[ubuntu-uk] UK Project Proposal (Sight Village)

Ian Pascoe softy.lofty.ilp at btinternet.com
Sat Oct 6 15:11:23 BST 2007


Alan

Some very valid points.  However, until the stock market crash in the late 90's Guide Dogs was the wealthiest organisation in the UK for the blind, and in the top 5 in the world.

Unfortunately, they're now ranked somewhat lower, but gradually picking up again.  This may well turn you off from giving to GDBA, but just remember that from birth to death GDBA looks after all their dogs financially and medically, and an average cost to maintain a dog through it's life including training is £30k+!

E

-----Original Message-----
From: ubuntu-uk-bounces at lists.ubuntu.com
[mailto:ubuntu-uk-bounces at lists.ubuntu.com]On Behalf Of alan c
Sent: 05 October 2007 10:28
To: British Ubuntu Talk
Subject: Re: [ubuntu-uk] UK Project Proposal (Sight Village)


Ian Pascoe wrote:
> Hi y'all
> 
> Before I ask for Popey's help to put this onto his Ideas Pool, I 
> thought I'd run it by the list and see what your feed back was.
> 
> Every year the Queen Alexandra College for the Blind in Birmingham 
> runs an exhibition called Sight Village, which is the "leading" 
> technology showcase for the bisually impaired and associated 
> support groups throughout Europe - these groups being both 
> Government bodies and local / national / international charities. 

> What I was thinking of doing was running a stand there for the 
> three days - starting Tues 15/07/08 I think - demonstrating Ubuntu
> together with it's Assistive Technologies in use.


Great idea!

A background scenario might be of interest:

a) RNIB (as a major institution in the scene) is apparently very non
Open Source. I have previously contacted them as a potential volunteer
helper - for open source (Free) and Linux. I do not think they even
knew what I was talking about, even the Computer related person.

b) RNIB is said to be a very rich organisation. Saving money may be
something they as an institution see in their own special way.

c) My contact with RNIB suggested they naturally use a level of
bureaucracy you might expect from a vary large well off organisation,
who also use many volunteers too. The formality seemed much higher
than with Age Concern for example. Associated with the formality and
bureaucracy may be a certain inflexibility and resistance to change.

d) When on the Microsoft Campus in Berkshire (for Age Concern events,
a couple of occasions) I became aware of the AbilityNet organisation
http://www.abilitynet.org.uk/ who are -located- in one of the main
Microsoft buildings, apparently heavily funded by the company.
[extract quote] 'AbilityNet’s links with Microsoft, IBM, Hewlett
Packard, BT and other major IT companies put us in a very strong
position to make sure the voices of disabled people are heard.  We aim
to lead the way in providing effective interventions using the latest
technology.'
Comment: One can easily understand that there is a strong tradition
for and also a strong expectation of proprietary software at all
levels - organisations and end users.

e) Blind people I have come across *are* very keen to save money! And
very interested in alternatives. They would obviously need a bit more
support that other new Ubuntu users.

The Sight Village event would be a major marketing showpiece for us. A
very alien territory, with a tradition probably of users being even
more reliant that usual upon proprietary companies.

Can I remind ourselves that press and media coverage will be important
to stimulate and foster?

In principle I would like to and be able to attend and or contribute,
although the far date will need confirmation closer to the event.
(Particularly finding a suitable car park for our small motorhome, and
us, to reside unobtrusively for the duration).
-- 
alan cocks
Kubuntu user#10391

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