I wish I could have attended, as I was in Canberra on Friday and Saturday (though I left at 2pm) but I was there to get as many photos I possibly for Wikipedia articles.

With the WiFi issue, was there an error showing up, connected to the WiFi but couldn't access the internet ect?

Bidgee

On 30/01/2011 6:57 AM, Laura Hale wrote:
I need to eventually try to integrate in various blog posts, pictures and videos into the wiki. If anyone can help with that, we'd very much appreciate it.

Some of the issues that we've dealt with so far that have been interesting from an organizational point of view:

* wifi has been a problem. Many people have not been able to get it to work. This wouldn't be so bad except that the venue is also in a bit of a dead zone for 3G coverage. (I think about 1/2 the people attending brought their own 3G dongles.) I'm not quite sure how to fix this in terms of hosting the next RCC in 2012. We'll have to hope the university can fix it.

* An education group attended and had their own break out session on Saturday. This actually worked out pretty well. It gave the people who needed and wanted a chance to network for that reason more of a reason to attend, to network, to learn about educational practices and gave them additional exposure to wikis. They produced a high quality video related to their session.

* More people at RecentChangesCamp this time were probably less into wikis than RecentChangesCamps I had attended in Palo Alto and Portland. This probably was a very good thing. It helped provide a bit of a broader perspective and more insight into how wikis work and how wikis don't work.

* Wikimedia Australia was one of our sponsors. They provided about $2,000 in airfare to bring Mark Dilley down to facilitate. They also provided around $5,000 to help offset airfare for five or so attendees. Their support in helping bring people together was invaluable. Seriously so. The people that came were not all Wikimedia Foundation users. One is an Appropedian. I believe another one was a WikiTravel person. These voices were fantastic to hear. Beyond that, it was a great learning opportunity to better understand how the Wikimedia Australia works and what it is capable of doing. That Wikimedia Australia's scope is beyond just WMF projects and includes the greater Australian wiki community and collaborative projects is fantastic. I can't say enough good things about Wikimedia Australia and the two people from the organization who attended.

* Some people appeared a bit concerned about the lack of structure prior to attending. Once we got into the sessions and planning, these concerned appeared to melt away. We might try a barn raising of some kind in one session but if it doesn't happen, it is perfectly okay.

* When we did the one day camp, people appeared less than satisfied with what they got out of it because things didn't go into the depth that they needed. This three day session had that depth that people appeared to have craved. (This could be a function of the difference in who attended both camps.)

* The social eating component appears to have been really important. We had a few people get together on Thursday night, a few people get together on Friday night, a barbecue last night. This allowed people another chance to get to know everyone and unwind. It might have been nice to try to do something like we had with the wikiHow party and invite more people, wiki people in Canberra who otherwise wouldn't be attending RecentChangesCamp to just show up for the food and socializing part. It is something to consider in the future.

* Power points for plugs were pretty available. At times, they were a little inconvenient because we had white board walls and that meant plugs were only on two sides of the room.

* White board walls? The most fantastic thing ever! Seriously awesome. We had a session on why wikis don't work. The people who had a session on wikis and facilitation got to see our notes from that session. It created additional points for conversation. It also meant that we weren't constrained to writing on blocks of paper. It gave the whole camp more of a wiki feel because of those lack of limits. The notes on walls issue were great conversation starters. People took lots and lots of pictures of them. The ability to write on the walls probably helped offset the annoyance over the lack of wifi and 3g. (The physical space was one thing I really loved about this. Yeah, each of the three places for sessions was in its own room and this isn't generally part of the whole concept of Open Space but it worked for who was there.)

* Many of people who attended were very much into Wikis as Wikimedia Foundation projects or who knew wikis from education. This was interesting. At past RecentChangesCamp, such people were clearly in the minority. There were more interests from people attached to other wikis like AboutUs, wikiHow, wikiTravel, kiki, wine wiki, Wikia, Fan History. It changed some of my way of thinking and reinforced some of the ideas that I had regarding WMF projects. In the future, I'd love to see more people from those projects as people were blown away to hear about our experiences in non-WMF projects and outside education... but if it doesn't happen, it is still okay. (the wikiTravel session was really interesting.)

* Updating the RCC wiki was a pain in the butt. This caused some aggravation and I think they moved the content they would have put on it to Wikiversity. It was annoying and because of the lack of wifi and time zone syncing with the people maintaining it, we couldn't really get things fixed.

* If we had more information on research on how wikis successfully functioned, that would probably have been awesome. I cited wikiHow as having done research but it was hard to find that while attending RCC.

* Hopefully, we'll come out of this with more people interested wikis and wiki conferences. I think that this group is more likely to support Wikimedia Foundation as they put on future events as they can see how their mission is to help the broader community. I think it also helped foster an idea of an Australian wiki community.

If you want to get more of an idea of what we've been talking about, I filmed bits and pieces on my iPhone. That can be found at http://www.youtube.com/laurafanhistory . We've been some what active in updating Twitter at http://search.twitter.com/search?q=%23rcc11 . Blog posts include: http://blog.tomw.net.au/2011/01/wikis-for-vocational-education.html and http://blog.tomw.net.au/search/label/RCC11

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