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Tom Barr in Portugal

Discussion in 'Aquatic Clubs, Events, and Announcements' started by Tom Barr, Jul 26, 2008.

  1. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    I will be speaking in Lisbon, Portugal Sept 20th, 2008 and doing a demo for the 5th Anniversity of Aquariofilia.net

    Hope to see you there!


    Tom Barr
     
  2. jazzlvr123

    jazzlvr123 Guru Class Expert

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    how was Portugal tom? I'm sure the planted hobby is really happening there. hope you had a good trip.
     
  3. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Well, one of their members placed in the top 10 for the ADA contest.
    They did not have high opinions of Amano however.

    This is what they said:

    More a sales trip, not much else, brought a pallet of product along with him would not answer any of their direct questions.

    Sounds very familiar:p

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  4. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
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    Is Amano's problem with questions that he is an artist and not well versed in the nitty gritty chemical/biological part of the hobby? At least that is how he comes across to me from what I read about him and from looking at his works.
     
  5. jazzlvr123

    jazzlvr123 Guru Class Expert

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    John Coltrane, Wes Montgomery, and Wayne Shorter were some of the best jazz musicians in the world. but they don't know or talk about/ analyze what they play they just hear it and execute. Wes Montgomery diddn't even know his major scales, or how to read music, or any of the basics, yet he is one of the most influential jazz guitarists in history.

    I think the same can be said about great aqua-scapers they see what they want and execute just because they don't know the science of whats going on in the tank like tom does doesn't mean they cant scape. however when you can talk the talk and walk the walk like Tom your opinion becomes a lot more educated thus more respected and valuable.
     
  6. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    I found it interesting after 4 events that the different folks and clubs had the same things to say about Amano. Nice guy etc, good sense of humor, but it's mostly a sales trip, look at my pretty pictures.
    I'm not sure you learn a lot. You speak to the club, you help them achieve their goals, not yours.

    I come as an educator however, not a business salesman. So what do you expect?

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  7. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Good analogy, however, my goal and Amano's are different.

    Actually, all hobbyist have different goals.
    If Muddy Waters wanted to impose his style on everyone, would we have had Stanly Jordan or Jimi Hendrix?

    Suppose Kenny G wanted every one to do his style?
    And folks listen(they do actually, he sells lots of CD's)........:(

    Amano is in business and the trips/talks are pretty much sales trips.
    SeaChem, Kent, virtually all businesses are doing this.

    These guys might like the hobby and all, but they are not specifically educators, that is only a part of the goal. I'm not selling a darn thing. Well, actually I do, articles here and maybe some trace mixes here shortly. But not a huge thing like any of the above. Small fries.

    Still, business, practical matters and science can and do work together.
    Not everyone is going to do the same method and the same field nor even has the time to run a business + do research. It's too much work.

    You cannot fault Amano. He is there to sell ADA. Greg from SeaChem is there to promote and sell SeaChem. For clubs, this is big draw.

    Amano is without a doubt a better scaper than I will, be, but I doubt he's going to pass a qualifying PhD exam either.............so we each have our strong points.

    Still, it's not his goal to do as such, nor mine to become the best scaper and photographer, I'd like to be better, but I judge myself on my own terms and goals, not those defined by others.

    As long as he, I or anyone can do what we like, does not matter.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  8. tedr108

    tedr108 Lifetime Charter Member
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    Analogy (as with most analogies, it has its weaknesses, but hopefully you'll get my point):

    Let’s say you have an illness and you need to go to someone for help…

    Interaction with healer A:

    A: Your problem can be fixed by drinking the special elixir here – only $50 a bottle.
    You: What is wrong with me?
    A: It doesn’t really matter. The magic elixir will cure it.

    Maybe the elixir cures you, maybe it doesn’t. Either way, what have you learned? Not much. How are you going to prevent your problem from coming back? You are dependent on some special elixir – this does not strengthen you. If your problem comes back, you have to go back to A to get more elixir.

    Interaction with healer B:

    B: Your problem is most likely caused by this, this or this. (B goes on to tell you what you can do to cure this problem and to avoid it in the future. He doesn’t even sell you anything, just guides you to the nearest cheap supplier of whatever supplements you need. Nothing magic, no secrets … simple down-to-earth instructions.)
    You: Thank you, I understand now.

    After your interaction with healer B, you have knowledge to deal with your problem – it strengthens you. If your problem comes back, you can deal with it yourself.

    So, which one is Tom and which one is the others?
     
  9. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Well, I think each brings something to the table. Many assume that scaping = means they know everything............they must etc...................

    While there are many great gardener's there are many that simply know little about plants and how to set up a test or rule things out etc etc.

    Likewise, plenty of folks that know science and plants, but cannot grow plastic plants...........

    Still, hobbyist assume that a nice looking tank automatically means that this person knows every detail and why their system is working.

    ADA is not just Amano either. He has other folks working for him............and has done his own share of trials..........he's not as ignorant as he might come across.
    He also spends a lot of time setting up tanks, taking photo's, trimming and basic gardening. If you add enough CO2 and have a good handle on the visual cues, the test kits really matter little.

    Something both Amano and myself tend to agree on but from different paths.

    Many folks do not care, a photo sells them. They also do not want to know why, just what to do, what to buy to make it happen. Cookie cutter stuff.
    You cannot buy experience and the hard work.
    But you can sell the preception..............
     
