On Friday, September 7th meeting featured Bezdikian (alebez in SL), who shared with NPC how Basecamp project management tool makes working on a distributed team and collaborating on mutual projects so much easier.

Nonprofit Commons Weekly Meeting
Friday, September 7th, 8:30 AM SLT / PST
Plush Nonprofit Commons Amphitheater

• 8:30 am Introductions
• 8:40 am TechSoup Announcements
• 8:45 am Mentors Central
• 8:55 am Main Speaker: Ale Bezdikian
• 9:30 am Open Mic / Announcements

– Unabridged Transcript –


[08:29] Rhiannon Chatnoir: welcome those coming.. should be starting soon
[08:29] Jerry Buchko: hello all 😀
[08:31] Jerry Buchko: hi jac 🙂
[08:31] Chayenn: bonjour jac
[08:31] X-Flight, flight assist: All Go
[08:31] jacmacaire Humby: Hi Jerry and Chayenn
[08:32] Rhiannon Chatnoir: hi all
[08:32] Coughran Mayo: Hello Rhiannon
[08:32] Jen: Hi Rhiannon
[08:34] Rhiannon Chatnoir: ok everyone.. should be starting … if you want to grab a seat 🙂
[08:34] Jerry Buchko: hi Coghran & Jen 🙂
[08:35] JenJen waves at Jerry
[08:36] Rhiannon Chatnoir: so hello everyone!
[08:36] Glitteractica Cookie: sorry i crashed
[08:36] Buffy Beale: Hii Rhi! waves to everyone 🙂
[08:36] Rhiannon Chatnoir: thats ok, waited to start for you to return 🙂
[08:36] Rhiannon Chatnoir: Welcome everyone to this week’s Nonprofit Commons Weekly Meeting!
[08:36] bulaklak: Hi, folks!
[08:36] Rhiannon Chatnoir: The Nonprofit Commons in Second Life is sponsored by TechSoup Global and is a program of the TechSoup Global Community & Social Media team
[08:36] bulaklak: What’s up with the bunnies?
[08:36] Chayenn: good morning bulaklak
[08:36] bulaklak: Hi, Chay
[08:36] Glitteractica Cookie: dunno
[08:37] Rhiannon Chatnoir: not sure, I can’t remove Par’s things if you can.. please remove
[08:37] bulaklak: They’re kinda cute
[08:37] Rhiannon Chatnoir: Today’s Agenda:

8:30 am Introductions

8:40 am TechSoup Announcements

8:45 am Mentors Central

8:55 am “This one time at Basecamp” with Ale Bezdikian of TechSoup

9:30 am Open Mic / Announcements
[08:37] Buffy Beale: our new mascot?
[08:37] Glitteractica Cookie: I returned them
[08:38] Rhiannon Chatnoir: First a few links to start off the meeting.
[08:38] Rhiannon Chatnoir: Here are the many ways to can get involved with the Nonprofit Commons in Second Life:

Nonprofit Commons Blog:




Google Group:

Google Calendar:

About TechSoup the sponsors of the Nonprofit Commons:
[08:38] CarynTopia Silvercloud: Caryn Heilman, Topia Arts Center in the Berkshires in NW MA,, @TopiaArtsCenter
[08:38] Rhiannon Chatnoir: Let’s start off with Introductions!
[08:39] Adalace Jewell: sorry, I’m late. @adalace – RoSa Library Brussels Belgium
[08:39] jacmacaire Humby: Jacques Macaire HUMANBE Action Tank and Council on Sustainable Development France and International @Humanbe
[08:39] Rhiannon Chatnoir: Please state your real name, location, org, and the ways we can find you online.
[08:39] Buffy Beale: Buffy Bye, Bridges for Women, Victoria BC Canada, @bridges4women
[08:39] Lyssa Lyssa Rowan, Job Accommodation Network, Morgantown, WV @JANatJAN
[08:39] Dancers Yao: Kara Bennett, Elder Voices, Inc, Los Angeles, CA Health Care and Human Rights
[08:39] Pathfinder Lester: John Lester, Chief Learning Officer, ReactionGrid. Living in Montreal, Canada.
[08:39] Jen: Bruce Hestley, Transgender American Veterans Association, Akron, OH,,!/TAVAUS
[08:39] Ethelred Weatherwax: Dave Dexter, Neenah Historical Society, Wisconsin USA
[08:39] Rhiannon Chatnoir: Joyce Bettencourt, Boston, MA area, TechSoup Community Manager of Nonprofit Commons,, @RhiannonSL
[08:39] Chayenn: monique richert, Protect Yourself 1, Inc., Baltimore , MD ,,, @PY1US
[08:39] bulaklak: Michael DeLong, Senior Manager Online Community and Social Media, TechSoup Global, San Francisco, CA @TechSoup @MichaelDeLongSF
[08:39] Gentle Heron: Virtual Ability, Inc.
[08:39] Zazoom Zimminy: Kyle Reis, Grants Managers Network, New York City
[08:39] alebez: Ale Bezdikian, Online Community Coordinator, TechSoup, SF, CA @TechSoup, @alebez
[08:39] Tank Thibedeau: Ricky Davis, San Antonio
[08:39] Svea Morane: Brian Kaihoi, Web Administrator, Mayo Clinic,
[08:39] Brena Benoir: Brenda Bryan, Preferred Family Healthcare, Kirksville, Missouri, @brenabenoir
[08:40] Jerry Buchko: Jerry Buchko | Counselor, Coach, & Tutor of Personal Finance in Private Practice | | @jerrybuchko
[08:40] Coughran Mayo: Dick Dillon, Innovaision, LLC, St. Louis MO @Coughran, @Innovaision
[08:40] Glitteractica Cookie: Susan Tenby, Online Community and Social Media Director, TechSoup and this community, the NPC @suzboop @techsoup @npsl, San Francisco, CA USA
[08:40] Angelbell: Ysabel Pachano IUSF proffesor.
[08:40] Rhiannon Chatnoir: If you join us late, please still introduce yourself!
[08:42] BELOVEDROX: NSIP- Roxy Rocker


