. "greenwashing") but I'm not sure if it's something the community is interested in: this isn't a guide for a specific project or proposal for a kind of technology. Is this fit for Appropedia? Koavf (talk) 10:43, 7 October 2014 (PDT)

I think it's a good fit for Appropedia.
(Searching…) Aha – we have a page called greenwash. What do you think of moving that to greenwashing and developing it further? --Chriswaterguy (talk) 16:07, 7 October 2014 (PDT)
Ha. I didn't even think to search greenwash. I'll see if I can add to that. Thanks. Koavf (talk) 10:12, 9 October 2014 (PDT)

Any overlap here?[edit]

Survivor Library, for tech that might work after collapse of civilisation. e.g. An early 20th century text on X-rays, the idea being that with that plus basic electrical & glass-blowing skills you might be able to build a medically useful machine from scratch.

This is not closely related to anything we do here, but it might include some books of interest. It seems worth a link, but where? Pashley (talk) 08:35, 28 October 2014 (PDT)

Cool! Probably we want a [[Category:Collapse]], or [[Category:Post collapse]]? We don't have a lot of content directly addressing this, but it's definitely on topic. (Personally, I think the chances of modern society really collapsing are very low. However, I do believe in being prepared, and that compiling the info has other benefits.)
So, where... an initial article could be called Recovering from collapse, say? Just a thought. Be bold :). --Chriswaterguy (talk) 20:16, 29 October 2014 (PDT)
Love it. I often think of appropriate technologies as epi-apocalyptic technologies that we build in the race against collapse. The bonus is that if we do not make it in time, the technology knowledge can be there for the rebuild/re-imagine. --Lonny (talk) 21:29, 29 October 2014 (PDT)
From the looks of it, the content of the site is mostly public domain manuals/ how-tos from the 19th-early 20th century. Certainly there's a lot of commonalities between what people were doing then and the current approaches of appropriate tech and the transition movement. But there's also plenty of "bad ideas" from back then (like just about any application of lead). That aside, how could these two sites interact? Appropedia seems to be pretty averse to PDFs, which is Survivor Library's bread and butter. For the present SL can be used to identify content areas we're lacking here (like beekeeping) and linking to those that are covered here. --Ethan (talk) 09:38, 17 May 2015 (PDT)

Media idea[edit]

Hi been a long time.. just checking in to say that I've been thinking in a similar way about this, thinking that there are few forms of media which are written as if collapse is a real possibility (and, having been to a few academic conferences about this in recent months, I think it is a lot more likely than many might think) - or even if it isn't, talking as if the changes we need to make to our lifestyles in the face of climate change are real, serious and urgent. Which, I think, probably amount to the same kind of thing. I was even vaguely contemplating starting a wikinews clone to start putting out news written on that basis. Oh yes, I forgot to say that since I've been away, I've kinda become a journalist.. as you do! Joeturner (talk) 09:20, 10 November 2014 (PST)

Hi Joe. Thumbs up for all those thoughts.
Could Appropedia be the platform, or at least an incubator, for your news site idea? (Side note: "Collapsonomics" springs to mind for the economics section of such a project.) --Chriswaterguy (talk) 14:48, 10 November 2014 (PST)
Hi Chris - well I'm really throwing it out for discussion rather than suggesting that I have a 'ready made' idea. There are significant problems with the model from wikinews which makes it very bland and has a very tortuous process to get to publication - I am not sure that is really necessary. Also there is no need to feel pressure to generate a lot of daily content. So I guess I'm thinking something which is a bit more than a blog, but a lot less work than a full news site - perhaps including interviews with people involved in relevant stuff (including but not exclusively appropredia projects), discussion of relevant issues etc. It could, perhaps, be intended to be a monthly mag (newsletter or whatever) but with articles coming out as and when during that time.
I think it could work as opensource - providing everyone understood some basic rules and there were some protections to prevent people getting misquoted etc. I suppose I see it a bit more like an open review system to improve content which is eventually 'published' (and no longer open for editing). Dunno, just a thought really. Joeturner (talk) 02:41, 11 November 2014 (PST)
"I'm thinking something which is a bit more than a blog, but a lot less work than a full news site - perhaps including interviews with people involved in relevant stuff (including but not exclusively appropredia projects), discussion of relevant issues etc." – I like it. To do it in a collaborative way means that an existing site (with lots of suitable users already registered) would be a good place, but maybe that's my bias. To do it in an open source way, MediaWiki has some advantages.
In any case it sounds like something that I'd like to support, partly because it's a good idea and partly because I know that you're smart and no-nonsense. --Chriswaterguy (talk) 16:16, 24 November 2014 (PST)
Sounds like a potentially great project, Joe. I've been watching the collapse discourse for awhile. What info sources there are leave a lot to be desired. The main thing I'd like to see is something with a lot more fact-based approach. There are some staid and insightful media like John Michael Greer's blog and the C-Realm podcast, but there's also a lot of tin foil types. --Ethan (talk) 09:54, 17 May 2015 (PDT)

Farm Hack[edit]

Farm Hack looks like prime partners for Appropedia - we should be encouraging cross pollination. -- Joshua (talk) 06:38, 6 February 2015 (PST)

Thanks Joshua. I'll drop them a line. --Chriswaterguy (talk) 05:04, 7 February 2015 (PST)

LH side bar link for sustainable community action[edit]

There are now quite a few (c. 300) pages in the Category:Sustainable community action. It'd be good if we could have some kind of link from the left hand menu (just to Sustainable community action, the sca main page), perhaps near the collaborators box? comment by Philralph, 17 February 2015‎.

