Fundraising proposals

From ourproject.org wiki
Jump to: navigation, search


Why this wiki

This page serves as an environment to compose, collect and structure our fundraising proposals for Kune and Move Commons.

KUNE

Introduction

Statement of Need

What we have seen nowadays, there is a scenario to what we have lived all these years in ourproject.org

When a person or collective needs to have a space in internet:

  • Either they depend on economic resources to hire the creation and management of these spaces… If they don’t have such resources, this option is not feasible.
  • Either they have technical volunteers to perform these tasks. In this case, the people without Internet technical knowledge depend on the technicians, that suffer a lot of demand and are frequently a bottleneck (there are not enough geeks per square meter). In such cases:

- These geeks use free/libre tools that are old and difficult to use for the general non-geek public (mailman, etherpad, wikis, irc, etc)

- The geeks focus their efforts in teaching to use these tools to the users. The result is typically the frustration of both groups, as only a small percentage of the users manage to handle successfully in those complex environments.

- There are issues with certain tools that demand too many resources (bandwidth, hard disk, management) such as the email, as it’s complicated to fulfill the demand of so many people for such a service (using free alternatives)

  • When the geek community cannot fulfill all their demands, or when the people/collectives cannot afford these dependencies, these users end up using proprietary tools (groups, emails and chat of google/yahoo/microsoft, blogs in blogspot or wordpress.com, flickr, google-docs, facebook, etc) that due to their usability and simplicity they can manage by themselves. This implies:

- Use of proprietary and centralized software, controlled by multinational for-profit corporations.

- Problems of privacy, selling our private data.

- Blocking of services, accounts or documents with political implications.

- Loss of independency.

- Forced to comply with foreign law.

- etc

  • In the worst case, they use tools that they know how to use (Powerpoint, Microsoft Word, etc) and they send each by email different versions of the created documents… communicating through long chain emails and/or without any netiquette.
  • …or simply they cannot manage to have any presence in the internet, as they find it too complicated, turning into mere consumers (non-producers) of information.

We seek funding to support one year of development, design, community building, and public outreach. With your support, we can build a public resources for everyone around the world working collaboratively, regardless of their technical skills level.

Project description

In kune we try to take benefit from our experience these years in Ourproject.org in order to facilitate the creation of self-manageable web & communication spaces, for any person or collective, independently of their technical knowledge or economic resources.

kune is free/libre software (licensed under Affero GNU Public License v3) that focuses on building free/libre contents collaboratively, aiming to empower NGOs, cultural/artistic initiatives or social movements. In order to do this, Kune promotes using Creative Commons licences that allow the reuse and modification of contents (e.g. knowledge, solutions, researches, experiences with others) in the web (default CC Attribution-ShareAlike).

Kune is a project under development since 2009 by a very small community of developers, and it is still under development. Nowadays, the community is working in a usable user interface for group collaboration and its web publishing functionalities.

Kune can be seen as a web tool to:

  • Create easily your personal web (blogs, photoblog, CV, etc).
  • Create, share & edit your documents simultaneously with your fellows.
  • Connect & keep up with your fellows (social network, chat).
  • Integrate rich contents (videos, maps, polls...) or functionalities (translation, spelling, twitter...).

An organization (NGO, collective, academic group...) could:

  • Create easily its website (blog, wiki, video gallery, etc).
  • Group-chat among the members.
  • Organize meetings and actions.
  • Create, share & edit documents simultaneously with the members.
  • Connect with other organizations with common interests.

A big institution, such as an University, Social Forum, or umbrella federation, could:

  • Install your own independent Kune server for your members.
  • Customize your Kune features.
  • Boost collaboration among the members.
  • Connect with members of other institutions transparently.

Why do we need kune?

Because at present there is nothing like this that already exists. there are three main reasons:

  1. The majority of current alternatives are not user-friendly enough to be used by just any human being. Too frequently the terminology and structure used turn out to be usable only by people with a technical background.
  2. Kune is structured with a specific logic oriented to manage free content of individuals, projects, communities or organizations, allowing them to collaborate with one another. the alternatives are not oriented towards building open communities or free contents, but towards closed and hierarchized publication environments.
  3. The development of web applications has radically changed lately. This encouraged us to begin this project using new technologies that, over all, improve the usability of these tools.

Existing solutions:

  • Alternatives (Diaspora, identi.ca, OpenOffice...) tend to roughly imitate commercial tools instead of building a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.
  • Focused on sharing, not on building on Communication not on Collaboration on interaction for fun.

Background

Who is behind Kune?

Kune is an initiative of the Comunes Collective, a non-profit organization with the aim of encouraging the Commons and facilitating the grassroots work through free/libre web tools. This collective, working since 2002, established itself as legal entity in 2009, forming Comunes. Nowadays it serves as an umbrella organization for several projects and tools encouraging activist work and the Commons.