[08:42] Rhiannon Chatnoir: OK, moving to TechSoup announcements. If you have introduced yourself, please do. Thanks!
[08:43] bulaklak: Hello, folks! Very excited to be here, as always. And super excited to hear from my fabulous colleague alebez today. But first just a few things from TechSoup.
[08:43] Buffy Beale: yay bulaklak!
[08:44] bulaklak: As you know if you were here last week, we have recently officially launched the TechSoup Global Local Impact Map, a dynamic way of demonstrating stories of technology in action all around the world.
[08:44] bulaklak: In conjunction with its launch, we are running a photo contest this month called Technology in Action.
[08:44] bulaklak: It’s a *very* simple contest and has what I think is a pretty cool prize
[08:45] bulaklak: You just need to send us a picture of technology in action at your organization and you can enter to win a custom-made interactive infographic from Karma Store
[08:45] bulaklak: There are three easy ways to enter
[08:46] bulaklak: 1. Submit a photo and caption through our Facebook contest app (here comes the link)
[08:46] bulaklak:
[08:46] bulaklak: 2. Tweet a photo with the hashtag #TechInAction
[08:47] bulaklak: 3. Email a photo and short caption to
[08:47] bulaklak: Do this by 11:59 pm PT on September 30 and you are entered
[08:47] bulaklak: And we look forward to seeing how you picture technology in action!
[08:47] Gentle Heron: Can you please give an example? I’m not sure how that applies in my all-virtual organization.
[08:48] bulaklak: Well, folks can get creative. A screenshot is the same thing as a photo, of course.
[08:48] Gentle Heron: But it doesn’t show the tech.
[08:48] Glitteractica Cookie: you can take an inworld shot and tweet it
[08:48] bulaklak: Or a photo of you at the computer.
[08:48] bulaklak: We’re giving people a pretty wide license.
[08:49] bulaklak: What does tech in action mean to you?
[08:49] bulaklak: You could draw zeros and ones . . .
[08:49] bulaklak: Have fun with it!
[08:49] Rhiannon Chatnoir: 🙂
[08:49] Brena Benoir: Gentle maybe a screen shot at VAI during a presentation that makes the the presentation accessible to people around the world through use of technology?
[08:49] bulaklak: The caption can really tie it together
[08:50] bulaklak: Get those creative juices flowing
[08:50] Svea MoraneSvea Morane things about technology with blood all over it as it is a surgical implant of SL 😉
[08:50] Buffy Beale: lol Svea!
[08:50] bulaklak: Our aim is ultimately to tell the human story attached to tech
[08:50] Gentle Heron: oh Svea, save it for next week.
[08:50] Svea Morane: 🙂
[08:50] bulaklak: LOL Svea
[08:50] bulaklak: 🙂
[08:51] Buffy Beale: you’ll have us all fainting Svea
[08:51] bulaklak: So moving on. We have an upcoming webinar that I am super excited about (I am saying excited too much today)
[08:51] bulaklak: We’ve been thinking a lot about network mapping on our team and at TechSoup
[08:51] bulaklak: So this webinar came at just the right time
[08:51] Tank Thibedeau: someone sitting in a field of sunflowers in sl because in rl they could not because their medications does not allow them to be in sunlight for an extended period of time
[08:51] bulaklak: It’s from one of our very cool donor partners, Esri
[08:52] bulaklak: Their program isn’t as high profile as, say, Adobe, but boy they do some really awsesome stuff
[08:52] bulaklak: with GIS and other mapping technology
[08:52] bulaklak: So I am really looking forward to this webinar about how to use Esri tools to map impact
[08:53] bulaklak: It’s free, as are all of our webinars, and if you request live transcription 72 hours in advance, that is something we can also gladly accomodate
[08:54] bulaklak: This will be on September 13 at 11am PT
[08:54] bulaklak: And it will be recorded for anyone who can’t make that time
[08:54] bulaklak: Here is the link where you can register
[08:54] bulaklak:
[08:54] Coughran Mayo: ah, my birthday!
[08:54] bulaklak: Yay!
[08:54] Coughran Mayo: hint, nint
[08:54] Rhiannon Chatnoir: lol
[08:54] bulaklak: I will also be live tweeting it, using the hashtag #TechSoup
[08:54] Svea MoraneSvea Morane takes notes on virtual gifts 🙂
[08:54] Rhiannon Chatnoir: great
[08:54] bulaklak: so you can follow the insights on Twitter, too
[08:55] bulaklak: It should be really cool. Network mapping is a really interesting and growing topic.
[08:55] bulaklak: So . . . with that I will turn things over. Have a great day!
[08:55] Rhiannon Chatnoir: great and thanks Bulaklak 🙂


