Son of Five Rivers Blog

For the advancement of Entrepreneurship, Sustainability & the Ecology of Everyday Life

This Site has Moved to

Click Here to Vist NEW Site:

I’ve been blogging for several months now and I’m glad to have recieved the feedback I have.  I’ve enjoyed the experince and for that reason I’ve decided to take blogging to another level.  I’ll be self hosting my blog and that means you’ll see a lot more creativity in the design, functionality and layout of the new blog.

Check it out:


January 22, 2010 Posted by | 1, A Thought, Ads, Agriculture, Art, Blogging, Books, Brochure, Business, Business Cards, Business Development, Business Model, Carbon Credits, Clean Energy, Co-op, Community Economic Development (CED), Computer Networking, Construction, Creativity, Data Recovery, Definitions, Earth, Economics, Education, Electric Cars, Email, Entrepreneurship, Family, Finance, Geothermal, Government, Grants, Great Ideas, Green Roofs, Human Resources, Information Technology (I.T.), Inspiration, Investment, LEED, Life, Marketing, Micro Credit, Not for Profit, Open Source, Packaging, PDA's, Philanthropy, Photography, Politics, Power Piont, Products, Project Management, Quotes, Sales, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Services, Social Enterprise, Social Media, Solar, Sustainability, Sustainable Community Development, Taxes, Venture Capital, Videos, War, Waste, Water, Website | Leave a comment

What is Cloud Computing?

This is great general knowledge for all businesses and NGO’s.  Plus I believe this is this where the industry is going.

Enjoy this short clip, its a little geeky but informative.

December 23, 2009 Posted by | Computer Networking, Information Technology (I.T.), Open Source | | 1 Comment

The White House going Open Source

White House announced via the Associated Press that is now running on Drupal, the open source content management system. That Drupal implementation is in turn running on a Red Hat Linux system with Apache, MySQL and the rest of theLAMP stackApache Solr is the new White House search engine.  This move is huge win for open source movement and to bridge the digital divide amongst all of us who can benifit from technology.

This is one step forward for all the people of the world.  If government can adopt open source technologies and web 2.0 it would truly make a more democratic society.

November 24, 2009 Posted by | Business, Creativity, Government, Information Technology (I.T.), Open Source, Politics | , , | Leave a comment

Free Online Photo Editor

Okay Photoshop costs an arm and a leg and microsoft paint just sucks!

Here’s the that is fantastic.  Its free and its online.

aviary-tools.jpg (819×399)


November 5, 2009 Posted by | Art, Business, Creativity, Open Source, Photography | | Leave a comment

Excellent Open Source Telephony Application

From the AsteriskNOW Web site:

Asterisk is the world’s leading open source telephony engine and tool kit. Offering flexibility unheard of in the world of proprietary communications, Asterisk empowers developers and integrators to create advanced communication solutions…for free.

What this means is that small (and large) businesses can reduce their telephone PBX (Private Branch eXchange) costs significantly by implementing the AsteriskNOW software appliance instead of investing in a proprietary PBX. In practical terms, a small business can set up a software PBX using an old PC as the server and by making use of IP telephone handsets (i.e. the handsets connect to your data network), can have a working telephone system for a small investment.

The PBX can be connected to the regular telephone network (often referred to as “POTS”, for Plain Old Telephone System) by the installation of a card in one of the PC’s expansion slots. These cards support multiple phone lines, so that, if you have a large amount of telephone traffic, it can be managed smoothly. Another option is to use your existing Internet connection and contract with a VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) service provider, thus bypassing the telephone company entirely.

All this is well and good – but what about managing people and extensions, external phone lines and voicemail (yes, it comes with voicemail, too)? I have been running an Asterisk server for a couple of years now – in fact, my office number is a VoIP line (or “trunk” in telephony jargon) that connects to the Asterisk box and then over my office network to my telephone handset. To be blunt, the original set up process was quite a challenge – it is a complex and very flexible environment, so can be difficult to configure. Enter AsteriskNOW – this is known as a software appliance, a specialized configuration that is burned to CD and then loaded on to the PC or server that will host the appliance. AsteriskNOW has a Web-based configuration interface:

FreePBX screenshot
Screenshot of the AsteriskNOW graphical interface, FreePBX.

In this partial screen image, you can see on the left side the various menu options that are configured to the requirements of your office – Extensions, Trunks and Outbound Routes, IVR, Voicemail (part of the Extensions configuration) and so on. IVR (Interactive Voice Response) is the feature which allows an Automated Attendant to be set up (as in “Press 1 for Sales, Press 2 for Support”). Other features of note include the ability to have an interactive voicemail message – if someone needs to get hold of you urgently, you can set up the voicemail so that when your “Away from my desk” message is played, pressing “1” can forward the call to your cell phone (or home office, or wherever you might be). This feature can be set up, too, in such a way that it’s hidden from general callers and only those you inform can use it.

