Re: Wired group houses
From: Catherine Kehl (tyliku.washington.edu)
Date: Tue, 28 Jun 94 17:20 CDT
Apologies to all for tearing apart your messages -- I'm just trying to 
provide a little context without taking up a lot of room.

Rob Sandelin said:

"Their "office" is now posted with a no kids without supervision
sign. During last summers community conference I heard of a community
in which some resident, who soon departed, ran up a fairly large online
access bill from some online service."

Hmmm...  Interesting.  One of the reasons that I am interested in this 
particular thing is that I really think the kids at the co-housing site 
SHOULD have access to in the internet.  However, what we would have would 
be essentially our own server, not a modem/phone line set up that would 
allow people to run up bills anonymously.  I'm going to forward this 
concern to our discussion group though, re: viri (is that the plural?)

John Willson said:

"Computer networks are very good at diseminating written information, however
you lose the personal contact.  I thought cohousing was about communities of
people, not computer networks.  Discussions about important issues are much
better in person as many more issues can be covered and the human element is
included."

Well, so far our discussion of on-line services have not been in terms of 
holding discussions via computer but rather providing co-housing members 
with access to the resources of the internet.  We don't have so many 
people who are comfortable using computers that the other would be 
feasible, I think.

But having done a fair bit of organizational work over email, I can't 
resist defending it a little.  One group (I now co-ordinate, actually) 
has almost universal internet access.  When we reached the point a couple 
years ago that our meetings became almost entirely business, and arduous 
at that, we began to encourage email use for some of these functions.  

The idea was not to replace face to face discussion, but merely to
facilitate it.  The meeting agenda would be established by email previous
to the meeting.  Anyone who thought they had relevant information to
contribute could post.  This way, people came to meetings prepared, 
knowing both the issues at hand and having had some chance to think about 
them.  When we got together, we could then determine how the group as a 
whole felt about the various issues, and discuss what we were to do about 
them.  This sped up our meetings tremendously!

Steve Weinberg said:

"Unless a community wanted to "hardwire" itself into a network (probably
not a bad idea to do at the construction stage even if it went unused for
years) they could use a cheap commercial BBS system to achieve the same
technological objective."

Actually, we're pretty much hoping to hardwire ourselves into a network.  
We think we've found a way to do this cheaply....  But this is still in 
the early stages.  (And we're already moving in!)  As it is currently 
looking, it will cost us about $60 a month to maintain our system once we 
get in running.  This hasn't been really formally discussed, but the idea 
being tossed around is that all adult who wish accounts on the system 
will split the fee, and that children will be allowed access for free.  

                        Well, we'll see!

                           Catherine


  • Wired group houses Vonnie, June 28 1994
    • Re: Wired group houses Catherine Kehl, June 28 1994

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