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CWSA 2008 and Beyond

From: Aoirthoir An B.
Sent on: Wednesday, February 6, 2008 9:42 AM
Howdy yens!

Just a note before I get on with it... In order to keep folks mailboxes clear, please respond to this email here:
http://webdesign.meetup.com/396/messages/boards/thread/4175336/
If you want you can click TRACK on that thread, to be informed when it updates.

Now on to it!

Yesterday's CWSA meeting was a rip roarin' success by my standards. Which means I didn't make a complete fool of myself. (Only a partial fool). We had tons of great input from members new and old alike. I think we can say down the line the input, suggestions, comments were right on par with where our Association seems to be headed.

We had a Core Team meeting on Saturday, and practically everything we'd concluded there about our direction was brought up by the members at yesterday's meeting. This gives me a lot more confidence that we are moving in the right direction.

So what's planned for this year? Oh my lots and lots!

I want to say first that none of our ideas are cast in stone. Heck right now they are mostly just ideas (unless noted otherwise).

First off the rip as some of yens know our website is up finally (thanks to Brad D and Brendan C for that!). http://www.clevelandwebstandards.org/

Oh and we have a new chat room on IRC at Freenode. It is #CWSA. Email me and I'll show you how to get to it if you haven't used IRC before. Soon I'll have a page up with step by step instructions.

We are going to be moving forward with our focus on Web Standards, so our presentations will continue to be geared towards that. We're also going to be working on the Business Case for Standards. Along those lines we've bantered about the idea of a Business or Community Liaison. We had some great suggestions about joining forces with other standards based groups. So we are going to start looking into that also. Again nothing in stone yet. Just ideas.

We've have several members who are at best novices in one area or another of web design. Consider me, I'm horrible at user interface or graphical design. I know enough HTML to shake a stick at, and that only when the HTML aint even lookin'. Since our presentations assume a certain level of knowledge, what's a feller to do when he aint got none?

Well we will be creating a resources section on our site. This will include links to other sites with great educational material, links to books, screencasts and so on. So that is a start. But folks like me also need feedback to just get started, much less improve. Along those lines for novices and experts alike we will be working on a forum soon. And yes, we've talked about a wiki as well, and user contributed content.

One note here, we have to have an understanding that content is contributed under a Free License such as the GNU Free Documentation License, or the Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike License. This will allow us to distribute the content in the future without restrictions, so we do not have to constantly ask permission each time we want to re-purpose your contributions.

Oh! And we have talked about tutoring. But really, most of us are incredibly busy, and it is very difficult for the professionals to offer the time needed. I'd even thought about it myself. But let's be realistic, none of yens want me to tutor you on web design. So I'm going to start instead a study group. The dates and times will be posted, and if you want to come you are welcome. More to follow on that soon.

We are also thinking about being part of a Barcamp (http://www.barcamp.org) soon. This is one of those things we do not have enough details on yet, but we will keep you posted.

Overall it looks like this year is gonna totally rock. I kid you not!

So holler us up at our next month's meeting (March 4th)

Kind regards yens,
Joseph James Frantz

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