Archive - May 2014

1
Travel With a Cause or Cause for Travel?
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How can World Tree Circle Help Make the Best of My Travels?
3
So Why Open Source?
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Attn: Translation Software Community
5
T-shirts Fundraiser
6
To Donate, or Not To Donate? That is the Question…..
7
World Tree Leaves
8
Ruuuuuunnnn Claarrke! Run!

Travel With a Cause or Cause for Travel?

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ecotourism_ecotour-orgNow lets look at WTC from the business perspective of the travel industry versus from the travelers’.  Ecotourism is the specific field of travel that WTC would like to promote the most.  Ecotourism is defined as “responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the well-being of local people.” (TIES, 1990)  Its the more physical aspect of what this website does.  Uniting different cultures through education and enriched awareness of other places around the globe.

Groups like USAID (United States Agency for International Development) is one such company.  USAID has benefited many countries through ecotourism.  “USAID supports nature-based tourism activities as part of its biodiversity conservation programs in more than a dozen countries worldwide. The Agency’s ecotourism activities include support for developing national park systems, demarcating and equipping new national parks, recruiting and training park staff, and encouraging government reforms that promote regulated investments in private lodging, guide service, and other tourism ventures.”  According to Untamed Path.  So far they have helped to increase revenue and local involvement in conservation in the parks in Nepal, Costa Rica, Jamaica and Sri Lanka, just to name a few.ecotourism1_www-borneo-holidays-com

There are many many eco friendly travel companies and programs out there.  With a few clicks you can have an amazing and conscientious trip planned across the globe.  We did some looking and found some pretty cool ones in just a few minutes.  One site in particular was pretty informative.  Here we found the top 10 suggestions.  The first recommended was a company called Responsible Travel.  They do all the work of finding hotels, tour operators and other travel options that meet strict sustainability requirements and make them available to you on their site.  The second is Natural Discovery.  They specialize in eco friendly accommodations across England.  The 3rd is a company called Good Travel Company.  A lot of the accommodations they provide around the globe are by train and they put all the hotels, tours, etc. that they promote through a strict audit as well.  To read a brief description of the top 10 ecotourism companies highlighted on the site check out the article on www.theecologist.org showcasing them.

 

The scavenger hunt game will work through the ecotourism and businesses around the world to encourage learning from other cultures and people across the globe by promoting their wares and being part of the hunt.  A location to go to, or an unusual or unique product to find.  It will also provide a place for these companies to promote their product as well as network.  WTC could also be a place for the more adventurous to figure out their own eco friendly destination through their own investigations and interviews of fellow users.  World Tree is a place for us to connect, learn from one another, promote causes, help out and showcase our talents, whatever they may be.

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How can World Tree Circle Help Make the Best of My Travels?

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With so many resources for travelers on the web these days, you may ask what World Tree could add.  It’s a valid question.  In our opinion WTC can add not only a much greater wealth of information to pull from but also a better rating for those suggestions and insights that you have to choose from.  Why just take one person’s word for it when you can ask millions?

Think about it.  World Tree, as a worldwide forum for any topic, would allow you to pose a question to every single person in the world old enough to use the internet.  The answers could be limitless.  That gives you a far more accurate idea of the pros and cons of an area.  Or which attractions in a specific area are worth adding to your list of things to do first while traveling there.

You have 4416 cities in the world to choose from (according to the World Atlas) and the most commonly known places aren’t necessarily best.  Sometimes its just a matter of better advertising and marketing.  And that’s just the cities with a population over 150,000.  There are little meccas of culture with inhabitants that embody a myriad of talents, values, and lifestyles for you to experience.

You don’t even have to travel.  Let’s face it.  As romantic and glorified as travel may be, it isn’t for everyone.  That doesn’t mean that some of those home-bodies aren’t still interested in learning about other cultures and making friends with similar interests no matter the distance.  They just don’t want to leave the comfort of their hometown to do so.  World Tree will give us all the ability to expand our horizons in whatever way intrigues us.

We’re not saying we’re going to be the best tool for world travel out there.  Just one of the better tools to compliment the existing greats.  Are you ready?

So Why Open Source?

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Why did we choose to open source?  If you do, or have done, any reading on Open Source you learn pretty quickly what  a rapidly growing idea it is.  More and more companies are using open source technology to grow their business.  There are many benefits.  Your software grows with you, it is more geared toward the users because they can give their opinion and help shape it.  And its friendlier to a tight budget.

