Roy van de Water, Jade Meskill, and Derek Neighbors discuss the Gangplank initiatives.
Roy van de Water, Jade Meskill, and Derek Neighbors discuss the Gangplank initiatives.
On November 15th, 2013 Gangplank Chandler held our 4th Startup Weekend. It was full of good pitches, hard work, good food, and a lot of fun. We started off the night by welcoming back Katie Hurst as our Startup Weekend facilitator. We had 28 pitches on friday night and ended up with nine teams formed.
The ideas ranged from video games Wiblits (free mobile and online one minute, multi-player, social games) and Zombieplank (a mobile augmented reality and geolocation app to fight off zombies in Gangplank) to a medical imaging scoring system that creates a “pay relative to performance model” for insurance companies (RadiUp). We also had an educational mobile video game to help improve test scores and change the culture about learning for kids (To Learn is Human) and an online recruiting tool to help American college students find employment around the world (Campus to Compass). And a subscription-based online custom market place for audiobook enthusiasts (Audissey).
Many of our meals were donated by some of our Sponsors. Marketing Press provided breakfast each day and the coffee came from ProvisionCoffee.com. Saturday’s lunch was Gangplanks famous Startup BBQ provided by Brian LaFrance and Authority Labs. Jeff Weninger provided us with Floridino’s pizza and helped multiple teams with customer validation. As a local restaurant owner, Jeff helped Local Dish (an online and mobile application meal planning platform). And as a Chandler City Council member Jeff was able to help ForUs, an online platform to help local candidates build a custom, full-featured web, social media and donation site for their campaigns.
With Vintage 95 catering sunday night we had a packed house for the final pitches. Our judges, Eric Schedeler, Troy Busot, and Kyle Stewart had a tough decision to make to choose the winner. Cam Easy, a B2B SaaS-based software program designed to replace outdated CAM software and spreadsheets used by property management firms, took the win. Overall, it was a successful weekend. Thank you to our many sponsors and volunteers, especially Pagely.com.
We are already starting to plan the 5th Gangplank Startup Weekend. If you are interested in helping or sponsoring, contact Trish Gillam at email@example.com.
Saturday December 7th, in Downtown Chandler, the 24th annual Parade of Lights followed by the 57th Tumbleweed Tree Lighting will take place. More than 12,000 people are expected to join Mayor Jay Tibshraeny and the Chandler City Council kick off the holiday season.
The festivities begin at 4:30 p.m. with a variety of musical and dance entertainment, inflatables and fun activities for children, and visits with Santa Claus in Dr. A.J. Chandler Park. There will be pony rides, a display of unique movie-theme inspired cars, and people can get their photo taken in a life-size Human Snow Globe.
The Parade of Lights begins at 7 p.m. and this year’s parade route will start at the corner of Arizona Avenue and Frye Road. The festive floats and other entries will move north on Arizona Avenue, past Chandler City Hall and continue through the downtown area. As it reaches the north end of Dr. A.J. Chandler Park the procession will turn right on Buffalo Street, followed by another right turn onto Arizona Place. After moving along the east side of Dr. A.J. Chandler Park, the parade will end at the corner of Boston Street and Arizona Place.
At the conclusion of the parade (approximately 8 p.m.), guests are invited to gather around the Tumbleweed Tree in the center of the park on the west side of Arizona Avenue for the lighting ceremony.
PARKING AND TRAFFIC RESTRICTIONS
Guests attending the event are strongly encouraged to arrive early to find parking. There are multiple locations with free parking, including two parking garages on the east side of Arizona Avenue, and several surface lots. Due to the expanded parade route, the Chandler City Hall parking garage at Washington Street north of Frye Road will be open prior to 6:30 p.m. and re-open after 8:30 p.m. Exiting this garage will be prohibited while the Parade of Lights is taking place..
Residents are reminded that Arizona Avenue will be closed between Chandler Boulevard and Frye Road from 3:30 to 10 p.m. Frye Road will also be restricted from Arizona Avenue east to Delaware Street from 3:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Several other smaller streets in the downtown area will also be closed or restricted during the festivities.
A map showing street closures and parking options, including parking for the disabled, will be available one week prior to the event online at www.chandleraz.gov/special-events.
