Occupy Technology

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CONCRETE GOALS:

  1. Brainstorm questions for some well-designed tech one-pagers
  2. Figure out what sessions to do rest of the week?

REPORTBACK:

  • We discussed tech problems of occupy and brainstormed common tech questions that could be well-served by tech one-pagers (that could be hosted on occupytechnology.org)
  1. What's a great service for using text messaging serice? -for mass broad-based alerts vs loops and communication
  2. How do I record General Assemblies and make them available online?
  • We brainstormed occupy tech sessions for the rest of the week: most popular ones were
  1. What does direct action look like in a virtual space?
  2. How do you do direct action SMS?
  3. How do you do secure document collaboration + data storage without using Google Docs?

Start: introductions

what's exciting: one-pagers or basic guides for tech selection

  • "you are a medical collective here are the three tools you should use
  • -concerns on security, replicatability
  • -pick peoples' brains on broad-based alert systems- what is the best case scenario?
  • -what we're using might not be the best
  • as an occupier i need help- been asked by a lot of other people to help them - one-sheets for users, one-sheets for activists, designers-printers - very important

community based aspects of open source, free software, etc- one of the things i've noticed (at occupy oakland and other things)

  • the occupy oakland's website got shut down by their host because they had too much traffic
  • lot of occupies using facebook as the occupy tool -
  • google spreadsheets is a huge organizing tool
  • occupytechnology.org: to share tools
  • but people use tools at hand: facebook, google
  • part of this is education process- how to educate people who use facebook that they might get in trouble
  • some tools are fine and should be used, some are potentially problematic
  • as this gets bigger, as it spreads and gets clamped down on: technology will be even more important, how it gets leveraged, how we do it

Tangible Problems with Occupy+Tech

  • Occupiers storing spreadsheets and collaborative documents on google??
  • handful of tech buckets that havent been solved:
  1. text alert system
  2. secure communication collaboration
    • "we're all organizers and decided to do direct action, we've decided we need human + tech processes to be secure"
  1. data collection, document collaboration storage
    • media teams collaborating on word document+spreadhseets
    • all this is on google now (spreadsheets like database of trainees, or database of arrestees)

these are the crisis points

  • open and transparent communication areas-
    • occupySF website "join this working group" - no idea where those emails are going
    • how do you empower people to communicate+collaborate but not being in charge of the group,
    • problem for us too, we have designers that want to help, want to be hooked up with people that need the help, we have no way of knowing when those tickets should be closed

Affinity Groups

  • affinity group formation
  • modes are moving from occupation+encampments into affinity groups
  • some people can form independently
  • lotta people don't know where to plug in- maybe a meetup is too open?
  • meetup is donating to occupy, but still a security issue
  • there's no structure
  • occupyassembly.org
  • make sure one-pagers are design process, not just copy process

how do we have GLOBAL communication transparency?

  1. the only way that makes sense to have global General Assemblies?
    • fish bowl conversations
    • main person talking
    • anybody can listen
    • that's the transparency
  1. how do we move beyond having a conference call?
    • group video? so you can see who you're talking to?
    • broadcast that so people can see in real time and moderated questions
    • occupy.net is rough wireframe of that

Forum Tool: Ideascale

  • Ideascale: possible forum software for occupy collaboration?
  • Ideascale: post an idea, then vote on it, then bubble up to the top (also attach files)
  • problem: topic hierarchy, only three levels of topics- need more
  • is it like a forum? donated to occupy movement
  • sell to businesses to get feedback
  • brainstorm ideas
  • addresses transparent communication
  • share an infographic with the world
  • high level and local level - share all this stuff
  • so that every place isn't duplicating effort?
  • pay solution
  • organizing collaboration vs idea collaboration