[08:55] Rhiannon Chatnoir: On to Mentors Central!
[08:55] Rhiannon Chatnoir: Today for Mentor Central we have Gentle Heron to speak on Intentional Productivity.
[08:56] Rhiannon Chatnoir: Let’s welcome her up and start whenever your ready Gentle.
[08:56] Buffy Beale: Cheering for Gentle!
[08:56] Gentle Heron: Good morning NPC friends.
[08:56] CarmenLittleFawn: Applause
[08:56] Gentle Heron: We all know that distractions can prevent us from focusing on necessary tasks and decrease our effectiveness and efficiency as we try to work or study. Four overall strategies will help students and employees become intentionally more productive.
[08:56] Pathfinder LesterPathfinder Lester claps
[08:56] Gentle Heron: Let’s look at each strategy, plus some tips for each. Probably this isn’t new to you; just a reminder.
[08:56] Glitteractica Cookie: Hey Pathfinder! Nice to see you here
[08:57] Pathfinder Lester: likewise 🙂
[08:57] Gentle Heron: 1. The first strategy is to eliminate “reactive nibblers.”
[08:57] Glitteractica Cookie: 🙂
[08:57] Gentle Heron: When you are working in reactive mode, always responding to new stimuli, you simply can’t focus on any important task. It’s not only the time you lose while responding, it’s also the time you take to switch gears and then switch back again.
[08:57] Gentle Heron: What are “reactive nibblers,” those little things that eat up your time a bite at a time? Please share a few in Local Chat now.
[08:57] Glitteractica Cookie: here! here! on that point
[08:58] Gentle Heron: What are YOUR reactive nibblers?
[08:58] Gentle Heron: What eats up your productive time?
[08:58] Glitteractica Cookie: when urgent requests come in from senior management to do quick research projects with a one hour turn-around time
[08:58] Jen: Phone call with wrong number
[08:58] Tank Thibedeau: facebook games
[08:58] Gentle Heron: Good ones!
[08:58] Rhiannon Chatnoir: phone calls
[08:58] CarmenLittleFawn: family
[08:58] Jerry Buchko: ‘urgent’ emails, that aren’t
[08:58] Coughran Mayo: Radon detector going off
[08:59] Gentle HeronGentle Heron smiles
[08:59] Oronoque Westland: pop ups from other chat windows or email programs
[08:59] Tank Thibedeau: trying to figure out what to wear in SL
[08:59] Gentle Heron: Right. We all know what they are. These are the big ones for most of us:

Email and IMs
Phone calls
Social media
[08:59] CarmenLittleFawn: hahah
[08:59] bulaklak: When you mean to fix one thing but find another unexpected typo or other thing that then leads down a rabbit hole to ten other things and a whole chain of command that is broken
[08:59] Gentle Heron: How can you keep them under control? Try some of these anti-distraction techniques.
[08:59] Gentle Heron: For email:
1. Turn off automated email checking. The pop ups or pings distract you even if you don’t check—but you probably will peek.
2. Alternatively, extend the lapsed time between checks. Set it to notify you at a time when you are ready to deal with all your emails at once.
[09:00] Gentle Heron: 3. You can even close or minimize your email app.
4. When responding to emails, focus on those sent TO you, not CCed to you.
5. Some email systems allow you to filter and/or color code your emails, to make it easier to find the priority items.
[09:00] Gentle Heron: For IMs:
1. Don’t forget to set your status indicator.
2. Customize your status indicator. “Cranky and on a tight deadline- interrupt at your own risk” may be more effective at blocking unimportant IMs than “Busy.”
[09:00] Pathfinder Lester: my dachshund is a nibbler
[09:01] Gentle Heron: For phone calls:
1. Turn off the phone. Don’t even leave the cell phone on vibrate. Leave the cell phone in a different room. Turn off the landline ringer.

2. Set up a system. Perhaps you can assign a ring to family or the boss so you’ll know which calls you MUST take immediately.
[09:01] CarmenLittleFawn: nods
[09:01] Oronoque Westland: @Path, good thing that hotdog has small teeth
[09:01] Pathfinder Lester: lol
[09:01] Gentle Heron: 3. Send calls to voice mail, and deal with them during a block of time you’ve set aside for listening to, prioritizing, and responding to all your calls.

4. See if a response is needed. Many calls don’t require a call back; maybe a return email would do.
[09:01] Gentle Heron: For social media:
1. Schedule check-in times. Try not to peek!

2. Use an automated service (e.g., HootSuite to send out scheduled posts. Write once, post several times.
[09:02] Glitteractica Cookie: i set my VM to sy that I don’t check VM and ppl should text or email me
[09:02] Jerry Buchko: great tip re: status indicators!
[09:02] Gentle Heron: good idea, Glitter!
[09:02] Gentle Heron: For visitors:
1. Put a sign on the door. If you expect a delivery, let the delivery service know not to knock or ring the bell.
[09:02] Pathfinder Lester: I find Google Voice to be an outstanding tool for managing phone stuff. Voicemail-to-email transcription is pretty good too.
[09:02] Gentle HeronGentle Heron nods to Path.
[09:02] Gentle Heron: 2. If someone comes when you are busy, they may get the hint easier if you say “Sorry, I’m expecting a call,” rather than a more generic, “Sorry, I’m busy now.”