“Mayor Tibshraeny proves that through foresight and endurance, America’s local leaders can help overcome their community’s problems,” said Bill Wolpin, Editor, American City & County Magazine. “His story is worth sharing in the hopes that others will become inspired.”
Mayor Tibshraeny has been at the forefront of the economic development push in Chandler preserving Price Corridor. This corridor is the a major employment corridor and is attracting some of the best high wage technology jobs in the state.
It is home to the likes of Intel, Bank of America, PayPal, Microchip Technologies, Orbital Sciences, Rogers Corporation and Wells Fargo. This year, General Motors, Infusionsoft and Nationstar have moved in.
“Chandler is a leader in the region in job creation and today the Price Corridor is home to an impressive roster of companies,” said Mayor Jay Tibshraeny. “This success validates our efforts to protect the area from residential encroachment. I am proud of what we have been able to accomplish in the area as Chandler is now recognized as a premier innovation and technology hub throughout the Southwest.”
Mayor Tibshraeny is a supporter of Gangplank, Downtown redevelopment and pushing for city wide initiatives to create healthier communities, stronger neighborhoods, boost education and re-imagine ailing shopping corners.
Go Jay go! We are proud to be in Chandler and have you at the helm.
– Love Gangplank
Chandler Community Meeting Notes 11/20/2013
By: Jeremy S.
END 4:35 PM
Roy van de Water, Clayton Lengel-Zigich, Jade Meskill, and Trish Gillam discuss the Gangplank Manifesto: People over Personalities
Jade Meskill: Hello, welcome to another episode of the “Dangercast.” We are going to talk about the culture and design of Gangplank. I’m Jade Meskill.
Roy van de Water: I’m Roy van de Water.
Clayton Lengel‑Zigich: I’m Clayton Lengel‑Zigich.
Trish Gillam: I’m Trish Gillam.
Jade: We are wrapping up our principles of the Agile manifesto. No, of the Gangplank manifesto.
Jade: We just did the Agile podcast a few minutes ago. We wanted to talk about people over personalities. Who’s ever met any personalities around Gangplank?
Clayton: I think I’ve seen a few. Usually you overhear them.
Jade: You overhear them?
Jade: That’s a good point. I remember when we were talking about this. We had a lot of very strong personalities in Gangplank, especially during the early times when it was this very raw unformed thing.
What we’re really trying to get at here is that we really value all of the people of Gangplank and not just certain personality types, or certain strong personalities that were in the community itself. Really the power lies within the whole community. Have you guys run into a situation where maybe there’s a dominating personality in the room? What effect does that have on a community?
Roy: I remember we did a podcast with some guests on “Agile Weekly” where we talked about the effect of when you have a certain type of personality in a company. They tend to hire other people that are that same personality. Soon enough you have a company filled with just that personality, and you have this homogeny of opinion, and it starts halting innovation and it starts halting all this other stuff now because everybody is just the same.
Clayton: I think more than anything with the personalities, especially at Gangplank, it seems to block everyone else out. So you get the one personality, and then there’s like the acolytes that are just trying to follow along. “Well, I kind of like this personality so I’m just going to do what they want,” and it kind of squashes the creativity and some of the new ideas that might have come about.
But they ended up not coming about because that’s not what the personality, or personalities, wanted.
Jade: What do we do when personalities are starting to get in the way?
Roy: Tea Party?
Jade: [laughs] Yeah.
Roy: I think when…I’m trying to think of examples for Gangplank. But it seems like with the way that we’ve handled that, Gangplank has kind of marginalized the personalities and made it so that it doesn’t matter if you have one. Like, that’s nice and all that you think you have this persona and that you are putting on this act every time you come into the space but that doesn’t matter, we don’t care about that.
I think that has worked pretty well. Some people are obviously pretty persistent with that, and they really try and, “No, you don’t understand, I am a really awesome personality,” and they want to keep going. But emphasizing the egalitarian nature of it all…
Clayton: That’s a word that’s way outside my vocal range.
Roy: The idea that you could just pluck anyone out of the Gangplank audience so to speak, and they would be a valid person for almost any task, or any activity you were getting into. It’s not about having the right personalities to do some activity or some event or to start…have an idea. You should be able to pick anyone and ask them their opinion about this, and that’s just as valid as anyone else.
