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What is PEP and PEX?

 
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Shawn Harper wrote:

r ranson wrote: You can use past projects so long as you have the images to meet the requirements.



Is there a good list of what those are? I skimmed through the topics and couldn't find what would and would not count as good enough.



I don't know of any that don't allow past projects so long as you have all the required documentation.
 
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Nicole Alderman wrote:Think about it from a certifier's viewpoint. If you're looking at a picture of something that has already been done, without any pictures of it being done, how do you tell that person did it? For all the certifier can tell, their spouse or friend or hired person (or a previous owner of the land), could have done it. We want to make as sure as we can that the person who's got a badge, actually has those skills.

Say someone tries to hire someone who has a roundwood working badge, or an animal care badge. But, they "earned" it just by just showing pictures of things already done. They never actually did any of the work. So, they come to work and actually know nothing and end up building a bad shelter and feeding your animals the wrong things and not keeping their house sanitary. That'd be horrible!

Now, of course, the lower level of skills aren't usually what you'd hire someone for. They're basic skills that show that someone can learn stuff. Say you might want to hire someone with an Wood badge in rocket stoves to make you one. Or maybe a Iron badge in natural building to make you a wofati. And, we went and certified a person that said, "hey, I made this wofati and it's rocket mass heater!" But, they never showed progress pictures, and it turns out, their X-wife did all the work, and they know nothing.

This is something every certifying agency has to deal with. Right now, my husband has a coworker that is a phlebotomist (the people who draw your blood), but it's apparent the person knows NOTHING about phlebotomy. Their wife probably took all the tests for them. When asked to take a test at work, the person stormed out, refusing to do so.

We're trying really hard to make sure that:
(1) The documenting requirements aren't TOO complicated
(2) The people who are getting certified have a high chance of actually having done the stuff and know what they say they know
(3) It's easy for someone who's looking at hiring or giving their land to a badge earner to look at their pictures and judge for themselves the quality of the persons work
(4) To have an online resource full of pictures of people doing useful things, so others can learn from what they did.


I don't like videos, either. But, sometimes, a video seems like the only way to prove that someone has done it. And, it helps other people online learn and find out about permies. We're building a vast collection of knowledge that is FREE and available to everyone.  None of us are getting paid to certify. And when someone tries to get something certified that doesn't have documenting proof, that makes it really hard on the certifiers. We don't want to accidentally certify someone who never did a lick of work and has not one ounce of knowledge about a subject!



This is easily the best explanation I've seen on this. I can easily understand your reasons. However I think that "We're trying really hard to make sure that: (1) The documenting requirements aren't TOO complicated" Needs some work. Maybe a thread with exact documentation expectations instead of several sometimes contradictory posts?
The other point I would make is not everyone has so much land that simply doing a project again will work.
 
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r ranson wrote:

Shawn Harper wrote:

r ranson wrote: You can use past projects so long as you have the images to meet the requirements.



Is there a good list of what those are? I skimmed through the topics and couldn't find what would and would not count as good enough.



I don't know of any that don't allow past projects so long as you have all the required documentation.



So, to earn a badge, one has to do a bunch of "Badge Bits."

For example, I have the Community Badge. I've done the required Badge Bits (also known as "BB"s) listed HERE.

One of those Badge Bits was to make a make a map of my property. Thankfully, I'd already made a map for my son's birthday a few years back. And, since I'd made a thread about it here on permies, I'd had the required pictures of me making the thing (usually the requirements for badge bits are: A before picture, a progress picture, and a completed picture. In this case, I'd needed pictures of the things shown on the map, so I went and took those). And I got certified for it. You can see that HERE
 
Nicole Alderman
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Here's a list of all the PEP badges: https://permies.com/wiki/96022/aspects-PEP.

Each has four badges for four different level of skills. Click on the name to go to that badge's page. Then you can click on the different badge bits and see if you've got the pictures for those things!
 
r ranson
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Shawn Harper wrote:

r ranson wrote: On the whole, it sounds like you want something different than what Paul's created.  Perhaps you could make PES - Permaculture Experience according to SHAWN.



I've seen a similar response to several others who posted suggestions. I guess I don't see what about my comment caused this canned response? I don't see a reason why in my reason I would need to deviate from pauls. However if this is a permies.com thing and not just a paul thing (hence the badges) I think it should be more inclusive. Things like this are great for motivating people to get out and create content. However it also runs the risk of alienating part of the user base if they feel left out in the cold. Just food for thought.



There's a very fine line between giving suggestions and telling others what changes need to be made.  It's very much in the way it's phrased.  Insulting something that someone else created like calling it lame, is a great way to get someone's back up.  

Paul designed the PEP system and has probably put in about 2,000 hours into getting this up and running.  I know of at least 20 people who have put in 100-500 hours each into getting this setup.  There's a lot of long conversations about each badge and the best way to word it.  

Making suggestions about improvements is great.  
Talking about all the things we are doing wrong... especially without doing the homework first... is borderline, not nice.  