Companies can save lots of their income by using open sourced products and creating their own to share.  World Tree Circle is no different.  As a small startup with no capital to start of with, on our own we have to raise the money to pay our contributors.  In the beginning we were all for that. World Tree Circle is going to be big news, and eventually it will bring a large income.  We’ll be rich.  We’d donate to whatever causes we wanted, buy nice, fair trade goods and foods, make our house more eco-friendly…the list could go on and on.  In the meantime though, WTC doesn’t have funds to get off the ground and we don’t have the technical knowledge to do it on our own.  We couldn’t pay the small team we had gathered and the challenges we faced discouraged some of them to the point of backing out, or at least only contributing now and again.  We were losing momentum and making tons of money and keeping it to ourselves was never the purpose of World Tree to begin with.

So why not share?  Why can’t we be comfortable and share the amazing technology that this project is bound to encourage?  This is a world site and should be a world project.  A place not only for all of us to hang out on to learn, sell, visit, get travel ideas or play games but also a virtual workshop for the most creative and innovative programmers and designers, social media gurus and any other techy to exercise their brain and share what they do best even behind the scenes.  So we started to research how we could do that.  And that is how we stumbled on Open Source.

The idea is very simple.  You put all the information you have out there.  All your notes, everything you’ve tried, and allow people to use it, modify it, rewrite it, with the purpose of correcting and/or improving it.  Open source has been around for a while.  Since the 80s at least.  It’s been used by business around the world for some time now.  Its gone through its hardships with regulations and changes but it is still around and growing more rapidly everyday.  We love the concept and can’t wait to experience the process firsthand.  We look forward to meeting all of you and building a website we can all be passionate about, enjoy and be proud of.

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Attn: Translation Software Community

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multi language helloWe are World Tree Circle, an open source project.  My husband, Clarke, and I have been working on the idea for the our website for about a year now.  It is still in its very early stages.  One of the major functions of this social networking site will be that it translates all chat and video so that you can communicate live as well as the current mode of email and posts.  Our site would benefit translation software companies, too.  We would help the companies with making the translation organic as we grew with fun games to play in order to learn a language as well as help with improving the software.  People would have more and more accurate translation software to use and we, meaning everyone wins.

We are sending this to as many companies as we can find, to see who has the imagination and resourcefulness to meet the challenge.

Do you want to be a part of the next big news?

T-shirts Fundraiser

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We’re in the planning stages for Clarke’s run next year.  There are so many details to cover and lots to accomplish before the time comes.  Here is some of what we have got on the table for discussion…..

We’ve talked to BluBus and are working on the design for them so they can create some mock-ups.  Once that is done we have to figure out how many countries and how many T-shirts we will need for each.  The plan is to give away one T for every one sold but we are not sure how many to start out with.

We also have to start fundraising in order to cover the initial cost.  Should we us[notranslate]e Kickstarter[/notranslate]?  Or local events?  Should we put the Ts up for sale on eBay, Instagram, etc and advertise that with every one they buy, one T will be given to someone.  How do we decide who gets the free t-shirts?  Charity?  Businesses?  Within the same country as they were purchased or give within another country?

 

To Donate, or Not To Donate? That is the Question…..

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Roth-IRA-Income-Limits-2012 To Donate, or not to donate?  That is a question we ask ourselves more and more these days.  With so many con-artists and the internet making it harder to make people accountable, we need a way to get reliable information about fundraisers and non-profits.  Or just get the full story on someone’s cool new invention we would like to help fund. This is another great way for World Tree to pay it forward.  WTC could provide a way for people to donate to anyone, anywhere. Just think.  You could post an idea about some sort of function and, if you chose, WTC could give you aray to information we have found pertaining  to your post.  Let’s say you like what you find and you would like to support the other group or activity, with regards to what they are doing.  Even if this Leaf Holder does not have donation information provided, WTC will be a conduit so that you may ask if they would be open to a contribution.  Then, you could donate securely through the website. So you would be able to donate to anyone you felt would benefit from the support.  Or you could donate just because you like the idea and want to help it grow. Another function of WTC’s ability to be a conduit for contribution would be the contributor’s ability to check up on what they had contributed to.  Let’s say you have a charity or organization that you heard about and wanted to see if their actions were having beneficial effects in the area they are specializing in.  The Leaf Holder could post questions on our Q & A Board to folks in the region and receive real world information about the organization that they were interested in contributing to. So – donate or not to donate?  Let’s get some answers………..Winnie the pooh

World Tree Leaves

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leaves

The team here at World Tree thinks that its users should get their own leaves.  Akin, possibly, to a Facebook page (if you are familiar with that).  You can decorate your leaf with pictures, colors, music, font, etc. that speak to you aesthetically.  Picture the Tree of Life.  Often depicted with different colored leaves to represent spring, summer, fall and winter.  Well, WTC’s tree needs leaves and each one would be unique, representing the leaf holder by representing all the aspects that make them what they are – their generation, upbringing, culture, and country of origin would be displayed in the way they fashion our leaf’s layout.

