Internet

Finding, and (Re)Using CC Licensed Resources

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Welcome to yet another post in the #CCByBrian series.

CC licenses are standardized – which means the terms and conditions are the same for all works subject to the same type of CC license. Despite creatives and authors who use the licenses wanting to make modifications to meet diverse ( or slightly different) needs and wants, CC strongly discourages from customizing open copyright licenses. Aside from the confusion this might create, it will take an immense amount of time and effort for users to learn about these bespoke customization. If you change any of the terms and conditions of a CC license, you cannot call it a Creative Commons license or otherwise use the CC trademarks. This rule also applies if you try to add restrictions on what people can do with CC licensed work through your separate agreements, such as website terms of service or privacy policies.

There is a detailed CC legal policy outlining these rules, but the best way to apply them is to ask yourself: is what you want to do going to make it easier or harder for people to use your CC licensed work? Note that all of the above applies to creators of CC licensed work. You can never change the legal terms that apply to someone else’s CC licensed work.

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Getting The Most Out Of A Hackathon

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The Basics:  A hackathon goes by many names – hack day, hackfest or codefest. Essentially, a hackathon is a design, build and demo sprint-like event where you get random people to team up and collaborate intensely, usually for 24 to 72 hours. The skills required are typically in software development, graphics or human centered design; user interface and user experience design, project managers, and domain or subject matter experts.

The organizer will provide some challenges, and the participants will form teams and try to come up with their best ideas/solutions. Eventually, the team(s) who presented the best ideas/solutions will get to win some cool prizes. Prizes can be cash or some gadgets.

Here are some thoughts about how to make the most of your participation in a Hackathon.

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Humanity’s Public Library

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At Outernet256, we believe that free access to information is a human right. The Internet has dramatically enhanced our ability to exercise this right, but unfortunately most humans cannot access the Internet. Today, over 4.3 billion people cannot connect to the Internet at all and another roughly 1 billion people have their Internet connections censored or monitored. A world where only 20% of humans have truly free access to digital information is unacceptable. That is why we support the creation of Humanity’s Public Library, an initiative by Outernet.

Outernet broadcasts a data signal from satellites that is free to receive anywhere on Earth. While this is not an Internet connection, it is a free stream of critical information. What information is considered “critical?” You decide.

Outernet256 and Creative Commons Uganda are co-hosting the first edit-a-thon for Humanity’s Public Library on July 18-19 2015, at Victoria University, alongside #MozFestEA to decide what is included in this library. Anyone on Earth is encouraged to participate – details on how to have your voice heard in this process can be found at http://editathon.outernet.is. We want to encourage our users to submit their own work and to submit content from Outernet256 that is licensed for redistribution. One such work is this very blog post. Copy these words and post them on your own blog and let’s all gather together and build a #LibraryFromSpace.

This blog post is licensed under CC0 and is free to be distributed and edited without restriction.

Selfish Interests

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A while ago, i posted this blog about my experience with an ISP here in Kampala, and rightly so, i was on the receiving end of a phone call from a “boss” who intimated that the persons who had placed their very lives on the line, to help this frustrated customer, had their jobs “threatened”, and the only thing i needed to do was to save their jobs by taking down the article. I agreed to, because a personal friend used his personal relationships to get me to the help i got, and I valued that. But that did not take away my earlier problem, nor my quest for a solution.

The very insinuation that my blog, notwithstanding its colours,  is a forum used to attack the ISP, was at the very least ignorant, and the repeated questioning of my “intentions” and whether i had achieved “what you intended to get” is at the very best, an insult.

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At Orange Uganda Limited

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I’m convinced, i now know how this nicely well oiled machine called Orange works. And if you think its theft, and arm twisting, i beg to differ. Its more like the shrewdness Jesus feared from Matthew the tax collector.

30th Oct, i loaded credit worth 25k, on my data sim, did not activate a bundle, went on line duly and from 3pm, to 9am the following day (not continuous usage), it was all wiped! 2 Weeks of exchanges between me and customer care yield a number of failed explanations and 2 interesting documents. The first, comes in 3 days after my credit disappears – a time stamped record of all urls accessed from 3pm on 30th, to 9am on 31st October. Total amount of data used: 0.0298 MB.

When you do not activate a data bundle, the system defaults to charging you as a mobile data user – See Cost Here – 0.9 UGX per KB. So you can understand why i had a hard time understanding that 0.0298 MB multiplied by 0.9 UGX per KB would result in 25000 UGX.

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Leadership Of Virtual Communities

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(Notes from an Open Session, held at IDLELO 5, Abuja Nigeria, 19th March 2012.)

Working with people we do not know, or see, only talk to them virtually. Nnenna, introduces her self and talks about nnenna.org, a privately run consultancy that has no office and yet maintains a full-blown services for its clients. Work happens in the Virtual Realm. Meeting and working virtually has the advantage of running the least administrative costs.

She is not alone, and as the group warms up to the discussion, we learn about a systems administrator, events manager and a systems administrator. Here are some experiences of virtual workers:

Evelyn Namara shares her experience as a virtual systems administrator, who worked on skype, dropbox and docs, while working with Tactical Technology Collectives (TTC) in Kampala, Uganda.

18.5 yrs as a University Librarian from Federal University of Nigeria, another gentleman is intent on merging virtual library with the manual physical library. He is convinced the ICT Sector does have the solution he needs…

UNESCO Abuja’s National Program Officer for Communications and Information – Oluseyi Soremekun is also eager to see if their information needs can be made Virtual. He contends that the power of information and its access to, by Nigerians is a great need and that ‘virtualization’ of work might have to be a solution.

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