There are a number of in person and online ways to get a problem solved or help someone by sharing your experiences.

An advantage afforded Internet technologists is collaboration with like-minded people from all around the globe and/or right next door. As the technology gets easier to use, increasingly the same tools are used by other groups of people. If you do participate in other groups, please let us know. Some of us might share your interests.

In the Diablo Valley area people have busy schedules. Often a user group is sustained by it’s members. Sometimes the schedules of members can change.

Shotgun Rules, Revised for DVLUG

People should be able to choose a location and meet other users of Linux, therefore a set of rules can encourage the people most interested in meeting with organizing more meetings. The Bay Area Debian group has a set of rules that we can adapt for our needs emulate.

  1. If you would like to meet, please do so regularly each month or each week
  2. The meeting location is like calling shotgun for the front passenger seat of a car. Whoever calls the location first, wins, and that’s where the meeting is held. In case of close calls, “first” is determined by date received by the email list server machine. Please choose a location that has adequate power and Wi-Fi.
  3. A meeting announcements are posted by email to the email list, with the word “Meeting” in the Subject. It must define a time, a location (with address and/or directions by car and public transportation), and use the declarative voice (“We are going to…” not “Would you guys like to go to…?”). It should not be sent before any previously scheduled meeting has happened.
  4. If you make the announcement you must attend, and preferably arrive early and display some kind of distinguishing item like a Tux penguin so that people they are in the right place.
  5. Consider a lack of an announcement as an invitation to schedule one.
  6. Attendance is not a requirement. Apparently kind spirited suggestions will be duely considered. If you think you can do better, please schedule a meeting with similar like minded people.
  7. In case of any change the original organizer should post a new announcement, mentioning the change prominently. The organizer should put up a sign and/or a human runner at the original venue to redirect those that missed the changed meeting announcement.

That’s it. 7 simple rules. The Date Rule, the Shotgun Rule, the Email Rule, the Organizer Rule, the Go Rule, the Suggestion Rule, and the Change Rule.

Groups similar to ours around the Bay Area and California might be of interest.

Groups talking about related technologies or free culture might also be of interest.