Thanks Philralph – you're doing great work. I added it under "areas", as "Community action" so that it fits. ("Collaborators" was intended for external partners, so it didn't seem right.) How is that? --Chriswaterguy (talk) 15:16, 23 February 2015 (PST)
Excellent! Thanks Chris Philralph (talk) 01:27, 24 February 2015 (PST)

Translation students on Wikipedia[edit]

Sharing this link because it may be relevant to Appropedia and Ekopedia, as we work to connect the different language wikis: Translation students embrace Wikipedia assignments, but find user interface frustrating. --Chriswaterguy (talk) 04:44, 24 Februa ry 2015 (PST)

What's the progress on that project? I'd be glad to help port stuff once I'm finished with Unfortunately, I don't know French, but it looks like there's lots of great English-language content and images. --Ethan (talk) 09:17, 17 May 2015 (PDT)

Self-healing concrete?[edit]

Slashdot points to an article on bio-concrete; it contains bacteria which fix cracks. Pashley (talk) 10:09, 15 May 2015 (PDT)

Year of Soil & Light[edit]

This is a bit late as the year's almost half over, but it would be cool if we could do something for the International Year of Soil and Light (as declared by the UN). Perhaps some kind of work party or months-long effort to add relevant content. At the very least it could get a mention on the front page. --Ethan (talk) 10:03, 17 May 2015 (PDT)

Oops, I haven't been checking this page, sorry! That's a good idea. Perhaps there are existing pages that could be highlighted also? --Chriswaterguy (talk) 05:28, 12 June 2015 (PDT)


As J.M.Pearce mentioned, Instructables has some material that could be ported here. But there's a snag. If I understand right, Appropedia avoids BY-NC-SA material. That license appears to be the default on Instructables, so the majority of content is licensed that way. I want there to be a quick way to look up BY-SA content, but I'm stumped. CC's own search utility doesn't include Instructables. Trying to combine a reverse image search of the BY-SA image combined with the string "" didn't work. Any suggestions? I don't want to waste time going through stuff we can't take. (Incidentally, I was reminded of the website's existence by finding a book of "off-grid" projects compiled by the site's founder. Is he violating his own users' licenses!?) --Ethan (talk) 21:56, 20 May 2015 (PDT)

It turns out there is alttext on the license images. So you can enter the search string " attribution sharealike -noncommercial" to get (mostly) relevant results. I created the template {{Instructables}} to provide attribution for imported material. TCMTECH dripper irrigation for rainbarrel is an example of what an imported page can look like. It might also be nice to notify the content creator.

Side note: There's been some discussion discussion about CC license violation 1, 2 --Ethan (talk) 13:04, 21 May 2015 (PDT)

Hey, nice effort with the " attribution sharealike -noncommercial" search.
Yeah, it's unfortunate about the incompatible licenses. What we are always able to do, regardless of license or copyright, is post a summary or paraphrase together with a link. I think that's still very useful, as it becomes information that can be found by browsing Appropedia (e.g. going through the pages in a category), even if the full version must be viewed elsewhere. --Chriswaterguy (talk) 05:26, 12 June 2015 (PDT)

Articles about individuals - need guidelines[edit]

There were a couple of articles about individuals in mainspace, that were a bit promotional in nature. That's not fundamentally a bad thing, but it's not what Appropedia mainspace is for, I think. So, I've moved them to the userspace of the user that created the pages.

We want to be clear and consistent, so my suggested guideline is that articles about people need to be notable in some way. If they meet Wikipedia's notability criteria and they're relevant to Appropedia's themes, they can be in mainspace.

We can be more flexible than Wikipedia, though, e.g. by counting popular sustainability/development blogs as "reliable sources" that count towards notability.