Let’s take it a step further.  Not only should you be able to customize your leaf, but we also think you should be able to set up a shop, or organizational platform leaf as well if you like.  It can be one-in-the-same or hang its own “leaf”.  Someplace that you can offer you wares or state your case, as the case may be.  Musicians can sell their music, individual tracks, whatever.  Hobbyists can display their works of art, similar to Etsy.  All while have that translation software making dealing with people worldwide as simple as a few clicks of your mouse or a friendly chat with your new clientele via a chat room or video chat.

This is where those organizations we mentioned in another post would set up base camp (their leaf). When you want to read about an activity, organization, movement, and so on, that you heard about – this is the place you could come.  The organizations would have the opportunity through their translated leaves to get their information to a much larger audience.  Another great way to learn about other cultures or ways of life.  These leafs will also have the opportunity to receive Sun Rays just like the personal leaves.

Not sure whether you want your personal leaf to be seen by friends or the public, or anyone to see it period?  No worries.  You decide what gets seen and what doesn’t.

leaf home

Ruuuuuunnnn Claarrke! Run!

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running shoes

Okay, Okay, I agree.  That quote, “Run Forest! Run!”  or variations thereof, have been used just a bit too much.  But we still chuckle, and it is actually kinda relevant in our case.  Recently, while on his daily run, Clarke got the idea to pull a Gump wearing a World Tree Circle T-shirt to promote WTC.  He got the inspiration from Forest Gump himself.  He was running for no reason, other than he enjoyed it.  That reason alone was good enough for Clarke.  After going on a run with a good friend who is passionate about running himself, Clarke found he loved to run.  What better than to combine two passions – WTC and running?  All that was left was to plan how and when.

After some initial thought and planning he brought it up to the kiddos and I that evening.  Though we are totally behind him, it was a real challenge for the kids, and me.  He is a stay at home dad, and the kids DO NOT want him to be gone that long.  Did you know that Forest ran for 3 years, 2 months, 14 days and 16 hours?   I can’t say I was real stoked at the idea of having him away from home for months, or years, either.  While moving back and forth from Ohio we didn’t make it more than a month before our begging him to come home had him moving ahead of schedule to be with us.  How would we get through the separation?  That was our selfishness speaking.  We all want this to be a success and this is something that Clarke enjoys and really wanted to do.  Plus, it is a great way to get the word out.  So, the decision was made.

Clarke figures after a bit of training, that he will be able to run 5 miles an hour for 8 hours a day.  From where we are in North Carolina to the West coast, then back past our home in the mountains to reach the East coast (and back to the house) is a bit over 6,000 miles.  That is about 150-some-odd days!  The more research he did the obvious is became that if he didn’t want to disappoint the kids by being away that long he was going to need to alter the plans a bit.  Instead of going cross country, which had less to do with World Tree Circle, he would have to find an alternative if we were going to make this run idea a success on every level.  That led to the idea of running in sections.  Each summer working from a new starting point.

Then, while telling another good friend of his about the idea and how he was working out the logistics of it, his friend suggested he run to different locations within the United States that represented the different countries around the world.  That sounded more feasible.  Less international flights – and more time with the family while the kids were home on vacation.  He could even run in warmer climates during the school year and not miss out on as much.

So that’s the plan.  We are going to get him T-shirts made with the WTC logo on it and he’s going to run to different places around the United States that represent the different countries around the world. We will keep everyone up to date on when and where he will be running.  In case anyone wants to join him or just follow along from home.  We hope to raise enough money to get enough T-Shirts to pass them out along the way as well as keep him fed and hydrated, lol.

If you have any great ideas on how to help Clarke with the planning or preparation, please comment below.  OR, if you have suggestions on where he should go in order to get “all around the world” put that in those comments below as well.  You can also email us at worldtreecircle@frontier.com or message us on Facebook at facebook.com/worldtreecircle if you prefer.

 

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