Grants talk:Project/Rapid/Empowering African schools with Kiwix

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I think your travel expenses (or part of them) should be included somewhere. You are allready giving time and energy for this, itonly normal that the expenses be covered. Maybe you should also make other Kiwix projetc holders aware of the expertis eyou have gained by publishing soemwhere in detail waht you have done in the past. This would have been a great subject for the francophone convention in Paris in august. Maybe it is too late to submit it, but you could design a poster?--Nattes à chat (talk) 07:11, 1 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

WMF Comments[edit]

Hi GastelEtzwane thank you for submitting a request for this Kiwix project. It sounds like you want to do follow up visits and evaluation of work you have done in the past, and you want to train new schools/organizations and provide them with materials. While are interested in supporting projects that improve offline access to Wikipedia, this plan will need to be developed further before we can consider funding it. We have posted questions about your past experience, the involvement of local volunteers in planning and finally questions about your goals in order to get a better understanding of how your project will work.

1. How has your past experience influenced your current plans?

  • What kind of follow up have you done with the people who were trained in August 2015?
    I am doing the follow-up right now. People react differently, they do very little communication by email, all is done during face-to-face meetings during which documents are exchanged.
    Not much is sent by postal mail between individuals, and they are not used to communication by email. This means that I am now collecting the (oral) reports that were their side of the agreement we reached during my visits in 2015. GastelEtzwane (talk) 23:50, 11 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • What lessons did you learn from that trip, and how have they been applied to your plans for the upcoming trip?
    In 2015, I planned my seminars in a way that included students as well as teachers. It turns out that the students here do not do much computer work on a regular basis, due to different issues: hardware, reliability, electrical power, number of students per class, curriculum, teaching methods... There is no way that can all be changed at once... Those who did benefit enormously are the teachers, as well as some very independent minded students who can work on their own and who have access to computers outside the schools. This time around, I will be concentrating on teacher training (which is part of what I do IRL), and I will talk to the teachers about the kind of appreciation they will receive when sharing Kiwix with their gifted students. GastelEtzwane (talk) 00:03, 12 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • What deliverables are you planning to collect on this trip?
    I plan to collect the action reports by the three schools and training facilities I visited in summer 2015: the KOCC Barma High school and the US Peace Corps training base, both in Thiès, and the Senegal navy training base in Dakar. I already have the (oral) report from the navy base, and will submit my written version for their approval. I also expect to get some formal signed agreements with some of the schools that I was not able to reach in 2015. GastelEtzwane (talk) 00:10, 12 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

2. How have local communities been involved in the planning of this project?

  • Are there local Wikimedians you can work with who can support schools after you have returned home? Have you been in touch with local Wikimedians to plan this project?
    I am in contact with what appears to be the only two wikipedeans in Senegal, and will soon meet up with them. They have been informed of my project. I am also working with one of the heads of the government agency in charge of distance learning with teachers (RESAFAD), and this agency was involved in the distribution of an offline digital resource library supported by the Orange Foundation. I have met and talked extensively with a Geneva association who does similar work in Benin: they have set up two computer centers where teachers from all over the country can come to update their computers and receive computer related training. I had a meeting with the co-president last October, and they now distribute Kiwix and it is a huge success. I will be able to have some metrics on that at the end of the summer... I plan to use a computer resource center here in Thiès the same way. Teachers in Thiès or in the surrounding towns will be able to come to the center so that they can also copy Kiwix and get some minimal training in it's use - we have to remember that even if there is some internet access, mostly by mobile phone, it takes forever to download the Kiwix files, not to mention the cost of the data transfer. GastelEtzwane (talk) 00:43, 12 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Have you spoken with organizers of WikiPack Africa about your plans and whether your projects could work together?
    Florence, Isla and Emmanuel are aware of the work I have been doing in Senegal, but they have not talked to me about their WikiPack Africa project. I see that they are doing this with the support of the Orange Foundation. I have met with RESAFAD in 2013, 2014 and 2015 and we talked extensively about the project done with the Orange Foundation which also included Kiwix along side other Open Educational Resources. I felt that the Orange Foundation just supplied the hardware, but did not provide teacher training and long term pedagogical support. I may be wrong, of course, but that is the feeling I got.
    When I found out about Wikipack Africa I had already started work on a version of a Raspberry Pi hotspot with Kiwix. I wanted something a lot cheaper and more versatile than the Dream Plug that WMCH was using up to now. I choose to piggyback Kiwix on top of a Pirate Box, thereby allowing file-sharing as well as access to Wikipedia and other zim files through the Kiwix program. I currently have two prototypes with me, we still need to work on the interface and user manuals, but the Raspberry Pi hardware works fine. I do not know the status of the Wikipack Africa project, but my follow-up trip has been planned for a while and I needed something that works. The work on the Raspberry Pi was all done on a volunteer basis and through personal funding of the hardware. That is what is nice about Raspberries: they cost so little... GastelEtzwane (talk) 00:53, 12 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