What are your thoughts? --Chriswaterguy (talk) 05:43, 12 June 2015 (PDT)

I've been thinking about this a little bit, but not about the notability aspect. There's several individuals and their work that I'd like to profile. In many cases the individual is more or less synonymous with the organization they head or the technique they developed. Sepp Holzer is a perfect example which already exists on the wiki. I can't imagine anyone whose biographical details will be sufficient (for the purpose of this wiki) to justify their own article. --Ethan (talk)

Nominating Ethan for admin[edit]

Ethan has been flagging spam, and being an admin would let him work on this more effectively. He's been an enthusiastic and trustworthy contributor here, so I see no reason not to make him an admin. Support, oppose or have another comment? Please comment below. --Chriswaterguy (talk) 06:20, 12 June 2015 (PDT)

I'd be glad to help out. :) --Ethan (talk) 19:35, 12 June 2015 (PDT)
Support, Philralph (talk) 01:55, 24 June 2015 (PDT)
Great. Thank you Ethan, welcome to adminship. You should see new tools on pages (such as the ability to delete directly). You should also see new tools at Special:SpecialPages, such as mass delete (use with care). Please feel free to ask whenever you have a question. Thank you for all you do. --Lonny (talk) 17:58, 19 July 2015 (PDT)
Thanks everyone. I tried out the delete function on the lastest spam articles. What's the standard procedure for the spambot-created users? I'll take a closer look at Special:SpecialPages; there's a lot there. Any recommended regular mainenance tasks? --Ethan (talk) 13:15, 31 July 2015 (PDT)

Lightweight structural panels 3D print[edit]

Think of a cross between milk crates and giant legos. Now build a house with it. If you're actively intrigued about how to address this challenge with a 3D printer, please see because I really don't know much about how to go about it. I only have an idea with potential.

top menu link for Community action[edit]

Can we have a link in the menu that goes across the top of pages for Community action (as in the areas of the side bar)? I've moved 'Sustainable community action' to Community action for sustainability, which fits better with the link, and is perhaps a slightly less opaque name (plus am making corresponding changes to category names, etc), Cheers, Philralph (talk) 08:21, 13 August 2015 (PDT)

Also would be good to have links to Community action for sustainability or Community action on Welcome to Appropedia/Categories & Appropedia:CategoryTree Philralph (talk) 07:45, 16 August 2015 (PDT)

I bet most-all of Category:Taking action could be merged into CAS, and then CAS could replace it on the Category Tree. --Ethan (talk) 11:40, 17 August 2015 (PDT)

commercial article?[edit]

I'd like for someone to take a look at The Economics of UK's Residential Solar Power and tell me what you think about it. It's been written by, and links to, a website that compares different solarvoltaic installation services in the UK. I'm not sure whether this crosses a line in terms of advertising content. It does appear to offer some useful, if unsourced, information. I'm sure at least part of the motivation for creating the article was for SEO reasons, but I don't think that's sufficient reason to remove it if they're also adding substantive content to Appropedia. Thoughts? --Ethan (talk) 11:52, 17 August 2015 (PDT)

Question on Naming Conventions[edit]

Was fleshing out an index on my new project page and wanted to ask about the naming conventions for internal page links. First, is it OK to use separate pages for sub-sections of a project or is it preferable to only use sub-sections on the one project page? Is there a convention for naming internal pages and links so they relate just to a parent project?

Thank you. comment by EricHunting, 23 August 2015.

My opinion is 1) Go for it. If it turns out there's not much substance on a particular page, it can easily be merged into the parent page. 2) Check out Help:Page naming. I would title the pages something like Open House Fabrication, Open House Budget and so on. --Ethan (talk) 12:16, 23 August 2015 (PDT)
Agree with Ethan. Unless they're short sections, it's often better to have separate pages, that link to each other.
Having the patent project as part of the pagename is a good idea, so visitors can quickly see what it's about. --Chriswaterguy (talk) 06:54, 24 August 2015 (PDT)
Thanks for the suggestions. I'll give that a try. --EricHunting (talk) 06:58, 25 August 2015 (PDT)

Ekopedia status[edit]

It appears that Ekopedia is down. Are the site owners/ admins aware of the outage? --Ethan (talk) 11:47, 27 August 2015 (PDT)

Yes. There are people working hard on it. The technical details are quite difficult and they could use some additional help. Please contact User:Chriswaterguy if you know some great multilanguage wiki people that could help. In the mean time, I am making a temporary landing page at Ekopedia. Please feel free to edit with more direction. Thank you, --Lonny (talk)

A Two-Stage, Oscillating Swingset Pump[edit]

By swinging in this 'swing/penduluum' the other end of the lever oscillates up and down.

This then operates a vertical rod which, with a simple piston air compressor (or water pump), stores compressed air in an insulated air scuba tank, or pumps water in an efficient and relaxing way.

The heat from compression stays put, and gives more umPH to run two air pistons, which are located on-board the teeter-totter 'chariot'! (Now stationary for water pumping.)

Then, off it goes with a thousand lb. load of goods to a destination. Truly a dual-purpose vehicle!

These two air pistons then power the wheels, to assist the runner/driver with getting easily around a festival area at 10mph cruising speed...with a thousand pounds of people!

So, the penduluum , that is in the 'Two-Stage Oscillating Lever' invention, now becomes a...children's swing air compressor/water pump!

