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What do immigrant organizers need to know about databases?

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One of my favorite projects these days is the "Immigrant Organizers Information Technology Network," which a joint undertaking by the Center to Support Immigrant Organizing and , and is funded by . Right now, I'm helping to put together a clinic for a cluster of groups in

The affiliated with these groups are the best in the world at for immigrants, and they juggle an awe-inspiring amount of information about constituents, donors, policy makers, service providers, activists, and other stakeholders.  Most of this juggling is done in their heads, or on paper, or with - very few of them also have expertise in .  What to do?

In June, offered these groups a "Databases 101" workshop, designed for smart people who are starting from scratch in learning about databases.  This month, the goal is to follow up with a clinic that will enable them to get down to cases about their specific needs. 

We've invited from three local organizations - , , and - to serve as "clinicians."  These folks all have extensive experience with both database development and grassroots organizing.  So far, so good!

But the remaining challenge is to craft the clinic in such a way that all of the immigrant organizers come away with a feeling of confidence, a practical understanding of how databases can help them, and a list of to take back to their offices.

Among , there's considerable consensus that subjecting people to yet another just isn't the answer, so I am currently on a quest for better ideas.

Netsquared Profile: Mike Linksvayer

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is the Chief Technology Officer for . He spoke at the Netsquared conference as well at a recent Net Tuesday event. Mike tells us what Creative Commons is, how it's beneficial to nonprofits and a bit about what the future holds. 


This video is part of NetSquared's video profile series. You can subscribe to with your favorite video catcher, such as , or .

TechSoup Meeting in Second Life - June 30th

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Originally uploaded by .

Great meeting today at the TechSoup Office in Second Life!  There's an Net Tuesday event coming up - Mark your calendars - July 18th.  It will be a mixed reality event -- in-world and in "real life" at the Tech Soup Office in SF.  Want to get involved in the planning?  Join the TechSoup discussion list: and join the next meeting on Friday, July 7th at 11:30 AM EST

After the meeting, we tried for a group photo op.  Let me tell you, getting all those avatars to look into the camera and smile is even more difficult than trying to get a group shot of a bunch of preschoolers!  First one who can name all those people in the photo with their Real Life Names will get a prize.  Leave your answer in the comments!

Advocacy Developers III Conference

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Found this conference announcement on the blog.  It seemed like the kind of conference Net2 folks would want to know about:

AdvocacyDev III, Oakland, July 31-August 2.   The third convening of organizers, activists and developers working with open source tools for online advocacy and organizing will take place in Oakland from July 31 to August 2. If you're passionate about creating better tools for online activists and organizers, please join us for knowledge sharing and brainstorming!

Yay for Podcasting Volunteers

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Two wonderful people have volunteered to help us edit and upload the audio recordings from the conference to our : the always awesome who has been recording  presentations and interviews at almost every Net Tuesday, and , who is on the Planning Committee of the , is a contributing editor to the , was an early reviewer of the from the Stanford Law School Center for Internet and  Society, and was recently featured in the book .

Even More NetSquared Conference Video Sessions Online

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Check out more of the Conference session videos online at ForaTV.  You can view them all as thumbnails in the archive here:

Or go to each individual new session link below:                                                     , moderated by Daniel Ben-Horin, President & Co-CEO of Compumentor.

featuring panelists Tara Hunt, Chris Messina, and Elisa Camahort with moderator Marnie Webb, VP of Knowledge Services at Compumentor.

featuring panelist Michael Bletsas with moderator Michael Brown.

Again, thanks to for their tireless video coverage of the event. <

Centromigrante wins MIT

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CentroMigrante wins MIT 100K
 
For a business idea that was just discovered on a "serendipity walk," (see article) there is no doubt that Centromigrante has made a giant leap by winning the grand prize from the prestigious MIT 100K Entrepreneurship Competition last week in Cambridge, Massachussettes. This is the first time a  Filipino team has taken on this 100K race, a competition that might as well be compared to a marathon for its magnitude and prestige. An advantage arose for the Pinoy team when MIT decided to shift course this year and open 100K to a development track.

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