Sunday, December 14, 2008

Crimping cables, hakuna frittata's and windex without windows

The Mindtriggerz work session yesterday was probably one of the best yet. We were thrilled to have a nice crowd with a lot of laughter and glad to see one of Jesse's friends back from college on winter break. Oh and a lot of work got done too!
While Jennifer and I gave a thorough cleaning to a stack of old keyboards and mice, one of our favorite techies, James Richardson, recorded an instructional video on how to crimp ethernet cable. We posted it on google videos here. This was a totally spontaneous idea - I had just asked James if he would teach us how to "crimp" when the notion to record it hit. It's a really fun video too - with random appearances and interruptions from Jesse's dad and our other techies - I couldn't bring myself to edit out the laughter and fun.

On Friday afternoon a wonderful donor delivered an additional 12 cpu's as well as a monitor, keyboards and a couple of printers. All the machines tested good so several were sent to Jesse's dads house for loading of Ubuntu as well as the educational software GCompris and Childs Play. Both these "suites" are perfect for our project as they are designed for kids in the 2 to 10 year old age group. They are also pretty randomly fun for older kids too - Joyce and I spent a couple of hours earlier this week teaching ourselves how to play them so we can demonstrate to the kids at our training session on the 20th. We laughed a lot and learned a few things too - like that TuxType can be challenging!

We've been working out of my basement where a lab has been set up using saw horses and hollow core doors. To say that the area has grown a bit crowded and chaotic would be an understatement. Several of the guys spent a lot of time doing some organizing and arranging - thankfully Jon and Matt hung out all afternoon and made the space much more "user-friendly."

I talked to several of our volunteers and am going to randomly turn over blogging days to them. Hopefully that will provide an insiders' look at what we are doing from a point of view other than my own. These are incredible young people - they restore hope in us. We are eternally grateful to them - and to everyone out there who has donated old technology for us to use!

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