Am I allowed to start pages in languages other than English - Español - Deutsch - Français - Italiano - Português - Kiswahili ?[edit]

I want to develop articles in my native tongue, to reach out the locals. This would also give a platform for my language writings to focus on green technology, green ways etc. So am I allowed to simply write articles in my language? IKHazarika (talk) 00:44, 16 September 2015 (PDT)

Hi, IKHazarika. Yes, we welcome content in other languages. Please refer to Appropedia:Languages. --Ethan (talk) 02:08, 18 September 2015 (PDT)

Duplicate originals[edit]

I've been going over the website with a fine-tooth comb looking for things that need to be cleaned up. Most issues I've found have trivial fixes, but here's one that's a little more complicated. Several original content pages dating back to 2006 have duplicate pages. In each case they have their own separate edit histories. See: . Duplicates for each can be found as both XYZ_(original) and Original:XYZ. I'd be glad to merge these articles, if I can get some guidance on the best way to do that. --Ethan (talk) 22:05, 26 September 2015 (PDT)

Proposal for mass deletion[edit]

There was a certain user who copied a lot of templates and other content over from Wikipedia about 2 1/2 years ago. Most to all of it seems to be unnecessary to Appropedia, at least at this stage in its development. For example, there are several templates related to news. While Philralph has been adding news to the relevant location pages on CAS pages, there's not multiple news stories coming up every day to make those templates usable. Also there's not a large enough userbase here to update them. Other templates are just outside of the purview of this wiki. Further, they're really cluttering up the category tree. Therefore, I'd like to go through and just get rid of the majority of it. There's probably a few things that might possibly be used in the future which could be shelved in the incubator, and I'm willing to go digging through it all. --Ethan (talk) 05:25, 30 September 2015 (PDT)

I went ahead with this. There was at least one template that was deleted in error, so if anyone notices something that looks broken please inform me or another admin. I changed my mind about a news template (see below). --Ethan (talk) 02:32, 2 December 2015 (PST)

Porting from PermaWiki[edit]

I received Graham Burnett's blessing to port PermaWiki's content here. He was actually surprised it hadn't been done already. Because of long-term interest in PermaWiki here, and both sites using CC-BY-SA I anticipate no roadblocks. I set up the infrastructure already; ported pages can be appended with {{attrib permawiki}}, which will automatically place them in the PermaWiki category. The full list of mainspace pages can be found here. I'll get started on this in earnest once I finish porting the content (shouldn't be long, once I resolve access issues). --Ethan (talk) 09:44, 5 October 2015 (PDT)

Excellent, thank you! --Chriswaterguy (talk) 18:12, 27 November 2015 (PST)


I'd like to propose a new feature: compatibility with OpenStreetMap. First, it's collaborative and open-licensed (CC-BY-SA), consistent with Appropedia. Second, (in my opinion) the map quality is often better than proprietary map services. More info here: --Ethan (talk) 20:19, 25 October 2015 (PDT)

Hi Ethan,
We are working on a site upgrade as we speak. Once we are up to date, I would love to explore this extension. I love OpenStreetMap. Thanks, --Lonny (talk) 20:01, 2 December 2015 (PST)
Wikivoyage has two types of map, both derived from OSM. A "dynamic map" has OSM data overlaid with any WV listings (hotels, etc.) that include lat/long co-ords; almost every destination has one of these & there's a template to make inserting one easy. Some also have a "static map", user-created. Pashley (talk) 15:46, 17 February 2017 (PST)

Felicity Tepper for admin[edit]

I nominate Felicity Tepper (talk · contribs) for an admin role. Felicity has been making many valuable contributions and also tagging spam pages for deletion.

Felicity, do you accept? --Chriswaterguy (talk)

I've been reading through the admin materials and links, to be sure of the responsibilities involved. If everyone else is happy for me to facilitate in this way, then I'd be happy to accept. Felicity (talk) 13:20, 28 November 2015 (PST)

Any words of support, any questions or concerns? --Chriswaterguy (talk) 18:09, 27 November 2015 (PST)

I support! --Lonny (talk) 18:24, 27 November 2015 (PST)
Me too! Philralph (talk) 02:42, 28 November 2015 (PST)
Support. Felicity has been adding a lot of great content and tagging spam. --Ethan (talk) 17:31, 28 November 2015 (PST)
Woohoo. Thank you Felicity, you are now an admin! --Lonny (talk) 19:41, 1 December 2015 (PST)

Thanks everyone, looking forward to helping out and continuing to learn. Cheers. Felicity (talk) 23:03, 1 December 2015 (PST)

Main page redesign proposal[edit]

I'd like to suggest some design changes for the front page. My draft redesign is here. There's two main things I'd like to see:

1) Reduce size of header and announcements. Right now when I load the main page these two items take up all of the space that isn't dedicated to the top & side bars. I'm not very experienced in graphic design, but to my mind that's a waste of some valuable real estate.

2) Add a news section. Phil has been adding news items to Community action for sustainability on a daily basis. I think bringing them to the front page, and putting them next to the more static content on the front page offers a nice balance. It would do a better job of highlighting the breadth and depth of material covered on Appropedia.