3. Even if you’re not listening to music, wear a headset to discourage visitors.
[09:03] Gentle Heron: 2. The second strategy for intentional productivity sounds simplistic, but it’s really foundational. Plan your work day.

There are lots of tools that can help us with this. You can buy expensive planner systems. But you don’t really need tools. Here’s what you can do.
[09:03] Gentle Heron: First, at the end of each day, write down at least the top three things you need to accomplish the following day. A full TO DO list can seem overwhelming, but is also useful if you might forget something important.
[09:03] Jerry Buchko: @Pathfinder, Ditto re: Google Voice
[09:03] Pathfinder Lester: “Plan your work. Then work your plan.”
[09:03] Gentle Heron: Yes Path!
[09:03] Gentle Heron: Keep a long-range calendar. Be sure to mark all deadlines and due dates. But also work backward from these end points, and mark where you need to focus on the steps necessary to achieve the objectives by the deadline.
[09:04] Gentle Heron: Throughout the workday, set short goals. Write down “the three next things” you need to accomplish, and finish those before you write up the next list of three things.
[09:04] Gentle Heron: If you get interrupted, or if you finish a subtask, make a note to yourself explaining what to do next.

A yellow stickie that says “Continue spell check from here” pasted onto the manuscript, or a note to “Call the client to give progress report” paperclipped to the draft plan will keep you on track.
[09:04] Oronoque Westland: just make sure that your to-do list is not part of the pop ups that you have now turned off
[09:04] Gentle HeronGentle Heron chuckles.
[09:04] Gentle Heron: 3. The third strategy is to create a productive working environment.

This has to be personalized, as we all have different needs. Basically, you want to make your working environment disappear, so that you can focus on the tasks and don’t get sidetracked by annoyances and distractions.
[09:05] bulaklak: This is great! I love planning tips.
[09:05] Gentle Heron: For example, some of us need absolute silence to really concentrate; others need background music.

Noise-canceling headphones work either way. You can also use ear plugs or a white noise generator. Whatever works best for you, use it!
[09:05] bulaklak: I also *really* love this tip from above “4. When responding to emails, focus on those sent TO you, not CCed to you.:”
[09:05] Gentle Heron: The same with all the other environmental variables: light level, temperature, chair and desk, etc.

One way to keep yourself focused on work is to be sure that the fun apps– Angry Birds, your recipe collection, whatever– are NOT on your work computer. Put them elsewhere, preferably in a different room.
[09:06] Gentle Heron: 4. The fourth and final strategy is to be aware of time, and yes Rhiannon, I am!
[09:06] Gentle Heron: A timer will help you focus. This can be the old fashioned wind-up kitchen timer, or an online tool like
[09:06] Gentle Heron: Most of us can manage at least ten minutes of concentrated effort. Work up to 25 minutes of sustained attention.

The Pomodoro Technique ( recommends 25 concentrated minutes followed by a 5 minute break. After four cycles of this, take a longer break.
[09:07] Oronoque Westland: I need to position the on screen clock where other apps don’t hide it
[09:07] Coughran Mayo: “always on top”
[09:07] Gentle Heron: (onlineclock will buzz even if you can’t see it Oro)
[09:07] Gentle Heron: When you begin a task, or start a meeting, note the time at the top of your paper. This visual reminder will keep you working and help you avoid “bird walking” away from the topic.
[09:07] Jerry Buchko: oh, fun apps are definitely one of those distractions i wrestle with sometimes
[09:08] Gentle Heron: Don’t go to unnecessary meetings! Sure you can’t avoid some. But if you see from the agenda that the topics aren’t relevant to your work, ask the meeting organizer if you can be sent the meeting notes afterward.
[09:08] Gentle Heron: Similarly, if you are in charge of the meeting, be sure it is scheduled at a time others can attend easily; always send an agenda ahead of time; and cancel the meeting if there’s nothing important to accomplish.
[09:08] Gentle Heron: Blockers and Aids are two different approaches to dealing with productivity issues. Blockers keep the distractions away from you.
[09:08] Gentle Heron: For instance, Leechblock (a Firefox add-on

and DoNotDisturb (for Outlook
[09:09] Gentle Heron: … will keep you away from those websites that steal so much of your time and attention. Other examples of distraction blockers are ear plugs, or putting your phone on mute.
[09:09] Gentle Heron: Aids help you manage distractions by encouraging you to work or study better.

These include calendars, dayplanners, TO DO lists, colored highlighters, and text substitution apps (see for some examples).
[09:09] Gentle Heron: It’s easy to get a great deal of stimulation in return for very little effort. How hard is it to find dumb cat videos on YouTube?

If it took a half hour to find one, or you had to pay to watch it, the impulse value is gone. MEMO: Don’t buy the candy at the check out aisle!
[09:10] Gentle Heron: Change the effort-to-reward ratio for low-value distractions. Make it harder to become distracted! Give yourself a chance to make a better choice, more time to think.
[09:10] Glitteractica Cookie: i close facebook when I’m trying to focus, b/c the notifications are too diff for me to resist checking
[09:10] Gentle HeronGentle Heron nods!
[09:10] Gentle Heron: Routines will make a difference in your productivity. In general, productivity aids work better than blockers, because it means your attitudes and behaviors have changed.
[09:10] Gentle Heron: What you want to do is be more mindful about productivity. Create new productive habits.

