[Grassroots-l] Health Jam 2008

Greg Smith (gregmsmi) gregmsmi at cisco.com
Tue Apr 29 16:44:07 EDT 2008

Hi Guys,

Thanks Bryan for the plug. Looks like I need to sign up for another list
:-)  I added my self to Health list. 

I'm maxed out but can try to add some project planning focus if people
find it helpful.

The first step is to find a user. In this case that is probably a health
care worker near an XO school. Without a user you don't have well
defined requirements and its hard to know if you are building the right

Maybe someone on the list already lives near an XO school and knows what
health care challenges people are facing...

I also saw this site go up recently. Maybe someone can reach out to
them: http://wiki.laptop.org/go/OLPC-Bangalore

At the same time you reach out to a user, evaluate the capacity of the
group to deliver. You don't want to promise anything you can't deliver.
That's especially true in health care where if you have a bug or don't
come through, peoples health is on the line.

Then ask the user what they need, what their concerns are and what their
biggest challenges are. Then come up with a proposal on how to address
it and run it by the users. 

Enumerated steps:

1 - Find real user ready to communicate and work with you.
2 - Line up volunteers and evaluate group skills and time.
3 - Discuss with user the key challenges and pick one or two you want to
4 - Come up with a design proposal and validate with users.
5 - Code up a prototype or working example.
6 - Run beta test, refine and gather feedback.
7 - Deliver code and give great support in the early going.
8 - Go back to step 1 or to step 6 and keep at it :-)

That's my 2 cents. Maybe you already have steps 1 and 2 done?

If so put the info in the wiki and send out a link. We need to hear from
a real health care worker who also has access to kids using Xos. The
more voluble they are the better! Doesn't have to be a Bryan-class
communicator but needs to be ready to e-mail and give lots of feedback.


I've seen lots of e-mails about the health project so my impression is
that you have many capable people working on it already. I don't mean to
jump in mid-stream or impugn any existing work. It's a great project but
I'm squeamish so I have never worked on anything close to wetware :-)

I look forward to learning more about it.


Greg S

Message: 2
Date: Wed, 30 Apr 2008 00:32:04 +0545
From: Bryan Berry <bryan.berry at gmail.com>
Subject: Re: [Grassroots-l] Health Jam 2008
To: arjunsarwal at gmail.com
Cc: library <library at lists.laptop.org>, health
	<health at lists.laptop.org>,	"Greg Smith \(gregmsmi\)"
	<gregmsmi at cisco.com>, grassroots at lists.laptop.org
Message-ID: <1209494824.7102.98.camel at dell.linuxdev.us.dell.com>
Content-Type: text/plain


Start w/ some simple goals for Health

1 activity for first aid
1 activity on nutrition
1 activity on the causes of disease

1 good pdf on the causes of disease

Then do some work on them to get started. After you have some prototypes
__then__ go look for help. The argument is "Here are our goals, here is
what we have so far, please help us improve what we have. However, if
you are think you could create better content yourself by starting from
scratch, please do so."

If you ask the larger community for help w/out having any existing
prototypes or precise goals, everyone goes off in different directions.

Martin Langhoff's e-mail motto sums it up quite well

"don't get distracted with shiny stuff - working code first"

Since you have an all-volunteer team on OLPC Health, you need projects
where folks can contribute a few hours a week. I recommend avoiding
architecturally complex or esoteric technical projects, it will be hard
for folks to put in the necessary time and for others not so acquainted
w/ that obscure platform to contribute. We are running into this problem
w/ EPaati since it is coded in Squeak.

If you could get some of Greg Smith's time, he could help you put
together a project plan. He has been very helpful to me. He is also
resident in Boston

hope this helps

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