Wikimedia Hackathon 2017/Mentoring Program

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19 – 21 May 2017 | Vienna, Austria

Welcome


Program

Venue & Vienna


Travel


Participants


Register & Attend!



Mentoring Program


WAYS TO CONNECT:

How to find mentors to team up with? How do I find newcomers who want to learn sometihng?

  • Mentoring Area is in room Heuriger (ground floor) - everyone welcome!
  • Daily meetings in the Atrium: 10.00am (mentors & newcomers) and 17.30 (mentors)

For this year’s Hackathon we will be implementing a mentoring program for newcomers to our movement. The mentoring program is a new approach that we are trying out for the first time, where we were looking for Wikimedians who will be at the hackathon exclusively as mentors. They will come up with newcomer-friendly projects and ideas and, during the whole weekend, work with groups of about two to six newcomers, to help them with the whole onboarding process, and make their way into the great Wikimedia tech community as easy and as much fun as possible. The focus is to welcome more newcomers into the community, by introducing them to the different aspects of working with MediaWiki, and help them achieve their own first steps during the hackathon weekend. Additionally, we want to create a welcoming social atmosphere, so we can further diversity and growth in our community.

Eule.svg

What does it mean to be a mentor?[edit]

Since the mentoring program is something new this year - much more guided and focused than previous initiatives (like e.g. the buddy system) - we want to make sure that everyone is on the same page.

Being a mentor means:

You will be at the hackathon exclusively as a mentor! You will create projects that are newbie-friendly and you will work on them together with the newcomers  for the whole weekend. You will not get as much done as you would on your own, but you will contribute an incredible amount of value to the community by sharing your knowledge and helping the movement grow.

  • Before the hackathon, everyone will come up with newcomer friendly projects, broken into small and large, easy to accomplish tasks. Mentors, like all other participants, can contribute their ideas for sessions, skill share and projects in advance on Phabricator (see: "Contribute to the Program Before the Hackathon" on the Program-page). Additionally, mentors will present their projects in newcomer-friendly language here on this page down below.
  • Before the hackathon, we will keep sending the mentors emails with updates on the mentoring program as we will develop it together – since this is a first time for all of us, we really value your feedback and contributions!
  • At the opening ceremony, the mentoring program and the mentoring team (as a group, not personally) will be introduced and greeted with a round of applause.
  • After the opening ceremony, mentors and newcomers will meet in person and get to know each other, and both mentors as well as newcomers can decide with whom, and on which project they want to work together for the weekend.
  • And, as a special thank you: mentors will get some mentors-only goodies, and the commitment to teach others will be much, much appreciated.
  • Mentors will work with newcomers throughout the three days, but they will not be left alone: We will have regular mentor-meetings during the weekend, to assess the situation, identify potential problems in advance and provide help and exchange within the mentoring team as well as the hackathon staff. Whatever you need during the weekend, you can count on the hackathon staff team to help you out as best as we possibly can!  

Welcoming newcomers into the movement is our goal...[edit]

This program will give newcomers the chance to dive into the Wikimedia movement and try out projects that are designed in a way that will give them the chance to hack on something that can be accomplished on that weekend, with the support of experienced Wikimedians as their mentors. While hacking, the newcomers can get to know the Wikimedia movement and see what impact they can have. We would like to create an event which will offer newcomers the opportunity to engage closely with Wikimedia projects. Pre-assigned hacking groups for newcomers will be kept small, with only four to six participants per project. It will be a unique chance for newcomers to get to know some of the coolest projects and coders out there and become part of the Wikimedia community!

... and the mentoring program is just one of many ways to do it.[edit]

While we are especially thankful for everyone who signed up to be a mentor exclusively, we also need people who do not want to take up this pre-defined role, but instead want to keep the flexibility that makes up such a great part of Wikimedia Hackathons. Everyone can give sessions tailored to newcomers and share their skills in whichever way they choose during the hackathon. (See Wikimedia Hackathon 2017 Program for details on how to do this.) It is very important to us, to provide the space and flexibility for others to help and get involved in a less formalized way.

Newcomers[edit]

I am a newcomer and would like to join the mentoring program! What should I do?

In the registration form, we offered everyone the option to indicate that they are new, and want to join the mentoring program. If you did this, you will automatically be on our list of newcomers and will receive an email with further information! If you did not register as new, but want to join the program, too, no problem. Here's what you have to do:

>> Take these Three Steps to Prepare for the Wikimedia Hackathon <<

WAYS TO CONNECT:

How to find mentors to team up with? How do I find newcomers who want to learn sometihng?

Resources for Newcomers[edit]

Optional: If you want to dive deeper into the world of MediaWiki, here are some more resources you can check out:

General sources for MediaWiki[edit]

Resources from MediaWiki pre-hackathon workshops in Vienna[edit]

  • List of resources for installing MediaWiki on a server and getting started with PHP & Co, by jackie: wmws.tantemalkah.at
  • Installing MediaWiki using VirtualBox, by Tobias: Download PDF
  • Quick Start in MediaWiki System Administration, by Alex: Download PDF

Prepare for the Wikimedia Hackathon[edit]

Mentors[edit]

Your Mentors in Vienna 2017[edit]

In the registration for the hackathon, everyone was asked if they wanted to volunteer as a mentor. Everyone who answered positively got an email, in which the details and responsibilities of this year's new mentoring program were explained. The people who then opted in for a second time, are now our mentors for this year's hackathon!