Jade: I think you’re marginalizing the strong personality who’s trying to disrupt the culture. That is something that we’ve done quite a bit, I think unintentionally. It makes me think back to when we made one of our first terrible mistakes, which was allowing people to have their own private offices.
Jade: We had some very strong personalities. That was very integral to their participation in Gangplank. They needed to have that private office and private space. We realized how anti‑collaborative that was and really how much it violated our culture, and there were people that wouldn’t give it up.
We didn’t have a good way of resolving any of that conflict at the time, but we certainly started to marginalize those people’s influence and importance. Because, really, they had marginalized themselves, they had locked themselves away from the culture itself. When it finally did come to a head, some people chose not to participate anymore because of that particular issue.
Roy: I remember that specific example. Being in that office for some reason and thinking, “Am I allowed to be here?” I don’t think I ever really thought that about Gangplank. There was never anywhere in Gangplank that I would have been and thought, “Should I be here?” That even goes for the women’s restroom.
Roy: There was a point when it was cool to go in the women’s restroom.
Jade: That’s right, we did call it restroom number two.
Roy: I never felt like that, but here I am sitting in this person’s office and it’s like, this feels weird. I’d never experienced this before.
Jade: It was very much against the spirit of what we were trying to build. How else have you dealt with difficult or interesting personalities? Oh come on, Trish, I know you’ve got some good stories. Don’t hold out on us.
Trish: I think some of it’s, as far as dealing with difficult personalities, sometimes it feels like it varies by personality. But more often than not, it feels like it’s really just like they’re trying to push whatever their personality is. It’s letting the rest of the community know that they need to also get their input.
Jade: I think a lot of times it’s tied to their agenda, right?
Trish: Right, I was actually thinking, so this kind of relates to [inaudible 06:00] agendas, as well as learning about expertise because what it all reminded me of is that it’s not just about the personality. So anybody can come in and we give you that opportunity to learn, even though you’re not an expert. So, the same kind of idea, the personality doesn’t have to be already this persona of the expert. Anybody else can come in and give that opportunity a try.
Clayton: It seems to have formed a self correcting situation by virtue of not having the idea of titles and hierarchy. Because if I were to be a personality, I would be a personality for personalities sake, but I wouldn’t have that title to go along with it.
As soon as people get sick of my bullshit, they just stop listening to me and do something else. They don’t have to listen to me because there’s nothing other than them wanting to listen to me that causes them to.
Jade: So there’s no authority to worry about.
Jade: Because it’s not like we’ve gotten rid of personalities. They definitely still exist. Gangplank is not a bland place where everybody’s afraid to be themselves. That definitely doesn’t happen. But you’re right, there’s no advantage to, I guess, embracing some of the darker side of our personalities.
Roy: Like, you’re going to climb a curtain rail out of here? The only way to do that is by getting people to actually like you and the only way to do that is by being vulnerable and your genuine self.
Jade: Right, and by participating and doing and following all the other parts of the manifesto that come into play. I think that’s the interesting thing about the manifesto. All the values really do reinforce each other. They’re very highly dependent on each other.
What do you think about…When we talk about people, lets switch to the people side of the equation…
Roy: You mean resources?
Jade: Yes, human resources.
Jade: How does Gangplank value people? What does that mean to you?
Clayton: I like what Trish was saying about anyone can come in and learn expert stuff. One of the ways I see that Gangplank values people is just by the sheer fact that literally people that just wander in off the street and they get engaged in some conversation, or they talk to somebody about something they’re interested in.
I feel like that’s a very core human type thing of seeking connection and making a connection with another person.
That’s one of the ways I think is probably the most powerful, and it’s so easy to do. I think people get so worried about coming into Gangplank, and who am I going to talk to, and what am I going to say, and do I fit in.
I’ve seen so many times when people just show up and, even their first time, and 10 minutes into it, they stumble onto some conversation the third or fourth person they made a connection with, and now they’re talking about something they really care about. I think even just having that makes such a big difference. I think that’s a great representation of the people aspect.
Trish: We were talking earlier today, it came up in the community meeting people. It seems like everyone else liked the idea of a directory, and one of the things I was pointing about with the directory of, for me with Gangplank people walk in the door and you don’t know, are they the CEO of some huge company, or are they currently without a job.
