Member Handbook

This handbook is your guide to the cultural norms of our community.

You’ll learn our preferred way to structure discussions, and the various channels we have and how we use them.

Be sure to also take a look at our main community page, and our code of conduct.


How We Slack

We treat Slack like a message board, not like a chat. Some of our channels are archived in a searchable record, and we often refer back to old discussions. This gave rise to a particular style of posting and responding that we strictly adhere to.

Posting

To start a discussion, act as though you’re creating a forum post or blog post. Prepare what you want to say in its entirety, including any links, and then submit it all in a single message. In other words, don’t send multiple messages in a row.

You can create newlines with shift-return, but it’s helpful to draft longer messages in your text editor of choice, and then paste them into Slack when you’re ready to post.

Responding

When you want to respond to someone’s post, always use threaded replies.

Please try to keep thread replies on-topic with respect to the original post. If you want to fork a discussion off in a new direction — say, if you feel a tangent coming on — by all means start a new top-level post that includes a link back to whatever message sparked your digression.

You can use the :thread-please: reaction emoji to signal that something should probably be its own thread.

When you post a message that includes a link, Slack will often generate a rich preview that appears under your message. If you link to a video, the preview will allow the video to be watched right within Slack. This is nice! But often, these previews don’t add anything of substance, and they eat up a lot of scroll height. In this case, please remove the rich preview (which, AFAIK, can only be done using the Slack web or desktop clients, not the mobile app).


Channels

Each of our channels has a specific purpose, but it’s common that a discussion could fit into several channels. Use the descriptions below to help decide where best to start the discussion. For a quick refresher, whenever you’re in the Slack, you can check the pinned messages in a channel to see a detailed description.

#introduce-yourself

When you first join the community, please make a post here. You can tell us about your background, your interests, how you got into computer futurism, how you found the Slack — anything that’ll help us get to know you as a new member of the community. Feel free to share past project URLs, and tag other members you know.

Please, no links to startups or companies, unless the link points to something deeply technical, philosophical, or otherwise interesting for us to talk about.

#thinking-together

If you have thoughts or questions about the future of computing, post them here. This is the place to discuss your own ideas, yearnings, and excitement.

While you can add any number of reference links to your posts, please take any discussions that center around external links to one of the next two channels.

#reading-together

This channel is host to in-depth discussions of academic papers and other long, substantial, or deep materials that deserve thorough consideration and reflection for how they’ll inform the future of computing.

If you’re looking for papers on a specific topic, post a request in this channel and the audience there might be able to help you find some.

#linking-together

If you found a blog post, article, talk, podcast, or other item of external media that is in some way relevant to the future of computing, this is the place to share it.

#present-company

The home for casual chat about the present world — how we do programming today, how the world as it exists influences us, and generally any thoughts or questions about the here and now. If you’d like help with your homework, this is the place to ask. If you wrote a new blog post about how to use react-thingamabob or JSON or Elm, this is the place to share it. This what we have instead of a #random or #general channel.

#share-your-work

This is the channel for discussion about your own work, with a particular emphasis on work that pushes us toward the future of computing. If you want feedback, collaborators, high-fives, or just a place to drop your latest output, this is the place. This channel is especially sensitive to tone, so please keep things positive and constructive. Critique is great, criticism is not.

#two-minute-week

Once each week, post a 2-minute (max) video explaining your most recent progress on your own Future of Coding project. Learn More

#random-encounters

This channel gives community members a fun way to connect and get to know one another. Every so often, you’ll be paired up with one other random person in this channel, via our friendly neighbourhood @donut bot. You and your pair can schedule a video call, or just chat via DMs. These pairings should happen about once per month on average, though the schedule will fluctuate a bit.

To organize calls, you may wish to use this handy time zone converter.

#administrivia

This is the channel for discussion about the community itself. If you’d like to propose a new channel, report a violation of the code of conduct, ask a question about how we do things, or start a new community initiative, this is the place. If you’d like to discuss something sensitive, please DM @ivanreese (the community admin).

#announcements

This is a channel for special announcements that everyone in the community will see. It is primarily used for announcements about the community itself, though occasionally a job offer or other opportunity will be shared here. If you would like to share something in this channel, please DM @ivanreese to discuss it first.

Subject-Specific Channels

There are a handful of channels that are focussed on specific topics. You should join them if you’re interested in these subjects:

Location-Specific Channels

Finally, we have a number of channels for organizing meetups or other activities around the world.