Photo / Avatar Name About me (incl. contact information & comments) During the hackathon, we could work on... _____________________

We actually worked on... (project name, Phabricator task)

________________

We worked with... (names of newcomers)

________________

Ideas for next steps for newcomers...?

Tony Thomas DP.jpg Tony Thomas I am tonythomas on IRC, and works on python-django, Angular, PHP etc. Feel free to ping me on 01tonythomas@gmail.com. I had been a past GSoC 2014 student, 2015-16 Mentor and org-admin (2016) for the program as well. We - the Extension:Newsletter team has around 30 easy/beginner_friendly tasks - mostly from https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T159081 - which we would be helping out to fix if someone is interested. One of them can be your first patch to the mw-codebase as well. Mostly newsletter extension stuff, [1]and various patchsets. Currently working on T159083 with Bawolff MtDu, a bit with random others.

(Made @Srishti push in her first patch to the newsletter extension as well). We have 'Ad' too here.

Mostly the rest with Bawolff (dino).

We always have more simple one liners at T159081. Please come in to room 'Grukel'
John Samuel Wikidata, Wikipedia infoboxes, Python, SPARQL, structured data See d:Wikidata:WikiProject_Informatics/Programming_Language, d:Wikidata:WikiProject_Informatics/Algorithm, d:Wikidata:WikiProject_Informatics/Data Structure for some projects related to Wikidata and Wikipedia infoboxes. phab:T165868 it:User:Laurentius, de:User:notizblock, pl:Matma Rex Extending this approach to other Wikipedia infoboxes
jackie sys admin using lots of mediawikis; loves doing workshops on tech stuff; queer*feminist attitude; https://tantemalkah.at See my user page User:Jackie_a_k for more details. I'm not the expert MediaWiki hacker, but I'm more an expert on helping people out with getting started (e.g. with programming, sysadmin stuff, tweaking a MediaWiki install towards my own needs, etc.). So I could imagine to help around newcomers with setting up their own installs and doing some local modifications to get a feeling on how this all works and where we could go from there. Srishti Sethi already set up a share session on how to set up a MediaWiki dev environment on phabricator. I could imagine joining there and afterwards be there for some newcomers to explore more.
Kohli, Niharika May 2017.jpg Niharika Kohli Community Tech team engineer. Making your wildest wiki wishes come true since 2016!

Twitter handle: @niharikakohli29

I could help you get started with extension writing, gadget writing, bot writing, labs tools etc.
Amir-IMG 4549.jpg Amir Sarabadani

User:Ladsgroup

Wikidata, ORES, mediawiki, OOUI, Colors, pywikibot

Amir1@IRC

You can find more information about me in my user page but I will be definitely interested in building AI for Wikimedia or developing Wikidata :)
Schottlender, Moriel March 2014.jpg Moriel Schottlender Collaboration Team, Wikimedia Foundation

@mooeypoo on twitter and IRC (#mediawiki-collaboration)

Project ideas:
  • "Allow users to restrict who can send them notifications" task T150419 (Mostly PHP, some JavaScript)
  • Improving documentation by working on a written tutorials - Installing Mediawiki-vagrant, How to add notification to your extension using Echo/Notifications, etc. (You will need to install those and document your steps in a new-developer-friendly manner)
  • Working on "Easy" tasks in Notifications backlog (we will go over this task list and work on however many you manage to during the weekend!)
  • Your idea! If you have an idea for a project that relates to any of the topics I've mentioned, come see me!
  • MtDu
  • JoHammer
  • Stay involved and keep contributing!

If you want more tasks and projects, there are many more ideas to do and improve with your tasks, let me know!

Sam Reed

User:Reedy reedy on IRC, @tehreedy on twitter

MediaWiki, Wikimedia Development or Deployment, AutoWikiBrowser
Foto Cassinam Federico Leva

User:Nemo_bis

i18n, crosswiki, community, translatewiki.net, WMIT I can guide you through any Wikimedia/MediaWiki process you're interested in. Otherwise, I have some ideas.
i18n table at the hackathon

I'm staying at the i18n table in the Gurkerl room (first table in the second room upstairs).


Current mentees:

Dan Andreescu Dan Andreescu

User:Milimetric

Analytics team at WMF, data, visualization, community backlogs and metrics, UI/UX. I can help you with being a complete beginner to mediawiki development, or finding non-mediawiki core software that you might be interested in working on. Such as analytics, research, mobile apps, new greenfield wikidata UI rewrite, and other projects people are working on. Technology-wise I can help you with JS, SQL, python, big data tools, and deep analysis of mediawiki-related data. I know people in all corners of the movement, developers and otherwise, so I can introduce you to anyone you want to meet.
Dziewonski, Bartosz April 2015.jpg Bartosz Dziewoński

User:Matma Rex

Software engineer at WMF Editing department. I work on VisualEditor and boring user interface stuff. I used to write gadgets and tools and such.

Contact: matma.rex@gmail.com, MatmaRex on IRC

I can help with anything related to the interface of Wikimedia wikis – I'm at least superficially familiar with most of the extensions we run. I can also help with VisualEditor, OOjs UI or non-Wikimedia skins.

