BarnCamp 2011 Workshop Proposals

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This page is for adding workshop proposal for future BarnCamp-style events and will most likely be used to develop the workshops to be run during BarnCamp 2011.

Barcamp1.jpg

We aim to keep half of the space for the weekend free so that people can turn up and arrange a workshop. This follows in the traditions of BarCamps and unconferences. However this is a hybrid event where there are also some planned workshops, this allows people time to prepare and lets other attendees know what kind of workshops are likely to happen.

Contents


Template

Copy and use the following template to describe your workshop idea:

Title of Workshop

Proposed by
put your name or alias here
Number of people
put min and max here, e.g. 5-20
Duration
put time in minutes, e.g. 45 mins
Required space
e.g. indoor, outdoor, field, barn, river
Facilities
say whether you need computers, a projector, a sledge hammer, etc.
Description
say something about your workshop in this space, write as much or as little as you like at this present time.

Audio, video & media

How to run your own activist radio station

Proposed by
adeladye5
Number of people
5-15
Duration
60-90 mins (90 required for good practical)
Required space
indoor
Facilities
projector, audio mixer, microphones, computer
Description
this workshop will look at how to set up and run a small internet radio station using low-cost off-the-shelf equipment and free software. It will look at what audio kit to have, how to use a simple audio mixer, microphones and techniques, different types of audio connectors, headphones, compressors and what help they can be, the pros and cons of external vs internal sound cards, software for streaming running under Linux/FreeBSD, Mac OS X and Windows, and the Icecast streaming server. It will also introduce several streaming platform projects (such as G.I.S.S) and look at how existing radio projects operate.


How and Why to set up an anonymous blogging network

Proposed by
m3shrom
Number of people
5-15
Duration
60 mins
Required space
indoor / barn
Facilities
projector
Description
Wordpress.com and Blogger.com are an amazing asset to online organisers. These services have done a lot of work to make setting up a website / blog and using it as easy as possible. However as media activists we can do an even better job by providing the same service and community with out the dangers of your anonymity being compromised, or your account being withdrawn for dubious reasons.

This workshop looks at the network23.org anonymous blogging service, as a template for other groups to use or to replicate. We'll look at the rationale behind it, how to promote anonymous blogging and the practicalities of how to set up a blogging network.


Distributed Social Networking With Diaspora

Proposed by
yossarian
Number of people
5-10
Duration
60 mins
Required space
indoor /barn
Facilities
projector, outbound network access, an available wireless lan in the barn
Description
To a greater extent than any other computer system in history, Facebook has connected humanity with itself - and with a ruthless surveillance-based business model. What alternatives exist? People obviously want the connectedness and communications options which social networks bring to the table, but are there ways to meet these needs without a centralized system? We'll examine a few of these political questions, and then dive into setting up our own "pod", part of the Diaspora social networking system.


Airtime - (Campcaster revisited) an online Radio Scheduler

Proposed by
m3shrom (someone else feel free to step in)
Number of people
5-10
Duration
60 mins
Required space
indoor
Facilities
projector
Description
At previous Hacktionlabs we've looked at Campcaster a radio scheduler, and well, rejected it. However, it has been rewritten from scratch with a different playlist technology (LiquidSoap). We'll get a version of it up and running in the Barn and use this session to learn how to use it and to test it. We may get our own radio station working for the weekend.

More info on AirTime here - http://en.flossmanuals.net/airtime/index/


Top tips for citizen journalists

Proposed by
penguin (I could facilitate this workshop, but would need input from others, especially on video, photography, audio)
Number of people
as many or as few are willing
Duration
60 - 120 mins?
Required space
Yes. Space is required. Could be anywhere
Facilities
Flip chart paper & stand. People that have citizen journalist skills (is it OK to talk about people as facilities?).
Description
For a time I've been thinking that it would be a good thing to provide people with few skills but lots of enthusiasm about how they can be good citizen journalists. The concept of this workshop is to bring people with these skills together a suck the expertise they have out of their heads in an accessible way for wanna be citizen journalists. For example:
  • 10 tips for writing effective news stories
  • 10 tips for shooting great video
  • 10 tips for interviewing (audio) people
  • 10 tips for taking powerful action photos
  • Others? You get the general idea.
  • Doing the above being mindful of activist security

The results (to be determined by those there on the day) might be something along the lines of a series of leaflets (produced at a later date) of top 10 tips on each topic.