I think both of these would spur more interest and participation from visitors to the site. Note that my draft has some issues: the left and right columns can become unaligned depending on what which random selections load. The Highlighted Projects section would also need to be edited to fit the left column. --Ethan (talk) 21:34, 29 November 2015 (PST)

I'd love to see a redesign. I'll have a closer look at your draft later (getting to work now) but:
  • The part of the header that lists all the topic areas ("Appropriate technology • Construction • " etc) was an experiment, I think, and it isn't necessary as we have sidebar navigation and a search bar. We can remove it and see how that goes. In fact... GreenCheck.pngDoneDone ! (If that turns out to be unpopular, any admin can revert, here: MediaWiki:Sitenotice.)
  • News section would be excellent - the continual activity that's been happening on Appropedia means that we can keep that fresh.
Thanks! --Chriswaterguy (talk) 14:42, 30 November 2015 (PST)
This is looking good. Is there any way to bring the highlighted project higher. I feel like projects are the core of Appropedia and it would be cool to have it above the fold. Either way, I think it looks better as you have it and would be happy have you implement it. Eventually we will have staff for some awesome UX. In the mean time, I am glad that we can all make it better. While you are at it, can you:
Thanks! --Lonny (talk) 18:24, 30 November 2015 (PST)

I don't see a big conceptual difference between "Community action news" and "Hot topics / In the news." Perhaps the items can be combined into one section or one section with two parts. I put together a sample layout --> here <-- to show how "Community action news" could be incorporated into the Main Page, while still keeping the "Highlighted project" near the top. --RichardF (talk) 06:43, 2 December 2015 (PST)

Hot Topics/In The News is more focused on the work of Appropedians, while Community Action News focuses on the work people are doing in communities around the world. Hot Topics/In The News is closer in content to the Appropedia blog. --Ethan (talk) 01:02, 4 December 2015 (PST)
That sounds like a reason to keep them distinct but not necessarily separate in general locations on the page. If you all need any more help with page layouts, let me know. --RichardF (talk) 06:41, 4 December 2015 (PST)

Hi all, it'd be good to take up Ethan's suggestion of getting some Community Action News into the main page. RichardF's general locations on the page looks good to me, but there seemed too much text on one band (row). A way round this might be to incorporate Selected Quote into one of the columns (for me adds to readability) example here. What do you all think? Philralph (talk) 10:52, 7 January 2016 (PST)

Nominating Philralph for admin[edit]

I nominate Philralph (talk · contribs) for an admin role. Philralph has been very active, especially in building the many, many pages on sustainable community action..

Philralph, do you accept? --Chriswaterguy (talk)

Yes, thank you --Philralph (talk) 07:16, 2 December 2015 (PST)
I second that nomination! --Lonny (talk) 19:46, 1 December 2015 (PST)
Absolutely! I thought he was already! Felicity (talk) 23:04, 1 December 2015 (PST)
I, too, was surprised when I realized he wasn't. I support, of course. --Ethan (talk) 02:16, 2 December 2015 (PST)
Hi Phil,
Congratulations and thank you! You are now an admin. Please see the fledgling Appropedia:Guidelines for administrators for more info. There should be more tools available to all the admins at Special:SpecialPages as well. --Lonny (talk) 19:56, 2 December 2015 (PST)
Thanks all --Philralph (talk) 23:53, 2 December 2015 (PST)

Feedback on support page please. (New recurring donation option.)[edit]

Please check our donate page, clicking from the left sidebar: Support -> Donate. (I'm not linking it here - too easy for someone to insert scam or phishing links in a wiki page.)

I've added a recurring donation option. The page now needs a couple of things, and I'd love suggestions:

  • A small number of engaging images from the wiki, illustrating a range of what we do - e.g. energy, water, building.
  • More engaging text, for a diversity of potential donors.

Thanks! --Chriswaterguy (talk) 14:56, 6 December 2015 (PST)

Hi Chris, some pics from CASwiki, which could be balanced by pics of other stuff e.g. energy, water, building, etc:
Philralph (talk) 09:31, 11 December 2015 (PST)
Thanks Phil.
Since I posted, I had the thought that I should use images that are public domain or that we have copyright for, so we can just have the images, without attribution links. Donation pages shouldn't have unneeded links, which are opportunities for the reader to get distracted before donating :-). Anyway, I'll look for public domain images - but we could use these images elsewhere. --Chriswaterguy (talk) 16:53, 12 December 2015 (PST)

CC-BY-SA logo links to GNU FDL license[edit]

Just thought I'd point out that the CC-BY-SA logo at the bottom right corner of each page links to the GNU FDL license instead of the CC license. --Hairless Wookie (talk) 01:00, 7 January 2016 (PST)

Woops – thanks!
Note for a tech admin: The guide to editing the footer is at mw:Manual:Footer. I guess we're still on CC Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported, but just FYI there is now CC Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (but I haven't read up on the significance of the update). --Chriswaterguy (talk) 03:45, 7 January 2016 (PST)

Tool for converting formatted text to wiki markup[edit]

For those that aren't aware, we have a tool here which is useful if you have a document or web page that you are converting to a wiki page. (Of course, be sure that you have permission, and give attribution as appropriate).