Example small tasks I could mentor:

Flaschen, Matthew Jan 2014.jpg Matthew Flaschen Software Engineer, Collaboration team, WMF

Edit Review Improvements/RCFilters, MediaWiki-Vagrant, Flow, GuidedTour, gadgets, Code of Conduct

  • Flow OAuth proof of concept (make a discussion system that looks the way you want it to, without writing any backend code!)
  • RCFilters (have an idea for a new filter for Special:RecentChanges)
  • Languages, extensions, environments where I can help you with whatever you're interested in:
    • PHP
    • Puppet/MediaWiki-Vagrant
    • Flow
    • GuidedTour
    • Tool Labs (want to make a web service related to wikis?)
    • User Scripts/Gadgets (make Wikipedia do what you want; no extension needed!)
Strainu Gadget and bot developer, technical contact for the Romanian community bots, gadgets, i18n, monument or other databases A notification robot for living person's biographies, some pywikibot bugs Clco, Honeypot95
Marios Magioladitis @ ThessHack 2016.jpg Marios Magioladitis Developer of AutoWikiBrowser (AWB). Knows C#, Python, PHP. AWB, regular expressions, bots Installed AWB, read source code, installed AutoWikiEditor user:Shavtay
Jugend hackt Österreich 2016 (30683965032).jpg Tobias Interested in Wikidata, automating boring stuff, good data and easy user interfaces. Knows things about: PHP, Python Javascript, CSS, Mediawiki OAuth, Tool Labs, Wikidata, SPARQL. (Email: tobias47n9e@gmail.com) A tool on Tool Labs. Something that uses Wikidata queries. Some web service for the Commons app (https://commons-app.github.io/).
Madhu Viswanathan Ops Engineer on the Wikimedia Cloud Services (Labs) team, talk to me at madhuvishy on #freenode.
Alangi Derick Wiki Indaba 2017 Alangi Derick Twitter: AlangiDerick, Github: https://github.com/ch3nkula, IRC nick on Freenode: d3r1ck Are you interested in knowing something about the Wikidata API and other Wikimedia project API related stuffs, I will be around to introduce you to Wikimedia project APIs and specifically Wikidata API which you could use to build tools to solve problems (that might exist).
Koerner, Chris January 2017 01.jpg C̡̰h̯̙͜r̮̻̱̼̪is̸̘̦̟̻ ҉̫̩̠K͏̱o̜̮̹̱̱̩͟e̷͕̩͉̣̩̯̹r͖̠̫̪̹͝n̗̥̣̤͙̰̟e̷͔r̠͍̲ Community and MediaWiki nerd who loves meeting new folks - feel free to email me if you'd like to chat ckoerner@wikimedia.org
Amir Aharoni.jpg Amir E. Aharoni, User:Amire80

(not to be confused with Amir Sarabadani and Aaron Halfaker)

I edited Wikipedia since 2004. I am a staff member in the WMF since 2011. I am also a a bit of a linguist and a bit of a musician. My interests in MediaWiki are mostly around language diversity, internationalization, localization, and all imaginable kinds of language support issues.
  1. Editing through messaging apps, such as Facebook Messenger and Telegram. Come if you're interested in in learning about MediaWiki API, Node.js, chat bots, and Wikimedia Tool Labs. No previous knowledge required!
  2. Anything to do with translation, localization, and improving language support. Come if you know any language other than English, if MediaWiki doesn't work in your language well, if you want to learn to translate software, Wikipedia articles, or documentation.
  3. Middle Eastern candy!
Elena Tonkovidova (WMF) QA QA Analyst Help with general info about various projects - VE, Echo, Flow, and other aspects of workflows with emphasis on software QA. Vagrant set up, Selenium and RSpec testing. Setting up a standalone wiki (collaborative efforts with Matt Flaschen and Timo); intro into wiki workflow - edits, user rights, db May Huge thanks for the program! Having greater emphasis on educational, introductory aspects of programming and dev process may attract more newcomers who now feel that the barrier for learning/participating is high. It would be helpful to re-define 'hackathon projects' to a broader scope, not limited to coding only.
Joal.jpg Joal Working in the Analytics team At WMF
  1. Consume realtime data streams (wikipedia recent changes for instance) from your prefered language (or some fancy ones I can teach you :).
  2. Learn how wikidata information is structured in json, and how to make more easily queriable at scale using Spark.
  3. Have a look at how mediawiki historical metrics are computed on Hadoop, and how we plan to use them.
  1. Work on realtime data streams
no mentee :[ I served as resource person for mentees, and interacted a lot with other mentors.

