Registration is now closed for 2017 Overnight Website Challenge events.
To receive updates on our 2018 season, sign up for NerdKind.
FAQs for Web Challenge Preparation
For All Participants
Q: Should I bring my own food, beverages, and/or snacks to Web Challenge?
A: We'll provide all your basic sustenance needs, including meals, snacks, and beverages.
Q: What else should I bring?
A: Bring whatever gets you through the night -- comfy clothes, a toothbrush, sleeping bag (we'll have a nap room if you need it).
Q: When should I arrive at the event?
A: Arrive between 7:30am and 8:30am so you can get registered. Web Pro Teams, arrive early -- you'll want plenty of time to get settled and arrange your gear.
Q: How will event parking work?
A: For Kansas City 2017, we've got an adjacent surface lot. There is no cost for parking here. However, we recommend carpooling or getting a ride if possible -- parking spots aren't overly plentiful and you'll be awfully tired on Sunday morning!
Q: What should I do if I have special food needs?
A: We try to have vegetarian and gluten-free options available. To help us plan, be sure to note any special food needs on your online application. If you missed it there, send us an email (email@example.com).
For Web Pros
Q: Should I bring my computer or will one be provided?
A: This is a BYOC event -- bring your preferred hardware, extra cables, etc. Each team workstation area will be supplied with:
- Tables (enough space for a standard workstation. You multiple-monitor types may feel squished.)
- Standard chairs (read: not ergonomically superior)
- Power, with two power strips (we recommend you supplement with your own)
- General office supplies for taking notes (e.g., Post-its)
Note that this list does NOT include printers or scanners, so if you feel you'll need those, bring your own.
Q: Will I be able to set up a local network for my team?
A: Yes, you're welcome to bring equipment for a local network. We do attempt to provide reliable wifi, but PLAN AHEAD. This year would not be the first time where we have a major internet outage, so prepare for the worst. Don't rely only on services that are not available offline.
Q: What should my team do now to prepare for the event?
A: Here is some advice from previous teams:
- Designate a team lead for the event. This is a person who can respect everyone’s opinions and can diplomatically make tough choices when there are differences of opinion.
- Other roles to designate: Server / connectivity / tech support, Database guru, Source control and backup master, Back-end CMS, Front-end HTML/CSS/jQuery, Design, UX/IA, Content, Sweeper, Special Ops
- Plan your tools -- server environment, dev language, frameworks, CMS, plugins, etc. Your goal is to set up your nonprofit for success! When thinking about tools, think about how well your nonprofit will be able to maintain their new functionality for the long term.
- Prepare how you'll stay in sync with your team members. Consider what IM everyone will use, and email addresses. Share a list with everyone or create a mailing list. Come prepared with a platform to work on, be it a CMS or framework, and work out dev server logistics, passwords, svn/git users for all your team members.
- Have a fallback plan. If that new CMS you wanted to use doesn’t work out the way you were planning, be prepared to fall back on that clumsy solution you know like the back of your hand. Be prepared to make this hard decision within a few hours of starting.
- Be connected:
- Determine if everyone is using their own sandbox on their computer or a central server. If using a server, set it up before you get to the webchallenge. Bottom line: If you plan to use it, get it running prior to the event.
- Make sure everyone will be able to connect to it. Test / simulate if possible.
- Use source control. Or, have a really good plan for making snapshot backups.
- Have one or two people on the team make local backups at key checkpoints.
Q: What should I bring to support my team?
A: There are two things your team will need: Materials about your organization and access to your current systems. This includes:
- Brochures, handouts, flyers, testimonials, or anything else that describes what your organization does. Soft copies are best, and hard copies are helpful too!
- Forms and/or spreadsheets that you use for donations, events, memberships, volunteer signup and management, etc.
- Photos and videos from your organization and its events. A flash drive works well to store these.
- Login information for your systems, including any of the following that you may use:
- Your website
- DNS/hosting information
- Email marketing
- Social media
- Donor/volunteer management
- Event management
More q uestions? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.