The tool: Wikedbox. --Chriswaterguy (talk) 04:32, 8 January 2016 (PST)

A few things noticed since the update[edit]

I wanted to mention a few things this non-techie editor has noticed since the site was updated:

  • I often see what I think are the announcements at the bottom of the front page, misaligned and where they shouldn’t be. I can upload a screenshot if nobody else is seeing this.
  • The blog section on the front page appears to be blank.
  • I can’t access Special Pages at all. When I go to and click on any of these pages, the response I get is this: The following data is cached and may not be up to date. A maximum of 1,000 results are available in the cache. There are no results for this report.
  • As I add categories to uncategorised articles, the total article count seems to be going backwards. I am not sure why this is happening.

I thought I’d best pass these things on. Thanks for considering them. Felicity (talk) 02:02, 12 January 2016 (PST)

Whoa – thank you for noticing those changes, and letting us know. I'm not in charge of tech things, but we do have a developer doing a few things. Let's see what Lonny says. --Chriswaterguy (talk) 05:58, 12 January 2016 (PST)
Thanks Chris, happy that it's on the radar. Felicity (talk) 00:40, 13 January 2016 (PST)
Felicity's points 1&2 are the same bug. The blog section list doesn't conform to proper formatting. I'm guessing it's a conflict of the new CSS with JS. The weird thing is sometimes if you reload it *does* format correctly. --Ethan (talk) 21:27, 21 February 2016 (PST)
This falls under "feature, not a bug": since the update any page you edit will have the watch box checked (ticked) by default. Can we turn that off? --Ethan (talk) 19:43, 25 February 2016 (PST)

Appropedia in Google's definitions boxes! Conventional farming needs work[edit]

If you search for how to measure stream flow or conventional farming on Google, the definition box now comes from Appropedia. Confirmed in multiple countries. Great stuff... except that our conventional farming isn't as good as it could be.

(Thanks to Lonny for discovering this!) --Chriswaterguy (talk) 14:47, 31 January 2016 (PST)

Nice to learn this, thanks for the update. It's great to learn about increasing traction and responsiveness, keep up the great work everyone. :) Felicity (talk) 02:37, 2 February 2016 (PST)

permaculture content ready for "prime time"?[edit]

I was going to wait until I finished porting content from PermaWiki to do this, but there was a recent heated conversation about open-source permaculture. I was a little disappointed that our broadest permaculture pages didn't get mentioned, though some other sections of Appropedia were referenced. So I went ahead and added permaculture to the main page header, the sidebar and the main page selected portals (which may need to wait for a cronjob or cache refresh to appear?). I hope to raise the profile of Appropedia as permaculture wiki, because it is the only active one out there (also the Appropedia Foundation is a more trustworthy steward of this information than Wikia). If anyone objects, we can reverse these changes. --Ethan (talk) 21:38, 27 February 2016 (PST)

Thanks Ethan, looks good.
We have a number of great content areas, so I'm wondering how best dto display it all... might be something to ask a MediaWiki-friendly web designer. --Chriswaterguy (talk) 06:16, 12 March 2016 (PST)

Support needed to keep Appropedia alive and kicking goals[edit]

I've worked out how to let people make a recurring monthly donation to the Appropedia Foundation, to keep Appropedia growing and doing awesome things. If you're in a position to support us, please click "Donate" in the sidebar. Thanks! --Chriswaterguy (talk) 18:29, 16 March 2016 (PDT)

Are Appropedia Foundation accounts available somewhere? Would it be possible to have a direct link to them from the "Donate" page? Philralph (talk) 02:20, 18 March 2016 (PDT)
No, but I'd support making them available. Maybe we need to look at equivalent organisations (e.g. the Wikimedia Foundation) to help us with out whether there are particular things we need to keep confidential. I'm neither a lawyer nor an accountant.
I'll pass this suggestion on to the board. Thanks. --Chriswaterguy (talk) 04:34, 18 March 2016 (PDT)
Donation error PayPal has told me twice:

Sorry — your last action could not be completed Error Message

Your request failed due to technical difficulties.Please try again after some time.