I think having a distinction between project-mentors and support mentors could be nice. Depending on preparation, we would offer a smaller set of projects, with their mentors-leaders, and other mentors would gravitate around to help. Huge thank you to the organisation team, I have the feeling the program has really been a success for our newcomers :)

Bernd "bearND" Sitzmann Worked in the Wikipedia Android app team until end of 2016. Now working on Node.js services. IRC nick on Freenode: bearND T165495: Generic MediaWiki Android app
Petr bena wikipedian cat.jpg Petr Bena

User:Petrb

petan on IRC, Huggle and wm-bot dev Huggle - anti-vandalism tool written in C++, wm-bot - IRC bot used in almost every important IRC dev/tech channel, written in C#, support extensions written in other languages, MediaWiki core or extensions (written in PHP), Wikipedia bots - used to automate repetitive tasks, written in any language. XmlRcs backend for recent changes feed of all WMF projects (C++/Python/JS/redis). Wikimedia labs & Tool labs - linux (debian or ubuntu) based development environment which can be used for development or wikimedia related tool hosting.
Timo Tijhof at Wikimania 2015 Reception cropped.jpg Timo Tijhof

(Krinkle)

Volunteer since 2009, working as software engineer with Wikimedia Foundation since 2011. Creating an account on Tool Labs, and doing the Quick start steps from Help:Tool_Labs. Runing some querys @ https://quarry.wmflabs.org/. Introducing to another Hackathon participant for translation Niko => translated Global User Contributions into Albanian (sq) language. DenisaRucaj
Isarra I am the Skin Baron. Find me on IRC if you want an argument. This could be an argument with you, for you, against you, or totally off to the side of you. Your choice. MediaWiki skins, themeing, and anything involving skins. Or random extension crap, or miscellaneous UX stuff, if you really want. Also skins. Never did get any mentees. Helped some random folks, but nothing I kept track of, unfortunately.
Aaron Halfaker at Wikimania 2015 Reception at Museo Soumaya.jpg Aaron Halfaker (EpochFail/Halfak) I'm a Principal Research Scientist at the Wikimedia Foundation. I maintain a large-scale machine-learning service called ORES and a research the intersection of social processes and technologies on Wikimedia wikis. I'm stoked to work with anyone who wants to learn about machine learning, statistics, linguistics, or just do some fun stuff in python. I'm an educator, so you don't need to have any background in order to get started working with me. I've been around Wikimedia technology ("wikitech") for a long time so I can help make introductions too. See https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LYF-3t14CSc for an overview of my work. ORES, Machine learning, Artificial intelligence, Data mining & stats, Research of Wikis, and Distributed process (in python) using Labs/Cloud Services
Rummana Yasmeen

username: RYasmeen (WMF)

Contact: ryasmeen@wikimedia.org

Quality Analyst for VisualEditor I can help you in getting introduced to VisualEditor for editing pages, I can give you an overview of the QA process we follow for this project, I can also talk about the workflow we follow on Phabricator for managing and tracking issues. We can have a bug squash session to find the pesky bugs in the editor and analyze the steps causing them.
Henrique Andrade apresentando Palestra Minerando dados - Como extrair insights dos metadados da Wikipédia.jpg Henrique Andrade (User:HenriqueCrang) I'm a researcher from Brazil that create tools for data analysis on Portuguese Wikipedia. Find me on Telegram as @henriquecrang . I can help you create small tools for visualization of Wikimedia data and/or write queries to find the data you need. Gender Gap Dashboard task T165844 User:Alicetragedy, User:Geisasantos, User:Milimetric We did just a small set of analysis to start the idea. It has potential to be become a very depper project.
ArtAndFeminism edithathon, Graz, March 2017 (23)
User :WS_ReNu (de)
2017: Coach, Student and Wiki-Volonteer :-) How to start the beginning in coding and how to go on in respect of your own time shedule and ressources.
  • Dreyfus model of skill acquisition (from beginner to expert; communications)
  • Work - Life - Coding - Balancing
  • Ressources to keep on learning how to code and just doing it :-)
persons with individual topics and goals - Time and energy-management

- Where and how do I get into personal (helpfull-) contacts? - How to keep beeing motivated? - Sharing knowledge and results

- Reciving and giving feedback

Hugo Lopez (User:Yug) Cartography, Audio recording
Wikimedia Hackathon 2017 ocorrido em Viena.
Geisa Santos (User:Geisasantos) Dev Padawan in Ruby & Python

- Rails Girls & PyLadies organizer and a whole lot others projects about Education and Technology - Interests in Games, InfoSec & Diversity - I would love to help with Project Management, Design Thinking, User Experience, Community Management, Startups, Education programs focused on underrepresented groups, Libre Mesh, Games (both playing and game development) - Contact: geisa@riseup.net

Want to work on projects about gender gap and accessibility. Gender Gap Dashboard Parting with Henrique Andrade and Laura

Matching Mentors and Newcomers[edit]

Introduction Session:[edit]

Mentors and newcomers will match themselves, in person at the first day of the hackathon, after everyone gets to know each other.

Mentoring Program starts with an introductory session on Friday 11:30-13:30 (just after the opening) in room Wiaschtl.

NOTE: All mentors and newcomers, make sure to be there! Mentors: Please prepare a 1-2 minute introduction of yourself & your project ideas.

Outline of the session:

  • Welcome & short introduction by the organizers
  • Ice breakers/ getting to know each other a little bit
  • Mentors introduce themselves & pitch their projects in 1-2 minutes (write keywords on a flipchart paper)
  • Newcomers choose projects they like

Mentors and organizers will help to facilitate the matching process, so that newcomers find projects that match their skills and interests, and that everyone has something to do.

Please be prepared for a certain level of flexibility! We encourage mentors to team up with each other, share ideas, maybe have joined projects.

During the hackathon:[edit]

WAYS TO CONNECT:

How to find mentors to team up with? How do I find newcomers who want to learn sometihng?