They say it takes 21 days of repetition to form a new habit. Pick one that we discussed today and do it consciously for 3 weeks. See if that routine makes a difference. I bet it will.
[09:11] Glitteractica Cookie: great advice!
[09:11] Gentle Heron: For the next 3 weeks, try making being unproductive unproductive.
[09:11] Oronoque Westland: some of these are great ideas that I can apply to sticking to my diet too
[09:11] Gentle Heron: Here are a few resources you might look into. Thank you for your attention, and I return you to the regularly scheduled program.
[09:11] Jen: ********APPPLLLAAAUUUSSSEEE********
[09:11] bulaklak: These are great tips and reminders. I’ve been thinking of setting my email to only come in every 35 minutes, but it would be such a major shift to make for me.
[09:11] Gentle Heron: Oro, that’s such a good point!
[09:11] CarmenLittleFawn: I am so appreciating this Gentle, I was and have been thinking about managing my time and projects more efficiently, and truly I know a lot of these things u are saying, the reminder helps me know I am on the right track and also the new information is going to be very helpful, 🙂
[09:11] Zazoom Zimminy: Yea!
[09:11] Gentle Heron: You can use these tips in so many ways!
[09:11] Pathfinder Lester: excellent advice
[09:12] Svea Morane: Great ideas and suggestions Gentle
[09:12] Rhiannon Chatnoir: Thanks to Gentle for leading Mentors Central today!
[09:12] alebez: these are great, gentle.
[09:12] Gentle Heron: Anyone else have good advice for us?
[09:12] Gentle Heron: Please share!
[09:12] Rhiannon Chatnoir: and yes, great advice and tips.
[09:12] Gentle Heron: Or do the next Mentor Corner!
[09:12] Tori Landau: Brill tips Gentle, thank you!
[09:12] Jerry Buchko: great presi, Gentle!
[09:12] Oronoque Westland: such great ideas and from someone who is a model at getting things done
[09:12] bulaklak: Well, I recently heard that the Rockwood Leadership Institute does NO work on Fridays and they increased their productivity by 25% . . .
[09:12] CarmenLittleFawn: 🙂
[09:12] bulaklak: hmmm
[09:12] Svea Morane: Gentle is one of the most productive people i know
[09:12] Rhiannon Chatnoir: We might want to hold that til the Open Mic, we are running a bit late today.. but lets keep the discussion going then
[09:12] Jerry Buchko: can we get a copy of your slides? i want this one for my library


