Today’s not over yet, but I’ve got a few minutes of downtime, so I thought I’d take a moment to summarize today’s events thus far….
First of all, I’ll reveal that I’m on the Outreach Committee. So I can really only speak to the issues that the four of us faced. Hopefully other committee participants will chime in with their experiences.
Today our committee tackled the problem of choosing the name for our tool. We’d started the brainstorming yesterday and went late into the night. We kept a running list of nearly everything we’d thought of as well as some major concept words and ideas, maintaining this all in GoogleDocs. We sat around in the hotel bar as we brainstormed, and oneweekers from other teams would pop in occasionally and offer some thoughts. Mostly, I suspect they were laughing at us as we came up with a bevy of ridiculous-sounding ideas. We made two strategic decisions in this process. The first was to not choose a vague name like Omeka or Zotero, even though this is the CHNM tool-naming pattern. We wanted the name of our tool to illustrate its function. But of course this made it even more challenging because of the difficulty of finding unique domain names. The second strategic decision was to cut off the name-choosing process midday, and settle with the best choice at that point so we could move on to other items on our to-do list.
Around 11am we had a list of about 20 possible choices. Our committee members voted on our three favorites and we narrowed the list to the top 5. We created a poll and sent it around to the entire oneweek team asking for their input. We quickly ruled out some of the 5 names based on the feedback we received. And a winner emerged as we realized that the other options were problematic for one reason or another.
By 2 pm we had a mockup of the website front page (thanks to Trevor Owens). We presented this to the all-team meeting in the early afternoon and received positive feedback. After that, our team hunkered down with Jeremy Boggs as he took us through the steps for writing the wordpress theme for our site. He wowed us as he worked on three projects simultaneously while taking our ideas from conception to reality. Trevor also helped us continue on with our work when Jeremy moved on to other duties. Dan and Tom sat down with us throughout the day and gave valuable support to our efforts, too. I don’t think there’s any way that we could be accomplishing this project without the mentoring from the CHNM folks, and I appreciate how much of a educational experience they’re making this process for us.
By 5pm we were writing taglines, website verbiage and to-do lists for shwag, targeted outreach possibilities, conferences, and the like. We also continued to brainstorm logo ideas. In just a few minutes we’ll meet back in the hotel lobby to continue our work on the logo.
Throughout the afternoon several non-Outreach oneweekers wandered over to our workspace and offered suggestions for us. I got the sense that most of them were excited about what we’d come up with and were eager to offer their input. At the same time, I felt that most of them were glad not to be doing the outreach work, and were happy with their roles on the other teams. Because we chose our own roles, we each seem to be sitting in just the right spot for our individual proclivities and skills.