One of the cool things for me with Gangplank is that people have to choose a person. They don’t know…a few minutes have a look at their LinkedIn profile. But typically they don’t know what you’re advertising yourself as, and really people just approach you as a person They may find later that you have a certain title or you have certain assets that can help them. But from the start, it’s just a conversation with another person.
Jade: Some of the proudest moments I’ve seen is when we’ve had one guy who is mentally handicapped kind thug that lives in the rough neighborhood behind Gangplank Chandler. He came in and people were very wary of what he was doing here. But some of the more interesting personalities at Gangplank really embraced him and treated him like a real person, and tried to help him out and did a bunch of things for him.
I thought that was a really cool thing to see. That really no matter what, you don’t have to be a geek, you don’t have to have money, you don’t really have to have really anything, and people will still treat you like a real genuine human being around here.
Clayton: One of my favorite stories like that was the time when I heard there was two people about how they had to get to Tucson but their car broke down, or they didn’t have a ride or something, and they had to go that night. Someone else in the space shouted out, “Is anybody going to Tucson later?” and some random guy raises his hand. “Will you give him a ride?” the guy was like, “Sure!”
Clayton: So just stuff like that, here’s this connection. I don’t know where else you could facilitate something like that, where people wouldn’t think that you were totally nuts. But in this space, that made sense. That’s a totally legit thing to do.
Jade: Anything else on people and personalities? I think we’re going to wrap up this discussion of the values of the Gangplank manifesto. Join us next week on the Dangercast.
There are many families in Chandler who are not able to provide all of their basic needs. This is where you can help out. Our neighborhood food bank (literally they are just down the street), the Chandler Christian Community Center assists in providing food and basic needs. Gangplank Chandler and the Downtown Chandler Community Partnership are partnering to assist CCCC in collecting food and supplies this holiday season. Please participate in the downtown Chandler food drive.
We have several CCCC boxes at Gangplank Chandler to collect donations in.
TOP EVERYDAY NEEDS
Salt – Flour – Cooking Oil – Sugar
Kid-friendly soups (like chicken noodle) – Ramen noodles
Pinto Beans – Canned Meats – Pasta Sauce – Tomato Sauce
Canned Fruit – Canned Vegetables (corn, peas, green beans) – Canned Milk
Cake Mix & Frosting – Jelly – Peanut Butter – Cereal
Ready-to-eat food with pull-top lids for the homeless
TOP HOLIDAY NEEDS
Black Olives – Brown Sugar – Sugar -Butter – Cooking Oil – Eggs – Flour – Frosting – Cake Mixes – Pudding Mixes – Stuffing – Pie Shells – Ham – Turkey – Canned Corn – Canned Green Beans – Canned Pineapple – Canned Pumpkin – Canned Milk – Candied Yams – Celery – Mashed Potatoes – Chicken Broth – Gravy – Jam or Jelly – Jell-O – Macaroni Pasta – Mayonnaise – Mustard – Pickles
Diapers – Diaper Wipes – Baby Formula – Baby Food – Cleaning Supplies
Derek Neighbors, Jade Meskill, and Ankit Sura discuss the Gangplank Manifesto: Learning over Expertise
Jade Meskill: Hello, and welcome to another episode of the Dangercast, where we talk about the culture and design of Gangplank. I’m Jade Meskill.
Ankit Sura: I’m Ankit Sura.
Derek Neighbors: And I’m Derek Neighbors.
Jade: Today we wanted to talk about…continuing to talk about the Gangplank manifesto. We’re up to “Learning over Expertise.”
Derek: Do we have an expert to talk about this?
Ankit: I’m just learning what’s happening around here.
Jade: We came up with this. We were faced with a lot of people who like to project themselves as the experts. The problem with experts is they tend to shut down conversation and exploration for other people who don’t feel that comfortable.
Just like the other values of the manifesto, it’s not that we don’t value expertise. It is very important. It’s something that we think is useful. It’s that we value learning so much more than somebody who claims to be an expert.
Derek: A lot of it goes back to some of our work with agility and the concept of inspect and adapt. If you’re constantly challenging the status quo it means that you’re doing stuff there are no experts on. You can only be an expert on something that already exists and already has a large body of work.