[09:13] Rhiannon Chatnoir: Time for today’s main speaker alebaze/Ale Bezdikian.
[09:13] Glitteractica Cookie: um, bulaklak… ?? i don’t think so, but nice try. ;-P
[09:13] bulaklak: =)
[09:13] Jerry Buchko: lol
[09:13] Rhiannon Chatnoir: You can come up and grab a seat in front alebez.
[09:13] bulaklak: w00t alebez!
[09:13] Rhiannon Chatnoir: great
[09:13] CarmenLittleFawn: Hello alebez 🙂
[09:13] Rhiannon Chatnoir: She is going to share with us today how Basecamp project management tool makes working on a distributed team and collaborating on mutual projects so much easier.
[09:13] Glitteractica Cookie: this is a RAWK STAH, ladies and gents
[09:14] alebez: Good day everyone, thanks for being here!
[09:14] Rhiannon Chatnoir: First a bit about Ale.
After studying journalism and comparative religion at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, Alexandra (Ale) Bezdikian was given a fellowship with Mother Jones Magazine where she produced videos as well as fronted their outreach communications department.
Currently, Ale is TechSoup’s Online Community + Social Media team Coordinator, and loving it! That means she keeps the team on track and in check, making sure everyone is meeting timelines and deliverables. Most of her time is spent wiki gardening and managing her team in Basecamp.
[09:14] Rhiannon Chatnoir: So lets all welcome alebez! Ale, you can start when your ready.
[09:14] Glitteractica Cookie: and she’s fabulus!!
[09:14] alebez: Thanks!
[09:14] alebez: I’d like to speak to you all about a project management tool that my team currently uses to manage our day to day activities, called Basecamp.
[09:14] Buffy Beale: Great job Gentle! and Yayy alebez!
[09:15] bulaklak: Great fit with the Mentors talk from today, too.
[09:15] alebez: You can view this presentation in your browser alongside this virtual presentation there, on our community slideshare page.
[09:15] alebez: I know, right bulaklak?
[09:15] CarmenLittleFawn: claps
[09:15] Glitteractica Cookie: is there a vanity
[09:16] alebez: It’s a tool I use every day, as do my colleagues here on the Online Community Team. For us, Basecamp does a fantastic job of managing all the content we produce during our planning and creating processes. It really helps to keep all our discussions easily accessible to members working on a project, and allows for transparent assignment of tasks.
[09:16] alebez: this was the bitly, gliteractica:
[09:16] alebez: Have any of you heard of or used Basecamp in the workplace? I’d like to note that we’re using the most recent version of Basecamp, which differs slightly from Basecamp classic.
[09:17] Coughran MayoCoughran Mayo has used basecamp
[09:17] bulaklakbulaklak uses Basecamp
[09:17] Svea Morane: I use Basecamp for dozens of research projects
[09:17] alebez: oh, fantastic!
[09:17] Pathfinder LesterPathfinder Lester has used Basecamp. Currently uses Jira.
[09:17] CarmenLittleFawn: never used
[09:17] bulaklakbulaklak uses both classic and new
[09:17] Glitteractica Cookie: alebez, i meant one that was memorable.. a vanoty, so we can tweet it, mention it, etc
[09:17] Jerry Buchko: no hadn’t heard of Basecamp until now
[09:17] alebez: Basecamp is a web based project management tool. It puts a whole team’s communication and work onto a single virtual page which displays your teams discussions, tasks, files, and documents, keeping everything stored in a single location online.
[09:17] Glitteractica Cookie: you can make one later
[09:18] alebez: This makes it incredibly easy to facilitate collaboration across a distributed team, and makes holding team members accountable all the more transparent.
[09:18] Pathfinder LesterPathfinder Lester also uses Highrise (contact management), made by the same folks who make Basecamp.
[09:18] BELOVEDROX: used it for a project once
[09:18] alebez: By assigning ownership of tasks, and placing project deadlines on one unified calendar, each member of our team can see upcoming deadlines and track project deliverables. I’ll show you how in just a bit.
[09:18] alebez: Basecamp is a web-based tool which allows for multiple user access, and makes collaboration easy across a distributed team.
[09:19] alebez: After logging in to a Basecamp account, what you see is a dashboard of all the projects you have on your plate at a given time. You can then choose to navigate to the project you’re working on at the moment, and open the project folder to reveal team discussions, to-do lists, files, and text documents.
[09:19] alebez: After opening your project folder, you have access to view and participate in all your team’s discussions relating to that project, to-do lists with the option to assign ownership of tasks, share files and text documents.
[09:20] Buffy Beale: this sounds like a great tool!
[09:20] alebez: You can choose to contribute to a discussion thread, check out upcoming to-do’s, or download files relating to the project. This folder is meant to contain everything relating to the project at hand, and allows access to the team members you choose to work on the project.
[09:20] CarmenLittleFawn: mmhmm
[09:20] alebez: Collaboration is made easy through Basecamp especially through discussions.
[09:21] alebez: It’s easy to begin a new discussion thread, as it’s a lot like crafting an email. You’d give it a title as you would an email, write the content, and then choose which people on your team you want to notify.
[09:21] Ethelred Weatherwax: I don’t see that Basecamp is offered through TechSoup
[09:21] alebez: It’s not currently offered, Ethelred.
[09:21] alebez: Your discussion is public, so anyone invited to the project can join, but only those you choose will get an email notification. (you can sync up Basecamp notifications to your email account)
[09:22] alebez: Basecamp offers a versatile platform for assigning ownership of tasks and tracking deliverables.
[09:22] alebez: By keeping all yours tasks together, and individually assigning to-do’s to members of your project with due dates, you can easily track the progress of your team on the calendar, and manage deliverables accordingly.
[09:22] Glitteractica Cookie: post it on the wishlist thread, Ethelred
[09:23] Glitteractica Cookie: we have a forum for product requests
[09:23] alebez: Because items can be assigned to individual users, it makes it easy to delegate and hand out responsibility for particular tasks. Each team member can then monitor their own to-do’s on their own personal pages and whose deadlines are factored into your team’s Basecamp’s calendar.
[09:23] bulaklak: We do offer Huddle, though. Which is similar.
[09:23] Glitteractica Cookie: bulaklak can post the link
[09:23] alebez: thanks, bulaklak, i was getting to the Huddle option. 🙂
[09:23] bulaklak: Here is the TechSoup Technology Wish List thread:
[09:23] bulaklak: Of course you were on it, Ale.
[09:23] bulaklak: =)
[09:24] alebez: So by assigning ownership of tasks, and placing project deadlines on one unified calendar, each member of our team can see upcoming deadlines and track project deliverables.
[09:24] alebez: Each project is color coded on the calendar, so when you assign a duration of time to a piece of a project, say for a social media campaign, it appears in this case in orange, and spans a number of weeks.
[09:24] bulaklak: The color coded calendar on Basecamp is my absolute favorite.
[09:25] alebez: For me personally, having one calendar that shows multiple aspects of what we do based on the categories we defined…
[09:25] alebez: whether those are events we’re producing on a given day, campaigns we’re running over a period of time, or upcoming deadlines to track, I can see everything from a birds eye view.
[09:25] alebez: Basecamp is not free.