Programming

The HTML 5 <canvas> element as seen through a fractal eye: a brief introduction

Proposed by
adelayde
Number of people
5-20
Duration
30-60 mins (depending on whether we go into the maths)
Required space
indoor
Facilities
a projector and screen, I'll supply the laptop.
Description
Years ago I was into fractals, and wrote a lot of code for the Atari ST with a friend to produce Mandelbrot and Julia sets. Recently I was excited to see that HTML 5 has an element <canvas> that allows you to draw directly in to it, so I ported the algorithm for producing Mandelbrot and Julia sets to Javascript so that I could have a play. I thought this might make an interesting workshop. It could cover:
  • A brief introduction to fractals, Benoit Mandelbrot, Gaston Julia, et al.
  • A look at an algorithm to produce a Mandelbrot Set, based on those given in the book The Science of Fractal Images, along with an introduction/refresher on imaginary and complex numbers and how the pictures are drawn.
  • Taking the formula Z -> Z*Z + C and turning it in to code in Javascript.
  • A code walkthough of the final solution.
  • Reflexions on what code be done to improve the fractal demo I've done: new features, and ideas for what we could do with <canvas>.

It's obviously a bit of a techie workshop this one, and it would help to have a background in maths (up to GCSE/O level would be helpfu) and some awareness of computer programming languages, especially familiarity with HTML and Javascript.

The slides for this workshop are downloadable from the Wiki.

Resources

Other tech

Serval

Proposed by
sam
Number of people
2-6
Duration
45 mins
Required space
indoor
Facilities
Computers and rooted android phones
Description
Serval is a temporary, self-organising, wifi mesh network running on Android phones. It is used to make peer to peer telephone calls using VOIP. The Wifi connection can be encyrpted for secure comms http://developer.servalproject.org/twiki/bin/view/Main/HowToInstallServalSoftware

Email accounts & lists - non-corporate options

Proposed by
penguin
Number of people
5-20
Duration
60 mins
Required space
indoor
Facilities
projector
Description
Why and how to use activists providers instead of Google, Hotmail, Yahoo, etc. Vague agenda is
  1. What's wrong with corporate providers?
  2. What are the alternatives?
  3. How to set up email accounts and lists on non-corporate providers.
  4. Social (i.e. non-tech) considerations in setting up & managing email lists.

Help! - would be great to talk to a aktivik person about this workshop.

TAILS

Proposed by
Ben Green
Number of people
0-40
Duration
15
Required space
indoor - poss laptops outdoors in the shade
Facilities
one computer with USB boot facility, a projector if lots of people want to see
Description
A look at the potential of the TAILS distribution - it goes on a USB key and doesn't tell anyone what you are doing: https://amnesia.boum.org/

More info - The Amnesic Incognito Live System (Live CD, Live USB) is aimed at preserving your privacy and anonymity: all outgoing connections to the Internet are forced to go through the Tor network; no trace is left on local storage devices unless explicitly asked.

Bitcoin

Proposed by
Ben Green
Number of people
0-40
Duration
45
Required space
indoor
Facilities
A projector if lots of people want to see
Description
A new and growing currency. Peer to peer based and secure. Currently circulating around $3.1m worth of coins and growing. http://bitcoin.org/

More info - For this workshop I've come up with a way of explaining how it works. I'll also go into some common concerns and other aspects of how it works and how far it's got.

Ecological and Social Costs of IT Hardware

Proposed by
Syder
Number of People
0-40
Duration
30-45mins
Required Space
Indoor
Facilities
Projector
Description
A talk looking at aspects of the production process for some forms of IT and media hardware, and the associated ecological and social costs which we tend to hear little about. Presentation online at http://prezi.com/frkvvv2hzaoa/media-materiality-and-the-environment-exploring-the-ethics-and-sustainability-of-hardware/

Using Thunderbird to send & receive encrypted emails

Proposed by
penguin
Number of people
1 (other than me) - 20
Duration
60 - 90 mins (depends on number of people)
Required space
Indoor
Facilities
A projector ideally, but not essential.
Description
Thuderbird is a popular email client that you can use to send and receive email from many different service providers (Riseup, Ackivist, gmail, etc.). There is a plug-in (called Enigmal) that allows you to send & receive email fro Thunderbird. Vague outline of this workshop:
  • What's the problem with unencrypted email?
  • What is email encryption (basic level)?
  • How to set up Thunderbird to encrypt email.
  • How to send & receive encrypted email

This workshop will be quite practical - I hope that people will bring their laptops (ideally with Thunderbird and Enigmail already installed), and go away with encrypted email fully set up.

