Skip to main content

Greg McVerry

Planning the YouthZone for Feminist(Inter)vention Conference on Gender and Technology

3 min read


flickr photo shared by hackNY under a Creative Commons ( BY-SA ) license

The Good Fight

Fighting for diversity at Southern Connecticut State Univisity looks a little different than it does at other universities in New Haven.

While debating the use of words like "headmaster" or discussing the balance between free speech, safe spaces, and halloween costumes matters our diversity efforts focus more on the lived experience of those who have long felt the shackles of oppression. 

Our fight for diversity means ensuring the class schedule coincides with city bus routes. Our challenges lie in ensuring a smooth pathway from community colleges to four year insitutions. It means providing greater online classes and child care for single moms with two jobs.

We fight for diversity by working tirelessly with Gear Up students who also want to become first generation college students.

 I do not want to undercut the efforts of other universities nor their student bodies. Its just the fight for diversity looks different at schools of access rather than those of affluence.

I am a firm believer that words do matter. Every student should feel safe. Yet to truly overcome the issues around diversity, wealth, and society we must first focus on educational and economic stability.

Diversity and Technology

For those who follow the tech scene you know that we have a diversity problem. Yet this cannot be solved in Silicon Valley. It must be solved at places like Southern who work closely with New Haven Public Schools. It must be solved by Open Source projects such as Mozilla's efforts to .

It can not be solved in your board room or with the right hire. Equity comes from opportunity. Opportunity comes from education and economic stability.

Thus I am proud to serve on the committee for the 22nd annual Women's Studies Conference: (ter)vention: Women, Community and Technology. I am charged with creating the YouthZone.

Using lessons I borrow from the YouthZone I want to create a space that uses production based learning to empower young women through agency. Together we want to see how young women from Connecticut can change the world.

My original design sketch

GitHub Repo

I have created a github repo for anyone that would like to follow along with our progress. I will probably also mae a gDrive folder with the latest files so those who can't navigate the intracacies of GitHub are not excluded.

I will need the most help with the hackathon. I am a non-technical volunteer for many edtech projects. I can markup pages but I have never really coded. Please feel free to jump in.

Have an idea or question? File an issue. Want to get involved file a pull request or reach out to me on Twitter. I need your help.

The Closing Pitch

We are 100% a self-supported conference. We try to offset fees by finding local donations. If you would like to support our efforts feel free to reach out via email. We need swag, money, and volunteers. Any level of involvement will be greatly appreciated.

 

Greg McVerry

Defining #WebLiteracy as we must #teachtheweb

2 min read

As part of our  language arts class we had to choose from a few options for a cumaltive project. I chose to work on the "flipped classroom" videos that have emerged as an instructional genre.

In the flipped model background knowledge and lecture material are delivered out of class so the work with the material can be done inside.  I use the term more loosely on the class syllabus.

Basically I refer to any short video or multimodal performance designed to teach a very specific obective. These are often how-to or basic knowledge.

I chose the knowledge approach for this one (been leaning more to gifs for my how-to's). Since some of you have started to hit the Web Literacy and Language module I thought I would do a quick video on Defining "Web Literacy"

How it Was Made

Remix. I took multiple video and image sources from people explaining Web Literacy and from Web Literacy in action. 

To make the video I used Mozilla's Popcorn. This is a tool dear to the heart but soon to join a the parade of old tools that had to make way for the future. 

What will remain are the udnerlying skills of authoring content through remixing. 

Greg McVerry

Okay @spackatgal @flim_girl and @doomquasar slightly annoyed by this weeks episode. Which means I enjoyed it that much more.

I am an Mac OSX, iOS, and Android user as I prefer to choose the best software in each category.You need to find a Google or Android fangirl to join the crew to combat the blind allegiance to all things Cupertino. The idea that Google Wallet and now Android Pay are less secure due to fragmentation is unwarranted and the discussion of rooting was a bit simplistic. Root access (harder and less necessary) to achieve does not give someone immediate access to secure wallet transactions. They are unrelated.

Furthermore I agree that Apple is trying to make privacy a differentiator. Google is trying itself to be more transparent as well with "My Account," but I would never pay for iCloud. It is an inferior product in every way.

I work in with schools and even in iOS schools we would never choose iCloud over gDrive (note GAFE data not aggregated..and Google for Work by that matter). iCloud and all of Apple's cloud services going back to MobileMe (iDrive was good) have been awful. I could never recommend them to anyone.

I think the future of the web in terms of getting free products from advertising companies and paying for services from product companies is a very interesting and important debate. One that must also include the Open Web. Apple is still as much a content silo as Google and Facebook.

I am guilty of selling my soul and data to the plex.

The Star Wars talk I liked. Even if you were rehashing old and settled debates. The description of CGI versus live set captured much of the travesty known as the prequels.

There was so much more to talk about with the upcoming new movies (Going to get extra nerdy). For example Disney throwing a thermal detonator on the EU and removing it all from canon. I mean the timeline would have been perfect for the Thrawn Chronicles to have matched up. They should be canon. Even if Zahn wrote Leia as to two dimensional and not as strong as she was those three books were considered gospel until Disney destroyed the legacy.

There is also Ashoka's rise to be a Jedi Master in Rebels Season Two. I agree with Brianna that Star Wars is a sexist universe. There was no "female Yoda" (yes I know about Yedi, so before the haters jump I mean in the greater sense of teacher and leader). Lucas could have addressed this in the prequels but doubled down. Killing Padme because of a "broken heart" is one of the most sexist ways to go.

I assume Vader will kill Ashoka at some point in Rebels but not before she is a true leader. Still have hopes she survives long enough for the movies. Ohh and Darth Maul is still alive. That could be interesting.

Then there is the introduction of Han Solo's possible wife in the Marvel comics. Disney has stated anything new is canon and the comic comes between Empire and Jedi so it makes for an interesting play. I will not judge based on one panel as the artists may make her out to be crazy, but still the idea that Han was married while falling for Leia is interesting. My guess is they remove this from the storyline fairly quickly.

Ohh and Simone. I judge you. We all do. Son loving, even animated children is weird.