BarnCamp 2017 workshop proposals

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Contents


Workshop Ideas

Example Entry

Proposed by
Exampley Mc Exampleface
Time
3-4 years
Level
Some experience of using a wiki required
Resources
Laptop and 10 mice, USB hub (10 port)
Number
up to 10 people all huddled round a laptop and USB hub with 10 mice in it

You will learn how to make generic fictional entries into wiki pages, demostrating the format of the page expected, together with some humour. You will also use bullet points to:

  • show how bullet points are used in Mediawiki
  • add some much needed recursive self reference
  • make friends

You'll then finish off your description with how exciting workshop will be, or with an uncomfortable orphan sentence type paragraph.

This is the end of the example.

Coding

Life's a Git, and then you use it

Proposed by
adelayde
Time
45 mins (talk/demo) to 2 hours (interactive workshop)
Level
experience of using the Linux, Windows or OS X command line.
Resources
projector, laptop, people can bring their own laptops (or use BW laptop suite if it still exists).

How to use Git in essence. How to keep it simple.

  • what Git is and what uses can it be put to
  • how does it work (branches, commits and repositories)
  • how to set one up for your file system
  • how to add files and commit them
  • how to delete files and commit them
  • how to roll-back and move the HEAD about
  • how to clone a repository
  • what GitHub is and how to set up a remote bare bones master repository
  • how to push and pull
  • what to do when you get in a mess

Audio signal processing using interactive python

Proposed by
Marcus V
Time
1 h 45 mins
Level
To appreciate the sounds and laugh (hopefully) at the jokes: none. To follow the maths: undergraduate level maths or physics or engineering or computer science.
Resources
projector, laptop, PA to play the sounds.

Marvel as I attempt to compress a term's worth of undergraduate level signal processing content into 90 minutes. Using interactive python we will whip up a drawbar organ, a fuzz box, a classic disco bass line and much more from first principles.

Spectogram of all 16 DTMF tone combinations.png

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Legacy Code

Proposed by
adelayde
Time
45 minutes
Level
experience of programming at a intermediate to advanced level - nerd gag warning!!
Resources
projector, laptop (have one)
Number
any

Legacy Code. I never wrote it; everybody else did! How many times have you waded through an ageing, decaying, tangled forrest of code and wished it would just die? How many times have you heard someone say that what really needs to happen is a complete rewrite? I have heard this many times, and, have uttered that fatal sentence myself. But shouldn’t we love our legacy code? Doesn’t it represent our investment and the hard work of ourselves and our predecessors?

Throwing it away is dangerous, because, before we do, we’ll need to work out exactly what it does, and we’ll need to tweeze out that critical business logic nestled in a deeply entangled knot of IF statements. It could take us years to do, and we’ll have to maintain two systems whilst we do it, inevitably adding new features to them both. Yes we get to reimplement using the latest, coolest programming language, instead of an old behemoth, but how long will our new cool language be around, and who will maintain that code, when it itself inevitably turns to legacy?

We can throw our arms in the air, complaining and grumbling about how we didn’t write the code, how we would never have written it the way it is, how those that wrote it were lesser programmers, possibly lesser humans themselves, but the code still remains, staring us in the face and hanging around for longer that we could possibly imagine. We can sort it out, we can improve it, we can make it testable, and we can learn to love our legacy code.

System Administration

Introduction to CiviCRM

Proposed by
Cassidy McGurk
Time
1 to 2 hours
Level
No experience necessary
Resources
Projector, fast laptop, internet access for attendees
Number
up to 15?

CiviCRM is an Open Source project to produce better than commercial CRM for campaigns and not-for-profit organisations | More on CiviCRM

Basic introduction for newbies with hands-on examples of basic administration tasks

Communities Skill Swap

Proposed by
Cassidy McGurk
Time
2 hours
Level
None
Resources
None
Number

Many barn campers are active members of different community-based projects, whether that is an Open Source project on the net or a local tech collective or a housing co-op. I'd like to lead an open discussion on what our project's structures, processes, successes and failures can learn from each other

Media Applications

GIMP 2.10 prospective new features demo

Proposed by
Ben Green
Time
0.5 to 1 hour depending on takers.
Level
No experience of gimp necessary.
Resources
Projector, fast laptop.
Number
any number of people

GIMP has come a long way since 2.8, but hardly anyone has seem the results. The hugely long development cycle leaves us punters mostly in the dark. This talk seeks to inspire GIMP users, and potential GIMP users about what's happened, why, and the implications artists, developers, and for the nature of the universe.

Scribus

Proposed by
Ben Green
Time
2 hours
Level
No experience of Scribus needed.
Resources
Projector, fast laptop.
Number
Max 10 or so

Scribus is one of the best publishing packages available. I'll show you how to use it to get documents together quickly. We'll be using the latest 1.5 development release.

Each person will need a copy installed, I'll post details, it's an easy package to install as there are Windows builds and an AppImage for Linux.

