Today I attended the first barcamp in Wellington. It was quite different to the Christchurch one in that it was focused on e-government, and there were four different streams.
Several of the same people who attended GOVIS attended this barcamp, but the atmosphere was completely different. It was relaxed, collaborative, and people seemed to be willing to share more openly and talk about contentious issues.
It was interesting watching the programme get developed. Topics were written on post-its and they were put by presenters into timeslots on a big schedule sheet. There were three half hour timeslots for each room for each time period (e.g. morning tea to lunch). The session post-its seemed to self organise into related topics in each room/time period, without any overt coordination of this.
There was open access to wifi so there was a fair amount of live blogging on the event. Bloggers are listed on the barcamp site. Here’s my mindmap of the event.
At the end we did 3 word summaries of the day. Here are some of them:
good clean fun; collaboration action next; introductions variety wordprocessors; yay egovt; change starts here; opportunity understanding; unconferences rock severly; creative constructive connections; make stuff happen; let’s move on; make the web fun; you’re all reallysmart; plotting scheming ranting; great ideas guys; do it again; be the difference; let’s fix it; sco is dead; developers, developers, developers; go the allblacks; resourceful thoughtful people; geeks are cool; web services arrghh; open is good; its about people; shift in power
Then I facilitated (I couldn’t help myself) breaking into small groups to discuss “what’s next”. Here’s my quick write up of the feedback.
Organise small barcamps (in real bars if necessary), tack them on to events that are already happening (e.g. web stock, GOVIS), topics likes digital identity, open govt data, creative commons and privacy commons.
barcamp reality tv, nat hats humans, cat/dog/robot barcamp, code goes to barcamp, what they said, run a hackathon with a deliverable at the end of the day, make a wish foundation for frustrated public services, have a geek roadshow
record what happened here, don’t let it be forgotten. public consultation, discussion papers and policy stage, can we get more of those tagged and put into RSS feeds so you can watch them. some sort of wiki tool to explain and track the process of government, e.g. theyworkforyou. who are the key people. accountability for stopping services.
get more govt people here. get to decision makers. find out what the problems are and have another session just to address them. training on validation, just meet in a bar. document the successes. pick your fights, win them and talk about how you won. mashup government.
wiki around barcamp, standards, connect to microformat wiki. There will be one on the govt guidelines apparently. buy in to microformats. moving towards the semantic web. getting government to get more service focused. 7 x 7 format, people just speak for 7 minutes. aligning opensource with NZ national policy. ownership of egovt needs to be widely held. understanding the users. more rapid content creation. better RFPs, a site where vendors rate govt RFPs.