Get Thunderbird here: http://www.mozillamessaging.com/en-GB/thunderbird/

Once installed, search plug-ins (or add-ons, or whatever they're called) to install Enigmail.

Laser Tag

Proposed by
pete
Number of people
a few, or just me, doesn't really matter
Duration
well, it takes about 20 minutes to set up then it's just playing time so as long as people want to really.
Required space
Indoors or outdoors in the evening
Facilities
Big projector, long VGA cable, i'll bring a laser pen.
Description
Laser tag is a cool toy invented by Theo Watson and the Graffiti Research Lab (now FAT - Free Art and Technology). Basically you use a laser pen and a projector to draw on buildings. I set this up last time for people to play with during the Saturday evening stuff. This time I was thinking I'd do a quick session before hand on how to set it up, what you need to make it work (mostly patience) etc and will have copies of the software for Mac and Windows (currently there is no Linux release).

OpenConsent

Proposed by
mish
Number of people
5-15
Duration
30-60 minutes
Required space
indoor
Facilities
Computers would be good, a projector might be handy.
Description
Getting feedback and ideas for a web based tool to support consensus decision making for distributed organisations. (We've started building it (using django), but it's still pretty basic).

Just Living

Proposed by
mish
Number of people
put min and max here, e.g. 5-20
Duration
30-60 minutes
Required space
indoor
Facilities
Computers would be good, a projector might be handy.
Description
An intro to setting up a guide to proper positive stuff in your area. You can see examples at http://www.justliving.org.uk/ and http://bristol.justliving.org.uk/

Foodsoft

Proposed by
mish
Number of people
5-15
Duration
30 minutes for discussion and play, days to finish the i18n
Required space
indoor
Facilities
Computers would be good, a projector might be handy.
Description
We're also (slowly) working towards translating some software to help manage food co-ops from German into English. We can show people how the system works and see if people are keen to get it going. The techies amongst us could then spend bits of time internationalising more of the code.

The code can be seen at https://github.com/foobacca/foodsoft

OpenStreetMap

Proposed by
clara
Number of people
2-10
Duration
put time in minutes, two session: 30 minutes and 45 minutes
Required space
indoor or barn
Facilities
computers, projector, GPS devices
Description
Put your social center on the map. A short introduction to OpenStreetMap and how to edit it online (Potlatch 2). The first session will be a short introduction, demonstrating the different forms in which data can be gathered: local knowledge, GPS tracks and points, walking papers and satellite images. In the second session we will edit the map - with the location of your social center etc and/or with tracks and Points of Interest around the Barn Camp. And in between we can go for a walk, recording some tracks for missing streets and pathes, and Points of Interests: from buildings to bus stops and recycling facilities...

If you have a device with GPS, e.g. a smartphone, check whether is has some tracking software or whether you can install some. For Nokia's I recommend Maemo Mapper. See BarnCamp location on OpenStreetMap: http://osm.org/go/eulGk38aC-


Low/Non-Tech

Wild Food Walk

Proposed by
Ben Green
Number of people
40
Duration
120
Required space
40acres of woods and fields
Facilities
none
Description
I'm sure you can guess. Walking around looking for food and plants useful in other ways too. Learning to indentify what's edible and what's poisonous.

Get Knotted

Proposed by
Pete
Number of people
as many as are interested
Duration
not long, 20-30 minutes i guess
Required space
a bit of space
Facilities
none
Description
Has anyone ever told you to "get knotted" but you've not been able to because you don't know any knots? well if so then this workshop is for you. i like knots. they're very useful. next time someone says "get knotted" you can say "c'mon i need some more specificity here; should I use a figure-8? an 8-on-a-bight? a taught-line-hitch? a whiskey-bottle-hitch? a clove-hitch? fisherperson's knot? double-fisherperson's knot? or even the infamous 8-on-a-bight-on-a-bight?".
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