Supporting an openhatch session

About a week ago, I heard that the socialcoding4good community manager Emma Irwin was running an OpenHatch session at the University of Victoria (in Canada!) OpenHatch sessions are meant to help students get started in contributing to Open Source software. Emma was also going to show them how to contribute to one of my favourite projects, Webmaker, and since I like the project and I have a lot of fun helping new contributors get started to it in general, I did the only reasonable thing and decided to help out… Remotely!

The session

Apart from helping students fix webmaker bugs, the other thing that was particularly interesting to me in the session schedule was a briefing on using IRC. Since I'm running a Mozfest session about the subject soon (!), I thought it would be great practice, so I decided to speak about IRC myself

Working from home

Technology made giving the talk remotely remarkably easy, and there weren't many surprises!
I started by helping out over Skype: Emma had hooked her screen up in a projector and I could talk and share my screen with Skype's screen sharing feature. I said a few short words about IRC and then jumped straight into demonstrating how to use a client and get on freenode's #openhatch and moznet's #introduction and #webmaker.

Later on, students were encouraged to ask any Webmaker questions in the #webmaker channel were me and other contributors could help them out. I answered some of their questions and worked with them and had lots of fun.

Overall, it was an awesome day/night both for me and the students, and I certainly hope to see them in #webmaker again contributing and having more questions!

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