BarnCamp 2010 Workshops

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Have a gander at this page for the schedule of sessions for this year's BarnCamp.

Contents


Notes of Worskhops

Open BarnCamp Workshops

2010 Workshop Notes BarnCamp

Why would I want to use Indymedia?

Mark R

Short Description:

A discussion about the importance of open newswires and how the praxis of citizen journalism can build community. I'm offering this because I've been doing some outreach work recently for my Indymedia collective. This has made me think about the importance of open newswires (text and multimedia) and their interaction with listings/announcements as a means of developing (political) community. My thinking about it is captured in this sketchy diagram, which I'm hoping can be bettered by the end of the session.


Aggregation websites and citizen media

Mick Fuzz

Short Description:

An update to the great workshop done by planet last year. Sites which bring together rss feeds, podcasts, twitter feeds, event / iCal feeds all based on user generated content and social bookmarking continue to be a great source of information. How can use these tools in an accessible and ethical way?

Presentation Workshops

Please put down your workshops here if they are mainly presentation based.

Citizen Video Journalist Network workshop

Facilitator: PaulO, Hamish Campbell, Richard Hering

Length/type: 60 minutes presentation

Short Description: Would you like to join a network of motivated people filming their own news? visionOntv & Undercurrents are seeking people with camcorders to build a 'Citizen Journalists Network'.

BRING YOUR SMART PHONE / STILLS CAMERA with video / VIDEO CAMERA and be a citizen reporter right away!

Full description:

Citizen Journalism : 'Participation by citizens in gathering and distributing news. Aims to provide an independent and alternative viewpoint to traditional news organisations.'

Would you like to help build a network of motivated people filming their own news? Support your local community and campaign groups by producing regular quality fast-turnaround video news.

During this workshop we will introduce the concept with examples of how people have used their video cameras for social change.

If you have a have the desire to make a differences and tell story's come and check the project out. More info on http://visionon.tv/production or http://www.undercurrents.org/training

Found Sounds & Live Coding Playshop

Facilitator: Mark R

Length/type: 30 minutes presentation/practical & 20 minutes performance

Short Description: Stand-by activity to do if a proper workshop is cancelled at the last minute

Are you up for collaboration? Hell yes, I have more to learn than to teach

Full description: The plan would be for a 20-30 minute barcamp-style session preparing an experimental musical piece, to be performed on Saturday Night as part of the entertainment programme. I don't see this as a core part of what Hacktionlab is about, but there are some "transferrable skills" in audio manipulation & live-coding so I propose it as a stand-by if something better gets cancelled

The barcamp-style part of the event could involve finding some sounds from around the site then sampling them to be triggered using Hydrogen to form a soundscape, and/or using Puredata and/or Supercollider to code up some oscillations, depending on people's interests. If it flies then a small group could re-convene after the workshop programme finishes, make a few loops and prepare a performance. People wanting to make non-electronic noises (e.g. banging shit, shouting) would also be encouraged to join in. If we lose power completely, prepare to behold the wonders of the vegetable orchestra!



Practical Workshops

Please put down your workshops here if they are hands-on practical workshops. Ones where people are asked to bring their own equipment, set up an account on a service and step through activties etc.


Citizen Video Journalist Hands On

Facilitator: PaulO, Hamish Campbell, Richard Hering

Length/type: 60 minutes hands on workshop

Short Description: A hands on workshop with the motivition to help build a 'Citizen Journalists Network'.


Full description:

During this workshop we will build on the introduction of how people have used their video cameras for social change.

BRING YOUR SMART PHONE / STILLS CAMERA with video / VIDEO CAMERA and be a citizen reporter right away!

We'll look at using these technologies to get a report up on the web immediately.

If you have a have the desire to make a differences and tell story's come and check the project out. More info on http://visionon.tv/production or http://www.undercurrents.org/training


Get your Windows or Apple computer running Linux too! (Dual Boot)

Facilitator: Andy and Bristol Wireless people

Length/type: 60 minutes practical

Short Description: You'll learn how to take a laptop with Windows or Mac operating system and install Linux on it. This will most likely be Ubuntu or you could choose Debian as well.

Are you up for collaboration? It would be good to have some people floating around to be able to give 1-to-1 help to anyone who gets stuck.

Full description:

You'll find out how to install an extra operating system on your computer so that you can try out Linux. It's pretty easy to do, but it's nice to do together with people who can help you out if it gets confusing. There are loads of things that are much easier to do on Linux computers and if you learn Linux it means your computer life will be bullet proof!