Just so you know. Koavf (talk) 16:20, 3 July 2016 (PDT)

Following on from my earlier comments: could Appropedia make use of open collective? - "A group of people with a shared mission that operates in full transparency"? Might this sort of thing be useful even if used to meet some, not necessarily all, of Appropedia's objectives, at first? Philralph (talk) 10:49, 19 April 2017 (PDT)

for more see eg: Open Collectives: transforming our cities from the bottom-up, Apr 11: @OuiShare and BrusselsTogether, "lets you create a virtual association so that you can get started in no time and focus on what you want to do to improve Brussels" - though there may be better examples in the context of Appropedia, Philralph (talk) 11:10, 19 April 2017 (PDT)

New related wiki[edit]

Waterpedia See I figured this community and that one can work together. Koavf (talk) 16:15, 3 July 2016 (PDT)

Ekopedia down[edit]

See here I get a 404 message:

Page not found (404) Request Method: GET Request URL:

Using the URLconf defined in odc.urls, Django tried these URL patterns, in this order:

   ^odc/(?P<url>.*)/$ [name='odc']
   ^_odc/(?P<url>.*)/$ [name='odc']
   ^__odc/(?P<url>.*)/$ [name='odc']
   ^bloquery_post/ [name='bloquery_post']
   ^vol/(?P<ht>.+)/$ [name='vol']
   ^vol2/$ [name='vol2']
   ^show/(?P<mo>.+)/$ [name='show']
   ^show_all/(?P<mo>.+)/$ [name='show_all']
   ^templ/(?P<mo>.+)/$ [name='templ']
   ^mod/(w{0,50}) [name='mod']
   ^web_editor/attachment/add/$ [name='docs']
   ^web/dataset/call_kwx$ [name='docs']
   ^docs_list/$ [name='docs_list']
   ^docs_upload/$ [name='doc_add_form']
   ^doc_erase/(?P<name>.*)/$ [name='doc_erase']
   ^static/website/translations/$ [name='noslash']
   ^(?P<url>.*)/$ [name='url']

The current URL, , didn't match any of these.

You're seeing this error because you have DEBUG = True in your Django settings file. Change that to False, and Django will display a standard 404 page. Does anyone know what's up? The same thing happens at en.ekopedia. Koavf (talk) 20:42, 10 July 2016 (PDT)

The Ekopedia and Appropedia teams are working together on the problem, but could use more help from people experienced in database and wiki management. --Ethan (talk) 23:06, 21 July 2016 (PDT)

Spam and Captchas[edit]

Hello Intrepid Appropedians!

Thank you for your patience with our Captchas recently. We know that they had become too arduous and buggy. We have upgraded our captcha based spam abatement significantly. We hope your experience is also significantly enhanced! Please let us know if you have any problems editing, joining, posting, etc.

Thanks again, --Lonny (talk) 15:05, 21 September 2016 (PDT)

Great job! Very minimal spam is making it through now. --Ethan (talk) 22:48, 25 February 2017 (PST)

Saying Hi[edit]

Hi just introducing myself. I have some years experience on Wikipedia, here I'm interested in studying and working on many topics related to off grid + self sufficient homesteading. If anyone wants to collaborate on such topics let me know. Peace. Moribund (talk) 10:14, 17 February 2017 (PST)

Hi Moribund,
Great to meet you. Thanks for your contributions!
--Lonny (talk) 11:24, 17 February 2017 (PST)
Welcome Moribund. Please do share your knowledge and let us know if you've any questions. Your interests are perfect for here. Felicity (talk) 15:13, 17 February 2017 (PST)
Welcome! Good contributions so far. Nice to have someone who's experienced with natural construction. --Ethan (talk) 00:24, 20 February 2017 (PST)
Hi all and thanks for welcome. Unfortunately no practical experience of natural construction, but this should change soon =)
Let me know if anyone wants to collaborate on any topics. Moribund (talk) 14:53, 22 February 2017 (PST)


One area on this wiki that could really use some development is appropriateness. I don't fault Appropedia for not elaborating it clearly, since this is a wider issue in the permaculture, alternative building and possibly also the appropriate tech communities. I'm sure we can all think of instances of people becoming enamored with a certain technique or technology without giving due consideration to how well it would fit into the specific contexts. What I propose we do:

  1. Further develop the general notion of appropriateness across all sustainability disciplines. The context article is a good start.
  2. Note the in/appropriateness of specific techs in various contexts, including possible modifications. Perhaps we should add a recurring section for context considerations to specific tech articles.

--Ethan (talk) 20:01, 25 February 2017 (PST) I should add that this information/ approach permeates Appropedia. What I'd like to do it bring it to the fore. --Ethan (talk) 20:10, 25 February 2017 (PST)

Thank you Ethan. I appreciate your points and vision. I think that it is a common problem, at least for me, to forget to bring to the forefront the water in which we swim. I am excited to see your efforts in this direction!
PS Some day, I would like to build some Human Centered Design content and make the connection between empathy and appropriateness.
Thanks again, --Lonny (talk) 22:05, 25 February 2017 (PST)

Fab labs[edit]

An intriguing new model of production. Anyone encountered one of these yet? —The preceding comment was added by Ethan (talkcontribs) 04:57, 1 June 2017‎

Hi Ethan, I love fab labs and have contacts with a few engaged fab lab'ers over the past decade. Definitely cool. --Lonny (talk) 12:01, 16 June 2017 (PDT)

RAIN archive[edit]

A digital archive of back issues of RAIN magazine is now available here: --Ethan (talk) 22:52, 13 June 2017 (PDT)

So cool! --Lonny (talk) 12:02, 16 June 2017 (PDT)

Quote and Cite templates[edit]

I think it would be useful to have these same templates:

How to transfer:

In testing it took a minute or two for wikipedia to prepare the Template:Quote. It's 22.8 mb with all the history.