Among the Comunes' objectives are to provide legal protection to member projects, together with technical infrastructure. It claims to be inspired by Software in the Public Interest organization, which provides similar protection to free software projects. Comunes member projects must focus on encouraging the protection or expansion of the Commons. Comunes Manifesto shows a view on the social movements as nodes in a social network, analysing which problems this ecosystem has and proposing Comunes web tools for diminishing them.

Additional info in Wikipedia.

History

Comunes Collective started with the launch of Ourproject.org, started in 2002 as a web-based collaborative free content repository. It provides multiple web services (hosting, mailing lists, wiki, ftp, forums...) to social/cultural/artistic projects as long as they share their contents with Creative Commons (or similar) licenses. Nowadays it hosts 900 projects and its services receive 500.000 monthly visits. However, the need of each project to have a high level of computer knowledge to manage the tools is a large constraint: social projects with no "techies" involved tend to use poorly the offered tools. Kune is the result of the experience accumulated throughout this period since ourproject.org began, learning from the mistakes made along the way.

Kune aims to improve/modernise/replicate the labor that ourproject.org does, but in an easy manner and expanding its features for community-building. It allows the creation of online spaces of collaborative work, where organisations and individuals can build projects online, coordinate common agendas, set up virtual meetings and join people/organisations with similar interests.

Kune is under development since 2009 when Comunes presented a prototype of the idea and started to spread the word about their work in the free/libre/open software community (starting with a face to face meeting with Richard Stallman, who showed us interest in turning Kune a GNU project).

However, a few weeks later Google Wave arrived. Suddenly, there was a huge & fantastic project that was overlapping in some parts with Kune, and that was going to be released as free/libre software. Wave provided a decentralized rich collaborative editor and environment for third-party applications. Still, Wave was lacking several key features of Kune such as its extensive focus on groups (with their own space, members, followers...), the weight of CC licenses or the web-publishing capabilities. Comunes took the decision to use/integrate such a gift into our code. However, there was a drawback: that was summer 2009, and since then Comunes had to follow Google Wave's release calendar. In the meanwhile, Comunes started to play and familiarise with their technology, doing small pieces of software that expected to be integrated in Kune later on.

In November 2010, Google turned control of Wave to the Apache Foundation, resulting in the release of Apache Wave-in-a-Box. Thus, Comunes started to integrate WIAB in our code with the participation and support of the IEPALA Foundation.

On May 2011, after many efforts, Comunes announced the first release of Kune, a pilot with a basic set of features developed.

Aims, goals and objectives

KUNE aims to provide a web platform for the creation of networks of collaborative work and exchange of free contents. Based on Wave-in-a-box and XMPP, Kune should allow collectives to work together on Creative Commons (CC) contents, extrapolating the philosophy of development in Free/Libre Open Source Software (FLOSS) projects to any kind of initiative.

Comunes believes that KUNE, focused on usability and ease of use, can have a significant impact in encouraging more creators to showcase, collaborate and share their work online. This is one of our goals along with promoting free (as in freedom) social movements and culture, providing CC licenses to the contents created.

Comunes has planned the following general objectives of the tool:

  • Kune should provide to the civil society a tool for action that promotes networking and collaborative work, adapting the emerging technologies and methodologies. This would promote the creation of online social communities, open, public and self-managed.
  • With its ease of use, it would facilitate the presence on Internet of people and groups that have no expertise or resources to do so, breaking the current dependency on techies.
  • Kune wants to be a free and decentralized alternative to the existing proprietary services, centralized and anti-privacy (Facebook, Google Docs, etc).
  • Using and creating CC contents and promoting groups to share and exchange those, Kune would boost Free Culture in social movements.
  • Any major organization should be able to create a forge / incubator of initiatives, offering web services to social projects of any kind.

Last May 2011, the first release of Kune saw the light, it was only a pilot with a basic set of features developed. Kune's development is still far from finished, as there are still plenty of key features to implement. Kune is growing increasingly so Comunes has planned the following objectives for the further development of Kune:

  • Improve the current hardware infrastructure and purchase new hardware to build kune.cc .
  • Improve some aspects of software such as:

- Stability of the current code.

- Internationalization into other languages.

- The interface of the INBOX.

- Federation subject.

Kune is decentralized at the server level. What does it mean? A server can have its own Kune installed that can host hundreds of users and groups. But also, if a user exists on a server and another user on the other server, no need to register first user on the other server to work together, you can add him as a friend of a transparent and participate in their groups and and share documents and work together ... like they're on the same server. The idea is that in the future there would be many "Kunes" (a network of nodes), each institution wishing to set up their own kune and customize as they please, but all part of the community and adding critical mass. This is the meaning of federation and allows advanced technology / modern, the Wave Federation protocol.

- Storage and indexing content.

  • Add new functionality to existing tools such as:

- Lists and add collective calendars to the events tools.

- Make the public side.

  • Mobile Version

Technical aspects

The following description provides an insight of Kune's technical details, for an audience with certain technical knowledge.

