creating an inclusive and friendly Ruby on Rails community.
October 16, 2009
✤ To create an inclusive and friendly Ruby on Rails community.
✤ First, do no harm. Then, help where you can.
✤ Bridge the gap from aspiring developer to contributing community
member through mentoring, teaching & writing.
✤ Reach out to individuals and groups who are underrepresented in the
✤ Collaborate with other groups with similar goals.
✤ Open Workshops
✤ Teaching Kids ✤ Mentors
✤ Bug Mash
✤ Student Code Reviews
✤ Courseware ✤ Ruby Challenge
A closer look at some projects
✤ Teaching Kids
✤ Builders connects volunteers with projects for 501c3 non-proﬁts.
✤ A development team of volunteers will build a web application to
address a speciﬁc need
✤ The Sunset PTA is a group of
parents working with a
dedicated principal and
teachers to create an
outstanding public school.
✤ Rails developers are building
a website to that will help the
PTA organize and stay in
contact with school
✤ Survival International is a
nonproﬁt organization which
helps the world's tribal
peoples protect their lands,
defend their lives and
determine their own futures
✤ Volunteers help with online
video, asset management and
distribution system, & online
campaigning and support
using Rails, RSpec and
✤ The Cape Eleuthera Institute
focuses research in the ﬁeld
of sustainability working
with Deep Creek Middle
School in the Bahamas.
✤ Rails developers are working
to improve the website
experience and make it easier
for frequent updates
including photos and videos.
✤ Encouraging kids to create computer applications by providing
support and curricula
✤ Teachers who want to help kids to understand a part of the world
they live in
✤ Parents who want to teach their kids or encourage their schools to
✤ People who write code and want to share their love of software
✤ Shoes and Ruby
✤ Mixing light to explain RGB
✤ Teaching kids to mentor
✤ Software as foreign language
✤ Teaching excitement
✤ Practical experience over
✤ Pilot program for SF Middle School
✤ After school projects
Open Workshop Project
✤ Mission: Enabling Rails developers everywhere to organize and
present high-quality introductory Rails workshops.
Events so far
✤ 6/12-6/13 at OrangeLabs in South San Francisco
✤ 7/31-8/1 at Pivotal Labs in San Francisco
✤ 9/26-9/27 at sfCube in San Francisco
✤ 10/5 Aloha on Rails
✤ 10/16-10/17 at Berkman Center, Harvard University
How does it work?
✤ Plans & curriculum on devchix wiki
✤ Slides published in github
✤ Lots of volunteers willing to step up and make a difference
Diversifying the community
✤ Making a real difference in the lives of individuals
✤ Women and men who are unemployed, underemployed or simply
want to learn about new technology in the ﬁeld
✤ Successful Rails engineers who have not had the opportunity to
work with many technical women before
✤ Increasing the ambient level of technology amongst women
✤ Technology is naturally reﬂective of its creators. Focus groups and
usability studies tend to ﬁnd omisions, not inspiration for new ideas.
✤ Open source software requires that people keep working on it -- not
only in the form of code contributions.