Society for the Promotion of Appropriate Technology and Housing, Cameroon

About communication and information

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By Norbert Pintsch/IPC-FBTC

We constantly communicate and disseminate information in everyday life, without really thinking about what we actually do. Information from the Latin informare means: form, form, shape, educate, teach, represent, imagine something - Communication comes from Latin word communicare and means: to share, to communicate, to participate, to do together, to unite.

The spread of the terms information and communication over the Indo-European languages suggests uniformity, which are deepened in the scientific discussions, whereby the terminology is theorized and manifested, ignoring the actual diversity of linguistics in everyday life.

Ultimately, the resulting pseudo reality is seemingly insignificant, but actually the basis for all ensuing misunderstandings and conflicts.

Apparently, the theories and various explanatory patterns seem to be clear, so that they are further deepened, but in this process the understanding of basic concept disappears. The clarity of a theory turns out to be useless practice.

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posted by S A J Shirazi @ 10:24 AM, ,

For our friends in Bamenda University of Science and Technology and in Royal University Centre

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Self-contained note on three book projects

At the end of the year 2017 there are 3 publications about living concepts:


From a series of articles for a technical magazine between 2008 and 2012, the German translation is now available with original graphics and illustrations, in which the topic of Housing is discussed from different points of view (economy, technology, science, philosophy, etc.).


A conversation between Prof Dr Mackemsen and Prof Dr Pintsch resulted in a comparison of two research and teaching methods: the traditional one with quotations and references and the unconventional one, almost without references, which deliberately leaves the reader to look for the source and thus stimulates him to another form of activity.


From mosaic-like aspects to the system view between holistic, open and closed system, with the emphasis on the closed system.

In sketchy contributions, the complete range is discussed: the physical, earth-related to the far-off independent system and the psychic phenomenon of being self-contained for example in special diseases (amyottrophic lateral sclerosis).

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posted by S A J Shirazi @ 10:11 AM, ,


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posted by S A J Shirazi @ 11:09 AM, ,

Volunteers in Bamenda

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Volunteers again on site, In Bamenda at CAT, As well as in Alahkie at RDC (May2017):

Renate Perner and Lutz Fluegge coach Trainers, who pass on their knowledge to the Kids Club children. This time, as handicraft, chains were made from old paper. and in the context of Appropriate Technology, a toy with a reaction-drive.

Marlis Bartkiewitz-Schmid has worked in Alahkie at the RDC, as well as RUC in the area of treatment with traditional medicine.

Professor Pintsch was active in Bamenda and Alahkie. A proposal for infra-structure development between Bamenda and Malabo has been developed and a wood-saving furnace system introduced by CAT and the RUC in Alahkie. A presentation will take place in the next days at the Ministry in Yaounde.

The infrastructure proposal is to be seen in the context of the situation between the French and the British backgrounds and shows new ways, no matter how the current situation develops.

Additionally, a discussion took place between the departmental head for traditional medicine and the department head for Appropriate Technology of the RUC and its Vice Chancellor , Prof Pintsch, with the involvement of journalists.

For this year, another film is planned, the local participants would like to carry out an exhibition of the project in 2018.

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posted by S A J Shirazi @ 9:27 AM, ,

Royal Guest House in Cameroon - A sample of Preservation of Cultural Heritage

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posted by S A J Shirazi @ 9:28 AM, ,

About some considerations regarding Holistic System

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by Prof Pintsch / IPC, FBTC 

In various discussions concerning:  
- holistic 
- open and 
- closed system

different approaches were established. Although the foundations are the same, the arguments are different.

Out  of the nature based system with its holistic approach developed in an open system with its ever-increasing industrialization a totally fragmented way of thinking.

Tasks were increasingly more thought out with the side effect that that auxiliary factors were increasingly disregarded, which impacted the economy and led to the prevailing growth-oriented approach. This fact stands in contrast to the verbal assurances regarding environmental protection, resource protection, etc.

Growth and prosperity for all is suggested and the exploitation of the planet is forced, which affects the academic training as well. The consequences of the approach are rising costs in society and falling tax revenues, with tremendous growth of virtual money; the money supply stands in stark contrast to unproductive activities.

The closed system invariably results in a more concentrated way of thinking, which despite all differences, comes not even close to the holistic approach.

Mutation of the System

Result of fragmentation, also in field of science, in the XIX. Century, is the beginning of industrialization.

The originally holistic (complete) approach, in science the universal worldview, as it once prevailed, for example with Alexander von Humboldt, began to fragment itself increasingly.

In the German language the term "culture" as a preamble, has a special importance.

Diverse cultural factors result shape into a new culture; the influence of which can be decisive on the others.

There were times when the religion (Inquisition) was the determining factor in Europe, - nowadays it's the economy dominating with its influence - in research and science.

Faith and knowledge intersect into each other. Strong faith leads to knowledge and the knowledge becomes ignorant of how important the faith is.

Thanks to the fragmentation. a new approach developed and the holistic approach was gradually pushed back. Problems are therefore not resolved but postponed at short notice and for economic reasons; Problem shifting instead of problem solving!

Rising academic approach increases the gap between theory and practice, so that, accelerated by digitization and globalization, major structural changes occur, which affectall fields of culture.

The knowledge gained here leads in all areas invariably to eruptions and to misunderstandings, since the Digital (incl. Virtual Reality) appears to be superior to the original approach and the human intelligence with its inherent processes of complex hormonal and biochemical interactions is absolutely underestimated.