Kune is innovative as nowadays there is no current software with similar features. Besides, other collaborative software is not user-friendly enough to be used by just anyone without technical knowledge. Details follow:

  • Based on Comunes experience since 2002 with ourproject.org, we believe we have a pretty clear image of the main problems and needs of social initiatives.
  • Comunes uses modern technologies that provide rich internet applications (RIA) using Google Web Toolkit (GWT) radically improving the user experience. We cannot develop RIA of the complexity of Kune (or e.g. Google Docs) with conventional web development tools (php, perl, rails, zope, django, drupal, etc..). Thus, Kune provides advanced features like collaborative editing between users on different servers (decentralized federation protocol), chat with internal and external users (XMPP), offline applications, etc.
  • Comunes has integrated Kune with some external projects (such as WIAB, Wave Federation protocol, XMPP) and built other modules as external libraries (such as Emite), with their own user communities.
  • There is a firm commitment to build a human-oriented environment, as user-friendly as possible.
  • Thanks to the Wave Federation Protocol, Kune is decentralized, allowing users of several instances of Kune in different servers to interoperate transparently.

Start/End date of project

Kune is under development since 2009 and on May 2011, after the slow but constant work by its small community, Comunes announced the first release of Kune, a pilot with a basic set of features developed (demo available). Kune's development is still far from finished, as there are still plenty of key features to implement. As the project is fully driven by volunteers, the development is slower than desired. As specified later on, we have defined a time set of 12 months to implement and communicate a Kune full release, in case enough resources are available.

Project team

Kune is solely driven by volunteers, mainly the team behind the Comunes Collective.

The Comunes Collective is based in Beirut (Lebanon) and Madrid (Spain) and its members mainly belong to these countries, and thus it is firmly based in those communities. It has two permanent collaborators in Beirut and four in Madrid, together with several periodical collaborators in those cities and others in France, Brazil or Argentina. Comunes is currently expanding through collaborations with some institutions:

  • Department of Computer Science of the American University of Science & Technology (Beirut)
  • GRASIA research group of the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, it considers agent technology from a multi-disciplinary perspective, joining experts from the fields of Software Engineering, Artificial Intelligence, and Sociology. It brings freely to kune the hardware needed.
  • IEPALA Foundation, it is a NGO which emphasizes his work on the analysis, studies and training in Latin America, Africa and the Third World, the defense and promotion of Human Rights, the Development Cooperation and the Democratization of society. It brings to kune some resources to develop the software.
  • Master of Free/Libre Software of the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos (Madrid), it offers Trainings & Internships in comunes to the students.
  • Department of Computer Science of the American University of Science & Technology (Beirut) , it offers Trainings & Internships in comunes to the students.
  • Medialab-Prado Commons Lab is part of the Laboratory of Procomún that aims to articulate a discourse and a series of actions and activities surrounding this concep. It brings to kune diffusion, ideas, collaborations ...
  • Free software cooperative xsto.info: Comunes has decided to associate with other similar social initiatives in order to build a collective data centre for all of us, Technically, we are deploying a Content Delivery Network, which should optimize the use of the servers, reduce the delay for the users, and increase the virtual bandwidth. The physical space is located in Spain.

Project organization

Kune is free/libre open source software (FLOSS) and thus the project organization follows the typical patterns of FLOSS projects: an informal community of volunteers horizontally organized manages all the aspects of the project. Although different individuals may carry different tasks and loads, there are no fixed roles, positions or representatives.

During the development of Kune, the small community of contributors has been changing in its composition. Still, there is a tendency to discuss and agree all major decisions concerning design, development, organization or funding, by those interested in each topic. Any new developer progressively gains permissions to alter Kune code, by agreement of the rest of developers.

Kune is mainly supported by the Comunes Collective, but its community is broader than such, as it can be seen in Kune Credits: http://kune.ourproject.org/credits/ Comunes, as a registered nonprofit association in Spain, provides legal and economical support to Kune. Besides, Comunes, through its initiative Ourproject.org, provides technical infrastructure and resources to Kune, as specified in http://kune.ourproject.org/behind/

We all Kune contributors areorganized in "Teams". Each Team has certain function and interests, for example there is a Team for translators, a Team for system administrators, a Team for Kune development, etc. Besides, each Team has:

  • A mailing list for internal communication (and sometimes another one external, for announcements)
    • Development issues of Kune .
    • Issues about GWT
    • Issues about building Apache Wave extension.
  • A TO-DO task list. They might indicate also the responsible of the task. In Comunes we usually use waves for the TODO-lists. Nowadays waves are hosted in Google Wave to facilitate an easy migration to Kune soon.
  • A Team members list.
  • A section in this wiki.
  • Periodical online meetings by chat, when agreed.

