aicra is currently certified at Journeyer level.
Name: Marcia Wilbur
Member since: 2001-06-08 18:34:27
Last Login: 2014-06-09 03:35:42
Author of "DMCA", a Decade of the DMCA and In your pocket: the DMCA.
Maintained dmcasucks.org protest site
DigitalSpeech.org (FSF) advisory committee member.
Freelance writer for BinaryFreedom.com
Volunteered at the EFF
Involved with OpenLaw in DVD/DeCSS case
Assisted Mark Spencer in GAIM response to AOL.
Working on DMCA documentary.
Technical writer - Linux Essentials (I tried to get them to call it GNU/Linux Essentials!)
Working to keep information free
Editor in chief - FAQLinux
Created multiple GNU/Linux tools/application/utilities training
Working on PicLe - a large distro centered around a small chip
Created GNU Linux install scripts for microcontroller company
Contributor - Drupalversity
Created HTML help using DocBook XML
Android application developer (java and C with NDK)
MS Technology - ASU
Graduate ASU Multimedia Writing and Technical
Graduate Three Rivers Community
Technical College - Computer Science
Articles Posted by aicra
Recent blog entries by aicra
After some discussion with some of my community friends, I have decided to keep the gig with the state and use the money to go to Law School.
Thanks to Paradox, curmudgeon and the crew. I did not realize Timothy Lord had his JD.
Basically, there was a lot of encouragement to pursue this direction.
If this happens, it is like a dream come true.
September is the LSAT. I'll sit for that one.
8 Jun 2014
(updated 8 Jun 2014 at 06:45 UTC) »
I did a terrible thing.
I am doing a terrible thing.
I didn't realize it until this weekend and that is more terrible.
They needed someone who knew Moodle. They needed someone to convert Moodle files to Common Cartridge using MoodleRooms. Easy enough. It was Moodle. I wasn't thinking about the big picture.
For the past month, I have been working in implementing a proprietary Learning Management Solution.
On the one hand, it brings technology in the classroom to students across the state. That is the good thing. On the other hand, not only am I implementing a LMS that is proprietary... but I am converting this from non proprietary.
I think the one benefit here is that I can reverse the process and know what is necessary in conversions from proprietary platforms to non proprietary and thus create documentation regarding this and move our effort forward.
I feel terrible. I was sucked into this in the first place. OMG. What have I done. What am I doing. Please don't judge me. I'm not a terrible person.
No wonder I feel so isolated in the job. I'm not doing the right thing...
It was that friendly manager. I couldn't help it. I wasn't thinking straight. I had a moment. I lost myself for a moment, literally. All I wanted was to go there again. I ... I...
If I can turn this thing around I will. I swear I will. I will have to make this right.
My goals were the opposite of what I'm doing. Intention doesn't mean shit. It's my actions. What have I done. What have I done!
17 May 2014
(updated 17 May 2014 at 04:49 UTC) »
Sometimes, life is so weird.
So, now I am implementing a solution that could actually have over a million users. I love it because it leverages educational opportunities for all students.
I dislike Google. They contacted me about a tech writing job. They apparently give programmers a tech test... about simple things like binary trees and data structures.
They wanted a tech writer who could code. The recruiter wouldn't listen to me.
Here's my question - If you want a tech writer who can program... give me the damn tech test you stupid mother f**kers.
Next time, I'll just send my Sourceforge and Github info. No more freshmeat....
WTF! I don't want to do tech writing anymore at this point in my life. I don't want to be someone's code monkey either.
I don't want to be a server babysitter but it's the best opportunity I've had in awhile. When I started with GNU, I couldn't even get an admin job. In fact, a recruiter told me he didn't believe I wrote the Linux Essentials. I said, ????
He said, "well I can't use linux." I said, "I have a degree in computer science. You don't" He said, "clients aren't going to believe you, even if it is true. I'm just letting you know."
I don't have to prove I can code. Check out my code bitches.
I LOVE to code. I LOVE to find solutions and tweek my code. I love being the only one who can get a robot to work in a contest because I rock C++ and assembly.
I LOVE solving customer coding issues when the electronics engineer who worked on the touch technology cannot figure it out.
