(add names below if i missed u!! enhance minutes if I missed anything!!)
RF Boston Robert Fadel, VP of International
DT Boston Darah Tappitake, Managing Give Many /
Change the World
KQ Boston Kim Quirk, VP of Support
RC Boston Reuben Caron, Country Support Engineer
SJ Boston SJ Klein, Head of Community/Content
FH Boston Frances Hopkins, Support Specialist
AH Boston/Europe Adam Holt, Community Support Manager
(organizer of mtg, wrote minutes below)
SC North of Boston Sandy Culver
YP Austin/Bolivia Yama Ploskonka
PW Sydney area, Australia Pia Waugh
DB Boston/Nigeria Daniel Bennett
AD Silicon Valley Anil Daswani
CB Los Angeles Caryl Bigenho
AK San Antonio Aaron Konstam
How to "Change the World"? Designing SUPPORTABLE G100/G1000 Deployments
RF: We (OLPC) are broadening GM/CTW (Give Many/Change the World)
seeking the best possible "supportable" program (for schools/groups
buying 100+ XO's). Ongoing http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Support_Gang help
SC: What lessons can we learn from the past 6 months of Give Many
prospects emailing email@example.com? Yes CTW's a newer program beyond
Give Many: but can we learn from GM examples in S. Carolina, NYC, New
Orleans, be they failures or successes?
RF: Very reasonable. Remember too (if you'll excuse the metaphor)
a large fish tank can be much easier to manage than a small one, as a
large fishtank forgives mistakes without killing fish, while a small one
may not. But Agreed: we can/should go back and look at small deployments
(EG. 100 laptops), examining which qualify as earnest "supportable OLPC
programs" -- versus more unsustainable handouts?
100+ laptop deployments: How to TRACK SUCCESS STORIES
YP: How do you know smaller deployments aren't succeeding as well as
RF: The feedback conduit (2-way) is missing around small deployments --
whereas OLPC has better communication with larger deployments.
YP: Sounds inconclusive!
RF: Now with support more built-in to G100 (basic repair kit) & G1000
(includes on-the-ground OLPC visit), more fruitful reportage will flow.
DT: We want a Wiki page where schools document their own success
(http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Change_the_World_stories) even if OLPC cannot
resource an editor to promote this, we can certainly direct all G100
participants to voluntarily participate.
YP: Can we get a public list of all CTW places, laptop counts, and dates?
He had trouble getting access to basic information in South America, even
after very patiently talking with deployments' teachers, we can do better!
DT: Will need to get back to you. Buyers are not currently required to
go public. For now we can push CTW deployments to post success stories
on a Wiki page open to all.
YP: OK, but if there are 3 deployments in Ecuador, they need to be able
to find each other.
SJ&AH: Can we insert new questions into the CTW sales / post-sales
process to ensure interested such schools don't fall thru the cracks?
PW: Recommendation: please don't re-invent the wheel! Instead expand upon
http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Deployments transcluding to/from other pages if
nec, to keep things fresh avoiding inflationary/festering wiki swamplands.
Create a Weekly/Collaborative DISCUSSION SPACE
YP: OLPC needs to consider Internet-based support which scales better
across 10-laptop to 10,000-laptop deployments. Who is our target?
PW: Inter-deployment communications are what is most missing. PW will
host weekly IRC meetings, at well-announced hour(s), to change this,
since she believes physical meetings are insufficient. Pia will create
a Direct web interface into this IRC channel so that every net-connected
teacher/deployer worldwide can participate, without require IRC expertise.
RF: Yes, let's consider. We need online portal/commons regardless of
what program/size. Let's create this collab/participative environment.
PW: Can't find docs. Wants deployment docs accessible -- even kids will
RF: Agrees: Deployment people on ground not always possible. But neither
is "flattening" of all offerings sensible, as deployments face diff
issues at diff scales (eg. 100 laptops vs. 10,000 laptops).
RF&DT: DT apologizes for being late and will meet us in future.
DT similarly offers to try to find a way to update us (Support Gang)
New LEARNING MATERIALS for Deployers & Kids
CB: Can we translate & republish TelMex's great teacher-training etc
materials currently linked off of http://wiki.laptop.org/go/OLPC_Mexico ?