Description of work

As stated previously, Kune has been under development since 2009 and in May 2011 it announced its first release of a pilot with a basic set of features developed. Kune's development is still far from finished, as there are still plenty of key features to implement. Among other things, we have tried to integrate certain additional tools thinking of the needs observed these days. In fact, what can we do with Kune? Kune offers users and collectives services such as:

  • Email service of new generation, hosted in the Kune server of your trusted collective
  • Chat compatible with gmail and others: person-to-person or group conversations
  • Allows the call for online assemblies with the members of your group/project/initiative and taking minutes (editing them all at once)
  • Collaborative and simultaneous edition of documents (similar to Google Docs) thanks to Apache Wave
  • Social network: management of personal and collective contacts with different levels of privacy
  • Multimedia space: for sharing videos, photos, maps, twitter…
  • Extensions useful for collectives: allows call and development of meetings, decision-making, translation of documents, sharing task lists…
  • …and everything is free/libre software, usable and decentralized, that can be adapted and improved by anyone

The following table shows the steps followed until Kune's pilot was completed, followed by a 12 months plan to implement additional key feautures and communicate its results.

Work packages (subtasks)

WBS Name Begin End Work Finished
1 Kune First Release May 16, 2011 May 16, 2011
2 Analysis Sep 3, 2009 Jan 27, 2010 210d
2.1 Requirements Analysis Sep 3, 2009 Dec 16, 2009 150d 100%
2.2 Design Analysis Dec 17, 2009 Jan 27, 2010 60d 100%
3 Coding Jan 28, 2010 May 25, 2012 1189d
3.1 Kune Web site Jan 28, 2010 Mar 17, 2010 38d
3.1.1 GWT Development Jan 28, 2010 Mar 10, 2010 30d 100%
3.1.2 Kune web site graphic design Mar 11, 2010 Mar 17, 2010 5d 100%
3.1.3 Donations site Jan 28, 2010 Feb 1, 2010 3d 100%
3.2 Coding prototipe Jan 28, 2010 Oct 6, 2010 180d 100%
3.3 Add web tools Oct 7, 2010 Nov 17, 2010 30d 100%
3.4 Preparing the Development Environment Nov 18, 2010 Dec 29, 2010 30d 100%
3.5 Integration Wave & KUNE Dec 30, 2010 May 4, 2011 90d 80%
3.6 Coding tasks management May 16, 2011 Sep 16, 2011 315d
3.6.1 Individual web sites management May 16, 2011 Aug 5, 2011 60d 0%
3.6.2 Group web sites management May 16, 2011 Aug 5, 2011 60d 0%
3.6.3 Content permission management Aug 8, 2011 Sep 16, 2011 30d 0%
3.6.4 Rol management Aug 8, 2011 Sep 16, 2011 30d 0%
3.6.5 Privacy management Aug 8, 2010 Sep 16, 2011 30d 0%
3.6.6 Comments management Aug 8, 2010 Sep 16, 2011 30d 0%
3.6.7 Contacts managements Aug 8, 2011 Sep 16, 2011 30d 0%
3.6.8 Notification management Aug 8, 2011 Sep 16, 2011 45d
3.6.8.1 Xmpp pub/sub Aug 8, 2011 Sep 16, 2011 30d 0%
3.6.8.2 email Aug 8, 2011 Aug 26, 2011 15d 0%
3.7 Pretty URLs May 16, 2011 Jun 11, 2011 20d 0%
3.8 Communication Channels May 16, 2011 Jun 24, 2011 30d 0%
3.9 Maintenance Jan 28, 2010 Jun 15, 2011 63d
3.9.1 Documentation Jan 28, 2010 Feb 17, 2010 15d 10%
3.9.2 Add selenium framework testing May 5, 2011 May 9, 2011 3d 0%
3.9.3 Develop testing sets May 10, 2011 May 30, 2011 15d 0%
3.9.4 Bug hunting May 5, 2011 Jun 15, 2011 30d 0%
3.10 UI improvements May 16, 2011 Aug 5, 2011 123d
3.10.1 Better icons May 16, 2011 May 18, 2011 3d 0%
3.10.2 Adaptation of i18n UI interface May 16, 2011 Jun 3, 2011 15d 0%
3.10.3 Rating service May 16, 2011 Jun 3, 2011 15d 0%
3.10.4 Customization May 16, 2011 Aug 5, 2011 60d 0%
3.10.5 User basic preferences dialog May 16, 2011 Jun 24, 2011 30d 0%
3.11 WIAB Management Sep 19, 2011 May 25, 2012 270d
3.11.1 Kune & WIAB integrated registration/sign-in/sign-out Sep 19, 2011 Dec 9, 2011 60d 0%
3.11.2 WIAB Server and Kune server running together Dec 12, 2011 Mar 2, 2012 60d 0%
3.11.3 WIAB Client adaptation Mar 5, 2012 May 25, 2012 60d 0%
3.11.4 WIAB Groups adaptation Mar 5, 2012 May 25, 2012 60d 0%
3.11.5 SSL support Sep 19, 2011 Oct 28, 2011 30d 0%
4 i18n Jun 6, 2011 Jul 15, 2011 30d 0%
5 New Deployment Sep 19, 2011 Sep 30, 2011 10d
5.1 Deployment Sep 19, 2011 Sep 21, 2011 3d 0%
5.2 Purchase high bandwidth connection Sep 22, 2011 Sep 30, 2011 7d 0%
6 Broadcast May 16, 2011 Jul 6, 2011 90d
6.1 Communication of KUNE: flyers, summaries, examples, slides May 16, 2011 Jun 10, 2011 20d 0%
6.2 Communication of KUNE: short video, long video May 16, 2011 Jun 10, 2011 20d 0%
6.3 Diffusion in social networks, media May 16, 2011 Jun 10, 2011 20d 0%
6.4 Organize international workshop on KUNE, with invited scholars & activists May 28, 2012 Jul 6, 2012 30d 0%