3. It sounds like you goal is to distributed materials and train educators on how to use and maintain Kiwix devices so that they can be used in preparing courses in areas with limited internet access.

  • Do you have a goal for the number of teachers that will be trained, or the number of teachers who will use the devices for the intended purpose?
    I aim to reach 5 extra schools this trip (including the Djilor High school - I was just able to send them some hard drives and flash drives in 2015, but was not able to train the teachers). Each school will receive 10 flash drives, and I expect Kiwix to be installed on their personal computers by 50 teachers in each school. My goal will be to train 100 teachers, and to reach directly a total of 500.
    There will be a certain amount of file sharing among teachers, and I am still trying to evaluate it's extent. I know that there has been, in the past, a massive redistribution of MS Encarta through file sharing, so I expect the same thing will happen with Kiwix. The main difference is that this time around, it will be legal and encouraged... GastelEtzwane (talk) 01:03, 12 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Who are the intended recipients of the raspberry pi's, tablets, and jump drives? Why have these groups been selected?
    Due to personal finances, I had to reduce the amount of hardware I could bring with me. I will probably have to ship the devices to Senegal, which will cost quite a lot. What I did bring with me was:
    • One external hard drive.
    • 60 32GB flash drives
    • Two prototype Raspberry Pi hotspot servers.
    The Raspberry Pi and tablets will be shipped at the end of summer, well before the start of the school year in October. The first few schools were chosen on the recommendation of a naval instructor I work with. He is not a contributor (with the exception of the Wiki Loves Africa photo contest), be he has been promoting and distributing copies of Kiwix all over the navy base in Dakar and among the people he knows in Thiès. I have picked another two schools, and maybe a third, in towns a few dozen kilometers from Thiès where there is no electricity of phone lines. I selected all of these schools because I was able to get a personal introduction to the principal without going through official channels. I now realize that I will probably be able to give out only 8 flash drives per school. I am giving out 32 GB USB 2.0 flash drives because that is the largest drive that Windows XP can read, and over 60% of the computers still run XP. GastelEtzwane (talk) 01:22, 12 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • What plans or ideas do you have for evaluating whether the training and distribution of equipment is effective for achieving your goals?
    A follow-up visit will be necessary at the end of the 2016-2017 school year. I will spend a lot more time and energy hounding the recipient schools and hope to get some written feedback that way. The most important for me is to work out a way of evaluating the spread of Kiwix outside the computers I have personally installed it in. I also need to be able to find out how often Kiwix is really used, not just what people tell me. GastelEtzwane (talk) 01:34, 12 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Please let us know if you need clarifications about the questions listed above, or would like to discuss your project plan on a phone call. --KHarold (WMF) (talk) 21:07, 11 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hi GastelEtzwane, thank you for providing such detailed answers to our questions - they have been extremely helpful for understanding your project and your plans. We are inclined to fund this project because it seems like there are several good opportunities for learning how to measure/track offline use with Kiwix, and to learn what kind of training and partnerships and equipment are most important for distribution and use of Kiwix in schools.
