My ability to write publicly, for anyone to read, is a freedom I hope never to take for granted.
Nelson Mandela, the hero and inspiration for millions passed away this week.
It is never my custom to use words lightly. If twenty-seven years in prison have done anything to us, it was to use the silence of solitude to make us understand how precious words are and how real speech is in its impact on the way people live and die.
Closing Address, 13TH International AIDS Conference, Durban, South Africa, 14 July 2000
I wonder how Madiba’s passing will affect the political climate in South Africa, a country I know and love.
Today I’ve decided, as many people do, that I want to start writing again. We’ll see how long it lasts before the next project captures my interest instead.
I’m going to talk a bit about technology and nonprofits, and my thoughts of where we’re going as a society. You’ll learn what it’s like managing the tech for a small-to-midsize nonprofit; the challenges I’ve faced setting up iOS devices, selecting a volunteer management system, and the solutions I’ve found.
Interspersed with that, I’m going to write about how I’m adapting to life in New York; how much I like living Brooklyn although I’ve barely scratched the surface, and how much I detest the Hell’s Kitchen area of manhattan. How the subways freaked me out the first weeks I was here, and did so again last night when I was trying to meet up with some friends.
This blog will reflect me as best as I can.
After spending four days meeting geeks from around the world, learning about the causes they care deeply about, I realize that I’m missing something. There’s a question I keep coming back to, over and over, that I can’t seem to answer.
Why didn’t it occur to me before now that the nonprofit tech community exists? Continue reading
I thought it would be fun to analyze the analysis done by two fantastic organizations (M+R Strategic Services and NTEN) about the state of nonprofit communications. There’s a whole lot of #DataNerd stuff in here, so let’s dig deep and take a look!
The report they released is called the 2013 eNonprofit Benchmarks Study. It’s easy to read, and I highly recommend spending some time exploring and reflecting on it for your nonprofit.
You should see how your organization stacks up with others within and outside of your sectors. Then ask yourself why some organizations and sectors are outperforming or underperforming in certain areas.
The tl;dr version: There are few surprises here.
- Email is still more successful than social media.
- Don’t forget The Ask.
- Talk to your people more.
- Photos go viral.
After reading a post on the Freakonomics blog, I decided to do a bit of research:
If you are in the United States, you probably remember participating in the Decennial Census in 2010. These forms are kept confidential for 72 years—roughly an average American’s life span. But this same rule means that today (actually, a couple of days ago), the 1940 Census results became public information. The good folks at the National Archives have scanned all of these census forms, and put them all online. With a bit of work, you should be able to find your house—or if you are in a newer neighborhood, perhaps a neighboring house.
It took me a few hours to make my way through the National Archives site before I hit on useful information. It turns out that their site really only likes Internet Exlorer. Blegh. Of course, not that you can find that listed on their website anywhere. If you’re looking to do the same research I did, I’d recommend checking out this Unified 1940 Census ED Finder. I didn’t find it until I completed my research, but it would have saved me a lot of time.
According to the National Archives 1940s Census, where I live now was Enumeration District 1-106 of Washington, DC. Once I figured out my enumeration district, I was able to find a map (click through for the full size version).