Secure Hosting

  • lots of tech solutions
  • where can we securely/safely be hosting this stuff?
  • lot of collectives providing moderate tech support
  • we need to come up with solutions tailored to where they're going to be hosted
  • we can run wordpress anywhere, but it needs to be run somewhere
  • one-pagers need a specific location to be hosted
  • have to be in places that can take the heat

possible server hosting solutions

  1. May1st people link : one option for servers
  • jamie mcclelland + josue
  • host all community organizing there
  • will fight to death to not turn over data
  • very political!
  1. electricembers on west coast
  2. toronto: koumbit

Spain+Madrid technology solutions

  • spain+madrid groups have been at it for 6 months
  • building web servers of their own
  • their own listserv, email
  • their own stuff
  • we've been doing this now because we didnt have to set our stuff up

Our Decaying Infrastructure from 10 years ago

  • we built this infrastructure up but we let it decay
  • because of virtualization we don't have indymedia backbone anymore
  • infrastructure was repsonse to different enviornment
  • now there's all this free corporate controlled stuff
  • monoculture could be bad for servers
  • keeping servers out of the country : maybe should support local business?

Best Practices

  • design toolkit : don't replicate the labor of training, best pratices documents
  • best practices for kitchen, winterizing, etc
  • people shouldnt have to be developing them on their own?
  • existing things are good solutions to certain things
  • data collection: going from 0-website is a pain, but from website->website with data is easier
    • don't move from scratch, move from where you are
  • how do we match up tools + people that can implement/help + the occupy place?
  • how do you resource request? occupy needs list?
  • we have people read to help how do we connect people?

occupytech website is what we need let's brainstorm this stuff

  1. what would the ten pages on this website be
  2. what questions am i going to ask that i need to solve?
  3. make one-pagers for these questions

The Big Questions

Online Organizing

  • What are the problems with using facebook?
  • How do I get 100,000 people to do something at once?
  • How do I create tools for direct action?
  • How do I securely communicate with different subcommittees?
  • occupyresources = website with a bunch of that stuff
  • How do I find a developer/volunteer that wants to volunteer?

Techies

  • Best practices for developers who want to help occupy.
  • Best practices for designers who want to help occupy
  • How to be a techie in service to an occupy movement.

Web Hosting Services

  • Where do I host my website?
  • I've gotten too much traffic how do i keep it up?

Online Media (non-website)

  • What's a great service for using text messaging serice?
    • for mass broad-based alerts
    • vs loops and communication
  • How do I broadcast video from occupy?
  • How do I record General Assemblies and make them available online?

Camping Stuff =

  • How do I set up a kitchen? (maybe not tech)
  • How do I set up power for an occupy?
  • How do I set up a bicycle power generator?
  • How do I set up wireless network for an occupy?

Security Culture

  • Why should I even worry about security?
  • When do I need to communicate securely?
  • How do I collect data securely?
  • How do I collaborate on documents securely?

There will be an existing Occupy Training Site soon (URL to come)

you can reuse old projects:

  • old asterisk voice mail system, blow dust off of it
  • "how to deal with tear gas"- cut and paste from the WTO manual

stack overflow/question/yahoo answers framework for occupytechnology ?

  • maybe occupy specific skillshare helpdesk
  • maybe use stack overflow- upvote responses
  • answers?
  • maybe for occupy technology website
  • or just a general one for occupy
  • label questions for beginniners, advanced, tags

What is the info we don't want out there?

  • Don't want it to be public knowledge.
  • Intentionally not written down
  • Problem: doesn't scale
  • Maybe there shouldn't be sharing+transparency about certain of these things

website: better spent digging into tougher questions

'goal of session: is figure out what we should talk about the rest of the week:'

What we should talk about this week: Session Brainstorming

  1. Dig into tougher questions re: the tech bucket needs- what are the existing solutions etc?
  2. SMS is a huge piece (5*)
  3. Secure Document+Collaboration (3*)
  4. Communication process transparency (3*)
  5. Matching developers and designers with needs and resource requests (5*)
  6. How technology can support occupy direct action?
  7. What does direct action look like in a virtual space? (6*)
  8. What is the state of tactical comms? (1*)