If you want to do something new that nobody else has really done before, by default you can’t really be an expert because everybody is learning what that is. The second thing we wanted to push in is, a lot of times when you are exposed to something and an expert is the one teaching it to you, not only do you feel inferior, but oftentimes you will not actually learn.
You’ll take it from rote memory. “Give me the cheat sheet, I’ll just use the cheat sheet that the expert gave me,” instead of taking the time to really learn what that is and master it yourself. We wanted to reinforce that the culture we want to create is that you should always be learning.
It goes back to “Be Dangerous.” Be Dangerous is always doing stuff that is so new to you that you feel uncomfortable, that’s part of being dangerous. The only way you can do that is be in learning mode all the time. If you’re in a situation, you’re like, “I totally got this, no sweat, no problem. I’m not challenging myself.” You’re not challenging yourself, that’s the problem.
Ankit: On this note, actually, something very interesting comes into my head. “The Learning Organization” by Peter Senge, I forgot the name.
How do we create an enterprise, an organization which is constantly learning, but coming to a space where people are working in different settings? How to facilitate learning between different people in a space requires a culture, and probably this ethos that we are emphasizing over here is trying to cultivate that. That’s how I feel.
Jade: There is no expert of how to be in Gangplank. It’s never been done before, we’re doing new things. We have to build that into the culture. It has to be based around teaching other people to be comfortable with learning new things, or we’re never going to go anywhere.
Derek: Some of that is part of the culture is rewarding people who learn. When people take risks and say, “I’m not the expert, but I’m willing to learn it,” we should be rewarding that. The culture should reinforce that behavior and say, “That’s good, do more of that.” We try to put things in place where we don’t hold people’s hands a lot.
When you walk into Gangplank for the first time, it’s kind of scary. You don’t know what to do. You have to learn how to go through even that process. Just to engage in Gangplank is a learning thing, and you see it in people’s eyes. They walk in the door. They look around a little bit. “Maybe I’m supposed to fill this out, maybe I’m not supposed to do this…”
But they learn, and they figure it out. It’s how do we create interactions, how do we create mindsets that propagate that? If you come in here and you’re like, “I’m the expert at this, and you should listen to me because I’m the expert,” people should reject that almost instantly, and you see that.
Jade: And they do.
Derek: When we see [indecipherable 04:34] speakers come in, or prisoners come in, and they come off with that ego of, “I know everything.” People round here are like, “Yeah, their ideas are tired and old. They think they know everything. Let’s move onto something more important.” Which I think is great.
Jade: So you’re pretty new to the community and you said you’re still learning some things. How have you felt? When you walked into the Gangplank community for the first time, could you feel that learning was very important around here?
Ankit: Let me build on what Derek just mentioned. When you go in the process of learning itself, stepping in the door, it happened with me too. I just read Gangplank, on the website, what it was. It’s a free co‑working space. I couldn’t believe it then, all the beautiful stuff that was there. I came over here and entered.
Someone walked up to me that was Brian at that time. He walked up to me, leaving his work, and said, “Are you new over here? Do you want a tour?” Gave me the feel of the space, what the space is all about. When I got the feel, and afterward they’re summarizing it with the manifesto, introducing me to what they believe in, what this is all ‑‑ why does he hear, why?
When I understood that, it just clicked. Then you just have to get to know people, introduce yourself, what you do and what they do. Learn about the people, get to know them. That’s where the relationship building process starts. Learning happens with good relationships that you’re building on.
Derek: That’s a great point. I think one of the things that we’re building is a culture of sharing. If you see somebody struggling, the deer in the headlights, you see that, that you’re willing to help teach. If you’re going to build an organization that says we value learning, you also have to build a culture that says that we value people teaching new things.
That goes hand in hand. You see it a lot when people come in. They’ll say, “I need this.” Usually people won’t say, “I’ll give you that,” they’ll say, “I can teach you how to do that,” which is a very different thing. If you’re willing to own learning how to do it, I’ll help you. If you just want me to do it for you, I’m not really interested in that.
That is a big part of the culture and building those relationships. I think the other part of having a strong learning culture is that people understand and collect who knows what. “Hey, maybe I don’t know Spanish, but I know so‑and‑so talks Spanish. If you want to learn Spanish, you should maybe talk to so‑and‑so.”