Timeline

http://comunes.org/grants/Gantt-Kune.html

Resource requirements

Name Short Name Type
Analyst A Worker
Developer D Worker
Graphic Designer G Worker
Manager M Worker
Systems Engineer S Worker
Testing Engineer T Worker
Translator TR Worker
Wrokshop Space W Equipment & Materials
High bandwidth connection BW Equipment & Materials

Other

Impact

Kune mainly addresses the social organizations (NGOs, collectives, social movements) but also, by extension, any group of citizens that work voluntarily to improve the lives of their neighbors. Kune would be open to such groups, acting as an usable webtool driver of a horizontal communication model.

The platform also works as a benchmark for organizations in the process of creation. Kune's architecture is based on free software, so it helps to implement a comprehensive and multifunctional tool that could be used, provided that they meet minimum requirements for any social group, regardless of geographic space in which located. The potential impact of Kune will be reinforced by a set of actions for dissemination, promotion and implementation not only in the years of the project but in subsequent periods.

Sustainability

Kune has a great potential to explore by social groups, and thus Comunes expects certain frequency of small donations to the project. Therefore, the more Kune spreads, more groups would join and more donations would be received. Comunes proposes the target of a 5% of groups accepting to provide a regular micro-donation of 10 €/month. Thus, 100 groups = 50 €/month, 1000 groups = 500 €/month, and 10,000 groups = 5,000 €/month.

However, as the target of 5% of collectives donating might be ambitious, Kune is exploring other sources of funding. Kune is within the Goteo platform, an alternative to Kickstarter based in Spain, which will be launched in Q3 2011. Comunes is also preparing applications to joint research projects with a research group at the Complutense University of Madrid, in addition to applications for development projects together with the IEPALA Foundation, which is strongly supporting Kune nowadays.

MOVE COMMONS

Introduction

Move Commons is a simple tool for initiatives, collectives and NGOs to declare the core principles they are committed to.

Project description

Move Commons is a web tool which follows the same mechanics that CC uses for cultural works. It provides labels (Non-Profit, Reproducible, Reinforcing the Commons, Decentralized) and their associated icons, semantic layer and tags, allowing collectives to declare the principles they are committed to, boosting their visibility and diffusion to link with volunteers and other collectives.

Creative Commons licenses (CC) are inspired by the GPL (General Public License) from the Free Software Foundation. They aren't, however, a type of software licensing. The main idea is to enable a legal model aided by computer tools, in order to facilitate the distribution and use of content. There are a set of Creative Commons licenses, each with different configurations or principles, as the original author's right to give liberty to quote his work, reproduce, create derivative works, publicly offered and with different restrictions, like not allowing commercial use or respect the original author. Although originally these licenses were written in English, they have been adapted to several laws in other countries.

Additional info in this presentation

Background

History

The core group behind MC is formed by Lebanese and Spanish volunteers with a wide experience in social movements and NGOs. In 2002 some of these volunteers launched the initiative Ourproject.org, with the aim of expanding the ideas and methodology of free software to social areas and free culture. Essentially, OP is a web-based collaborative free content repository for social/cultural/artistic projects (not just software), under the condition that they share their contents using Creative Commons

Also, in 2009, The volunteers who launched OP established in the association Comunes Collective. Comunes is based both in Lebanon and Spain, and focuses on encouraging The Commons: a broad concept that includes everything from free software/culture to the exchange of heirloom seeds. Under the umbrella of Comunes there have launched multiple initiatives, always with the role of "facilitators": facilitating and supporting grassroots movements that protect or expand The Commons. Move Commons is another attempt in the same direction - which Comunes firmly believes has stunning potentials.

After Comunes's experience in these initiatives, most of them linking the virtual world and real social initiatives, Comunes believes they are prepared to lead the development and launch of Move Commons. The association Comunes is involved in social communities both in Beirut and Madrid, and these social networks of collectives will be used for preliminary testing of the platform. ourproject.org and the Comunes initiatives have strengthened our ties with the social projects they provide support for.

Comunes believes that new activism approaches for solving a social problem, new ways of organisation with specific innovative methods, and the internal procedures followed by NGOs are also knowledge that implies creativity and that should be moved to The Commons.