  • We understand that you are in Senegal already, and that shipping equipment will increase the total cost of the project. We recommend that you check with teachers and schools to find out which equipment is critical for them to use Kiwix effectively - it may not be possible to send both tablets and Raspberry Pi's if the cost of shipping is high.
  • I am having second thoughts about using WiFi hotspots in schools. I requires a lot of training for the teachers to integrate this type of activity into their curriculum, and the schools do not have enough hardware for the students to have access. The Senegalese schools absolutely forbid the use of mobile phones in classrooms (like in Geneva, Switzerland), and there is no way that the school authorities will make any exception (the same is true for Geneva, Switzerland). I will probably be able to do a long term test of the Raspvberry Pi at the Dakar naval training facility. The instructor there is now quite familiar with Kiwix, he has tested a Dream Plug WiFi hotspot with Kiwix installed for under a year, but it was not satisfactory. The Raspberry Pi I am developing uses the Pirate Box software which seems quite flexible, and includes a file-sharing capability. We will try another long term test.
  • I do not think that it will work if I provide tablets to schools, at least not to those located in cities. The schools are very wary of having computer equipment over night on their premises, in spite of having both night and day security guards. The temptation might be too great... I will have to ask about the security situation in the more remote schools I will still visit. I did not hear anything negative in Djilor, so I imagine that there will not be such a theft problem outside the large cities.
  • Most communities here are perfectly willing to share equipment if they do not need it. This is especially true of the more rural communities. I do not think that they will accept to have a lot of expensive computer equipment (it will be brand new) just lying around at a local school. There will be a lot of community members studying in Colleges and universities, and they will be given all the help that can be mustered. This help will probably include a few tablets, USB keys or hard drives... These borrowed items will be returned at the end of the school year, but the project will not be able to proceed as planned. I understand their concerns, and do not blame them. But I will have to take this way of thinking into account and will have to re-think that part. GastelEtzwane (talk) 20:32, 16 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Please find out what the shipping cost and potential import duties may be for shipping equipment, and update the budget.
  • It is wonderful to hear that you will be meeting with local Wikimedians. It would be good to ask them if they are willing to support the project, either by providing local support or training after you have left, or to help with follow up, since you have identified that it has been challenging to do from a distance.
  • Please consider creating documentation of the training that you give to teachers to make available at computer centers
  • I will, of course. Please remember that just about everything is done orally here, and I tend to teach by having trainees experiment a lot with the programs they are learning to use. I will try to put it down in writing Inch'Allah. GastelEtzwane (talk) 20:45, 16 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Again, thank you for all of the additional information you have shared. Let me know if you have questions about the comments and suggestions above - I'd be happy to explain by email if that is easier for you while you are traveling. Once we have an updated budget that accounts for shipping we can more forward with a funding decision. --KHarold (WMF) (talk) 19:31, 15 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Goethe-Institut Dakar[edit]