 
Nicole Alderman
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Shawn Harper wrote:
. However if this is a permies.com thing and not just a paul thing (hence the badges) I think it should be more inclusive. Things like this are great for motivating people to get out and create content. However it also runs the risk of alienating part of the user base if they feel left out in the cold. Just food for thought.



While permies is run by volunteers (except for Paul, of course!), it is Paul's site. He pays the bills. He doesn't pull a profit from this site. We moderators certainly don't make any money! So, a permies thing and a Paul's thing are much the same. Sure, a lot of people have persuaded Paul to change or tweek some of the requirements for PEP. Those people are usually those that have spent hours completing badge bits or helping make the badge bit pages, and have shown they are willing to help out.

We want it to be for everyone. In the end, Paul calls the shots. He's a self-styled "benevolent dictator." And, after having spent a lot of hours on this stuff, his reasoning make a lot of sense!
 
Nicole Alderman
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Shawn Harper wrote:
The other point I would make is not everyone has so much land that simply doing a project again will work.



True! I can see this might be a great way to make a bit of money by selling one's skills. You might not have room for another 7 foot hugel, but maybe a friend does, or someone on Craiglist? You could make it for them for money/trade/just to be nice and get certified for it.

Or, one could go to a certifying event like the one coming up at Paul's place, and make a hugel there with his tools!
 
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Nicole Alderman wrote: In the end, Paul calls the shots. He's a self-styled "benevolent dictator."



EVIL dictator!

(If you say "benevolent" then a thousand nitwits pour out of the woodwork demanding that I be their personal bitch for life or they will personally revoke the "benevolent" part.  But if you embrace "evil dictator" those nitwits leave you alone.)



And, after having spent a lot of hours on this stuff, his reasoning make a lot of sense!



Thanks!
 
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We don't even yet have all of this stuff at version "0.6 alpha."  

First, we get it up to version 0.9 - all designed for my place.    And then we add about 2% more so it can work on a few thousand other properties too.   And after three more years of polishing, it might be ready to be called "version 1.0"

This is gonna take a while.  But we have enough so that people can start getting the simplest BBs.  
 
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Shawn Harper wrote:

r ranson wrote: You can use past projects so long as you have the images to meet the requirements.


Is there a good list of what those are? I skimmed through the topics and couldn't find what would and would not count as good enough.


If you look at any of the BB posts it has the lists of requirements.  IE under the Gardening badge there is a Build a Hugelkultur BB.  That BB post is what you have to follow to get certified for that BB.  Do all the BBs for a badge, you get certified for the badge.  For that particular BB (a rather involved one) near the end of the first post it says the requirements.  For that one they are:

To document your completion of the BB, provide the following:
 - Two pics of the site before the work is started with the intended location marked out.
       o probably marked with wood laid on the ground that will soon be buried!
 - Three pics of three different stages of construction - showing the contents of the hugelkultur
 - Pics of all the stuff about to be planted
 - A paragraph or two of what wood was used and where it came from, what was planted, what mulches were applied and anything else interesting
 - Two pics of the site after the work is complete from the same two locations as the beginning pictures.
       o include some people or something in the pics so we can gauge that the size is probably correct


So if you've built a hugel before and happen to have those pictures, awesome.  You're ready to post.  I think I've had two BBs where I happened to have the photos needed to get certified.
 
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Sorry if I've missed a FAQ on all of this, I'm just starting to familiarize myself with it.
How is the BB's completed tracked? Is it only through the BB threads or is there a PEP dashboard that one could use as a checklist/resume?
 
Mike Haasl
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Hi Alley, I just track mine with a spreadsheet on the side.  Lee has this cool app that is on sale right now that is probably 70x fancier than a spreadsheet or scribbled-on napkin.  See here: https://permies.com/t/119155/PEP-Badge-Tracker-easier-track

Or if I misinterpreted your question, Permies.com isn't tracking your BB completions, you need to.  Once you have a badge and get that certified, you get a badge icon under your posts.
 
Nicole Alderman
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I don't have any sort of tracker--I just kind of look at the badge I'm working on, and see which ones I want to do and have done. It's getting a bit overwhelming, though, so I might end up making a thread here on permies showing which ones I've done and haven't done. A thread like that would also double as a resume, of a sort.

To get the badge, you post to the badge page with links to the post/thread of each badge bit you've completed. You can see examples of Mike and mine on the Animal Badge page: https://permies.com/wiki/107858/PEP-Badge-Animal-Care. A staff person then double-checks that you did, indeed, get certified for all of them, and they grant the badge!
 
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Where do I submit and redeem the points achieved during the October PEP challenge?
 
Nicole Alderman
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dawn west wrote:Where do I submit and redeem the points achieved during the October PEP challenge?



Are they the points for completing/making Badge Bits to get free goodies from Paul? If so, check out this thread: https://permies.com/t/121940/bonus-goodies-BB-tested. I hope that helps!
 
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