Bringing Ideas Into Being

                                by Frank Odasz,

The Hewlett Packard and Teltecglobal corporations are interested in Native American, and rural, small scale clusters integrating horizontal wireless distribution with culturally appropriate fast track training with measurable outcomes.

Both has expressed interest in showcasing strategies for 'helping communities learn to invent.'

Many communities suffer from a threadbare social fabric and are in dire need of collaborative capacity building. There is a process needing definition and visible demonstration of community-based;
1. Vision, 2, the Will, 3. New Skills and Action, 4. Outcomes

The Internet offers hidden powers related to instant information access, global reach, the ability to allow one person to impact the lives of unlimited numbers of those in need, and yet undiscovered collaborative powers never before possible.

These are ideas that need to be brought into being in the lives of those community members we hope to serve.

As Internet access becomes available, this open door of opportunity becomes real, but few in the past have chosen to step through it with an understanding of the real opportunities at hand. Corporations have the opportunity to demonstrate that as a people, and as a corporation, they understand the importance of partnering with communities to demonstrate the growth in social value that comes from people learning, learning to share, and building together recognizable collaborative capacity to the benefit of all.

There's a need for a plug-and-play model of Intranet, complete with an initial citizen engagement program, to generate interaction and local content in the short term. Tribes will define their own direction within a minimum of base structural requirements for a successful outcome.

Their "collective will" enables them to elevate the ability of the tribe to acquire and share knowledge more powerfully on an ongoing basis. Emphasis will be on developing and reinforcing the social value of its members as the primary objective, with exploring entrepreneurship and material value as a secondary objective.

Generating ongoing stories of success will be the primary measurement, with survey and recordkeeping instruments providing secondary measurement.

Telecenters need to be showcases for the newer technologies and training centers for the higher tiers of skill development, not just the basics. Laptop leasing programs create the opportunity to provide incentives for local mentors, who would eventually earn their laptop by helping others learn and demonstrate important skills. Continued funding will require demonstrated commitment by a minimum number of persons.

With initial emphasis on the most motivating skills; digital photography, art and music, and manipulating multimedia files to quickly create local content web pages, the telecenters can become a hub of activity with regular community events such as web-raisings where all attendees create web pages and/or develop specific new skills, local content, and mentoring relationships.

Having the access and the knowledge is not enough, one must have the will and the fortitude to take positive action. Casinos have brought new opportunities and challenges to many tribes. "The ancients stand with you as you weigh demonstration of material value with the demonstration of social value." Where-in lies the honor of being successful is a defining cultural issue.