Get started at 2i2c

This is a guide and checklist for new team members of 2i2c to get oriented, and to make sure that you’re set up with all the resources you need to start contributing!

A note about staff vs. non-staff

The information here (and in the Team Compass) applies to anybody that is “on the 2i2c team”. That means both staff at CS&S, as well as non-staff team members that may work in other institutions. However, there may be some steps here that are only relevant to CS&S staff.

Onboarding process

New 2i2c team members are onboarded in order to make sure that the following conditions are met:

  • They know where to look for certain information

  • They feel welcome and excited to be a part of the team

  • They have an understanding of what 2i2c is currently up to

  • They have enough information to get started

When a new team member joins, follow these two steps first:

  1. Identify an Onboarding Champion. This is somebody that will help guide the onboarding process for our new team member. Their job is to carry out the process described in the onboarding issue template.

  2. Open an issue in the Team Compass. Choose the “Onboard a new team member” template. This issue will track the onboarding process, and will provide steps to take in order to onboard our new team member.

The following sections describe some things that should be met in order to onboard somebody new.

Accounts that should be created

  • A GMail address. You can use this to access information in the 2i2c drive, as well as various online services that we use such as cloud engines. You can sign in to your email address at gmail.com (it behaves like a Google account).

  • A Slack account. In addition to GMail, 2i2c also uses Slack to have informal or synchronous communication.

Accounts you should have access to

  • Google Drive. Your 2i2c email address will get you access to a Google Drive that contains documents, brainstorms, and other assets that aren’t fit for the 2i2c Team Compass. You can log into the Google Drive by going to drive.google.com and adding a new account using your @2i2c.org address and password.

  • GitHub Access. 2i2c has a few GitHub repositories. You should have membership in the 2i2c-org GitHub organization and write access to its repositories. Check that this is the case and, if not, ask for access in the Slack.

  • NameCheap Access. 2i2c runs much of its cloud infrastructure at custom URLs created for the target institution. In order to ensure you have the ability to create new URLs, you should have access to the 2i2c NameCheap account. If not, ask for access in the Slack.

  • Cloud Accounts. 2i2c has a number of cloud accounts that it uses to create and operate its infrastructure. You should have access to the cloud accounts for any projects that you expect to work on. This includes Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure, and Amazon Web Services. The specific project might depend on what you’re working on, so check with the team to make sure you have the right access.

What are we working on right now?

The Team Development Workflow page has information about our daily workflow. You can use this to begin participating in our daily activities and find out what everyone is working on.

What major projects is 2i2c working on?

Check out the projects page for more information about the projects that 2i2c is working on.

Tips for distributed working

2i2c is a distributed organization, and believes strongly in following practices that are inclusive, participatory, and collaborative. It has team members spread out over many time zones working on a variety of projects. There are many guides and tips for distributed working1, and we’ve tried to distill a few key components for our workflows:

  1. Have a single source of truth. For any information or projects in 2i2c, there should be one source of truth. Any conflicting information will defer to this source of truth, and it should be updated first and often. The default source of truth is this team compass, unless otherwise specified.

  2. Document everything. Documentation is the most important tool for coordinating and distributing information across distributed teams. It is crucial that 2i2c team members document all relevant information about their projects, what they are working on, etc.

  3. Broadcast updates in multiple places. Different people have different preferred methods of engagement and communication on 2i2c projects. For this reason, don’t assume that posting an update or question in a single location will reach everybody that you wish to reach. Do not hesitate to post questions or ask for feedback in multiple places (e.g., GitHub, Slack, or even email). However, try to keep information in a single place to have a single source of truth.

  4. Update often. Err on the side of updating the team more often than not. Nobody should be surprised when something gets done - especially nothing major. Your work should be as transparent to others as possible!

Where information is located

General organizational information / documents / brainstorms

We also have some organizational documents in a shared Google folder called “2i2c”. Your 2i2c address will give you access to this folder (or if you do not have access, please request it!):

https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1ABxxSFycGfCzQc9czfwer_dat-GVi4jw?usp=sharing

The folder is organized into a few top-level folders that should be relatively self-explanatory, but don’t hesitate to ask for a quick guide.

Todos, project plans and management

2i2c uses the Projects page to keep track of the major projects that it is working on. That page has links to the location of project-specific to-do lists, deliverables, etc.

More organization-specific discussion and items we track can also be found in the private 2i2c meta repository.

Generally speaking the daily specifics of activity on a project are recorded outside of the team compass, as they are more dynamic. The important thing is that the team compass make it clear where to find this information, and that the information is kept up-to-date for all.

Marketing and communication

There are three main ways that 2i2c communicates with the outside world:

  • Twitter: @2i2c_org

    • Currently, there is nobody activately monitoring the Twitter account. We use it to post links to blog posts or major announcements in the newsletter.

  • Newsletter: using Mailchimp

    • Users sign up to the newsletter via our landing page’s contact form at 2i2c.org#contact. Email addresses are imported into Mailchimp for the newsletter.

  • Blog: [2i2c.org/posts]

    • The blog is managed by our Hugo website repository. All new posts are automatically sent to the mailing list on a weekly basis.


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References for Distributed Work: The GitLab remote work guide, the future of work is written, RFCs as a management tool