YP: Yes! But UY, PE & Nepal have great existing materials we also need
SJ: http://WikiEducator.org can help here -- it's all about translators &
educators doing exactly that.
CB&AK: Kids themselves need better math programs, as there's nothing
PW: Not true! Try GCompris which offers a dozen math apps!
YP: True. But these programs will only keep your attention for a
DT: New CTW team (incl Mel, Reuben, Frances etc) working towards 2
1. Planning Guide (local support, community stories, power,
2. CTW Tech Manual (a more concise [[Deployment guide]] focusing on
new issues around smaller deployments, eg. 100 XO laptops.
PW: Let's not re-invent the wheel. Please build upon existing docs like
[[Deployment guide]] and [[Support FAQ]] wherever possible. Transclude or
use Semantic Media Wiki wherever necessary to avoid duplication.
DT: Modularization maybe, but tone matters. Will try for Christmas
timeframe deadline, to deliver above 2 guides?
AH: Great: those with most experience answering G1/G100/G10000 questions
*must* share out their best answers to the most Freq Asked Q's --
regardless of whether they are volunteers or employees!!! Start here:
Why do desperately poor countries like Bolivia pay FULL PRICE ($259)
just like rich G8 countries?
YB: Why aren't poor landlocked countries given discounted pricing ($219)
like the UN's 50 LDC's (Least Developed Countries).
CB: Concurs: Bolivia is the 2nd poorest country in South and North
America, above only Haiti. Bolivia should not have to pay as much as
rich countries like Japan.
RF: All proposals will be considered. Please understand that the UN's
separate lists of (poorer?) Islands nations and (poorer?) Landlocked
nations overlap somewhat with their list of 50 LDC's. OLPC is
not excluding island and landlocked nations from consideration.
But currently OLPC made a choice to offer discounted pricing to only
the 50 UN-designated LDC's. This UN's list will no doubt change annually.
SJ: Let's continue this discussion on a public web page, so that a clear
petition process is available, in case future changes are possible.
Fostering & CONVERTING Interested Prospects into Actual Rollouts
RF: Thanks to the http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Support_Gang for helping
continue to cultivate real leads.
AH: Let's make outreach happen -- which prospects seem most real given
DT's deep experience supervising firstname.lastname@example.org over most of 2008?
DT: 80% are generally US-based benefactors/philanthropists (charities,
faith-based, school groups) funding small deployments literally around
the world. European foundations & charitable goups too. Etc.
SJ: Schools mentioned in passing aren't always serious, even while we
continue to engage their email@example.com tech/informational support
CB: How long until the public's CTW queries get a response?
DT: We are trying to works towards a guaranteed 5 business days, with
thoroughly vetted responses.
DB: How can we ensure volunteers don't hold back, continuing to provide
the quality handholding we've developed over the past year, converting
lukewarm inquiries into hot prospects?
SJ: Is it possible G1 queries are getting much faster responses (from
volunteers) than G100 reponses (from employees), and if so how can we
reprioritize to strengthen engagement with G100 schools etc?
FH: The CTW team is still getting organized and getting up to speed with
RT, let's give them a bit of time.
AH: Let circle back in a couple weeks to see how this volunteer/employee
interface evolves & develops.
CB: How to respond to donors' other questions if their ticket's been moved
into the CTW queue, yet Tech Support/informational questions remains?
If we are AdminCC's on the ticket, are we removed from the conversation?
AH: Hopefully not, but so far unclear. For now, clone the ticket by
cutting & pasting if a tech support or general informational issue
needs addressing. It just takes a couple clicks to create & paste into
a new ticket. Later SJ & I (among others!) hope to finally upgrade RT,
possibly even in December?! This stands to streamline a lot!
YP&AH: Reuse & enhance "RTFM's" with savvier tools, similar to the
Austin company that hosted August's doc sprint. What "answer tree" can
we consider? The best librarians silently foster self-service and get
out of the way :)
SC: Yes, use RT's "Simple Search" to better uncover past issues already
answered -- train people to discover the power of RT!