  • Mentoring Area is in room Heuriger (ground floor) - everyone welcome!
  • Daily meetings in the Atrium: 10.00am (mentors & newcomers) and 17.30 (mentors)

Mentor Meetings[edit]

Thursday 18th May: 17:30-18:30 Meeting in the Atrium - Mentors

If you are already in Vienna on Thursday, join us for an informal first meeting. We’ll get to know each other, have coffee together and talk about the program. 

Friday: 17:30-18:00 in the Atrium - Mentors

Quick recap of how it's been going today, feedback etc. If you can't attend, please leave your notes in the ether pad. (Link in mentor telegram group chat) If you want to give a more confidential feedback please direct it to Sonja directly: sonja.fischbauer@wikimedia.at, via Sonja's telegram or in person.

Saturday: 10.00 - 10.15 in the Atrium - Mentors & Newcomers

Mentors + Newcomers start the day together! Quick good morning, meet new people, then off to work again :)

Saturday: 17:30-18:00 in the Atrium - Mentors

Quick recap of how it's been going today, feedback etc. If you can't attend, please leave your notes in the ether pad. (Link in mentor telegram group chat) If you want to give a more confidential feedback please direct it to Sonja directly: sonja.fischbauer@wikimedia.at, via Sonja's telegram or in person.

Sunday: 10.00 - 10.15 at the Atrium - Mentors & Newcomers

Mentors + Newcomers start the day together! Quick good morning, meet new people, then off to work again :)

Point of contact[edit]

Photo / Avatar Name About me (incl. contact information & comments) During the hackathon, we could work on...
Sonja Fischbauer 11 2015.jpg Sonja Fischbauer

User:Sonkiki

I am joining Wikimedia Austria as a freelancer for the Hackathon this year, to help coordinate outreach, with a special focus on stakeholders and newcomers. I will be your go-to person for questions related to the mentoring program, trying to help out with any questions and requests you might have. (But feel free to approach anyone in the hackathon staff/ team with your questions during the weekend!) I will do my best to set the scene and facilitate everything you need in order to make the mentoring program work as well as possible, for both mentors and newcomers alike.

Mentoring Guide[edit]

As a mentor, you are the heart of the initiative for newcomers in the movement. In order to make the mentoring program work as best as we can, we are establishing this guide. We will need all of your feedback and learnings to improve the program in general, and this guide in particular – we are excited to do this with you. The goal of this guide is to help you being well prepared, and to give you options and inspirations to draw from.

This guide is focused on creating a friendly and open environment for learners of all sorts – but also for you, the mentors, yourselves. This guide strives to help with making everyone feel comfortable, to have a pleasant learning and mentoring experience, as well as having a great weekend together.

Building on lessons learned

With this guide, we are building on lessons learned from previous newcomer-initiatives, mainly the buddy system, which was first introduced at the Wikimedia Hackathon 2015. While the idea to help newcomers was appreciated, the process felt a forced for some, while others were a bit lost. Suggestions for improvements called for an improved pairing process (e.g. based on projects, not people, and giving people the option to switch), guidelines for best practices and managing expectations in advance. With this guide, we are trying to make due on that. (Read the full lessons learned from Lyon 2015.)

Sources for this guide

This mentoring guide is built from the Open Tech School coaching guide (CC BY-SA 3.0 Open Tech School), which itself roots in the RailsBridge teaching style (CC BY 3.0 RailsBridge). Additionally, we draw from the Django Girls Coaching Manual (CC BY-SA 4.0 Django Girls), the Rails Girls Guide for Coaches (CC BY-SA 3.0 Rails Girls) and the Jugend hackt Handbuch (CC BY 4.0 Paula Glaser, Maria Reimer, Daniel Seitz for OKF DE and mediale pfade.org). All of these links are excellent sources if you want to dig deeper into the art of mentoring.

Mentoring isn't teaching…

in the sense that mentors are not standing in front and teaching a class.

Mentors...

  • Stand by on the sidelines
  • Are right there when needed
  • Focus on the learners
  • Have sympathy for their (in-)abilities
  • Encourage learners to go further through positive motivation
  • And ensure they have fun doing it.

Creating a friendly environment

Atmosphere

  • Smile
  • Make eye contact
  • Admit when you don't know something
  • Be kind and friendly
  • Use their name (on the name tags)
  • Tell learners it's ok to make mistakes
  • And to take breaks when it gets frustrating

Encouragement

  • Assume everyone you're mentoring has zero knowledge but infinite intelligence
  • Use normal language instead of slang
  • Make sure the learner understood what you said...
  • ...and explain it again differently if that's not the case
  • Encourage learners to play around on their own
  • Whatever they do is great!

Questions

  • Look around to see if someone else might be having trouble
  • They might just be afraid to ask
  • Come by once in awhile and ask: “Hey, how is it going? Anything I can help you with?”
    • This is a very powerful tool: It helps shy learners, builds rapport and increases engagement.
    • Another trick: Sit next to them and chat about what they are doing.

Questions are good!

  • Get people comfortable asking questions
  • Emphasize that there is no such thing as "dumb" questions
  • Ask if learners have any questions
  • Give other learners the chance to try to answer that question
  • Coding is collaboration — make sure learners understand that

Responding to questions

Chances are, there is a specific question when the learner asks you to help them. How do you respond?