Sad... really. No one believes in me.
I have to say the one thing that really has kept me positive is that my current manager has absolute faith in my abilities. That is the only thing that really helps me out. I mean, First Wikipedia, then Google. I don't care if they don't think I can code. I don't care to work for them. It just really hurts because I got the degree because... I thought that would prove it.
Don't you know that they just give away those Comp Sci degrees to anyone...
When I was in the computer science program in college, there was a job fair. I applied by adding my name to a list with my phone and email.
I received a call from the girl in the college careers office. The call went like this:
Her: Hi, I'm calling from college careers. I noticed you put your name on the list for the Coops and positions at Computer Sciences Corporation. I wanted to let you know that was a mistake.
Me: What was a mistake? Are they not interviewing?
Her: No, I mean, this is for people who are into computers a lot and have a lot of computer skills.
Me: Like people in the computer science program?
Her: Yes, so I'll just take your name off the list.
Me: No. No you won't. I'm in the computer science program.
Her: Oh, but this is for people who do like coding and stuff.
Me: I do coding... and STUFF.
Her: Yeah, but this is for, you know.... guys who are really good with coding and computers.
Me: Yeah, I code, I do web design, I can do database.
Her: Oh, you can do web design.
Me: Yes, and code.
Her: Ok, well I guess we can leave your name on the list.
I went further in the interview process than anyone at that college ever did.
They wined and dined me. I received like Airborne Express invitation for a formal meet and greet. .
Screw you little girl in the Career Services, Qim Gil at Wikipedia and Jeremiah Anderson who wouldn't even let me finish listing my skills. Screw. You.
Sexism: Wikimedia Foundation – We will keep you in mind for “LESS CODE RELATED TASKS”
As a woman in the FOSS communities for over 15 years, I know the issues and have experienced sexism within and from without the community.
Some are ridiculous to me. Some are serious offenses. This time, I was offended.
In fact, one of my best friendships was forged in IRC in 2000 with someone who had no idea I was not male and made the statement that “women belong in the kitchen”. Of course, I demanded an apology, thus exposing myself as female.
You see, that is the great thing about IRC. That 1337 programmer giving assistance with C++ or Java, that could actually be a female and you had no idea!
I saw there was an opening for a Technical Writer at Wikimedia Foundation. You know… the Wikipedia people.
I had all the qualifications. So, I applied. Sounded righteous. It was remote with a few days in San Fran. I met all the requirements. On the first interview, I was asked if I used IRC. IRC! Of course. I was using IRC when lilo was running freenode. Tragic.
So, imagine my surprise when I received a reject notice from Wikimedia Foundation.
I was surprised. I had the experience and skills.
What happened here?!
Keep in mind, I have worked as a programmer, have a degree in computer science and a Masters in IT from ASU. I have written more programs than I can ever count in C, Java, C++. I have written a few database driven apps for work, using PHP and SQL. I have several Droid Apps I created on Google and I also have written Linux installers and ported software to GNU/Linux distros. In fact, I am working on a mobile Moodle app right now and have a distro PicLE (Pic learning environment) I am working on. I have embedded (mostly microcontrollers from Microchip) and know 8086 assembly. I could go on and on, but I won’t. All of this is on my resume and was emphasized in the interview.
Yet, I received a rejection letter. A nice one… So I found Quim Gil, the Lead who was available in IRC, and asked him what happened.
Around 2:13pm MST 12/17/2013
I hoped, maybe they didn’t go with the project. So, I decided to find the lead, Quim Gil (qgil) on IRC and ask him.
aicra: Hi Qim. I was wondering. Did your team decide not to go with a technical writer at all for the 3+ month contract or was there some reason I was not selected
qgil: we haven’t selected a candidate yet, and I can’t comment anything to anybody at this point
qgil: or.] wait
qgil: did you receive a notifcation?
aicra: I was surprised
qgil: what is your real name?
