Collective Week(s) in Review

It is the beginning of my fourth week, and a lot has happened since I arrived. We rolled out a tech release package, launched group RSS feeds,  witnessed several great presentations, started several of our large projects, and welcomed several new members to the house.

We have been joined by Miri, who is heading up the CouchSurfing CARES program, and Wendy, a member of the User Research and Design team. Miri is with us for a month, and Wendy leaves tomorrow. Susy has returned from Holland and got an incredible visa! Ten years, with intervals of  six months, multiple entry!

We also welcomed our new cook, Nick, who will be taking care of our appetites for the rest of the collective. He cooked a fantastic pasta dinner with garlic / tomatoe / cheese bread and salad on Sunday night.

We have also enjoyed getting to know the local population. From weekly soccer and Frisbee matches to weekend barbeques, we have been integrating ourselves into the community. If we tell a group of people in Homer that we are volunteering with CouchSurfing,  someone inevitably says “Oh, you’re the new guys up on the hill right?”

The weekend before last we went on an excursion across the bay to hike around some glaciers, and then this weekend a group of us went to the Solstice Folk Music festival in Seldovia. Laura will write about that soon as I wasn’t there! Walter and I hitchhiked up to Hope, AK for some remote camping.

From a project standpoint, things are starting to move smoothly. The first few weeks were all about getting things set up, and now that everyone has tasks to accomplish and goals to achieve, productivity has continued to rise. We are using a new online project management system, thanks to Camtastic, and Jeff is working on a project matrix.

We also had  presentation from Shonali, Casey and Mattthew that will begin to help us discover CouchSurfing’s identity. With an organization as spread out as we are, this is a challenge we look forward too!

The tech team has been hard at work as usual, and has recently added three new remote members. We will also be adding eight new servers in the near future, and phasing out five old ones. This will help the performance and stability of the site.

More updates from the Great Northwest in the near future!

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