Moving dirt. Mixing concrete. Inspiring people. Not something you want to do with a spoon, a bucket and lots of screaming. Especially when your goal is to create entire civilizations from scratch. Typically, you would need a few dozers, a backhoe or three and a lot more money to throw at materials and manufacturing equipment. Not any more. Marcin Jakubowski, founder and director of Open Source Ecology, is taking on the challenge of developing low-cost, open-source, diy machinery with the Global Village Construction Set. They were just funded successfully on Kickstarter last month. Now it’s time to kick the machine-making into high gear.

the Global Village Construction Set

The Global Village Construction Set (GVCS) is an open technological platform that allows for the easy fabrication of the 50 different Industrial Machines that it takes to build a small civilization with modern comforts.

50 different machines… yeah, not just one. This is a set. You can see all 50 of the machines and the development progress on Global Village Construction Set site and get a quick run-down of the GVCS 50 here. Everything needed to go from wilderness to modern comforts in… in the time it takes to go from wilderness to modern comforts. They’re well along in the process though, making progress using the equipment they’re creating to build the Factor E Farm in rural Missouri.

Marcin gave a TED talk that breaks down the project, the reason for it and how he, along with the growing GVCS community, is set out to break down the barriers of building.

Join in the process

As Marcin mentions on his blog, the LifeTrac Challenge is live at GrabCAD. The lifeTrac is a multi-use tractor with modular parts. One of these parts is a quick-disconnect wheel assembly. The challenge is to re-design the wheel assembly to solve the issue of the failing motor coupler. You can find out more about the challenge and help develop part of the Global Village Construction Set at GrabCAD.


Josh is founder and editor at, founder at Aimsift Inc., and co-founder of EvD Media. He is involved in engineering, design, visualization, the technology making it happen, and the content developed around it. He is a SolidWorks Certified Professional and excels at falling awkwardly.