• ## Kickstarter for Gospel Math and Worknets archive

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• Thank you to everybody who participated at Minciu Sodas and Worknets from 1998 to 2010. More than 1,000 people wrote us letters and hundreds more participated
Message 1 of 3 , Nov 18, 2010
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Thank you to everybody who participated at Minciu Sodas and Worknets
from 1998 to 2010. More than 1,000 people wrote us letters and hundreds
more participated at our wiki and our chatroom. We also got to meet
each other every now and then.

This year, I gave up trying to make that work as a business. In May, I
moved to Chicago to work as a tutor. Now, I wish to share what I'd like
to do next. I have two projects in mind (a book "Gospel Math" and a
Worknets archive) that I would like to do through the funding platform
http://www.kickstarter.com I share my thoughts at John Rogers's
working group Cyfranogi, Pamela McLean's Learning From Each Other, and
my own Living By Truth.

I'm only working 18 hours a week right now. I have time to look for
more income, something that would be more relevant to my life and that
ultimately I could do from Lithuania.

I would like to support self-learning. I have a Ph.D. in Math. I was
always taught math as a hodge podge of techniques. Instead, I want to
think of it as a language of a few dozen deep ideas. As a teacher at
UCSD and AUBiH, and as a tutor at Ivy League Tutoring, I have fleshed
out parts of that language. An idea like "A right triangle is half a
rectangle" is the basis for trigonometry. "Four times a right triangle
is the difference of two squares" leads directly to the Pythagorean
theorem. "Addition means combine like units but list different units"
explains why you can add 3 feet + 2 feet = 5 feet, 3/7 + 2/7 = 5/7, 3x +
2x = 5x, but must simply list 3 feet + 2 inches or 3/7 + 2/9 or 3x + 2y.

I've looked around to see who is already doing what. I was amazed to
learn about Tom Henderson's "Punk Math" book project at Kickstarter:
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1541803748/punk-mathematics
He's a math graduate student / improv comedian. With a wonderful energy
he's co-hosting a podcast "Math for Primates"
http://www.mathforprimates.com which makes math interesting by focusing
on what humans are interested in, namely, other humans. He's unifying
all kinds of advanced subject matter around his own interest in game
theory. He's presenting this as "punk math" by making visceral the
sensitivity that math and punk rock share. Punkers rage about society's
problems; math solves them. Anybody can play punk music; anybody can do
math. Tom went to http://www.kickstarter.com to try to raise \$2,400 so
that he could write a "Punk Math" book. He actually raised \$28,701 from
1,022 backers. That's fantastic!

I was struck by Tom's success. I have a different set of strengths. I
believe that his equation "math = punk" made his own strengths
visceral. That's what people need to hear. How can I do likewise?

Very simply, I realized that I cherish gospel music. I sing in the choir
at St. Benedict the African. What would it mean to say that
"math=gospel"? I feel in them both:
* a joyful deliverance (self-learning, worship) from an abusive
environment (factory-like schoolwork, slavery)
* traditions rooted in the Public Domain
* encouragement of participation
* deep ideas simply expressed
* a love of principles
* purity of heart and mind
* openness to God, the absolute and infinite
* a culture of living, growing, learning forever
"Math=Gospel" lets me express such a sensitivity. It's my own outlook
and it opens up a space for my life's many threads including my
philosophy, my work with God, the kingdom of heaven, my art, my friends,
my life in Chicago's Black American community and the youth choir in my
village in Lithuania's countryside. I spoke to my housemates and they
thought that "Gospel Math" was quite intriguing. I asked God and God
was most supportive.

I purchased http://www.gospelmath.com Over the next month or so I want
to put together an outstanding "Gospel Math" project and then seek
funding through http://www.kickstarter.com I want to create learning
materials in the Public Domain, which could include a short book,
videos, worksheets, art, tutoring onsite and online and much more. I
would like to fit this within an open economy that includes people
already working on open source math books and others who'd like to
join. I ask for our thoughts and help.

I want to try out http://www.kickstarter.com with a smaller project
first. I imagine that Gospel Math will open up a new chapter in my
life. I would like to make available an archive of Minciu Sodas /
Worknets which came before. I would truly appreciate support from all
of us because the archive of our 35,000+ letters, our 4,000+ wiki pages
and our years of chat is a testimony to our many achievements. The
our many current projects. I would add search tools and organize
everything nicely. It would also be a good time to do interviews and
summaries regarding our efforts in the Pyramid of Peace and other
projects. It's a good time to reflect on our culture and share what
each of us have learned. The archive will point to our future projects
and we can point back to the archive whenever we reflect about our work.

