Humanitarian Free And Open Source Software - The Benefits Of "Doing Good"

Event Details
December 1, 2016 - 5:30pm - 7:00pm
Hugh Dempster Building
6245 Agronomy Rd, Room 110
Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4

The University of British Columbia will hold a one-night event on Humanitarian Free and Open Source Software (HFOSS) intended for an audience of Computer Science instructors and students. The event will be hosted by Meghan Allen and Steve Wolfman of UBC’s Department of Computer Science. Heidi J.C. Ellis, a professor at Western New England University, will give a presentation entitled “Humanitarian Free and Open Source Software - The Benefits of ‘Doing Good’”. The abstract for her talk can be found on UBC’s website.

Humanitarian Free and Open Source Software (HFOSS) affords students a variety of opportunities for learning and provides a number of ways for students to participate, as Ellis will show during her presentation. Student contributions to HFOSS so far have included adding a keyboard to the Caribou on-screen keyboard, adding color filters to software for users with visual disabilities, and creating a volunteer management module for Sahana (disaster management).

During her talk, Ellis will explain how students can contribute to HFOSS projects, which HFOSS projects are appropriate for students, what students should expect while volunteering on a HFOSS project, and how instructors can fit HFOSS participation into the classroom, giving answers that address both the students’ and the instructors’ perspectives. Ellis will use real-life examples of student experiences volunteering with HFOSS projects to illustrate her presentation. Data from a multi-year, multi-institutional, NSF-funded study on student feedback about their experiences learning though participation in HFOSS projects will also be presented.