Ankit: Go to…
Derek: Yeah. It fosters or propagates learning. When you do that through relationships…If Jade wants something and I know you know how to do it, and I say, “You want to learn that?” I make that introduction, Jade is more likely to teach you it because there’s a relationship there, even though maybe you two don’t know each other.
Those are all corresponding things within Gangplank. When we talk about Gangplank the collective, that’s what we’re really talking about. How do we start to connect nodes on the system? Whether they be physically in or outside of the buildings that we have, how do we connect those nodes to continue learning, and to foster even more deep connection and learning?
Ankit: Derek, since you have been with Gangplank ‑‑ and Jade, you two have been with Gangplank for a very long time. I’m a very new person in this enormous, beautiful concept. Could you give me an idea of how the offline physical learning, physical interaction is happening and how are you building on the virtual learning, learning that’s happening in virtual spaces? What’s happening there, how are you doing that?
I see some things happening there too.
Jade: That’s something that we still haven’t mastered. We’re definitely not experts in that area. We were very focused on the physical connections and face‑to‑face for a very long time because it is critical to building a strong community. Now we’re starting to experiment with some other ways of connecting.
Now we have multiple Gangplank locations, we have communities that are starting to be built that don’t have a physical location. We’re experimenting with a whole bunch of different ways of helping them to learn and teach each other. Really, it comes down to having presence with each other. We’re experimenting a lot in those areas.
We are learning a ton on what is working, what isn’t working. We are certainly not experts in this area, and I think some of the unique nature of Gangplank itself ‑‑ there really are no experts at all for what we’re trying to build because this is a very unique thing. To tie that back into the teaching thing, my favorite way of learning ‑‑ and I love to learn ‑‑ is by teaching people.
When you’re truly teaching, you’re not just dumping knowledge into their head. You’re exploring, together, what the possibilities are. I usually learn so much when I’m helping someone to learn something new. They’re always teaching me something.
Ankit: That’s actually true. When someone teaches, they actually learn themselves.
Jade: Of course. I find no better way. To really know something, I need to be able to teach it to someone.
Ankit: You actually become better and better at it.
Jade: Somebody who doesn’t know anything, they can ask the questions that you can’t think of any more when you think that you know something.
Derek: Or they need it explained in a way that is difficult for you, which opens up new ways for how you think about it. I also think there’s a lot to be said on helping somebody to do something. Maybe I know how to do it, I don’t do it for them, but I have them do it and I help them do it. That tends to unlock a couple of things. It tends to unlock a better understanding.
Watching somebody else do something that I know how to do makes me understand how even I do it better, because I have to explain to them the intricacies that are committed to my memory, or my muscle reflex, that I don’t think about. You see this when a guitarist that’s really experienced teaches someone who’s not experienced.
They’re like, “Just do this.” When the person doesn’t get it, you can see their head think…
Jade: …Just do a G‑shaped bar chord, and then blah, blah, blah….
Ankit: This is like implicit and explicit knowledge, something, something.
Derek: The other thing it does is it really creates a bond or connection between the teacher and the student. That bond is part of what really makes Gangplank. It builds that vulnerability and trust. It takes an enormous amount of vulnerability to say, “I don’t know to do something. I’m an infant, I don’t know to eat, I don’t know how to drink.”
Even if it’s, “I don’t know how to play guitar,” I have to admit that and say, “I’m totally at your mercy. I don’t know how to do this.” Taking that responsibility and walking in that person’s vulnerability to help show them how to do it and grow with them creates this event between the participants that then carries on to other things.
Ankit: Gangplank is a great place to start just coming over here and learning. Learning is a lifelong process and it just goes on. This environment that I have experienced over a short period is that learning can never end, because there is so much somebody knows.
Different people know different things, and you can just go on talking about different things, learning new things, having new experiences, through other people’s experiences.
Jade: One of the things we’ve tried to do from the very beginning is make it OK, and make it easy, to fail. That’s a fast track to learning. If I can try something and find out that it doesn’t work, I’ve learned a whole lot along that way. Now I have the confidence to try something else because I tried it and it didn’t work, but it wasn’t really that painful, right?
I failed, but now all these people know I want to do this and they’re all going to help me, teach me. I’m going to learn new things.