Would you contribute \$10 or \$100 or so for such a Worknets archive? I
want to raise at least \$1,000 for my work to organize the many pages and
\$1,000 to assure that they stay up on the Internet at worknets.org for
at least the next 10 years. I believe that if we think of good rewards
that people want, then we could raise more, perhaps enough for a team.

Andrius

Andrius Kulikauskas
Gospel Math
http://www.gospelmath.com
+1 (773) 306-3807
• Hi Andrius, I think its a good and worthwhile thing to support a documentation of the Minciu Sodas Story, which was at the same time a great inspiring idea and
Message 2 of 3 , Nov 21, 2010
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Hi Andrius,

I think its a good and worthwhile thing to support a documentation of the Minciu Sodas Story, which was at the same time a great inspiring idea and a failure. I would ask people to give comments what was inspiring for them and what they think caused the failure or was the failure.

I try to keep part of what was created in this time alive, namely the Globalvillages mailing list and the globalvillages.info wiki. I am looking for people who support the continuation and further development of the Open Source Version of ProWiki, trying to convince Helmut Leitner - the original developer who declared it Free Software in 2006 but furthe on changed his mind and kept the subsequent versions private -  its a worthwile approach.

I see that Helmut Leitner failed to create a roadmap for development - it was even counterproductive to have the two of yuo cooperate because while you wanted a system where thoughts can freely move Helmut and I wanted a system where thoughts are primarily embedded in fractal structure, creating the equivalent of a book. Maybe that was adding to eventual failure, although lots of energy were put into this work from both of you.

Helmut wanted to seed a community of providers, not primarily a community of developers. He was never clear enough on that. He wanted a support base that would allow him fo focus on development work (create some voluntary support and some paid services ), and if this support base was there - letting go of his code ownership was a logical implication. If not - not.

I think and I feel that ProWiki is a genious tool, providing exactly the mental structure in which at least I can abide well. It has coherence and the tools for flexibility at the same time, it is opening a space that can be fractally structured into smaller spaces and allow all of them to grow by their own pace. I did my best to convince Helmut that I have not the intention to leave him out of the picture.

Currently, Ralf and I have set up a ProWiki server - even with our limited knowledge of Perl we made them operational, and one of the three hosted wikis is globalvillages.info which will be a "living piece"  of the Minciu Sodas - Worknets legacy.

I would appreciate if we found people who helped us understand the structure and the options of configuration better. Although we are hesitant to create a  real fork out of the reasons given, we want to see what we can do to make it run smoother and better.

So I would welcome if you could raise some money for yourself under the title of a Minciu Sodas Archive and help us improve the technical documentation. I also think that the idea of a "HyperWiki shell" for Prowiki makes a lot of sense, so that we could leave the basic functionality intact and yet add modern features. But that would the require effort of additional people. Maybe it could be combined if there is a good Wiki project that we could host, having a technical person to work along with us.

One of the additional Wikis we created ourselves is "Theory Culture" (but in German), a place where independent thinkers have an opportunity to develop their system of thoughts embedded in a community. We welcome ideas, abstracts and projects in German.

So yes: lot of people are asking about the Minciu Sodas Ecosystems, where are the lists and the people. We need that. maybe you could start putting a "state of things" map out where at least it will become clear which venues existed. In addition to fundraising on Kickstarter I encourage you to open a facebook group, simply to raise support and to show the shere number of people in favor of the idea and inspired by what they got out of you.

Franz

• Hi Andrius I add my voice to those of my Minciu Sodas friends Kennedy Owino, Samwel Kongere, and Franz Nahrada, who have already replied to your email about
Message 3 of 3 , Nov 21, 2010
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Hi Andrius

I add my voice to those of my Minciu Sodas friends Kennedy Owino, Samwel Kongere, and Franz Nahrada, who have already replied  to your email about doing an archiving project and funding it through Kickstarter (I have copied a shortened version of your email below and highlighted it).

I would support the creation of the archive for various reasons.

Not philanthropy

My contribution to the archive project will not be a part of my normal charitable giving.