  10. jazzlvr123

    jazzlvr123 Guru Class Expert

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    very well said, you need to write a book ;)
     
  11. thief

    thief Junior Poster

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    Hmm... certainly changed a couple of my views on creating an aquascape!

    lol I agree with Jazz, you should right a book about the true aquascaper! I can see it now selling well on the shelfs at the book store.;)
     
  12. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    There are DVD's of me doing a scape there in Portugal, as well as them doing it as well.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  13. admin_old

    admin_old Administrator
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    I agree! If he does, it will be one of the best contributions to the hobby in 100 years!

    The troublesome part is how do you write a book, print it with quality pictures and break even ... the pricing is tough! The cost to print the book is high - not to mention the cost in terms of time and effort to create it. The price you have to charge just to break even on the printing and production cost is often prohibitive.

    And then you have to listen to complaints about the high price from the very hobbyist community that you have now essentially "DONATED" all of your time to ...

    There is not a lot of thanks given to people like Tom for their contributions to the hobby - and the financial realities of the cost to publish a book of any visual quality - makes that a challenge to just break even.

    Greg Watson
     
  14. zalun

    zalun Junior Poster

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    One does not really have to print a book to sell it. Most of the time PDF is fine. If it sells well - print the book - if not - just a waste of time, not money
     
  15. Jag1980

    Jag1980 Junior Poster

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    A book that explains in high detail on how each of the macro nutrients work and a explanation in how Micro nutrients work. Then explain what happen when they are mixed together and also what happens when they are mixed together with some nutrients left out and what reactions in may change.
    Then what lighting does to plant on how they grow and what happens when the lights come on and go of and how that affects how they take in nutrients. High light plants need more of what nutrient and lower light plants may need ore of another. ect..ect.. Then add how kH and Gh affect the nutrients the plants take in and how water flow can stimulate the plants. A book like this would be very helpful to every person who is serious about keeping a healthy tank.

    I'm still learning and I have learned allot and when I do help other people who have no clue in anything they seem to think I crazy.. I even had people hang up on me while I was explaining to them what they will need for what they where wanting to do.. This was one of those I drop everything in my tank they have at the pet store and I will have a awesome tank kind of people..

    Short answers are good for a answer but not for understanding why.

    This was a bunch of babble but you get the idea of what I'm trying to say.
    If there was a book out there like this I would love to buy it and I'm sure everyone else would to you cared about there tank.

    If "Clifford" the big red dog can sell a book, I'm sure a book on this stuff would sell if it was published.
    Is there any books out there like the one I described?
     
  16. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    No, not in book form. Many get their info via the web;)
    Problem with that web source.......is that many assume everything on the web is fact and true, then act all hurt and surprised when they find out there's conflict and that might not be true. Then they complain about it.

    Come on, you know better than that.
    This is the web.

    I had the same complain and went through that myself, but it was with the books, LFS's and magazines. The web should be much more obvious;)

    I think what should be done in a book is really the bottom line about what you can really say, and be straight forward about what you cannot say. Also, I think Diana Walstad's book is excellent, but even there, she makes mention of things she is speculating upon.............but many read it as fact unfortunately. I know she did never intended folks to do that, but I see and read it all the time.

    My fear is that folks will warp what I say, this happens a lot, and misinterpt it. I also realize that some of that will occur no matter what and that much of things I discuss fly in the face of: brand names and making money for LFS's, chains, and other vendors selling things for the hobby, beats the crap out of a lot of dogma that has long held sway over the planted hobby for decades.

    I sort of feel a bit like Darwin being reluctant to publish his Origin of Species:eek:
    Not so much in the importance, rather the conflict it shall cause in this little world of plated tanks.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  17. Jag1980

    Jag1980 Junior Poster

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    I like finding a good page of facts and learning from that, but allot of the times it's so short that it leaves me with more questions.
    Some people want to know how much light they will need to get what type of growth from there plants. I'm the kind of person who wants to know what the light is doing to the plant to make it do what it does in full. Then I will have a better understanding of what my plants are doing and not just viewing what happen. That makes sense? :rolleyes:
    Knowing these types of answers will help to answer your own question instead of asking for help and getting 10 different answers. Allot of time I will post on 3 or 4 different forums just to compare all the different answers and work from that :) Seems to work out alright that way, but most the time it's just a chosen option and no 100% understanding of the fact that go with it. I noticed that when people give you answers they say are the right way to solve a certain problem, you then ask them details about it and they don't really know because there knowledge that they are passing on was just a answer they got from someone else. haha..

    I will try to get find the Diana Walstad's book, sounds like it might be one of the best books out there for the plant hobby?
    Most people take what they read as fact probably it's the only answers that make sense, and the person who explains something with the most detail wins :) Sometimes

    Would be nice to have a book that can be read over and over and to learn something new each time you read it. I like to teach others what I learn, but I like to know it as a fact and not just a answer.

    Any other books you recommend?

    I think you should write a book.
    At least start one and see where it takes you?
    It doesn't need to be a big book, just a little hand book would be good,
    just as long as it doesn't leave anything out ;)
     
  18. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Her book is certain worthy, I do not agree with some things but it's not a personal thing either, they are things I've tested and found not to be true and set up alternative test to show that.

    But they are plausible, until tested and shown otherwise...........

    I also like that she chose the non CO2 approch instead.
    There is a strong bias to CO2 enrichment on the web and in the plant hobby.
    This is both good and bad.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  19. Jag1980

    Jag1980 Junior Poster

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    I will keep that in mind while reading, thank you
     
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