Tag Archives: learning

Introducing “Mozilla Webmaker:” helping the world make the web

Today, we’re proud to launch “Mozilla Webmaker,” a new program to help people everywhere make, learn and play using the open building blocks 
of the web.

The goal: help millions of people move from using the web to making the web. With new tools to use, projects to create, and events to join, we want to help the world increase their understanding of the web and take greater control of their online lives.

And we’d like you to join us.

Building a generation of webmakers

Concretely, Mozilla Webmaker will offer:

  • 1) Tools. Authoring tools and software, designed and built with our community. From supercharging web video with Popcorn, to remixing with Hackasaurus, to making your own web pages with Thimble.
  • 2) Projects. Practical starter projects, how-tos and recipes, designed to help people at all levels make something amazing with the web. From tweaking your blog template to building apps that change the world.
  • 3) Community. Bringing people with diverse skills and backgrounds together. Teachers, filmmakers, journalists, youth. From web ninjas to newbies. All making and learning together at events, meet-ups and hack jams everywhere.

A global invitation to make and learn this summer

We’re kicking off Mozilla Webmaker with something special: a massive summer learning campaign. It’s called the Summer Code Party, will run all summer long, and kicks off June 23.

We’re inviting everyone to join or volunteer at free local events and teach-ins around the world. With new Webmaker tools, event kits and starter projects designed to make it easy, social and fun. We’ll end with a big wrap-up September 23.

We’re not doing this alone. We want to build a big tent for everyone who shares our goal of a more web literate planet. Amazing partners are joining the party, from Tumblr, Creative Commons and Code for America to SoundCloud, the San Francisco Public Library, the London Zoo, and dozens of others. Plus special events with Boing Boing’s Cory Doctorow, OK GO’s Damian Kulash, and more.

What types of programs can participate? Summer camps, day camps, summer schools, public libraries, recreation centers, neighborhood groups, your kitchen table — anyone with a willingness to make, learn and engage using the open building blocks of the web.

Creating a web literate planet

Mozilla’s Executive Director, Mark Surman, says Webmaker is the product of Mozilla’s growing commitment to learning, and the culmination of experiments it began with the Mozilla Drumbeat project.

The web is becoming the world’s second language, and a vital 21st century skill — as important as reading, writing and arithmetic,” says Surman. “It’s crucial that we give people the skills they need to understand, shape and actively participate in that world, instead of just passively consuming it. That maker spirit and open ethos is vital to Mozilla, our partners, and the web.”

The new Mozilla Webmaker web site launches June 6. In the mean time, check out the new Summer Code Party site to find an event near you, sign up for updates, and get a sneak peek at Mozilla Webmaker tools and projects.

Get involved:

Code is all around us

What do we think about when we think about “code?” Many of us think something like this:

Alien. Intimidating. Gobbledygook. Maybe even vaguely sinister, like The Matrix. Something that says: this is not for you.

Whereas, for the Mozilla Webmaker project and our Summer Campaign to teach the world to code, we want people to imagine code more like this:

Or this:

Or maybe this:

In other words: code as something all around us. Warm. Human. Poetic. Not some scary bunch of geeky gibberish that only anointed high priests understand.

We want to show code and webmaking as revealing the patterns and hidden dimensions of everyday life. Swirling all around us. Like everyone’s second language.

The web as literacy. Code as everyone’s second language.

Code and webmaking as literacy — rather than just a professional skill. For a general audience of everyday people who have mostly never touched code before (teachers, youth, journalists, filmmakers, your mum), we want to employ a visual language that treats code less as math and mechanics and scary algorithms — and more as magic pixie dust. Or a maker’s language that can turn your big ideas into reality.

Once you see code as something that makes up your everyday world, you can begin to start using it yourself. To make something amazing, or bend the rules of everyday (digital) reality.  Moving from passive consumer of other people’s stuff to active creator of your own.

The hidden patterns and algorithms of everyday life

This opening to “Stranger Than Fiction” isn’t about code per se — but it perfectly captures the spirit we’re after. Revealing the hidden patterns and algorithms of everyday life.

The web as a maker’s world — NOT a series of tubes

Other visual examples of the web often try to depict it as a network or ecosystem. The challenge with this approach is that it emphasizes the pipes and tubes and tech — instead of the human dimension, and the web as a maker’s world.

Not this.

How do we apply this idea of “everyday code” in our visual language, branding and videos? As we think more about how to visually tell our Mozilla Webmaker story, we want to move away from abstract depictions of “the web” and instead emphasize the human dimension.

We want to tell stories about real people and Mozilla community members making amazing things. Passing and sharing them with others through a combination of maker spirit, open collaboration, and building the future they want together. Using real code to build big ideas.

Not this really, either

Seeking your examples: what else is like this?

I’d like to ask your help in collecting more examples like these. Images, web sites, memes, concrete examples — anything. Examples of:

  • Code as poetry. Code as a language for saying something more simply or elegantly than could be expressed otherwise.
  • Code as meme. Like “Movies as Code” Or “Programmer Ryan Gosling.”
  • Code as expression of the everyday world. In places we don’t ordinarily think of it: nature. An alarm clock. Your car.

What other sites or examples should we be looking at? I’m new to this world, and would love to learn from your favorites. Please share links as comments here. We want to collect memes and examples that can help inspire this style guide for our “Meet the Webmakers” video series.

We like the direction — but want to insert more real code into the mix, and slip in references that real developers will appreciate. So what examples would you include for inspiration? I know you’ve got them…

Mozilla Open Badges ships Beta release

Cross-posted from the Mozilla Blog.

Adding skills and achievements to your online identity

When Mozilla’s Open Badges project began in late 2010, it was little more than a demo and an audaciously big idea: what if we could use the web to create whole new ways to “show what you know?”

Today, that big idea is becoming reality, with impressive partners and new Mozilla Open Badges Beta software coming together to test how digital badges can supercharge learning and identity.

Collaborators building badges on Mozilla software

Mozilla’s Open Badges project now includes leading partners like the MacArthur Foundation, impressive collaborators (including NASA, Intel, Disney-Pixar, 4H and dozens of others now building badge programs using Mozilla tools) and — thanks to today’s new Beta release of Mozilla’s Open Badges Infrastructure — publicly available software for badge issuers and developers to get on board and build with.

Integration with Mozilla Persona = adding skills and achievements to your online identity

The new Beta release includes integration with Mozilla Persona (formerly BrowserID). This opens the door for users to create a single user-centric identity across the web, with tools like Mozilla Open Badges adding a “reputation layer” that provides a complete story about what they know and have achieved. All through an open, standards-based infrastructure that puts user sovereignty, privacy and security first.

Open Badges Beta: what’s new?

Today’s Beta release includes:

  • New tools for badge issuers. A new and improved badge issuer API makes it easier for any organization to award their own digital badges for learning, skills or achievements.
  • New ways for users to manage their badges. Improvements to Mozilla’s “Badge Backpack” make it easier for users to store, manage, import and group badges earned from multiple sites through a single location.
  • New tools for badge displayers. A new displayer API will make it easier to display digital badges across the web, from personal web sites to social networking platforms.
  • New documentation and privacy features. Including an updated privacy policy, terms of use and FAQs for developers.

Learn more and get involved: