[NAFEX] here's what I have come up with

Heron Breen breen at fedcoseeds.com
Thu Oct 21 20:35:31 EDT 2004

To all, 
Concerning the compedium/database of back issues, I am talking with a web 
designer/indy publisher friend who is very interested in the project. He is going 
to get back to me with what formatt and method of scanning would be best for a 
fully operational, searchable from any level compedium which could also double as a 
online database. I do not see any of us spending the next year of our lives, 8 
hours a day on the project, and I thought that a real mind would fill in our gaps. 
My friend's assertion, a true genius who runs Argos Designs (check out their 
website), is that if members volunteer to scan the issues into the corrct format, 
which may be html or who knows at his point, it would be less costly and effecient 
for a point person, which I can volunteer as, and an oversight committee, to create 
the searchable formatt. The truly usable database allows key word searches within 
any level of text, be it year, issue, region, topic, author, zone, fruit, nut, 
disease, graphics etc. A bare bones highly functional search engine on a disk, 
updated yearly. This may be the stepping off point for getting the online archive 
in order too since it is hard to search. I will find out more and welcome feedback 
as well as volunteers for an ad hoc committee to create a balanced proposal to 
general membership involvement and the board. Costs will be considered. If any 
folks feel they can do this on their own, strictly volunteer, cool with me. I 
thought I would explore the option.
Another idea: NAFEX could create for general sale, a series of our own books called 
simply: How To Grow Heirloom Apples. Then one for pears, etc, including ones on 
nuts and fruits like paw paws and cornelian cherries. Full Color, Hard Bound, Big 
size, Picking one hundred heirloom apples, discussing their GROWING characteristics 
in truth and detail, gleaned from the donated knowledge of those of us in NAFEX. 
Also showing four different styles of caring for orchards as a whole: commercial 
and small scale IPM, backyard, organic, and with animals, from a few different 
regions. We would send a flyer around to every member to list what varieties they 
have grown and tasted and which they would think would be included. Then all of us 
would about which ever ones we had experience with. The interesting and pertinent 
info would be edited and create a narrative and factual presentation. We print 
them, maybe through Mother Earth News, or Chelsea Green Publishing, or 
independently, and the profits go to our coffers. And in the process we distill the 
true strenght of NAFEX, our combined vast knowledge. I am ready for a new two year 
project. What do you folks think?
In answer to why make money: it is not money we are making, it is making use of 
what we know. To be useful is a great gift. The small financial security the 
organization may reap from any scheme will only allow us to maintain the most 
diverse library, the best conferences, the involvement with the university levels 
and the common person, and maybe even a wisened voice in the darkenss drawing folks 
to the joy of growing their own food. We may need to hire some fulltime people to 
help run this organization one day. WE may want to endow a scholarship more folks 
studying pomology or fruit exploring in other countries. We may want to buy every 
last acre remaining (not many) of the ancient apple forests in the ex-USSR as a 
world heritage site. Who knows...But I think we will see many more smiles than 
dollars out of any of these endeavors, and that is what I am here on earth for.

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