[09:25] alebez: Pricing starts at $20/month for up to ten projects and 3GB of files, rising to $50/month for 40 projects and 15GB of files.
[09:26] alebez: $100/month for 100 projects and 40GB of files and maxing out at $150/month for unlimited projects and 100GB of file storage. All the pricing tiers have support for unlimited users.
[09:26] alebez: There’s also a no-credit-card-required 30-day free trial to try it out.
[09:26] Gentle Heron: They offer a 45 day free trial.
[09:26] alebez: I think it’s 30 days now Gentle
[09:26] bulaklak: (You can also turn any of the color coded projects on and off when you are looking at the calendar, which is even more awesome.. So you can see as much or as little as you want.)
[09:27] alebez: Some alternatives to Basecamp are Huddle and Asana, for example. Huddle is a paid service, and is offered here at TechSoup: for an admin fee of $99.00
[09:27] alebez: Huddle was mentioned by Bulaklak just a bit ago
[09:27] alebez: Our team used Huddle for a period of time, but ultimately didn’t like the fact that there wasn’t one unified calendar to view everything from a higher level, but instead required the user to toggle between multiple dashboards. Huddle’s user interface was also somewhat clunky.
[09:28] alebez: Basecamp’s proven reliability was a huge factor when choosing which tool to go with. We knew it could deliver most of what we were looking for, including a master calendar. Also points for the ability to access it mobile, and multiple entry points for collaboration. Also, a few of our team members had already used Basecamp, potentially making it easier to adopt.
[09:28] Coughran Mayo:
[09:28] Coughran Mayo: for free trial info
[09:28] alebez: Fantastic. thanks, coughran.
[09:29] alebez: Asana looked like a good project management tool, can act as an interim crm, and does have an api, but doesn’t provide the crystal clear organization structure that I feel Basecamp does a better job at providing. It does however, have the capability of syncing to Outlook, and the interface is quite easy to navigate. Also, it’s free to set up an account (biggest points for asana here).
[09:29] alebez: Asana is a practicle and clean free service, one that I would recommend on a tight budget. I’ve heard good things about Asana.
[09:29] Glitteractica Cookie: on our team we tried so many PM tools, before settling on this one
[09:29] alebez: We sure did.
[09:29] alebez: We tried a whole lot.
[09:29] Glitteractica Cookie: and several before you joined the team too
[09:30] alebez: and ultimately, Basecamp fit our needs
[09:30] Coughran Mayo: Does TS have any special offers for nonprofits for Basecamp? That would be nice
[09:30] bulaklak: Yes, Alebez was not there for the CoHuman adventure.
[09:30] Glitteractica Cookie: Coughran, that is what we were talking to ethelred about
[09:30] Rhiannon Chatnoir: 🙂
[09:30] alebez: It would be nice if they had nonprofit rates, but at the moment, they aren’t there.
[09:30] Glitteractica Cookie: if you post the request in that forum thread, our bizdev team will look into it
[09:31] Glitteractica Cookie: right now, we have huddle, but not basecamp
[09:31] bulaklak: Coughran if you would like to suggest TechSoup offer it as a donation, you can do that here
[09:31] Glitteractica Cookie: there must be a significant interest on the front end, before bizdev seeks the doantion from the vendor partner
[09:31] Pathfinder Lester: Have you folks tried any “content collaboration” software (shared documents, etc.) ?
[09:31] Glitteractica Cookie: google docs and MS live collab software
[09:32] bulaklak: I used to use eRoom at one of my old jobs, Pathfinder
[09:32] Pathfinder Lester: cool
[09:32] Glitteractica Cookie: and of course, we are a big user of wikispaces
[09:32] Glitteractica Cookie: which is a techsoup product
[09:32] bulaklak: eRoom is expensive but it has really amazing version control
[09:32] Pathfinder Lester: We’re currently using Confluence at ReactionGrid. It’s working out very well for us.
[09:32] Pathfinder Lester: And since it’s made by same folks who make Jira, the two integrate very well.
[09:33] Pathfinder Lester: That’s probably our biggest challenge…getting all the different tools we use to *integrate* with each other. ;P
[09:33] alebez: That’s fantastic you found something that works for you, Pathfinder.
[09:33] Gentle Heron: That’s important, Path, the integration aspect.
[09:33] alebez: Now, can I answer any more questions, or any more questions to my team members who use Basecamp
[09:33] Pathfinder Lester: alebez, have you tried Highrise integrated with Basecamp?
[09:33] alebez: I really enjoy using this tool
[09:33] alebez: No, we have not.
[09:34] alebez: I haven’t expanded into the Basecamp app space
[09:34] Jerry Buchko: For those working in small collaborative teams that don’t need some of the time resource tracking functionality of PM software, LifeHacker had this useful article about how to use Google Calendar as a PM tool……
[09:34] alebez: Basecamp has a whole slew of apps that integrate with their tool that make everything from mobile collaboration to time tracking possible
[09:34] bulaklak: Ooh, thanks Jerry.
[09:34] Gentle HeronGentle Heron nods to Jerry…. VAI uses the Google tools for project management.
[09:34] Glitteractica Cookie: what is highrise?
[09:35] Pathfinder Lester: contact management
[09:35] Pathfinder Lester: made by same folks who make Basecamp
[09:35] Rhiannon Chatnoir: one of the other products that is part of the Basecamp line
[09:35] alebez: yep
[09:35] Jerry BuchkoJerry Buchko nods
[09:36] alebez: All-in-all, Basecamp is a satisfying tool to work with, and has integrated the best on our fast-paced team.
[09:36] Pathfinder Lester: as you work more with Basecamp, I’d love to hear about how you integrate/expand on it. Best practices for integrating different tools is a hot topic in my opinion.
[09:36] Jerry Buchko: @Gentle, For the small collaborative teams I’ve worked with, e.g. delivering a MOOC, using the Google Calendars along with the other integrated tools, like Hangout, Doc, Talk, etc. have really proven effective
[09:36] alebez: agreed. and i look forward to keeping you posted.
[09:37] alebez: glitter and bulaklak, do you have any closing remarks before I had the mic to Rhiannon?
[09:37] Glitteractica Cookie: I’m interested in maybe having a follow-up lecture from you, Path alongside Ale on that topic, integration
[09:37] bulaklak: I consider it a real testament to Basecamp that it’s gotten decent adoption on our team, considering our track record.
[09:37] bulaklak: (Of course it’s a testament to Alebez, too)
[09:37] Glitteractica Cookie: and considering my resistance to it
[09:37] Pathfinder Lester: i’d be happy to share my experiences. expecially my mistakes! (i learn most from those)
[09:37] Glitteractica Cookie: ;-P
[09:37] alebez: stop! blush
[09:37] alebez: 🙂
[09:37] bulaklak: That, too, Glitter.
[09:37] Gentle HeronGentle Heron agrees with Path about learning from mistakes.
[09:37] Rhiannon Chatnoir: any other questions to Ale before we transition to Open Mic & Announcements
[09:38] alebez: Well, great. Thanks everybody, this has been a great discussion, and a pleasure.
[09:38] Glitteractica Cookie: i’m still not over-the-moon about it, but it’s working, so that’s cool
[09:38] Buffy Beale: hearty applause, great presentation alebez
[09:38] Pathfinder Lester: ty alebez
[09:38] CarmenLittleFawn: tt alebez for the information
[09:38] Pathfinder LesterPathfinder Lester claps
[09:38] CarmenLittleFawn: ty
[09:38] Rhiannon Chatnoir: Great and thanks alebez for presenting today!
[09:38] Jerry BuchkoJerry Buchko applauds.
[09:38] alebez: certainly. thank you!
[09:38] Jen: ********APPPLLLAAAUUUSSSEEE********
[09:39] CarmenLittleFawn: clapping
[09:39] Jerry Buchko: thanks Alebez!
[09:39] Jen: Very good Alebez
[09:39] Jen: Thank you