Requirements: This session should be early on so that people can get the most out of later sessions. You will need to bring a laptop computer with Windows or Mac operating system on it. Or you can watch how it's done.

It is important to backup your data files to an external backup medium before attempting a dual-boot install (or any other hard drive manipulation), in case your hard drive becomes corrupted during the process. External hard drives, USB flash drives, and multiple DVDs or CDs are useful as external backup media. It's good to do this before you arrive if possible. Also if you have your copy of Windows or OSX then please bring that along as well.

The Command Line Interface Is Easy and Fun

Facilitator: Mark R

Length/type:  ? minutes practical

Short Description: Simple orientation exercises for people who haven't used 'the command line' much. A command-line interface (CLI) is a mechanism for interacting with a computer operating system or software by typing commands to perform specific tasks. This text-only interface contrasts with the use of a mouse pointer with a graphical user interface (GUI) to click on options, or menus on a text user interface (TUI) to select options. This workshop is going to be getting people to open a terminal emulator then use Commands like 'cd, ls, nano, less and man'. Then we'll have a quick look at the fun-fun-fun anagram generator "an" to show how switches and parameters work, pipe output to less, write output to a file.

Are you up for collaboration? Yes. It would be good to have some people floating around to be able to give 1-to-1 help to anyone who gets stuck.

Full description:

Many people who give the command line a try are so amazed by its possibilities that they do not even want to go back to a graphical user interface! Why? Well, in brief, the command line offers the following main advantages over common graphical software:

  • Flexibility. With graphical programs you sometimes hit a limit, finding that you just can't do what you want or need to find cumbersome work-arounds to program limits.
  • Reliability. Graphical programs are often immature or even unstable. In contrast, most of the tools that the command line offers are highly reliable.
  • Speed. Fancy graphics eat up a lot of your hardware's resources, often resulting in slowness or instability. The command line, on the other hand, uses the computer's resources much more sparingly, leaving memory and processing power for the tasks that you actually want to accomplish.
  • Experience. Using the command line is a great learning experience. When you use the command line, you communicate with your computer more directly than with graphical programs.
  • Fun. Have you ever wanted to be like those cool computer hackers who can make a GNU/Linux machine do things that you haven't even dreamed of? Almost all of them do that using the command line. Once you have learned how to use this powerful tool, you will find yourself doing fun and interesting stuff that you hadn't even thought to be possible.


Requirements: This should be very early in the programme, to enable people to get the most out of later sessions. You will need to bring a laptop computer with a GNU/linux (or similar) operating system already installed and working. (See other workshop). Please make sure that your battery is charged up, so we don't have to find lots of mains sockets. It would also save time on the day if you could have the "an" program already installed - again, ask for help if you need it. It's in the debian and ubuntu repositories; see also http://packages.debian.org/lenny/an if your geeky friend offers to help you compile the source code.

Getting encrypted

Facilitator: ana p

Length/type: 60 minutes, more if people require individual assistance and/or if there are many of them

Short Description: How to get all set up to send your emails securely and even encrypted - graphically and easily

Are you up for collaboration? Yes. It would also be good to have some people floating around to be able to give 1-to-1 help to anyone who gets stuck.

Full description: Using Thunderbird's OpenPGP extension, people who attended the first, more theoretical workshop on the subject, will end up being able to set themselves up to use encryption at least in its most basic level. We'll use only graphical interfaces unless absolutely indispensable.

Requirements: You will need to bring a computer, preferably with a GNU/linux (or similar) operating system already installed. Thunderbird is in the ubuntu repositories. Otherwise please make sure you have Mozilla Thunderbird already installed with its OpenPGP extension, although there might be people who can help you install all that if you can't do it at home. Please make sure that your battery is charged up if you can, so we don't have to find lots of mains sockets.

Short Description: What is the difference between using and not using a "secure connection" for email? What is the difference between plain and encrypted email? Why should I use any of those?

Are you up for collaboration? In what I can ...

Full description: Think of emails as letters carried in lorries, think of corporate and state authorities as flying in planes or similar from where they can see those letters. The lorries can either have their tops covered, or not, and they may travel on open roads, or through tunnels, and the choice of lorry is yours. Then you can also think of emails as messages in a box that can be either open or closed, and you have the option to put a good or a super-good lock on it. And so on.

