Warning: It’s late, parts of this post might not make sense.
We had a great Manaiakalani meeting tonight. We did our usual update on where we are at with issues and current development objectives, but then we revisited our design principles. This was a very useful exercise as there have been changes since the design principles were written. These changes were made because of indepth honest discussions that we have had over the last six months at our meetings – rowdy, passionate discussions where lots of points of view were brought to light and thrashed about.
We had lots of guests at our meeting and we were given feedback which was very useful. Helen Barrett in particular as she gave us her feedback in terms of a change process as well as suggesting we invite teachers to come to the meeting. Also really useful feedback came from Erin Barrett who said something along the lines of: everyone in this room has got it (the process, the risks etc), we need to educate the stakeholders (connect them to what we are doing). There were others who gave feedback so it was a really rich opportunity.
I want to come back to the inviting teachers feedback. Dorothy and I spoke about this later in the evening and she reminded me that it is voluntary to attend. When she said that I saw that it is the same problem as we experience with the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) community. There are lots of developers in the olpc community but not anywhere near as many teachers. No matter how much OLPC emphasise “it’s an education project” not a laptop project, many people still perceive OLPC to be about laptops and perceive that you can only contribute if you know how to write code. The reality is very far from the truth. There are lots of other ways to contribute, whether that be translation, distribution, funding, education, promotion, research, the list goes on. I am not a developer and I am contributing to Manaiakalani and OLPC. In both Manaiakalani and OLPC the voices that need to be heard and need to lead the decision making are the voices of learners and teachers, and I think the role of the developers is to facilitate the changes, so technology is developed to be appropriate to the pedagogy desired.
An absolute highlight of the meeting was having three students with us. They were invited to participate as equals to us, to raise questions and put forward ideas, but I think they were quite shy. We had some time at the end of the meeting which we used to talk with the students and we ended up talking about their career aspirations and fields of study in science. I look forward to seeing their blog posts about their experience attending “the Manaiakalani Hackers meeting”.
The preparations for olpc Community Summit are obviously well under way with the final details meeting yesterday. We packed folders for attendees with maps and info, we talked through the logistics and were shown the rooms we will be using.
|From San Francisco 2010|
The venue is fantastic, with one of the most extensive food courts I have ever seen as well as plenty of restaurants for feeding the masses. We enjoyed a vietnamese lunch to confirm the quality
|From San Francisco 2010|
I fly out on Monday evening 18 October and will meet with Pablo Flores at the airport. That is pretty exciting as Pablo is from Uruguay, has been working with Plan Ceibal, and is a researcher. Lots to talk about with Pablo.
Alex Kleider is picking us up from the airport and hosting us – thanks Alex!
I will try to find time each day to blog about what I did and share photos
You can read about the olpc Community Summit by visiting http://olpcsf.org/CommunitySummit2010/
A massive thank you to Internet NZ for funding me to go to the olpc Community Summit that will be held in San Francisco from 22-24 October 2010. Information about this event can be found here: http://olpcsf.org/CommunitySummit2010/
I am particularly looking forward to meeting some of the people I have spoken to so regularly online and getting to hear face to face about some of the great work that people are doing for olpc. The sharing of ideas and planning for the future will be fantastic.
Yesterday afternoon while working on Pecha Kucha slides with Fabiana my car got broken into. I had made the mistake of leaving the GPS on its stand attached to the windscreen and some nasty person passing by decided to smash the window and grab the GPS. Pecha Kucha is on Tuesday 28 September at Juice Bar, 144 Parnell Road. Entry is $9 and it starts at 8:15pm. We are talking on one laptop per child. Read about it here or here.
|From Drop Box|
Anyway, back to the point of my blog post. The theft happened in Parnell between 4pm and 6pm. I have a car alarm but we didn’t hear it from the apartment. The thief did not look for anything else in the car so luckily they didn’t take my wallet (it was not in plain sight but in the centre console).
We had an olpc XO with us but we had taken that into the apartment (again, XOs don’t get left in plain sight, if it is left in the car it is in the boot and hidden by the parcel tray).
The whole event freaked out my ten year old niece who was hanging out with us.
|From Drop Box|
It is also quite annoying to have the job of cleaning up after a break-in and all that time lost when you have other things to do with your time. The car insurance company said the replacement of the glass is covered by my insurance with no charges but you then have to take time out of work to get the glass replaced (thanks Elaine for lending us a car for a couple of days). If we want to claim insurance on the GPS then we have to pay the insurance excess, which is not much less than what the GPS is worth so doesn’t seem worth the headache with the insurance company. Our alternative navigation method is already being discussed and we are likely to just use the Android phone instead of getting another GPS.
Lesson learned – don’t leave the GPS in plain sight, even in the day time, no matter where you park.