The learning, networking, collaboration and fun all started with the candle light dinner. The panoramic view from the 13th floor of the Barton Center was explicit and pertinent. We came to know each other and shared the stories of our background.
Why focus on women?
“We need all hands on deck, and that means clearing hurdles for women and girls as they navigate careers in science, technology, engineering, and math.”
I basically liked the theme, as me being a woman I thought the sprint is well suited for me. I was very fortunate for getting selected and being a part of intellectuals from various geographic spaces of India and overseas. Since I dwell in Salem, one of the developing cities in Tamil Nadu and the disadvantage of being in such cities is that, any technology update gets implemented very slowly. This way I was able to share my views on many issues and how internet awareness needs a reach in many rural areas of India.
Why internet for women?
“Necessity is the mother of invention”
In India, the literacy ratio of women is higher when compared to men. In Tamil Nadu, for the past few years the State Level ranks are bagged mostly by women. This way women’s life can be even more enhanced with the help of internet in the field of education. Also the necessity for women is security. If safety measures can be provided by internet then this makes them to rely on it. Whereas if internet itself makes them feel insecure then the reliance decreases. The need of the hour is that women need internet not just for the fad of social media but for the security and development of knowledge.
Power packed dyads
The two day event was held at HasGeek (a Startup Space), Banglore. The place looked busy and had lots of space to do wonderful things.
Day 1: (Nov 19,2016)
The day started with Vnisha sharing about her own personal life on how it correlated with the theme. Then we had the basic designing session. I actually cannot give an artistic touch although I could put things what’s in my mind into the paper. Michael took over the session well and helped us to bring out the artists in us. Then the purpose for which we were present there was well-described by Rina. She said us the case studies which they had taken for the past couple of days. The case study was taken out in the vocational schools and colleges of Banglore where women from different background were surveyed. It was found that, most of them were restricted from using internet because of lack of affordability and pessimistic influence of the people around them. To frame a solution for this issue was the very purpose for which we were gathered there.
Merge Sort Strategy-
We examined the case studies which were around the hall and gave our opinions in the form of HMV (How Might We?). Then all our ideas were clustered into a single wall. Then the main domains were framed and accordingly the ideas were sorted out. This was made to keep things simple and also to reduce the redundancy of thoughts.
Diverge then converge-
Furthermore, we were split into teams. My team consisted of Tripad, Shreyas, Dinesh, Vnisha and me. This helped us to work on a single focus area. Each of us picked up our favorite areas of contributions and we gathered it in a chart. Then we examined each topic on each stratagem and pictorially we gave ample number of solutions for each. Then we casted votes on the ones we felt will be effective and practical. Finally, on majority basis we chose two concepts and prepared the poster for a presentation. This way I learnt how to extract down the juice from a large pulp.
Day 2: (Nov 20,2016)
The posters were ready. It was time for feedback. I love getting feedback! We were instructed to cast votes and give feedback for the fellow team’s posters. Likewise we did our part and judged our fellow-mates’ work with varied perspectives. This way we were able to give and get valuable feedback. Using the feedback we understood how people have understood our concepts and so we wanted a better means to make people understand what we had framed. We then made storyboards to make the concepts more clear and then presented it. Through this I found that stories can help in easy comprehending than other ways. Moreover, we made a final prototype for one of our ideas. Michael enacted aptly like a rural woman and this way we came to understand the feasibility of our idea in a user’s perspective.
Life ethics from Dino Tank workshop
- Team player– I was very fortunate for having got a wonderful team. My thoughts, my words and my works were respected and justified. Yes, we worked as a team! A perfect team!
- Bravery – I am inspired from Vnisha for this. This is because; the whole initiative of the theme was taken up by her. She took this huge step for the welfare of the woman throughout the country. I appreciate her fortitude when she said that rather than we working for her plan she is happy to work along with us and help us in making this a grand success.
- Volunteer– I appreciate our foreign delegates- Michael, Rina, Rosana and Stacy, for understanding the need and situation of the women in India. Moreover, I’m grateful to you for helping us to draft our ideas and extending your help to make every woman of India to envision their dreams.
- Hospitality– I loved the lodging, food, refreshments, logistics and all the arrangements which were made at the accurate time was simply astounding. I must mention Subashis Pranjal for this, his efforts paved way for triumphant event.
- Friendship– I learnt sharing, accepting, adjusting and giving, through this event. These values accounts to the real meaning of “FRIENDSHIP”. I got a bunch of talented companions at this occasion and this networking will help me in a long run.
- Feedback– This is one of the most important aspect that is needed in everyone’s life. Here I learnt the right etiquette of giving and receiving feedback. The feedback are essential not only in our work place but also in our lives.
In a nutshell, the event helped me to realize that “A picture speaks louder than words”. I not only got food for thought but also for life. When I returned home I thought about carrying out the survey at my college and neighborhood, where many women are in need of internet. I kept the squishy Dino toy (swag which was given to us at the event) on my study table so that every day I could cherish the memories of the event.