Command Line Guru Conversion Course Parts 1 and 2

Proposed by
Ben Green
Time
.5 - 2 hours
Level
No experience needed
Resources
Some computer of some sort
Number
up to 20

Taking beginner and intermediate users through command line use of a linux computer. For those with windows, we'll take you through first connecting to a linux computer. Part 2 will be for those who's thirst for knowledge was not sated by Part 1.

Greener Tech / Energy Descent

(Still) re-using computers in our communities

Proposed by
MaRk
Time
1 - 2 hours depending on number of people
Level
Some experience of keeping old computers in use
Resources
Nothing special
Number
up to 20

At the last BarnCamp, we had a discussion about personal computer re-use, and how this could be linked to community education and different kinds of organisation/business. Many BarnCampers are involved with these kind of activities. Let's catch up with how we've been developing our re-use practices (e.g. lessons learned from setting up http://re-pute.it/), take stock of current challenges and resources available, and talk about how we can support each other as a network of practitioners.

Practical activities

activism

Proposed by
xyz
Time
.5 - 2 hours
Level
No experience needed
Resources
a modicum of enthusiasm
Number
up to 20

how to make a difference. Discussions on applying tech skills to aiding activism. How to get involved. How to explore and expand interests. Current topics of interest. Where are efforts best aimed?

12/240 volt electrics for a campervan refit

Proposed by
Adelayde
Time
1 hour
Level
No previous experience, but if you know some DC electric stuff, it'd help me!
Resources
Project for inside bit (possibly), but otherwise outside at van
Number
As many as can practically see

I've recently done up my third van for use as a camper. I've installed a secondary battery supply to provide both 12volt DC and 240volt AC supplies. Thought I'd show folks around how it fits together and what kit you need. Will try to cover:

  • batteries one can use
  • cables and connectors
  • split charge relays
  • fuses
  • 12 volt lighting
  • 240 volt cabling and inverters
  • RCD protection of 240volt circuits
  • Earthing
  • Some basic theory if there's time

The workshop should be pretty exciting. We can look at some theory, before or after, having a look at the van wiring and discussing how I did it, and how you could do it.

Cool Running

Proposed by
MaRk
Time
1-2 hours
Level
none - could be inclusive of kids with supervision
Resources
laptops of varying ages (participants to bring their own)
Number
up to 5 people at once, but can drift in & out - informal

This activity uses a plug-in 240V power meter to measure power consumption of laptops, from which the battery has been removed. Each user is asked to get their lappy to run some standard tasks (e.g. play a video, or more formal benchmarks), and its power consumption is measured. Participants can then compare how energy-hungry their machine is compared to others, and how much energy they can save by changing how they use the machine. I've done this at village fairs etc. and it gets people talking and thinking about tech and energy.

The activity can be adjusted according to the experience of attendees...

  • we can go on to look at BIOS tweaks
  • sysctl / powertop adjustments
  • simple measures like reducing backlight levels
  • simple maths to convert energy use into CO2 emissions / what you Earthlings call 'Money'
  • demonstrates an experimental paradigm to people who might not like science
  • tabulating results and producing graphs of results


UnMonastery/ economic sustainability/UBI/War on Ca$h

Proposed by
Katalin, Patrice
Time
1 hr orso
Level
101 ( = no minimum level of entry)

Our proposals are low on tech aspects, maybe a nice diversion to more hard-core geeky talks/workshops.

Resources
human voice! (maybe slides could be shown, dunno yet!)
Number
Any number of people interested sitting in circle with the samovar in the middle.

(You can indicate yr preference for one of each of the two subject issues proposed)


Proposed by Katalin: The unMonastery project

https://web.archive.org/web/20160806025222/http://athens.unmonastery.org/ https://www.stirtoaction.com/article/unmonastery

("The unMonastery is a social clinic for the future. It is a place-based social innovation is aimed at addressing the interlinked needs of empty space, unemployment and depleting social services by embedding committed, skilled individuals within communities that could benefit from their presence.")


or: discussing how to achieve economic sustainability for small co-living co-working initiatives.

(Focusing more on the practical and organisational imperatives)


Proposed by Patrice: UBI: the movement for a Universal, unconditional basic income.

(here for a long Wikipedia entry making my talk entirely superfluous - but I still can serve Turkish tea!)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basic_income

For unrepentant geeks there is a crypto currency aspect to some UBI proposals. We could discuss these, though I am not a fan of what I've seen advanced yet - cf. Kate's & my talk on Bitcoin at BarnCamp 2015.


or: The War on Cash, and associated musing on the (bleak) future of Money as we know it.

see e.g. http://thelongandshort.org/society/war-on-cash (Brett Scott)


We intend to make our talk a place of conviviality and conmensality (Turkish tea!)

cf: https://talk.devuan.org/t/software-freedom-your-way/592

Cheers for now, p+7D! (only 2 coming to Barncamp!)

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