About WebLETS
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About WebLETS

The early beginings of WebLETS are a little unknown to me, but as best I know, it was created to impliment a now defunct LETS in Otawa Canada. After that the WebLETS project set idle for a few years.

Seperately, for some time I had been thinking there is some thing wrong with the way we use money and that there must be a better way. So one day in early 2008 I went searching the 'Net, for I was not sure what, but something. I had an idea that was almost identical to the LETS concept and so after some searching I stumbled across the LETS concept and I know that was IT, that was "the better way".

So then I went looking for a LETS near me, only to find that the idea never realy cought on in the USA and that there was no LETS in my part of the country. OK, no problem, I'll just start one, right? Right, so having an adversion to paper work, I went looking for software to impliment a LETS. This search did not go so well. All the software was old to very old and/or was not open source (a requierment). The best thing I could find was WebLETS, but it was old and I could not get it to run.

The choice came down to WebLETS only, due to the facts that it is open source and in a language that I already know well, PHP. Seeing that there had been no development on it in some time, I emailed the admins and asked if I could have the project. One of them emailed me back, and after a time to check with the others, he made me a project admin, basically giving the project over to me.

For about four months I worked on WebLETS nearly every day for at least a couple of hours and often for 10 to 14 hours at a time, some times more. The very first thing was to move from MySQL to PostgreSQL, as PostgreSQL is fully open source, fully enterprize capable as requiered for a LETS to get really big, and again, I already knew PostgreSQL quit well. For the most part the work consisted of taking the old code and making it work. At the same time the coding style was also changed.

Then one day I reallized that for the most part WebLETS was finnished. It still needs some polish, and it still could used some documentation, but it is working and is mostly self explanatory or has explinations included in it where need be. This is why work on it has mostly stopped, there is not much left to do. Well I do have other features I want to add, but the basic system is done and I need to attend to other matters for a while.

WebLETS is being used for a new LETS called MarsLETS, this is the LETS for which I did all this work to be able to create a LETS in my part of the country.
This LETS is open to anyone, see the site for details.

A LETS is really about building the vitality of a community. With a LETS a community can have it's own economy apart from the national or world economies. Even better is that a LETS is non-inflationary (no interest). If people only understood this, all communities would have a LETS.

So what next for WebLETS?
I have a few ideas, one is to make some way for people to make trades accross different systems, that is, two people belonging to two different LETS should be able to make a trade and have this automagically worked out somehow. Thoughts on how to do this are welcome.

Terry Mackintosh <terry@mackintoshweb.com>

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