Facilitator (talk) 14:45, 18 September 2017 (PDT)

Hi Facilitator, My apologies on the slow reply. Is this something you are still looking into? --Lonny (talk) 11:45, 1 November 2017 (PDT)

Database Dumps are Empty[edit]

Appropedia:Current_dump hosts currentdump.xml.gz. This file is supposed to be a complete dump of the text of Appropedia, which is useful for offline browsing. For weeks (and maybe longer), the file has been just 20 bytes - an empty archive file with no content. Can somebody look into fixing this?

We would love help on this. --Lonny (talk) 12:33, 13 March 2018 (PDT)

Vandalism: image uploaded revert fails, etc.[edit]

A new version of [[File:Thames sunset.jpg]] was uploaded yesterday. Revert failed. Deleting and re-uploading also failed to revert. This file currently used on 14 pages including (often on) Welcome to Appropedia/CAnews. Have blocked User:Xerou012. Advice appreciated on how best to get back to the intended image? Philralph (talk) 03:11, 1 November 2017 (PDT)

Thank you. Sorry for the issues. The issue is that it can take more than a few minutes for a newly updated image to propagate through the system. It should be good on all of the pages now... it is for me. If it is not for you, please try doing a hard refresh of your browser. Thanks again, --Lonny (talk) 11:41, 1 November 2017 (PDT)
Thanks, Lonny, Philralph (talk) 11:46, 1 November 2017 (PDT)
Thank you Philralph! --Lonny (talk) 22:25, 1 November 2017 (PDT)

offer of "help to ignite" / invite to collaboration to A People's Food Policy (UK)[edit]

Have emailed an offer of "help to ignite" / invite to collaboration to A People's Food Policy (UK) - copy of email on Philralph (talk) 09:23, 10 January 2018 (PST)

Excellent. Thanks. --Lonny (talk) 13:40, 10 January 2018 (PST)

Why are you non-profit?[edit]

Why are you non-profit, when you can be for-profit, and use said profit to solve the problems of the world? Like, document things by making youtube videos, to also get people to watch you helping people, maybe sell merchandise like any good youtube channel does, maybe even sell toy-versions of technologies useful for appropriation, maybe even some tiny e-book of only a few dozen pages, half or more being with only images (i.e. left page text and right page image to go with the text), maybe print some books to give to developing settlements, and make sure to include links or search terms for people who have internet access, and then you can go ahead and accept volunteers to help you out, eventually for the chance of being on youtube, being seen working. The whole point would be to be quite transparent in regards with what you're helping people with, and advertise your merchandise online with lines like "every 100 plushies helps us build one treadle pump well for a settlement, and you can watch us on youtube so you can see for yourself and show others that things can change for the better, if you invest in the right groups of people.

So let's do a recap:

  • Youtube videos of you doing actual work to help people, posted on your very own Youtube channel
  • merchandise related to you doing some of that work, eventually also some e-books (PDFs) and possibly even physical books (i.e. through Amazon), and even selling the very tools and tech you're helping people with, with a plain cheap version for those in need, and a fancy version for those who can afford and want to support the cause.
  • allow volunteers to help you out, in exchange for appearing in a video on Youtube, while they work.
  • be for-profit instead of non-profit, so you can use the profit to help change the world for the better, one problem at a time.
  • possibly also build a bikecar/velocar, which is a pedal powered 3-wheeler 4-wheeler (2 wheels in the front), and the frame can just be some painted textile (shell) resting on an skeleton (out of wood or metal, or even plastic). Preferably make it so it can change gears up to easily going 50 km/h (30 mph), or even faster (to be road-safe).

Here's a logo I've made for fun. If you want to use it, I can give you the source files.

Good luck!

- Sapioit

Non-profits can make a profit; it's just that this one doesn't. Koavf (talk) 20:45, 20 September 2018 (PDT)
I understand. My point is, by being for-profit, it can become competitive enough to actually change the world fast enough to make a difference in more than just a very few remote places.
- Sapioit
Thank you both. It is true that non-profits can sell products, advertising, etc. It is also true that for the most part, Appropedia does not do those things. We also agree that it is time to change that. The book To Catch the Rain is one of our first strong attempts at having a revenue stream to accelerate the impact of Appropedia. Indeed we need a lot of IT help (e.g. with spam abatement, updates, modernization, etc.) and server support (it costs hundreds of dollars a month to run servers that can keep up with our amount of traffic). Therefore, we need to bring in money just for those things... and then to thrive! Thanks again, --Lonny (talk) 16:10, 23 September 2018 (PDT)