Renewables and 12 volt

Title of Workshop: 12 volt heaven - an introduction to renewables and DC

Name and contact : Mike Harris / JimDog

Length: 60 mins

Short Description: What are renewables all about, what is DC and AC and what's the pros and cons.

Type: practical

Are you up for collaboration? Yes

Full Description:

This is a practical workshop where we will look at how renewable energy works and what different ways are there to generate it, covering topics such as solar panels and pedal generators, but also how to use a vehicle engine to charge on-board batteries whilst moving.

We'll cover the different types of batteries out there, the differences between AC and DC and we'll look into the renewable energy equation: how many panels does it take to charge x batteries? how many batteries does it take to provide x power for y amount of time?

We'll also look at the possibilities for events, such as solar-powered cinemas and internet spaces.

We encourage people to bring their ideas and set-ups with them to this workshop.

Editing Audio with free tools (Audacity and Ardour)

Facilitator: Mick and Mike

Length/type: 90 minutes practical

Short Description: You'll learn how to use a voice recorder, transfer files to a computer, basic editing, saving and uploading to the Internet. Perfect for making short audio reports, radio shows or jingles / adverts.

Are you up for collaboration? No, there's a lot to fit in so we'll be motoring.

Full description: Audio is a really intimate form of communication and is a lot easier to learn than Video editing. There are lot of community radio projects already out there, and if not then you can set up an Internet radio project quite quickly. We'll try to get you started with the technical skills that you need. Even if you are aware of some of these skills you might be interested in seeing how we can teach them in a short space of time, you might want to do a similar workshop.

We'll quickly cover how to use a voice recorder, including how to choose good ones to buy or avoid! Then we'll transfer files to a computer and do some basic editing, We'll cut out pauses, get rid of random noise and embarrasing bits of interviews. Then we'll look at saving the audio and uploading it to the Internet. This workshop is perfect for making short audio reports, radio shows or jingles / adverts.

For more indepth audio projects you may need to use a more advanced programme called ardour. This is only available for Linux programmes. But we'll look at it to see how it overcomes some of the limitations of Audacity.


Requirements:

If you can bring a computer with Audacity installed on it then that would be great. Also if you have a voice recorder that can record Wav or mp3 files then bring it too!

Food Forraging

Title of Workshop: Food Forraging is fun and legal (still)

Name and contact : Ben G

Length: 120 mins

Short Description: Food Forraging is fun and legal (still)

Type: practical

Are you up for collaboration? Yes oh yes

Full Description:

Walking around looking for food and plants useful in other ways too. Learning to indentify what's edible and what's poisonous.

Requirements: Footwear suitable for walking on country paths in.

Free software desktop publishing

Title of Workshop: Free software desktop publishing

Name and contact : Ben Green

Length: 90 mins

Short Description: Free software desktop publishing

Type: practical

Are you up for collaboration? Yes, the more the better. Contact me. I hope to find one person for each package, but will take on any myself that I can't find a person for.

Full Description:

Free software provides many tools like GIMP, Scribus and Inkscape. This workshop will take us each of the tools demonstrating and give a fun practical task for each. We hope to use the LTSP suite for those who don't have the software, but here's the versions we hope to use in case you'd like to install them on your laptop before hand for the workshop:

  • http://inkscape.org/ - version 0.47, but I'll stick to the features from around 0.46 for the pratical, so old installs will be fine.
  • http://gimp.org/ - version 2.6.8, though once again, 2.4 fine for the practical
  • http://www.scribus.net/ - 1.3.3.12 or above (stable version), most people should have this or higher

2-dimensional animation with Synfig

Title of Workshop: 2-dimensional animation with Synfig

Name and contact : Ben G

Length: 30-90mins depending on how popular it's looking

Short Description: 2-dimensional animation with Synfig

Type: practical/demonstration

Are you up for collaboration?: Yes, get in touch.

Full Description:

Synfig is a powerful, industrial-strength vector-based open-source 2D animation software package, designed from the ground-up for producing feature-film quality animation with fewer people and resources. This is a workshop to introduce people to what it is and what it can do.

http://www.synfig.org/

Most people are unfamiliar with this software, so unless there's a big demand, I'll leave this as a short introduction. It's great fun though, so please let us know if you are keen and I'll big it up and communicate your enthusiasm. We'll use 0.62.00 for the workshop, it's the first really solid build that supports Windows. Install it on your laptop, if you Linux distro has an older version, don't worry, that'll be fine.

Requirements: A sense of adventure.

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