Aims, goals and objectives

This web tool provide us the opportunity to meet out two aims:

  • To seek to boost the visibility of those small collectives and facilitate both their clustering/alliances and localisation by volunteers
  • To help them to locate the initiatives that fit their interests, as local as possible.

In addition, wIt's interesting to highlight that Move Commons is heavily inspired by Creative Commons ideas, in a similar way that Creative Commons built on the GNU GPL‘s original breakthrough.

In the task of meeting Comunes's aims, there have planned a series of objectives directed to users and collectives:

Move Commons allows the collective/initiative:

  • To help others to understand your work and approach
  • To find your work easier
  • To find other collectives with common interests
  • To attract volunteers to your collective

Move Commons allows the volunteers:

  • To promote equality in choosing collectives to collaborate with, without giving priority to the larger ones that have the most resources or more widespread advertising.
  • To facilitate local action by providing easy access to information on small and local groups acting in your community, which are oftenly not well-known and have few resources.
  • To promote mobility among volunteers and collectives.

To do all of this, Comunes has planned some objetives such as: To offer a user-friendly, bottom-up, labelling system for each initiative, with 4 meaningful icons, and some keywords.

On the other hand, Move Commons intends to widen the Commons by

  • Promoting the transparency and collaboration of social movements (including cultural, artistic, educational... but also environmental, communicational, humanitarian...) through the labels "Non-Profit" (labelling non-profits) and "Reproducible" (the collective is visible, open and transparent, using CC and clearly showing its internal procedures, funding and results)
  • Highlighting those that encourage The Commons and promote the same structural change as CC is promoting everyday, through the "Structural-Change" label.
  • Specifically from a local and grassroots approach, via the "Decentralized" label, that reveals its internal organization.

Start/End date of project

The idea of Move Commons was formed in early 2010 when some of volunteers of Comunes became necessary to classify certain groups to enable them to collaborate with other similar ones, the idea was been defining for several months in which they chose to use the model Creative Commons to categorize groups, so Co had got the version 0.1 in February 2010. The categories used for categorization were reduced to four and finally was able to publish the website of MC in July of that year with a presentationat the Medialab-Prado Commons Lab in Yochai Benkler seminar. Finally in May 2011 published the ontology of Commons Move.

There is still much work to do, including:

  • Fine-graining the categories. Subdivision of the “big” four categories into optional simple subcategories.
  • Allowing extensions of MC. That is, provide an atomic/basic version and allow user-customised versions for expressing own semantic content on top of ours.

Project team

There are many people and volunteers behind Move Commons that work to make this initiative a reality. In addition, Move Commons is support by some grassroots collectives, for example Medialab-Prado Commons Lab

The Comunes Collective is based in Lebanon and Spain and its members belong to these countries, and thus it is firmly based in those communities (in particular in Beirut and in Madrid). It can take into account three permanent collaborators of Comunes in Beirut and two in Madrid, together with several collaborators in those cities. On top of that, Comunes also have other collaborators from several other countries: Brazil, Dominican Republic and Argentina. Comunes is currently expanding through collaborations with some institutions:

  • Department of Computer Science of the American University of Science & Technology (Beirut)
  • GRASIA research group of the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, it considers agent technology from a multi-disciplinary perspective, joining experts from the fields of Software Engineering, Artificial Intelligence, and Sociology. It brings freely to kune the hardware needed.
  • IEPALA Foundation, it is a NGO which emphasizes his work on the analysis, studies and training in Latin America, Africa and the Third World, the defense and promotion of Human Rights, the Development Cooperation and the Democratization of society. It brings to kune some resources to develop the software.
  • Master of Free/Libre Software of the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos (Madrid), it offers Trainings & Internships in comunes to the students.
  • Department of Computer Science of the American University of Science & Technology (Beirut) , it offers Trainings & Internships in comunes to the students.
  • Medialab-Prado Commons Lab is part of the Laboratory of Procomún that aims to articulate a discourse and a series of actions and activities surrounding this concep. It brings to kune diffusion, ideas, collaborations ...
  • Free software cooperative xsto.info: Comunes has decided to associate with other similar social initiatives in order to build a collective data centre for all of us, Technically, we are deploying a Content Delivery Network, which should optimize the use of the servers, reduce the delay for the users, and increase the virtual bandwidth. The physical space is located in Spain.

Project organization

Move Commons follows the typical patterns of FLOSS proejcts: an informal community of volunteers horizontally organized manages all the aspects of the project. Although different individuals may carry different tasks and loads, there are no fixed roles, positions or representatives.

During the development of Move Commons, the small community of contributors has been changing in its composition. Still, there is a tendency to discuss and agree all major decisions concerning design, development, organization or funding, by those interested in each topic. Any new developer progressively gains permissions to alter Move Commons code, by agreement of the rest of developers.

