How to contribute/participate in Karrot?
Are you interested in exploring Karrot as a project and a community?
Are you a member of one of the groups already using Karrot?
Are you a member of a project/initiative looking for a tool to organise some of their activities?
An academic interested in community driven projects or a social scientist?
An institution/organisation that would like somehow to support a grassroots project like Karrot?
A member of a project of a similar ilk to Karrot looking for collaboration or knowledge/ideas exchange?
A graphic designer or someone who maybe likes making tutorials?
None of the above but still interested?
Whichever your angle and motivation(s) here is how you can contribute/participate.
Karrot in a nutshell:
Karrot is a community run and designed digital infrastructure developed with the aim of supporting communities of different sorts to organise at least some of their activities. To this day and due to its ‘special’ features, Karrot is especially popular among foodsaving and sharing communities mainly active in Europe. However new features have been recently added (and more are on their way) that can make Karrot a more general purpose tool which can possibly be used by other communities and projects (e.g. community gardens , makerspaces , neighbourhood based groups , political groups 🪧 etc).
Karrot as a community does not have a legal status, it is not a start-up or an NGO but a self-organised and non-hierarchical grassroots project.
Karrot is open-source. Through the years various persons and groups have contributed in different ways on Karrot, contributions beyond writing a piece of code. Open on Karrot goes beyond code and refers to a general culture of openness, participation and collaboration. Today, there is a small group of regular contributors coming from different fields who dedicate time and effort in keeping Karrot up and running and in developing new features. The general design approach on Karrot is ‘designing with’ rather ‘for’ the communities that use Karrot’s infrastructure. The latter implies that except for writing a piece of code, working on building relationships with the ‘experts from the ground’ and understanding the communities’ current practices and needs is central and as an approach opens up the realm of contributions and support that one can offer to the project.
So, how can someone contribute in Karrot ?
If you are new to Karrot we would suggest that you make an account and try out the ‘playground group’, a group in which you can play around with the different features and get a first level understanding of the infrastructure. However, this is only a suggestion and you can always skip this step and directly join in one of our weekly calls.
Our General Call takes place **every Friday at 18:30 PM UTC ** on Jitsi where we meet up for 1,5 - 2 h and discuss the project’s daily and future needs.
For a few months now we also meet up every Tuesday afternoon in the Design Call, around 6 PM UTC again on Jitsi, where we usually dedicate 2-3h focusing on one or a series of new features. In this call, we have been using different design tools (e.g. Excalidraw, Penpot) with the aim to create a series of mockups that can become the basis for new features to come.
Similarly, every Wednesday morning we meet around 9:00 AM UTC on BigBlueButton for a co-working session that can sometimes be really long!. During these calls we work on specific issues. Sometimes we might work together on the same issue or separately on different issues while checking in and sharing breaks every other hour or so.
As we value spending time together, having a drink together, ‘loitering’ and contemplating about life we also keep time for that and it is not rare that in some of our meetings we end up discussing all sorts of other things except Karrot.
We announce all of our meetings on our ‘Karrot and Feedback’ Karrot group which we recently created (some 12 months ago or so) to test out how Karrot could also work in this context. If you ‘d like to say hi ‘Karrot and Feedback’ Karrot group might be the easiest and most direct way to do so.
Use the application process to apply for becoming a member of the group, write on the wall if you wish to and/or join one of our calls.
To get an overview about Karrot you can also go through Karrot’s forum where you can find the notes of our weekly meetings, check the various discussions around features (existing and new ones), read a series of documentation posts on different events and engagements we have run (e.g. Karrot days: a 2 days event about Karrot), read about the recent funding the project acquired etc.
You can always check Karrot’s github where you can access the code and also explore all open issues.
and maybe watch a short film about Karrot’s first old days media.ccc.de - The foodsaving grassroots movement
Would be nice to see you around!