  • Positively:
    • "I’m glad you asked that."
    • "What an interesting question!"
    • "Great question!"
    • "Hm, I'm not sure... Let's look in the Internet/ask someone else."
  • If in doubt: blame the material, never the learner.
  • Their interpretation of the material might be as good as ours!

Pacing

  • This is not about you, but about the learner. We go at their pace.
  • Everyone learns at their own pace. That's a good thing!
  • Talk sssssslllllloooooowwwwwwllllllyyyyyyyy.
  • Wait much longer than you feel is comfortable for questions/comments (count to 10 in your head)

Be encouraging

  • Don't accept any learner saying they are too whatever to do it, answer that they can do it.
  • Congratulate people on their achievements, take some time to let them show them to you.
  • If people get off the path but have fun, encourage them to go on.
  • Encourage learners to show their work to others: invite them to present at the showcase at the end, or to show their stuff to other participants during the event. Tell them twice. Or three times. Whatever it takes.

Don'ts

A few things we are not doing:

  • We do not hit on anyone or make sexually suggestive remarks
  • We do not roll our eyes or laugh at questions
  • We do not use the time to advertise our own companies/jobs/ourselves
  • We do not pick on or make fun of anyone or anything
  • We do not debate which programming language, methods or technologies are "better"
  • We do not touch their keyboard

Their keyboard – it is made of lava!

  • Learners don't benefit from you taking over their keyboard.
  • Don't touch it.
  • If you absolutely, ultimately must type something on their computer — chances are you don't —, ask whether that is okay with them.
  • And explain what you are doing.

We do not discuss programming languages

Doing so confuses learners. In the tech community we have some strong opinions and our ways to express them, but for people new to it, this can quickly look like a huge fight. We do not fight each other!

“We are here to mentor you in this programming language/method/technology and that is the focus for this event.”

Thank you for being a mentor at the Wikimedia Hackathon!

Gallery[edit]

Emails[edit]

1st Email to potential mentors[edit]

Sent: 4 weeks before the event (22 April 2017)

Subject: Being a mentor at the Wikimedia Hackathon 2017 Vienna 

Hello fellow Wikimedian,

this is Sonja from the Wikimedia Austria team with updates on our Wikimedia Hackathon!

In your registration, you indicated that you would like to be a mentor at the hackathon. This is great, and we really appreciate it!

The mentoring program is a new approach that we are trying out for the first time, to get more newcomers into the movement, help them with the whole onboarding process, and make their way into the great Wikimedia tech community as easy and as much fun as possible.

Since the mentoring program is something new this year - much more guided and focused than previous initiatives (like e.g. the buddy system) - we want to make sure that everyone is on the same page.

Being a mentor means:

You will be at the hackathon exclusively as a mentor! You will create projects that are newbie-friendly and you will work on them together with the newcomers  for the whole weekend. You will not get as much done as you would on your own, but you will contribute an incredible amount of value to the community by sharing your knowledge and helping the movement grow.

  • Before the hackathon, everyone will come up with newcomer friendly projects, broken into small and large, easy to accomplish tasks. We will collect them on Phabricator on the Wikimedia Hackathon 2017 workboard, and you can also put yourself down as a mentor for projects on the Community Wishlist. Detailed instructions (what to contribute where) will follow asap, please stay tuned!
  • Before the hackathon, we will keep sending you emails with updates on the mentoring program as we will develop it together – since this is a first time for all of us, we really value your feedback and contributions!
  • At the opening ceremony, the mentoring program and the mentoring team (as a group, not personally) will be introduced and greeted with a round of applause.
  • After the opening ceremony, mentors and newcomers will meet in person and get to know each other, and both mentors as well as newcomers can decide with whom, and on which project they want to work together for the weekend.
  • And, as a special thank you: you will get some mentors-only goodies, and your commitment to teach others will be much, much appreciated!

If you have read all this, and it sounds good to you (yippee!), please fill out this very short form, to show that you indeed want to be a mentor (and tell us your t-shirt size so we can order them in time).

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScCkj9PdN7E7eXhUF2B-93_fM1AiHYV-gzy1sBXFmd-eTBO4A/viewform

Please fill out this form until Wednesday, April 26th, 12am (midnight) CEST! 

(Only 5 questions, should be done in 2 minutes - you can always go back and edit your replies later, but please select your preferred t-shirt size, so we can start ordering next week.)  

If you don’t want to be a mentor, but want to contribute by creating newbie-friendly projects and/ or holding workshops, please keep an eye on the MediaWiki Hackathon 2017 page, where we will add more info on other ways and means to contribute in the coming weeks.

Thank you very much in advance, have a great weekend!

Best wishes from Vienna,

Sonja and the Wikimedia Austria team

Gentle reminder for 1st email to mentors[edit]

Sent: 3 weeks before event (26 April 2017)

Subject: *Gentle Reminder* Being a mentor at the Wikimedia Hackathon 2017 Vienna 

Hi everyone, 

please allow me to gently remind you, that we’d be happy to have you in our mentoring team for the Wikimedia Hackathon 2017 in Vienna. 

Some people registered already, others chose to opt out, because they’d rather take on a different role during the hackathon – we appreciate all the helpful feedback and replies.