AsteriskNOW also supports Queues (e.g. to a support line), Ring Groups (sometimes called hunt groups), the recording of Announcements and the ability to handle out-of-hours calls differently than calls received during business hours.

In other words, AsteriskNOW does pretty much everything a costly proprietary phone system will do – at a fraction of the cost


October 30, 2009 Posted by | Business Development, Information Technology (I.T.), Open Source | , , | Leave a comment

Free Alternative to Microsoft Office

called Open Office, it works great.  The only problem is it doesn’t have the Outlook feature everyone is used too.  You’ll have to use something like Thunderbird.  That’s where it loses the main stream users.

On the technical side of things, the file format used by OpenOffice is called ODF – Open Document Format. This format is an international standard (ISO 26300) for document interoperability, which means that documents stored in this format wil be accessible in the future as the file format will not change from version to version as has happened with proprietary file formats in the past, thus making them challenging to read if the format is no longer supported by a more recent version of the software used to create the file.

Bottom line – if you’re tired of paying hundreds of dollars for your office productivity software, give a try.


October 30, 2009 Posted by | Business, Open Source | Leave a comment

If the World were a Village of 100

Logo Miniature EarthThe idea of reducing the world’s population to a community of only 100 people is very useful and important. It makes us easily understand the differences in the world.
There are many types of reports that use the Earth’s population reduced to 100 people, especially in the Internet. Ideas like this should be more often shared, especially nowadays when the world seems to be in need of dialogue and understanding among different cultures, in a way that it has never been before.

The text that originated this webmovie was published on May 29, 1990 with the title “State of the Village Report”, and it was written by Donella Meadows, who passed away in February 2000. Nowadays Sustainability Institute, through Donella’s Foundation, carries on her ideas and projects.


In the world today, more than 6 billion people live.
If this world were shrunk to the size of a village of 100 people, what would it look like?

59 would be Asian
14 would be American (North, Central and South)
14 would be African
12 would be European
1 would be from the South Pacific

50 would be women, 50 would be men
30 would be children, 70 would be adults.
70 would be nonwhite, 30 would be white
90 would be heterosexual, 10 would be homosexual

33 would be Christians
21 would be Moslems
15 would be Hindus
6 would be Buddhists
5 would be Animists
6 would believe in other religions
14 would be without any religion or atheist.

15 would speak Chinese, Mandarin
7 English
6 Hindi
6 Spanish
5 Russian
4 Arabic
3 Bengali
3 Portuguese
The other would speak Indonesian, Japanese,
German, French, or some other language.

In such a village with so many sorts of folks, it would be very important to learn to understand people different from yourself and to accept others as they are. Of the 100 people in this village:

20 are underonurished
1 is dying of starvation, while 15 are overweight.
Of the wealth in this village, 6 people own 59% (all of them from the United States), 74 people own 39%, and 20 people share the remaining 2%.
Of the energy of this village, 20 people consume 80%, and 80 people share the remaining 20%.
20 have no clean, safe water to drink.
56 have access to sanitation
15 adults are illiterate.
1 has an university degree.
7 have computers.

In one year, 1 person in the village will die, but in the same year, 2 babies will be born, so that at the year’s end the number of villagers will be 101.

If you do not live in fear of death by bombardment, armed attack, landmines, or of rape or kidnapping by armed groups, then you are more fortunate than 20, who do.

If you can speak and act according to your faith and your conscience without harassment, imprisonment, torture or death, then you are more fortunate than 48, who can not.

If you have money in the bank, money in your wallet and spare change somewhere around the house, then you are among the richest 8.

If you can read this message, that means you are probably lucky!

(The statistics were derived from Donella Meadows “State of the Village Report” first published in 1990)

The Original Report

July 26, 2009 Posted by | Agriculture, Clean Energy, Co-op, Community Economic Development (CED), Earth, Economics, Education, Family, Inspiration, Life, Not for Profit, Open Source, Social Enterprise, Social Media, Solar, Sustainability, Sustainable Community Development, Videos, Waste, Water | , , | Leave a comment

One Laptop Per Child (OLPC)

Children with the XO

Children with the XO

Children with the XO

Give a Laptop, Change the World!

If this is new to you?

Watch the video here, or you can read the mission statement below:

Mission Statement: To create educational opportunities for the world’s poorest children by providing each child with a rugged, low-cost, low-power, connected laptop with content and software designed for collaborative, joyful, self-empowered learning. When children have access to this type of tool they get engaged in their own education. They learn, share, create, and collaborate. They become connected to each other, to the world and to a brighter future.

And an Update for the followers:

July 16, 2009 Posted by | Books, Economics, Information Technology (I.T.), Inspiration, Life, Open Source, Politics, Sustainability, Videos | | 1 Comment