Add to that the fact that the laws of nature are valid only on this planet and the human being as subject and object at the same time is not able to come out of himself.

He is trapped in himself, while he is being altered rapidly through the technical advancement without realizing the consequences and without recognizing the changes.

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posted by S A J Shirazi @ 2:35 PM, ,

Our Cameroon Fish Market crowded by imported fish

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by Aaron Yancho Kaah

Cameroon boast of a steady fish market in sub-Sahara Africa yet much of the fish consumed in the country is imported. This has brouht a complete hard ship for farmers who depended on this sector for survival.

Of late low local production has led to a hike in prices. "Fish which use to be a source of protein for the common man and most low income earning households is now consumed by the rich". Bonue adoph a fish trader in Bamenda, Cameroon remarked.

To fix these challenges, Cameroon government in 2011 through the ministry of fisheries and livestock initiated broad-based community campaigns to get more farmers involve in inland fish cultivation. Statistics estimated 176.000tons of fish was produced in Cameroon annually with only 1000tons harvested through the aquaculture sector or inland fishing projects. This represented 0.1% of the national production index according to Mr. Keng Wilfred Nshom of the ministry of trade and industry. "Despite the available natural resources that provided a good level ground for quality and quantitative fish production, sustainability in the sector was still a major challenge"Wilfred Remarked.

Cameroon spents close to 100billion frances cfa each year to supplement the production deficit which is estimated to cost 230.000tons of fish according to officials in the ministry of livestock and fisheries.

Nonetheless a few passionate fish farmers have been brazing the storms to make a fine living out of the sector. Chief Agaki Solomon in the south west region of Cameroon posits that a year of good harvest brings good fortunes for his household. "But unfortunately for us the harvest is never the best," he said.

Pond fish farming actually started on Cameroon in the early 1950. The lack of adequate infrastructures and institutions to boast the sector had seen it limping from challenge to the next. To go by the findings of Pouomogne V and pemsl in a publication entitled the Development and Status of fresh water aquaculture in Cameroon in 2008, The fish sector in Cameroon is far from realizing it potentials. The research affirms that, "Fish is a preferred protein source for most rural households because it is cheap as compared to other protein sources like meat , chicken or beef."

Although there is a big challenge for fingerlings stirring this sector in the face, many obstacles still abound. Finance to open up fish farming projects, the lack of well-organized farmer self-help groups, the lack of good fish farming skills and the dominant use of earthen ponds rather than modern structures leave the sector at a want for help.

In the rural communities where most farmers are poor and want to fine hope and a better life in the sector, the absences of good fish varieties and poor feeding systems of the ponds aggravate their woes. "we just keeping struggling.... and struggling". Edge Sophia a fish farmers in the Bambalang village in NW, Cameroon affirmed their difficulties.

In Cameroon earthen ponds are the commonest fish farming structures for inland fishing across the country up to date. "This has resulted to low production ... and without any benefits from the sector many of our farmers are bound to leave the sector"..Nguma Mamah a fish farmer in Ndop said. The resulting consequences have brought untold suffering for these rural poor. "We lack income for urgent needs and can't maintain a balance diet as well".Mamah remarked. The urgent wish at hand is to upscale production. But all these dreams are still live in the hands of the poor farmers who see very little efforts coming from government to help them cope.

This lack of motivation is snow balling not only in to poverty but unemployment for the rural youths.
In Mbengwi sub division of the NW region of Cameroon alone there are at least 250 fish ponds owned by some 160 fish farmer initiatives. But not all of these ponds are active. "The enormous challenges and the lack of means to improve production are demoralizing factors". One of the fish farmers Ndi Samuel remarked. The harvest for these farmers is mostly at end of year meant for family consumption. "Very few farmers have surplus for sale in the local markets," Samuel said.

One point that gets attention in this community is that the Ku-Bome fish station a government sponsored fish fattening and fingerlings producing projects is operating below its capacity. Their objectives to follow up farmers and to educate them on the benefits of this sector are still only on paper. From the initial stages, 35ponds were pinpointed in this pilot project. "The lack of water hampered the smooth functioning of these ponds as only 8 are operational" Sammy remarked. Two of the dams that were expected to be supplying water to the ponds had long collapsed. The lack of staff to keep the vision of the project had poised another challenge. Anyangwa Theophile and his secretary are the only full time workers in this project. Theophile regrets that alone he cannot follow up farmers in the remotest and land locked areas of the division without a vehicle. Theophile has not relented too. His been encouraging farmers to show the same interest and commitment to fish farming as they do for poultry and pig farming. "Farmers invest in pig breeding because over the years they have learnt that it can yield them good income" he said. Theophile has a proposal. " I think NGO can boast the sector by providing fingerlings, feed and technical follow-up to the farmers to help them reap the benefits of their labour" Theophile opined.

A farmer who has taken the bull by the horn in fish farming is pastor Jessy Ngang in the city of Bamenda. Ngang is spearheading a project aimed at encouraging inland fish farming at the semi urban villages around Bamenda. Yet the inertia in the sector is still unabated. "The lack of financing and technical follow up are the main challenges" He said. On the whole proper organization of the fish farming sector could boast household income, nutrition and create jobs for the youth across Cameroon.

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posted by S A J Shirazi @ 2:29 PM, ,

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