Sketching with Code

Speaking in Shetland about Eigg and Geeks in Residence [video]

Video of a talk I gave in Shetland with Lucy Conway to give a talk about our experience of the Geek in Residence programme so far. We’re nearing the end of the experience, so now is a good time to pull together some of the things we have learnt.

Ambition Scotland kind of runs in parallel to what Sync are doing, with a different focus to helping cultural organisations use digital tech. Where Sync is all about rapid prototyping, hack days, collaborations, exploration and early stage playfulness, Ambition is more like a capacity building exercise - training, business development, leadership, and specific interventions and funding for cultural people to get value out of technology.

The theme of the one day conference they organised in Shetland was “Glocal” (global plus local), the idea that with the massive broadband pipe that just got run to Shetland to connect up Canada with mainland Europe, via Greenland and Iceland, there’s suddenly something very interesting happening around remoteness and connectedness.

That’s similar to what we’ve been talking about with Eigg Box. With the roll out of their own network of 50meg broadband on the island there’s suddenly capacity for people to visit the island, focus on a project and whilst being physically disconnected to urban centres, still have the benefit of decent connectivity and remote collaboration.

The talk is a little skewed towards that angle, but does include many insights from our time working together and a case study of one of the projects we are collaborating on - the Data Necklace.

Interestingly this was a live web cast, one of the first at such fidelity from the island, thanks to Mareel (the new arts centre) having really great facilities for this kind of thing. Oh and I mentioned a Viking hat in the video:

Viking hat wearer

Seriously, this hat was in the reception at our B&B, and inspired by wearing it I’m going to have to go back and see Up Helly Aa first hand I think. It looks crazy…