From Sudo Room
Jump to navigation Jump to search

As one of sudo room's key missions is ACCESS, we are engaging in an ongoing discussion and attentiveness to issues of inclusivity, diversity, and access.

Notes from Inclusivity Meeting 1/5/12:

- it takes time to understand that you can just show up to a space like this without knowing anyone. talks/classes help with this. - talks/classes that would not be intimidating?

Organizations to outreach to:

  • Community technology centers ( - felicia will contact them about possible collaboration
  • OTX West: - OTX gives away thousands of computers. how can we collab?
  • mosswood rec center - sudoer dan f teaches classes in programming. marina will reach out.
  • libraries - teen zones at oakland public library branches have computers for youth to use.
  • morning youth? sudo room is available for classes/regular events all mornings except for t/th (morning math is t/th).
  • involvement with lolspace (praveen)
  • fixit clinic - have held events at SR in the past. max?
  • one laptop per child sf:
  • youth uprising - already working with them on oakwiki. how to work further with them? they have equipment and youth participants. what could SR offer?
  • involvement with other hackerspaces - BACH, lolspace
  • US FIRST - for inspiration robotics science technology
    • Oakland teams: Oakland Tech (2013 Season FIRST Robotics Competition aka ULTIMATE ASCENT Teams in CA-USA)

classes are the most basic way to be accessible

  • possible classes:
    • open source install night
    • raspberry pi primer
    • arduino (hol)
    • audio production/radio
    • tech support - fix my browser, my computer is slow, etc. intro to computers and troubleshooting. sudo office hours - come with your desktop. (need windows, apple, people etc.)
    • knitting circle. possible outreach - rock paper scissors (they have very little space), 25th street collective. <= felicia will reach out
    • performance nights
    • 3D printer class - how to use it, how to model, how it works. (jack might teach with jae)
    • testing of sudo room equipment day, => fixing day, good way to publicize by letting people know what the space offers.
    • vanilla (ray)

Publicity to excluded communities remains a challenge. we do not have any active publicity programs at the moment.

  • postcards with basic info: photo, who we are, what we do, map, potential classes, how to get in touch/involved. <= mk will reach out to sudo room designers
  • more stickers?
  • cards
  • intro video - who would be interested? (max)
  • ideas from len :)

Newcomer engagement.

  • Welcome FAQ is a good start.
  • open tech support/instruction/fixing nights - open nights where "you come and people will be available to help you" (as opposed to just working on their own projects)?
  • how-to guide for sudoers to engage with newcomers to the space (possibly also for speaking with friends, etc. about sudo room)?


  • what kind of equipment/space needs can we focus on for the long term to engage with how to get more computers? how to fix existing computers/equipment.
  • day to do inventory and test items currently in the space. this should lead to equipment fixing days.
  • more build/organize days a la "move in day"
  • list of equipment ideas
    • more computers
    • sewing machines/craft materials
    • arduino kits/breadboards
    • proper kitchen things - possible collaboration with uptown kitchen (ray) (felicia does candymaking :))

accessibility for children.

    • kids corner. there isn't a good place for a child to sit even (a couch). what should contents of kids corner be? (the space needs to be reconfigured). piece of carpet for people to sit on. or a fort.
    • check out Education project page for more.

internal communication discussion

  • listserv is not effective, but what would be better? there are too many emails. **fix sudo discuss list.
  • buddypress - CUNY has academic commons, etc. "commons in a box" (on github), it has groups and let's people only get filtered emails. (alternate solution: more robust use of project pages on wiki). friday filosophy trial run for buddypress.
  • encourage people to tag their emails.
  • summaries of discussions happening on the mailing list - who will do?
  • poll for regular meetings.

Notes from Inclusivity and Access Session at 1st Annual "State of the Room" Unconference 12/8/12:

participants: aestetix, vicky, matt, jordan, marina, emily, matt, jenny, praveen, troy

  • what are the challenges
  • what are some practical steps we can take (and encourage others to take) to ensure that sudo room is inclusive
  • what are the long term investments, strategies, and initiatives we need to undertake to sustain an attentiveness to inclusivity at sudo room

current challenge to making sudo room inclusive: if you know about sudoroom/hackerspace, and you're a hacker, then you will come. we're not doing a great job at bringing new people in. how to reach out and welcome people who don't already self-identify as "hackers" or "good with technology" or "techie"? it's a leaky pipeline, it must be patched at different places.

  1. identity: itches that you have can be scratched with technology and with spaces , that you are the kind of person that are capable of that
  2. being aware of hackerspaces
  3. knowing tha you can go there
  4. when you go there, wanting to stay there


  • communication, what is a hackerspace, language barriers
  • spanish accessibility at SR. spanish-based classes? spanish/english labels for things in SR. add spanish to the labelmaker ;)
  • beyond one spanish-language class...making everything spanish-inclusive.

  • how many computers do we have here at sudoroom that people can use? TOMORROW.
  • how is the space open/available/accessible to disabled individuals. also crucial for older people.
  • ability: well-connected disability community in bay area
  • childcare and accessibility for parents and children.
  • important to continue to have this conversation. add to agenda? "exclusivity check" once a month.
  • guide for hackerspaces for inclusivity and accessibility
  • survey of problems?
  • human capital: lolspace has a problem recruiting spanish-language tech people. difficult to make strategic affiliations. tumis.
  • inclusivity and diversity is a human capital issue. look at hte people we could be building coalitions with and who we are not using.
  • reaching out to new people. how to foster a culture of that? 1) onboarding process 2) promote a culture where people are empowered and prepared to talk to new people. empower people to act as ambassadors. 3) designated ambassador or designated person who does outreach.
  • challenge in ambassadorial culture as the group scales. the role of the ambassador is to ensure that hte group is attentive to diversity and outreach.

  • outreach to communities is really difficult. getting people in the door and getting them to understand why they belong there is hard. how do we do outreach?
  • hackerspace - problem of language (either not sure what it is or have preconception), solution to show people the space. alternate problem: how do we adequately explain what it is.
  • really communicating all the time what we're doing. being public about what we do. both in terms of broadcasting and in terms of our friends and community.
  • ex of aaron coming in off the street.
  • do we have a video about what this is? talk to rusty
  • not just the idea of hte hackerspace is new, consensus is new, non-commercial forms of interaction.
  • metaphors for talking to people about hackerspaces - a library?
  • when building things, attention to the users is key.
  • how to do partnerships with existing groups. how to partner with them to meet with them to meet on their terms. ex: we have space, but we don't have human resources to coordinate. what do we offer and what
  • monthly open house: first friday. maybe something else? ex: mitch's intro to circuits. open hack nights (how to do that without implying that the rest of the time is closed). "getting to know you"
  • marketing - how do we market ourselves?
  • how would you explain sudoroom to a stranger: a group of volunteers who come together and share resources, ideas, and work on projects together using technological equipment. tailor your explanation to the person that you're talking to. talk about what people do here, not what it is. space for hosting your group, a place to find resources (people, technological, etc.).

  • future events: followup on mailing list, ongoing discussions within sudoer, with sudoers. jigsaw meeting style.
  • sensitivity classes
  • "how to keep a safe space"