Move Commons is mainly supported by the Comunes Collective, but its community is broader than such, Comunes, as a registered nonprofit association in Spain, provides legal and economical support to Move Commons. Besides, Comunes, through its initiative Ourproject.org, provides technical infrastructure and resources to Move Commons, as specified in movecommons.org/behind

Description of work

Move Commons is still an alpha version (preview), but Comunes plans to launch an improved version soon, based on the feedback Comunes has been receiving last months, MC needs the implementation of a software platform that supports the voluntary registration of the collectives, providing MC services such as searches, recommendation of similar groups...

Here there are listed the ideas to improve the current MC:

  • Fine-graining the categories. Subdivision of the “big” four categories into optional simple subcategories. That is, whoemever wants something easy and quick, should answer something like the current form. Whomever wants to really provide a lot of info, should be able to, in an additional optional part. This additional information wouldn’t be represented in icons, but in the semantic code… allowing it to be computationally tracked and to build things on top. Example of subcategories Comunes has thought about (open to additional fields):
    • Inside Non-Profit (NP): do you have a justification why NP? give URL link; do you have open-accounting?; do you accept donations? URL of donation page; do you accept volunteers? URL;
    • Inside Reproducible (RP): justification why RP? URL; Creative Commons license? which? other? ; what can others reproduce? org structure? docs? results?
    • Inside Reinforcing the Commons (RC): justification why RC? URL; which of the four areas?
    • Inside Grassroots (GR): justification why GR? URL; assemblies? consensus-driven? majority? democratically elected representatives? are board meetings transparent?
  • Remove negative categories in favour of keeping only the positive categories (NP/RP/RC/GR). Besides, turn all categories to be optional. This way Comunes wouldn’t enforce any mandatory questions to collectives/initiatives, and they will be able to advertise the categories they prefer.
  • Expected changes in the category “Reinforcing the Commons“. It is still fuzzy for most collectives (when filling the form, they believe it’s just the area: Digital, Ecology…), as the concept of the Commons is not spread enough, or not as clearly as we’d have liked. Comunes received suggestions to replace it, to make it mandatory, to just communicate it better…
  • Allowing extensions of MC. That is, provide an atomic/basic version and allow user-customised versions for expressing own semantic content (and icons?) on top of ours. Then, there would be total flexibility in the categories and sub-categories to be added/modified/removed by the community. Probably, this won’t be implemented yet in the forthcoming release.

Work packages (subtasks)

