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Bob Jonkman

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Civic Participation with Kirk Zurell @kzurell, Monday, 27 July 2015

There is a lecture on Civic Participation and e-Voting, taking place at Conestoga College next Monday, 27 July 2015. The lecturer, Kirk Zurell is well known in the Kitchener-Waterloo tech community; I’m planning on going.

You can register at Eventbrite: All Those in Favour, Click ‘Aye’.

 Note that this lecture is not sponsored by the Green Party.

From Conestoga College Events:

User Experience Guest Lecture Series: All Those in Favour, Click ‘Aye’ – The Struggle for Civic Tech

27 July 27 2015, 5:00pm

If a billion people around the world can over-share their lives on social media, why are voting rates still so low? Can e-participation systems coax more residents into taking part in civic life?


In this session, we will apply technology to the role of the voter, resident, and taxpayer. Civic technologies, including e-participation are increasing in popularity, with dedicated labs and businesses springing up to help citizens manage their “red boxes.”


How do user experiences and expectations compare to those of commercial services? How does civic tech affect the roles of the citizen, the political, and the civil servant?


Kirk Zurell, Research Entrepreneurs Accelerating Prosperity (REAP) Professional University of Waterloo


Kirk Zurell writes op-ed articles for newspapers on topics in civic life. Kirk takes part in civic life through the Compass Kitchener citizen engagement committee and Waterloo Voter Support Committee. He provides information technology support at The Working Centre and investigates digital media at University of Waterloo’s Research Entrepreneurs Accelerating Prosperity (REAP).


5:00 PM – 6:00 PM


Conestoga College, Doon Campus, Main Building, Room 2A301

To Register:

This guest lecture is free to attend but does require registration: Eventbrite: All Those in Favour, Click ‘Aye’


For more information, contact Dalibor Dvorski.

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Here's the video of the Ubuntu-ca IRC/Video Chat. Follow along with the IRC discussion at

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Hey Everybodeee! If you're as excited as I am, you won't need reminding that tomorrow is Ubuntu 14.04LTS Trusty Tahr Release Day, and with that comes Release Parties!

Reservations are made at Egg Roll King in Kitchener:
What: KW Ubuntu Release Hour
When: Thursday, 17 April 2014 from 6:00pm to 9:00pm
Where: Egg Roll King Restaurant, 85 Courtland Avenue East, Kitchener

...and reservations are made at the Alio Lounge in Toronto:
What: Toronto Trusty Tahr Release Party
When: Thursday, 17 April 2014 from 8:00pm to 1:00am
Where: Alio Lounge, 108 Dundas Street West, Toronto

Did you notice what I sneaked in there? Yes, we're going to join all of Canada in one big Virtual Release Party with a Google+ Hangout! It's scheduled to go from 7:30pm Newfoundland Time to 10:00pm Pacific Time, which should include primetime partying hours across Canada.

If you're having a Release Party (even a party of one) then get your Webcam into the action by contacting +JeffSmith at

If you're the shy type and just want to watch there'll be a simulcast on YouTube at Ubuntu 14.04 Release Party!

The Ubuntu-ca LoCo Event page for the Virtual Release Party is at Registration is optional, but let's show the LoCo Council that Canada knows how to party!


(And if you're not from Canada you're still very welcome to join! Mooseburgers and Maple Syrup on us!) 

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10 Photos - View album

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Here's the first 2 1/2 minutes of the Ubuntu Video Chat held Thursday, 23 January 2014.

See that "Out of Disk Space" error message about 2 minutes in? That's why there's only 2 1/2 minutes of video...  We're gonna need a bigger disk!


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Hello everybodeee! Tommorow  is the big day for the Ubuntu Canada
Video Chat. Based on the feedback, we'll be using Google Hangouts for
our chatting software.  You'll need a Google Plus account, and you'll
need to install the Google Talk plugin for Chrome (or Chromium).

I haven't tried Google Hangouts with other browsers -- if someone has
experience with that, can you post encouraging words on the Ubuntu-ca
mailing list?

If you prefer to stick to the traditional text-only IRC then it'll
still be there as a back channel. I'll do my best to transcribe any
conversation so it gets logged with the other meeting minutes.

If you have a moment, please register on the LoCo portal. It's
optional, but it'll make our stats look good for re-approval.

See you all on Thursday!

Date: Thursday, 23 January 2014
Time: 8:30pm NST, 8:00pm AST, 7:00pm EST, 6:00pm CST, 5:00pm MST,
4:00pm PST
Video: Google Hangout (URL will be announced on IRC)
IRC: irc://
IRC Webchat:
LoCo Portal:


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Paul Nijjar and Madison Kelly will still be at St. John's Kitchen for informal discussions about high availability computing. There are rumours of a jug of Tim Horton's coffee, too.

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We're having a Software Freedom Day in Kitchener on Saturday, 28 September 2013 from 10:00am to 5:00pm at the Kwartzlab Makerspace at 33 Kent Avenue.

We'll give away free software (software that doesn't cost anything, and also respects your freedom to copy, modify and re-distribute it). Bring your computer, and we'll help you install free software on it. We'll also have a showcase of free culture (music, movies and books that don't cost anything, and also respect your freedom to copy them).

I'm doing a presentation on Building Your Own Cloud, and we'll also have presentations on Blender 3D software, Knoppix Linux, and building a media centre.

Hope to see you there!

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