Speaker Kylie; Robyn
Time 2008-01-29 15:40
Conference LCA2008

Teen Challenge

International Grades in Open Technology (UK)

ITShare SAN Inc

Teen Challenge, helping people with life controlling problems, e.g. drug addiction gambling, abuse, poverty.

Converting MS-Windows computers, one by one, to Linux Ubuntu systems.

Computer training

Minimise gap between expected knowledge, and where students are.

Charge students for it, otherwise they would treat it is a throw away course.

People with no idea how to use the computer.

People from schools with no training in computers.

RAM and hard drive have same unit of measure, and as such, they get confused.

People scared of not being smart enough, or getting it wrong.

People don’t care if they don’t know how a car works. Why do computers matter?

  • Drivers need to know oil, fuel, water, gearbox, clutch, etc.
  • Why do people feel self conscious about computers.

Go back twenty years:

  • Women learned typing, sewing, etc, at schools.
  • If you they did tech, it was considered weird.


  • Others use the computer. No idea what they are doing. No idea how they solve problems, they go to fast.
  • “If I do it wrong they yell at me!”
  • Shouldn’t have to remember obscure details, e.g. path camera comes out as in Unix file system.

Get afraid of trying things out, “it might blow up!”

Most nervous student in class, computer monitor caught fire.

Tried to reassure the student that she did nothing to cause the fire. (too much double clicking???)

Was a bad spot in the room for monitors in the room.

Keep it simple, small groups. 4 students and 2 instructors.

PC building for women

ItShare SA Inc

Show students: Opening computer case, checking plugs firmly in place, installation of Linux, etc.

Teaching people with no computer knowledge

Teenagers through to older people.

“What is the Internet?”

“Where is the Internet?”

Don’t mention database, because they don’t know what a database is.

Emergency relief

Working closely with Centrelink. Centrelink want to shut people out as much as possible. They are requested to print out their income statement in order to access benefits. Centrelink staff will show you once, and people may not be able to do it. eg. illiterate people.

Is there a law that you cannot provide a service only by computer?

Digital divide, covers electronic toilets, VCRs, TVs, etc.

Accessibility for blind and deaf people.

The strength of this is people, and we are empowering people to use the technology, and the governments aren’t prepared to help, because it would cost them too much.

Centre in Canberra, places being installed with Windows ‘98 at charity, $200 a machine, because everyone uses Windows. make-the-move.net/

Question to audience

What do you feel puts people off starting a community project?

  • lack of time
  • not knowing anybody
  • lack of confidence
  • won’t start anything, because they are not that sort of person
    • contributor, not a starter.
    • researchers
    • sales people
  • outside comfort zone
  • concerned about who they are going to meet
  • negativity of others towards project
  • lack of funding
  • don’t know anybody who will help
  • marketing of the project, establish credibility.