If you want to be a mentor in our mentoring program (as described on the MediaWiki event page or in the previous email), please fill out this very short form:

Thank you – or, Dankeschön!, as we’d say here in Vienna – and have a lovely evening / whatever time of day this email reaches you! 

Best from Vienna,

Sonja

PS.: Please feel free to forward this email (and/or my first one) to fellow hackathon attendees, if you think they’d like to be a mentor, too. 

2nd email to mentors[edit]

Sent: 2 weeks before event 5 May 2017

Subject: Mentors at Wikimedia Hackathon - preparing projects, introducing yourselves 

Dear Mentors,

thanks for all the responses to our form! We have already ordered awesome T-shirts for all of you.

It’s great: We do have a team of 24 mentors, which is perfect for our 47 registered newcomers!

Please check out the new Wiki Page on the Mentoring Program. This will be the place where we can introduce you to the newcomers beforehand: https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Hackathon_2017/Mentoring_Program

Here’s our next steps:

1. Fill out the information about yourselves and your project ideas:

https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Hackathon_2017/Mentoring_Program#Your_Mentors_in_Vienna_2017

I have added a table with your names and contacts/ comments. I copied the information from the participants’ list. Please add your photo/ avatar if you like, more about yourself and, most importantly, possible projects you could be working on with the newcomers. Create these projects in a regular fashion on Phabricator, too like all other participants, but please use this table to explain them in a few words to newcomers who quite possibly are not familiar with any of them yet.

2. Please read the Mentoring Guide

These guidelines are meant as a tool for you, to, well, guide you through the process of working with learners/ newcomers. Many of you have already a very impressive teaching experience, so chances are, you have read a version of this before. :)

https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Hackathon_2017/Mentoring_Program#Mentoring_Guide

3. Join our Mentor Group on Telegram

There is a Telegram group chat for everyone https://t.me/wmhack, but I have set one up for just the mentors, too.

Please join: https://t.me/joinchat/AAAAAEK9RU9pREV7POP93Q  (if you don’t have Telegram, get it at telegram.org. Telegram also has a web-app version, and you do not have to share your phone number like e.g. WhatsApp!)

it could be a great way to chat with other mentors and share ideas beforehand!

How will you find your newcomers / how will they find you?

taken from the section „Matching Mentors and Newcomers“ on the wiki: https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Hackathon_2017/Mentoring_Program#Matching_Mentors_and_Newcomers

Mentors and newcomers will match themselves, in person at the first day of the hackathon, after everyone gets to know each other. After the opening ceremony on Friday, all mentors and newcomers will go for a joint mentoring program session to the breakout room Wiaschtl to meet and get acquainted. The organisers will prepare the session, in which everyone will have a chance to introduce themselves. The mentors will quickly pitch the projects they have prepared and/ or the areas of expertise which they can offer for the newcomers. Newcomers will separate into groups and find their matching mentors, according to their likes and interests.

>> Next week we will send you a more detailed schedule for this session. It will mainly include a few icebreakers and introductions from everyone, before you pitch your project / ideas that you’d want to work on with the newcomers. If any of you have ideas or want to help develop this, please get in touch!

Should you have any questions, please ask. We really welcome your feedback here, and we are happy about every message we get from you.

Best wishes from Vienna,

Sonja

1st email to newcomers[edit]

Sent: 2 weeks before event (6 May 2017)

Subject: Newcomers at the Wikimedia Hackathon 2017 – join the mentoring program

Fellow (future) Wikimedians, dear Wikimedia Hackathon attendees!

If you are receiving this email, you have indicated on your registration that you are new to the world of MediaWiki and would like to join the mentoring program. That’s great!

Experienced Wikimedians have volunteered to be exclusively mentors for the weekend, they will come up with newcomer-friendly projects and ideas and, during the whole weekend, work with groups of about two to six newcomers.

What do you have to do to join the mentoring program as a newcomer? Please follow these three steps:

1. Add yourself to the Participant’s List! If you are already on it, please check again and edit accordingly.

https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Hackathon_2017/Participant_List  

Add or edit:

  • your name / nickname
  • your contact details (website, github, twitter, etc.) and your experience with programming and your interests for the weekend! (E.g.: I have experience with Python, and am interested in working on a project about Wikidata for the weekend).  
  • In the new column with the question „Are you a newcomer who would like to join the mentoring program?“ write: YES

>> This will help us, the organisers, and our mentors prepare for you!

2. Read about the Mentoring Program

and get to know your amazing mentors for this year!

https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Hackathon_2017/Mentoring_Program

>> this will help you get familiar with what we have planned.

3. Check out our Resources for Newcomers,

especially the section: How to prepare for Wikimedia Hackathon will prove very valuable. You can also have a glance at the list of featured tasks, to get an idea of the variety of projects at the hackathon.

https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Hackathon_2017/Mentoring_Program#Newcomers

>> prepare yourself and your laptop :)

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask or give feedback, we really appreciate it.

The mentoring program is something we are trying out for the very first time at a Wikimedia Hackathon, although we draw from long-standing experience and the success of mentoring programs in similar forms, like e.g. RailsGirls, Jugend hackt and more.

Throughout this process, your feedback and input is very welcome!