Avec notre projet "promotion de la lecture au Sénégal" nous envisageons de creer quelques points de lecture au Sénégal en collaboration avec les maires des differentes localités. Ce serait aussi bien d'integrer les "Box internet" que Gabriel nous a presentés afin que les popupations puissent avoir accés à internet, wikipedia etc. pour faire des recherches. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Bouyafall (talk) 12:19, 18 July 2016‎

Le programme Kiwix permet de consulter le contenu de sites web sans être connecté à internet. Ce sites web sont archivées dans des fichiers de type zim. Wikipédia, par exemple, ainsi et d'autre sites web sont téléchargeables sur le site www.kiwix.org. L'encyclopédie Wikipédia au complet peut tenir sur une clef USB de 32 GB. Le programme Kiwix et les bases de données zim peuvent tout à fait être distribués sur des simples clefs USB. Kiwix est libre et Open Source, il est gratuit tout comme l'encyclopédie Wikipédia...
Le prototype Raspberry Pi que j'ai montré à Dakar est un serveur Wifi, non-relié à internet, qui utilise Kiwix en mode serveur. Les autres appareils (ordinateurs portables, tablettes ou smartphones) se connectent au serveur Wifi et ont accès à l'encyclopédie ou à d'autre contenus web et vidéos à travers un navigateur. Il n'y a pas de connexion internet et cela permet d'utiliser des appareils mobiles pour consulter Wikipédia "hors-ligne".
Le projet Wikipack Africa prévoit de développer un serveur Wifi, non-relié à internet, basé sur un Raspberry Pi, qui permettrait en plus de la consultation de l'encyclopédie Wikipédia, de modifier les articles qui se trouvent dans l'archive zim. Les modifications ainsi apportées resteront dans le Raspberry Pi qui a effectué la modification, et n'iront pas directement sur internet ou sur les autres Raspberry Pi. GastelEtzwane (talk) 20:24, 19 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Précisons sur le Wikipack ne contiendra pas de version de l'encyclopédie. Kiwix sera bien sûr mis à disposition dans les Rasp, mais le Wikipack sera vierge de contenu (à part quelques pages d'exemples et d'aide). C'est un wiki permettant de créer ou modifier des articles hors ligne. Mais cela ne constitue pas l'encyclopédie de référence. C'est un outil de travail et non un outil de consultation. Anthere (talk) 21:55, 20 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Merci pour ces précisions. Il faudra certainement mettre à jour la description du projet Wikipack Africa qui se trouve sur Meta. Je me suis basé sur cette description pour rédiger mon petit résumé. Il est vrai que j'ai préféré aller de l'avant et de développer moi-même un Raspberry Pi contenant justement Kiwix et des encyclopédies. GastelEtzwane (talk) 09:04, 21 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Concours d'écriture[edit]

Comme dit par email... selon le moment où tu prévois ton projet, envisage de rejoindre https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikipack_Africa/en#WikiPack_Africa_:_the_Wikipedia_Writing_Contest_for_schools

A priori, ce sera début 2017

Anthere (talk)

Ce concours me semble intéressant, et je vais voir comment certaines écoles sénégalaises pourront participer. GastelEtzwane (talk) 00:03, 20 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Funding decision[edit]

Hi GastelEtzwaneThank you for your responses - it sounds like you have learned a lot of important lessons on this trip about the kinds of devices that would be most useful for teachers and students in the areas you visited. We are pleased to offer 1375 CHF in partial funding of this request, including:

  • 110 CHF for 1 raspberry pi
  • 645 CHF for 50 flash drives
  • 120 CHF loading data on drives
  • 500 CHF event refreshments

Ultimately, we did not see a clear case for the second Raspberry Pi unit and for the tablet. Typically we only approve the purchase of equipment when there is a clearly defined purpose and individuals within a user group who will be on site to keep track of the equipment. You have already shared many interesting insights about your experience, and we look forward to learning more in your report - in this report we ask that you include the following:

  • Documentation of key points to cover in Kiwix USB training with teachers, including lessons learned and information that could be helpful to people running similar projects. For example, the points you have made about students not being allowed to use personal devices in classrooms, the need to distribute Kiwix USB’s that are compatible with the operating systems at schools, and the need for in-depth training for teachers to effectively use the Raspberry Pi hotspot are all very useful pieces of information.
  • Plan for how to evaluate the use of USB drives in schools.
  • Plan for how to evaluate the use of the Raspberry Pi hotspot on the naval base.

We can support you to develop evaluation plans. It would be good to set up a call to discuss this when you have returned from your trip. Thank you for your hard work on this project and your quick and thorough responses to our questions. --KHarold (WMF) (talk) 16:58, 26 July 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Thank you for this information. I am now up and ready and out of medical care, and I will now start to write up a report. The raspberry Pi is a prototype, and I still have it with me. I will send it to Senegal in September when I have fixed up the little glitches that appeared during testing.
I will probably apply for a seperate grant for the Raspberry Pi part of my project. I used a Pirate Box setup to broadcast Kiwix. It works very well, and users can also share files using Pirate Box. The part that needs some work is the power supply. I aim to use portable power packs, and have not yet found one that will work 100% of the time. I was cycling through three different models, and I still have to figure out why they work one day but not the next... GastelEtzwane (talk) 16:17, 3 August 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]