[09:39] Rhiannon Chatnoir: It’s time for Open Mic and Announcements
[09:39] Rhiannon Chatnoir: Does anyone have any announcements today?
[09:39] Ozma Malibu: I do, I think
[09:39] Jen: Now if I can get the Luddites in my Foundation to accept it
[09:39] Gentle Heron: That
[09:39] Ozma Malibu: if no one else is speaking to the birthday party, I do.
[09:39] Rhiannon Chatnoir: ok Ozma, go ahead
[09:39] Glitteractica Cookie: which foundation?
[09:40] Gentle Heron: That’d make a great topic, Jen… how to get Luddites moving forward.
[09:40] Jen: any ideas on that Gentle?
[09:41] Ozma Malibu: Hi! The big NPC birthday party is on September 21.
[09:41] Glitteractica Cookie: i love these productivity topics
[09:42] Rhiannon Chatnoir: yes
[09:42] bulaklak: Me, too! I think talking about productivity is way more fun than being productive.
[09:42] Svea Morane: Announcement on free (to SL residents) seminar:
[09:42] Svea Morane: Mayo Clinic is sponsoring its 5th annual 3 day symposium on innovation in Healthcare. The main stage presentations on day 2 and 3 (Monday and Tuesday, 9/10-11) will be shown in the Mayo Clinic conference center for free 🙂 Check the schedule and stop in.
[09:42] Gentle Heron: That conference is always SUPER, Svea!
[09:42] Svea Morane: thanks it is a good one..
[09:42] Svea Morane: mc is Hockenberry from NPR
[09:43] Rhiannon Chatnoir: I think we lost Ozma, so if anyone else has an announcement or wants to talk on the NPC birthday?
[09:43] Rhiannon Chatnoir: thanks Svea
[09:44] Brena Benoir: Ozma probably has the most up to date info on the birthday celebration as she has been managing the wiki for it
[09:44] Glitteractica Cookie: can you point to where it lives on the NPSL wiki?
[09:44] Gentle Heron: YAY Ozma is back
[09:44] Rhiannon Chatnoir: oh wait.. think she is back, and yes a link to the wiki on it would be great
[09:44] Tori Landau: What time will the birthday celebration be at please?
[09:44] Brena Benoir: We will be finishing up the builds for it. We are still looking for gifts that we could hand out
[09:45] Brena Benoir: one sec grabbing it
[09:45] Ozma Malibu: sorta back. Hey.
[09:45] Ozma Malibu: here is the wiki link:
[09:45] Glitteractica Cookie: thx
[09:46] CarmenLittleFawn: I am making some gifts to hand out
[09:46] Ozma Malibu: If everyone does a small bit we can have an amazing party
[09:46] Brena Benoir:
[09:46] Rhiannon Chatnoir: thanks
[09:46] CarmenLittleFawn: ty Ozma
[09:47] Brena Benoir: Zinnia has prepared the overall poster for the event which is currently off to the left of Ale’s board
[09:47] Rhiannon Chatnoir: great!
[09:47] Rhiannon Chatnoir: Any other announcements?
[09:49] bulaklak: Great meeting today!
[09:49] Glitteractica Cookie: indeed!

Written by: Rhiannon Chatnoir