Derek: The other thing, too, is it allows people to try new things. Sometimes it’s not even that I fail. I might even be doing OK at it, but it’s like, “I really thought I wanted to play guitar, and then I went to some lessons, and that’s not really want I want to do. What I really want to do is digital music and mess with things with the computer.”
It gives people that ability to not have a whole lot of pressure. When you have this expert coming up and telling you all this, and it’s all really formal, it’s a lot harder to say, “This isn’t really for me.” It’s like opening up a book, reading the first chapter, and saying, “I don’t really care for this book, but because I bought the book, I’m going to read the whole thing anyway.”
Derek: The same thing happens when you get too formalized in learning. “I already paid for the class, I’m two classes in, I’m just going to stick it out because…Whatever.” If it’s a much more informal thing, it’s like, “That wasn’t really for me, but this other tangential thing is,” and nobody really looks down on you on it.
“Oh my gosh, you didn’t get the degree in whatever it is you were wanting to learn?” Doesn’t matter. Just move on and explore what you want to explore. That’s another part of it, is exploring. I think Gangplank creates a culture where it really encourages you to explore. I almost think of it as like temptation heaven for people that want to learn.
Derek: There’s so much stuff going on that is interesting. You walk in here and it’s like, “But I want to learn that, and this, and I only have an hour here! How am I going to…I want to build a 3D model, I want to print, do music and I want to hear this podcast…”
Ankit: You have to get focused, right?
Derek: Now I have to choose, right? When my son comes here, that’s one thing he really articulates. There’s so much to do, it leaves him a hunger for “I want to come back because there’s other stuff I want to try.” If you don’t have that learning environment built in, it’s all about becoming the expert. If you don’t do that immediately it just sucks, it’s like a grind.
Jade: We’ve been doing this for a long time and I still feel that every week. There’re still new things for me to learn, new things for me to try. It never runs out.
Ankit: It’s fun, actually. Learning is fun.
Jade: Great fun. I would’ve quit a long time ago if there wasn’t more opportunities to learn.
Derek: It’s funny you say learning is fun, because I don’t know if we’ve got anything around fun in the manifesto. I don’t believe we necessarily do, but I think at least for Jade and I, learning is fun. For us, that was a big part of ‑‑ being the expert feels like the suit and tie kind of…
Jade: It’s a burden to carry.
Derek: It’s a burden. Learning implies when you make a mistake, nobody can criticize it because, “Hey man, I’m learning. I didn’t know any better.”
Derek: ”I’m sorry I blew up the car, I didn’t know I wasn’t supposed to cross those two wires.” I think that some of the element of Gangplank’s fun is that playful curiosity of a young child learning. I think that’s in the spirit of the culture as well, is that it’s OK to play. Learning is playing and playing is learning, so play a lot.
Ankit: That’s like being dangerous, right?
Derek: Yeah, sure.
Jade: Awesome. Well, that’s all the time we have. Join us again next week, when we talk about “People over Personalities.” Thanks.
Meeting notes (from Stephanie Liebold):
If you have a topic for a community meeting that you need more time to discuss, present the topic at a meeting and then be willing to facilitate it at an upcoming meeting (we can advertise the topic if desired).
Trish is giving an hour to Gangplank Chandler projects, such as cleaning, creating flyers, etc. Tuesdays at 5pm. If she’s planning to do a particular project, she’ll post it. Everyone doesn’t need to join, but you’re welcome to join her.
The CCCC food drive is going on now. Details are on the DCCP blog.
Rock the Block is this weekend. We need volunteers to give Gangplank tours, even if you can only be here 1 hr.
Desert Code Camp’s after party will be in the Itericom space. Need keyholder to be there.
AZEC is a week from today (11/13).
We’ll do a complete move out of the space – couches, everything will be moved to back, except arcade games, which will be moved elsewhere. Breakdown for this will start at 3pm 11/12.
If you have a desk, please plan to break down then. If not, we can still use help.
Basically everything else for Weds. is cancelled. You may be able to do Hacknight after 7pm. Kevin’s improv class is still on.
Move desks will go back in the main space Weds. night in a new layout.
Francine needs extra ice chests/coolers for drinks. Please bring them Tue. (GP has some buckets, but she may need more.)
Startup weekend doesn’t require move out.
Construction on 260: We are waiting to be cleared by the city to start.