WBS Name Begin End Work Finished
1 Analysis Jan 4, 2010 Feb 5, 2010 60d
1.1 Requirement Analysis Jan 4, 2010 Jan 15, 2010 30d 100%
1.2 Design Analysis Jan 18, 2010 Feb, 2010 30d 100%
2 Phase 0 Feb 8, 2010 Feb 25, 2010 14d
2.1 Write texts Feb 8, 2010 Feb 11, 2010 4d 100%
2.2 Coding prototipe HTML Feb 12, 2010 Feb 12, 2010 1d 100%
2.3 First Graphic design Feb 12, 2010 Feb 23, 2010 7d 100%
2.4 Testing Feb 23, 2010 Feb 24, 2010 1d 100%
2.5 Deployment Feb 24, 2010 Feb 25, 2010 1d 100%
3 First Release Feb 25, 2010 Feb 25, 2010
4 Get feedback Feb 25, 2010 Apr 7, 2010 30d 100%
5 Phase 1 Apr 8, 2010 Jun 30, 2010 107d
5.1 Analysis Apr 8, 2010 May 19, 2010 60d
5.1.1 New requeriments Analysis Apr 8, 2010 Apr 28, 2010 30d 100%
5.1.2 New design Analysis Apr 29, 2010 May 19, 2010 30d 100%
5.2 Write texts May 20, 2010 May 28, 2010 7d 100%
5.3 Legal issues May 20, 2010 May 28, 2010 7d 100%
5.4 Coding May 31, 2010 Jun 16, 2010 23d
5.4.1 Improve the structure May 31, 2010 Jun 2, 2010 3d 100%
5.4.2 First application form PHP Jun 3, 2010 Jun 16, 2010 10d 100%
5.4.3 Store initiatives PHP Jun 3, 2010 Jun 16, 2010 10d 100%
5.5 Improve the graphic design Jun 17, 2010 Jun 25, 2010 7d 100%
5.6 Testing Jun 28, 2010 Jun 29, 2010 2d 100%
5.7 Deployment Jun 30, 2010 Jun 30, 2010 1d 100%
6 Presentation of the second release Jul 1, 2010 Jul 1, 2010
7 Start of production Jul 23, 2010 Jul 23, 2010
8 Get Feedback Jul 23, 2010 Feb 17, 2011 150d 100%
9 Phase 1 Feb 18, 2011 Oct 6, 2011 275d
9.1 Analysis Feb 18, 2011 Jun 23, 2011 180d
9.1.1 New requeriments Analysis Feb 18, 2011 May 12, 2011 120d 80%
9.1.2 New design Analysis May 13, 2011 Jun 23, 2011 60d 0%
9.2 Coding Jun 24, 2011 Oct 6, 2011 95d
9.2.1 Tranlate form into GWT Jun 24, 2011 Jul 7, 2011 10d 0%
9.2.2 Subcategories of MC Jul 8, 2011 Jul 18, 2011 7d 0%
9.2.3 Agreement with search engine Jun 24, 2011 Aug 4, 2011 30d 0%
9.2.4 Coding semantic search engine Aug 5, 2011 Oct 6, 2011 45d 0%
9.2.5 Configure SMTP Jun 24, 2011 Jun 28, 2011 3d 0%
10 Release of Beta version Oct 6, 2011 Oct 6, 2011
11 Purchase high bandwidth connection Oct 7, 2011 Oct 17, 2011 7d 0%
12 Broadcast & Testing Oct 7, 2011 Dec 29, 2011 127d
12.1 Gather and analyze feedback community Oct 7, 2011 Oct 27, 2011 15d 0%
12.2 Beta-Testing with African network initiatives Lettera 27 Oct 7, 2011 Dec 29, 2011 60d 0%
12.3 Organize local workshop on MC, in Medialab-Prado Oct 7, 2011 Oct 27, 2011 15d 0%
12.4 Presentations in several forums Oct 28, 2011 Nov 7, 2011 7d 0%
12.5 Discussions with Social Forums to integrate MC Nov 8, 2011 Dec 19, 2011 30d 0%
13 Phase 3 Oct 28, 2011 Dec 20, 2011 98d
13.1 Develop semantic extensions of MC Oct 28, 2011 Nov 24, 2011 20d 0%
13.2 Test extensions Nov 25, 2011 Dec 5, 2011 7d 0%
13.3 Integration with Mozilla Open Badges Project Nov 25, 2011 Dec 15, 2011 15d 0%
13.4 Testing badges Dec 16, 2011 Dec 20, 2011 3d 0%
13.5 Development of widgets for several CMS & platforms Oct 28, 2011 Nov 10, 2011 10d 0%
13.6 Testing Nov 11, 2011 Nov 15, 2011 3d 0%
13.7 Improvement of graphic design Oct 28, 2011 Nov 10, 2011 10d 0%
13.8 User-friendliness of semantic search engine Oct 28, 2011 Nov 10, 2011 10d 0%
13.9 Visualization of clusters of initiatives Oct 28, 2011 Nov 24, 2011 20d 0%
14 Broadcast Jan 4, 2010 Jun 4, 2010 210d
14.1 Communication of MC: flyers, summaries, examples, slides Jan 4, 2010 Jan 29, 2010 20d 0%
14.2 Communication of MC: short video, long video Jan 4, 2010 Jan 29, 2010 20d 0%
14.3 Diffusion in social networks, media Jan 4, 2012 Jan 29, 2010 20d 0%
14.4 Social forum presentations Feb 1, 2010 Mar 12, 2010 30d 0%
14.5 Local Workshop about MC Mar 15, 2010 Apr 23, 2010 30d 0%
14.6 Organize international workshop on MC, with invited scholars & activists Apr 26, 2010 Jun 4, 2010 30d 0%
14.7 Agreements for inclusion in internet communities and forums of collectives Apr 26, 2010 Jun 4, 2010 30d 0%
14.8 Feedback from the community for new subcategories Jan 4, 2010 Feb 12, 2010 30d 0%

Timeline

Check: http://comunes.org/grants/Gantt-MC.html

Resource requirements

Name Short Name Type
Analyst A Worker
Developer D Worker
Graphic Designer G Worker
Lawyer L Worker
Manager M Worker
Systems Engineer S Worker
Testing Engineer T Worker
High bandwidth connection BW Equipment & Materials
Wrokshop Space W Equipment & Materials

Other

Impact

The idea behind MC follows the same mechanics of Creative Commons tagging cultural works, providing a user-friendly, bottom-up, labelling system for each initiative, with 4 meaningful icons, and some keywords. It aims at boosting the visibility and diffusion of such initiatives, and building a network among related initiatives/collectives across the world, allowing mutual discovery. Thus, it could facilitate them reaching critical mass. Besides, newcomers could easily understand the collective approach in their website, and/or discover collectives matching their field/location/interests with a simple search.

Sustainability

Move Commons is a very useful tool for social groups, thus Comunes hopes that they donate money to the project from time to time. And the more Kune spreads, more groups will join us and therefore, although its use is occasional. Move Commons has a low cost. It only has to keep bandwidth semantic of the growing search engine. But if it extends far enough, other search engines will appear that also report about MC that will relieve us bandwidth. Move Commons is within Goteo alternative Kickstarter / Lansana / Verkami, it will be launched in a few months.

Comunes also offer trainings & internships to universities as a way of allowing students and contributors to get introduced in free open source software & leading technologies while contributing in real projects to boost Free Culture.