WG/OBIT/Minutes/130203

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3 Feb 2013 OBIT Meeting

Boloco. Dana, Kendra, and Steve attending.

South End Tech Center. Kendra says that the South End Tech Center is open to working with us on tech education; we just need to come up with some sort of curriculum. Kendra will try to set up a time where we can meet with Mel King, and talk about how we can collaborate in the future.

At a future time, we'll need to discuss transporting the computers in storage to South End Tech Center.

User Agent Switching. Steve demonstrates how to change the User-Agent header that Firefox sends, and the utility in doing so.

(We diverge into an off-topic discussion about accounting)

Voices Effectiveness. Months ago, we created voices.occupyboston.org, a web site with forum boards. People had expressed frustration about mailing list overload, and we wanted to provide an alternate venue for on-line discussions.

Voices has a small number of users. Several of the most recent posts have come from people we don't recognize as Boston occupiers. That's not a bad thing; the posts are occupy-related, so we're giving people a way to reach in from the outside.

Email overload is an endemic problem in many organizations. In the last fifteen years, no one has found a really good solution to this problem. (Put another way, information overload in any medium is still information overload.)

We haven't solved mailing list overload, but at least we've given people an alternative.

In the software development world, lots of development takes place over mailing lists. This includes projects that have been around for decades. Some can have 50--100 messages per day.

What about Facebook vs email? There are people who'll prefer one over the other. Some people use Facebook because they like it better, or because to a claimed lack of understanding about how email works. Others avoid Facebook for the same reasons that they avoid Bank of America -- a distaste for the company's business practices and/or their lack of transparency about government information requests. Some folks are happy to use both.

Next meeting. We'll meet next Sunday at 3:00pm, same place. Next week, we'll try to do a better job at planning out an agenda.