Best wishes from Vienna,

Sonja 

3rd email to mentors (= Gentle reminder to 2nd email, but with updated info)[edit]

Sent: 1 week before event (12 May 2017)

Subject: *Gentle Reminder* Mentor at Wikimedia Hackathon - preparing projects, introducing yourselves 

Dear mentors, 

please allow me to gently remind you of these steps (they are even a bit updated since the last email!)

1. Fill out the information about yourselves and your project ideas: 

https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Hackathon_2017/Mentoring_Program#Your_Mentors_in_Vienna_2017

I have added a table with your names and contacts/ comments. I copied the information from the participants’ list. Please add your photo/ avatar if you like, more about yourself and, most importantly, possible projects you could be working on with the newcomers. Create these projects in a regular fashion on Phabricator, too like all other participants, but please use this table to explain them in a few words to newcomers who quite possibly are not familiar with any of them yet. 

>> Please prepare a 1-2 minute introduction of yourself & your project ideas.

The Mentoring Program starts with an introductory session on Friday 11:30-13:30 (just after the opening), and during this session, every mentor will pitch their project/ introduce themselves.

More about the outline for this session: https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Hackathon_2017/Mentoring_Program#Matching_Mentors_and_Newcomers  

2. Please read the Mentoring Guide

These guidelines are meant as a tool for you, to, well, guide you through the process of working with learners/ newcomers. Many of you have already a very impressive teaching experience, so chances are, you have read a version of this before. :)

https://www.mediawiki.org/w/index.php?title=Wikimedia_Hackathon_2017/Mentoring_Program#Mentoring_Guide

3. Join our Mentor Group on Telegram

There is a Telegram group chat for everyone https://t.me/wmhack, but I have set one up for just the mentors, too. 

Please join: https://t.me/joinchat/AAAAAEK9RU9pREV7POP93Q  (if you don’t have Telegram, get it at telegram.org (Telegram also has a web-app version, and you do not have to share your phone number like e.g. WhatsApp!) 

it could be a great way to chat with other mentors and share ideas beforehand! 

4. Add to your Schedule: Mentor Meeting on Thursday 18th, 17:30 at the venue 

If you are already in Vienna on Thursday, join us for an informal first meeting from 17:30-18:30 at the venue. 

We will meet at the registration desk. We’ll get to know each other, have coffee together and talk about the program. 

As always: If you have any questions or concerns, please let us know. We are trying this together and we are happy to have you on board! 

Best, 

Sonja

email to mentors after first mentor meeting[edit]

Sent: day before the event/ day 0 (18 May 2017)

Subject: Mentoring #wmhack - recap of today's meeting & schedule for tomorrow 

Hey everyone, 

thanks for a productive meeting today with everyone who was already at the venue. Everyone else: see you tomorrow, looking forward to meeting you! 

Please read a recap of all the important info, including a schedule for tomorrow: https://etherpad.wikimedia.org/p/mentormeeting

Join our telegram! https://t.me/joinchat/AAAAAEK9RU9pREV7POP93Q it’s quite busy already and we’re having good fun. 

Other than that - have a good night, see you soon! 

Woot woot, 

Sonja

Email to mentors and newcomers after first day of hackathon[edit]

Sent: Evening of day 1 of the event (19 May 2017)

Subject: Hackathon update! Saturday, 10am: Newcomers and mentors meet at Atrium 

Dear newcomers & mentors, 

thank you all for a great day! 

Some of you newcomers have found projects yet, some are maybe still trying to make sense of all of this - and some mentors have their groups, others are roaming around and are still looking for newcomers to help! 

Today, our mentors came up with the idea that we start the day tomorrow together. 

So let’s meet up after breakfast for a quick chat, and then you can either find a new thing to work on, someone to help you or team up with, or just go straight back to what you’re already working on :)

Mentor + Newcomer meeting

Saturday 20th, 10.00-10.30am in the Atrium

Please make sure to join our Mentor + Newcomer Telegram Group Chat: https://t.me/wmhackmentoring 

Find out more about our mentors and their expertise: https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Hackathon_2017/Mentoring_Program#Your_Mentors_in_Vienna_2017 

Looking forward to seeing you again. 

(You’ll find me tonight at karaoke ;)) 

Best, 

Sonja

Email to mentors and newcomers after second day of hackathon[edit]

Sent: Eventing of day 2 of the event (20 May 2017)

Subject: Hackathon Updates: newbie phabricator tag, mentoring documentation, newbie session tomorrow 10am

Hi awesome creatures, 

(= all registered newcomers and all mentors)

3 Quick updates! 

1) newcomer meeting tomorrow at 10.00am in the mentoring area: we start the day together, and Srishti will give anyone who wants an introduction to the Wikimedia tech areas, etc! 

2) We <3 documentation: Whatcha working on and with whom? Any future ideas? Please fill in these new columns on the wiki: https://www.mediawiki.org/w/index.php?title=Wikimedia_Hackathon_2017/Mentoring_Program#Your_Mentors_in_Vienna_2017

Newcomers, please help your mentors and do this together! 🤝

3) we have a new Phabricator tag "newcomers" to highlight newbie contributions! Please make sure to tag any tasks where newcomers contributed with it, so we can make visible the amount of great work thats happening ! 🦉

https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/tag/wikimedia-hackathon-newcomer/

Cheers everyone!

Thank you for making this event so incredibly awesome. 

See you at the party tonight!

Sonja