In some ways it is hard for me to say openly, in front of so many of our friends in Africa, that I will respond to your request, when I do not normally respond to direct individual requests for financial help made through Minciu Sodas. People often ask for individual help with all kinds of urgent family and community expenses. Perhaps they will wonder how can I support you if I have not supported all of them? It is not something I can easily explain. Will people understand if I say it is partly because I am not in Minciu Sodas as a philanthropist? (What if I try to explain that there are some places, and people, in Nigeria that I simply do not want to go back to because of the mismatch between who I am and who people expect me to be in terms of deep pockets, and responding to immediate needs? Will they understand then? Perhaps only those who know both cultures can understand.)

Even if I was a philanthropist and I had the deep pockets necessary to respond to repeated requests for financial help through Minciu Sodas would I do so?  Would I respond to all requests? How would I judge between them? Would Minciu Sodas be the best channel to direct my charitable giving? I don't know.

Minciu Sodas was home to me, for my non-formal post-graduate studies

I came to Minciu Sodas for the opportunity to think. In some ways there was huge overlap, between your views of Mincius Sodas, Andrius,  and mine, but in other ways we had differences, which we sometimes discussed. You (its founder) saw it as a laboratory and a potential business, while I (a participant) saw it as a kind of non-formal university. For me it was an online home and study centre for self-directed learners - place where I was encouraged to "think out loud". Other people in Minciu Sodas found other things there.

I found it to be true to the name you gave to it "Minciu Sodas" - Orchard of Thoughts. I wrote some of my thoughts  while I was there, but, more importantly to me, I participated in and observed the amazing, groundbreaking, global, online community that you created and nurtured - like a farmer creating and tending an orchard.  I believe you will see it bearing fruit, but perhaps not in the ways that you originally expected and hoped.

Support from alumni

It is perfectly normal for universities to approach alumni for financial support (especially when the university is building a new library, or buying some precious archive, or setting up some new research facility). Given I see myself in that relationship to Minciu Sodas I am happy to be approached to contribute to your work on the archive (which I see as a combination of library, archive, and innovative research tool).

I will contribute to the archive fund in appreciation of what Minciu Sodas has given me, and because I believe it will be a unique and valuable resource, both to those who were part of it, and also as a mine of information for researchers  who come later - especially if they are interested in socio-technology and the development of successful online communities.

You have also asked for additional information from us about the value of Minciu Sodas. I cannot begin to do justice to that here. Maybe we can have a separate conversation (or series of conversations) about it. I would also welcome the chance to explore ways in which things that I am doing, planning, and thinking about now may complement things you are doing, planning, and thinking about.

Pamela

On 19 November 2010 05:16, Andrius Kulikauskas <ms@...> wrote:

Thank you to everybody who participated at Minciu Sodas and Worknets
from 1998 to 2010. More than 1,000 people wrote us letters and hundreds
more participated at our wiki and our chatroom. We also got to meet
each other every now and then.

This year, I gave up trying to make that work as a business. In May, I
moved to Chicago to work as a tutor. Now, I wish to share what I'd like
to do next. I have two projects in mind (a book "Gospel Math" and a
Worknets archive) that I would like to do through the funding platform
http://www.kickstarter.com I share my thoughts at John Rogers's
working group Cyfranogi, Pamela McLean's Learning From Each Other, and
my own Living By Truth.

I'm only working 18 hours a week right now. I have time to look for
more income, something that would be more relevant to my life and that
ultimately I could do from Lithuania.

I would like to support self-learning. I have a Ph.D. in Math. I was
always taught math as a hodge podge of techniques. Instead, I want to
think of it as a language of a few dozen deep ideas. As a teacher at
UCSD and AUBiH, and as a tutor at Ivy League Tutoring, I have fleshed
out parts of that language.

(snip)

I want to try out http://www.kickstarter.com with a smaller project
first. I imagine that Gospel Math will open up a new chapter in my
life. I would like to make available an archive of Minciu Sodas /
Worknets which came before. I would truly appreciate support from all
of us because the archive of our 35,000+ letters, our 4,000+ wiki pages
and our years of chat is a testimony to our many achievements. The
our many current projects. I would add search tools and organize
everything nicely. It would also be a good time to do interviews and
summaries regarding our efforts in the Pyramid of Peace and other
projects. It's a good time to reflect on our culture and share what
each of us have learned. The archive will point to our future projects
and we can point back to the archive whenever we reflect about our work.

Would you contribute \$10 or \$100 or so for such a Worknets archive? I
want to raise at least \$1,000 for my work to organize the many pages and
\$1,000 to assure that they stay up on the Internet at worknets.org for
at least the next 10 years. I believe that if we think of good rewards
that people want, then we could raise more, perhaps enough for a team.