aicra: and disappointed but from your response, I see that there are possible candidates so it was probably me
aicra: Marcia Wilbur
aicra: worked at the FSF
aicra: Community minded
aicra: Free speech advocate
qgil: I remember, not all the details but I remember
aicra: I was hoping it was that your team decided not to select a tech writer. But I see. It was something I lacked, something about my qualifications that did not fit
aicra: Appreciate your time
qgil: you can send me an email asking for details, I would need the time that I don’t have now to reply properly
qgil: I think your qualifications are good, but this 3 month contract has a very precise goal where developer experience is appreciated beyond technical knowledge
aicra: No, Funny thing was I was trying to reach out to you on irc earlier but never saw you on until today. Maybe we have different IRC hours
aicra: Appreciate it.
aicra: Good luck. If it doesn’t work out, please keep me in mind
qgil: I actually marked your application as someone to keep in mind for more community and less code related tasks. True it is! :)
qgil: tech community, I mean
aicra: Great! Thanks!
qgil: thank you for your interest in contributing to Wikimedia
aicra: hold on a second
aicra: Sorry but did you write less code related?
aicra: I see
aicra: Can I ask what language?
I did not receive a response. I waited several minutes. Had to run anyway.
So, I did email him as a follow up before running out the door. Here is my response.
I just wanted to follow up on the comment made about “less code related tasks”.
In fact, that is more disappointing than if the reason had been something else.
I have a 2 yr. degree in computer science with data structures, assembly and database which means I am very knowledgeable and experienced with:
I also worked on the Gentoo fork. I have created database driven applications and Linux installers as well as Android applications.
I have not worked as a programmer, except at Aries and my resume does not reflect a lot of programming but unless it is Python (which I haven’t touched since 2005)...
However, I would think that with a degree in Computer Science one might know that I have coding skills.
Shortly thereafter, I received an email that my reject letter was a mistake. Actually, I received an email that the reject letter was an “ACCIDENT”.
I am so sorry – I rejected you by accident! We actually want you to have a conversation with Quim this week if you are available?
Akshata will get you scheduled once you send us your availability.
Sorry again for the error.
Was it really? Or was it to cover themselves so people wouldn’t learn about what transpired?
Seriously, though. I started to wonder about how many female developers are at the Wikimedia Foundation? What was the attitude toward female developers in our community?
I kept thinking about those words:
…developer experience is appreciated beyond technical knowledge.
LESS CODE RELATED TASKS!
So, before committing to an interview, I asked about diversity. The response was as professional as any corporation or organization.
They do seem to have somewhat of a diverse workforce.
All the while, all I could think of was…
LESS CODE RELATED TASKS!
I believe that Quim’s first response when he saw my name was female was to let me know I didn’t have the coding ability they wanted. Really?
Great assumption! Am I to give him the benefit of the doubt?
…developer experience is appreciated beyond technical knowledge.
I don’t think my developer experience is appreciated or could be appreciated!!!
No. I’ve been a female developer within this community for well over a decade. There were no females at Slashdot, Tina was the lone female at NewsForge and the only reason I got as far as I did was because in the beginning, these guys had no idea I was female in IRC, I was a computer science major at Arizona State and I love to code.
So, thanks Wikimedia, but no THANKS!
Side note: I believe Wikipedia has lost it’s connection to our community and the support. The point is, “Why are they paying someone to do this gig if they had community support!” Forking has already been suggested and as I write this, Wikipedia is being decentralized and will soon be available P2P as a community effort, not managed by Wikimedia Foundation.
As for me, I’ll keep focusing on Free Speech, censorship and maybe scandalous behavior (cough – Wikimedia)!
P.S. Not to be crude, but really, just because I have the ability to Quim, doesn’t mean I can’t code… Quim!
Well, I did get my git going. I like to work locally. However, I realized that should something happen to me or my machine, those files and apps might be lost.
So, it is a great way to get organized. I like subversion but I'm enjoying git.
For now, I'm working on a mobile app for elearning. Let's see how it works with my current LMS on Faqlinux. No learning up there just yet.
Ultimately, I would love to see shared learning. However, I don't know if that can happen yet.
There are so many other outlets for people who are creative.
I had efront set up on FAQLinux but something happened and I decided to go with Moodle. I had a few honest users on there .
Now, with Moodle, I have trolls.
That reminds me, I have to clean up dmcasucks.
This has been a crazy week with the Zimmerman thing, Farm Bill, and such. I don't know what to think. Violence is not the answer.
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