How to join Open Savannah and help propel the movement for open government data and services
Getting started with the Open Savannah brigade is pretty dang easy, and doesn’t require that you complete all of the following steps per se.
That said, we do recommend you take the following steps sequentially to make the process as seamless as possible, both for you and for us.
If you don’t think you can spare five to ten minutes to follow these steps right now or are unsure of any part of this process, no problem; feel more than free to ask any questions you may have on our Brigade Forum. We do, at the very least, ask you to take just a few quick seconds to sign up for our mailing list to receive updates, even if you’ve already joined us on Meetup.com or elsewhere.
SIGN UP FOR A GITHUB ACCOUNT
(yes, even if you don’t code)
We use GitHub for user registration on opensavannah.org, for project management, file storage, documentation and code version control.
If you already have a GitHub account, feel free to skip to Step 2.
If you’ve never heard of GitHub or don’t understand why we use GitHub, watch this quick explainer video for a good introduction. Anyone can use GitHub; it doesn’t require any programming knowledge. We’ll use it as a collaborative tool for all our Brigade projects.
To create a new GitHub account, take the following steps:
- Sign-up for an account at GitHub.com.
- Make sure to create a public-facing username in the sign-up process that you’ll be comfortable with displaying as your handle listed for project participation (i.e. we’d advise keeping it simple with something like
jmercer if you’re name is, say, Johnny Mercer.)
- Upload an avatar to your GItHub profile if you’d like. We’ll use this image alongside your contact info to display you in our Member Directory page.
whew! step zero done. good job!
LOG IN TO OPENSAVANNAH.ORG WITH YOUR GITHUB ACCOUNT
This is so we can list you in our member directory, add you to the mailing list, give you blogging/project creation privileges and more.
Our homepage, opensavannah.org, is powered by the BrigadeHub framework, which is under active development by Code for San Francisco and Open Savannah brigade members, and available as a repository on Open Savannah’s GitHub page. BrigadeHub allows us to interact with the APIs (application programming interfaces) of Meetup, GitHub and Medium. Think of an API like a window into an application’s data; we’re using GitHub’s API to pull in project data, Meetup’s API to pull in event-related data, etc.
Anyhow, to become an official brigade member, head to the homepage and select the ‘Login’ option in the top right. Then select the option to
Log In With GitHub. Assuming you’re logged in to GitHub, you’ll be taken to an authorization page next, where you’ll be asked whether to allow opensavannah.org to authenticate using your account. You’ll, of course, want to select
Yes. Then, you should be redirected back to the homepage and see your profile logged-in in the top right.
Now you’ve officially become a Brigade Member. Woooohoooo! Please follow the next couple of steps, too, to make sure you stay in the loop, take part in conversation, participate in project leadership and be an awesome Brigade Member.
JOIN THE OPEN SAVANNAH MEETUP GROUP, THEN RSVP TO THE NEXT UPCOMING EVENT
We use Meetup.com to announce and host regular events, from casual meetups to hacknights to hackathons.
Visit our Meetup group page at meetup.com/opensavannah. Select ‘Join Group’ to join the Meetup group and be notified of future events and RSVP for current events.
We use Meetup to check-in Brigade Members at events, and Code for America uses Meetup.com attendance numbers to allocate funding to us as a Brigade. So, if you plan on attending an event, help chip-in for the pizza by simply joining and RSVP’ing for the event on Meetup. We’ll love you for it.
REGISTER FOR OPEN SAVANNAH’S DISCOURSE DISCUSSION, IDEAS AND FEEDBACK FORUM AT FORUM.OPENSAVANNAH.ORG
Our discussion and community feedback forum is where we do most discussion (other than real-time chat, for which we connect on Slack), and where you can suggest ideas, offer feedback, submit tips/tutorials or post about your local community data or public service needs.
You can create an account on our discussion forum in seconds by logging in either with GitHub, Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.
Extra-Credit: Start earning points and cool badges by making a couple of posts to the forum!
OPT-IN TO OPEN SAVANNAH’S MAILING LIST
While registering for the forum and joining the Meetup group help keep you in contact with the rest of the brigade, perhaps the best, most universal way to stay in touch is old-fashioned email.
So, be awesome, and go ahead and sign-up to receive emails from Open Savannah. No spam, we promise. And no sharing of your email address, either.
6. COME CHAT WITH THE GROUP ON SLACK!
We’re currently communicating in real-time on techSAV’s Slack team under the channel #opensavannah. Slack is great for fun chatter and bouncing ideas.
- To receive an invite to techSAV’s Slack group, use this form to give us your email-address.
- After receiving the invite and joining the techSAV Slack team, find the Slack channel titled
#opensavannah from the dropdown list of channels on the left-hand side of the Slack user=interface.
- You’ll then see the #opensavannah channel. Select ‘Join Channel’ to make it official and get alerts when new posts are made.
7. MOST IMPORTANTLY, SHOW UP!
To make an impact, you’ve gotta show up. So, don’t be a stranger. Come join us at our next event on Meetup!