The Creative Community Computing (CCC) program has been running in various forms since 2007, started by Daniel Flood in Melbourne, Australia. Daniel moved to The Edge at the State Library of Queensland (SLQ), bringing the program with him. CCC was then facilitated by Andrei Maberley from 2011, with additional support from volunteers Katrina Archibald and SLQ contractor Lachlan Currie.

With limited staffing resources and a constant demand for workshops, it quickly became apparent that no matter how many computers were donated there was no way The Edge could reach the far-flung corners of Queensland, and fairly deliver on its remit of empowering Queenslanders to explore creativity across art, science, technology, and enterprise.

The Edge has therefore been working to create a self-sustaining, Creative Commons, open-sourced resource that will encourage regional communities to start their own CCC programs. This wiki and the CCC kits are the first step in realising an interactive, community-led documentation and presentation of the CCC learnings.

While SLQ provides the technical and training resources for CCC, we rely on partner organisations to identify participants and organise and publicise workshops.

The Edge has partnered with Brisbane-based organisations including QPASTT, the Multicultural Development Association and Edmund Rice Flexible Learning Centres. In the Western Downs our partners include Arrow Energy, the Downs Industry School Co-op, Miles High School and Police and Citizens Youth Centres (PCYC) and the Western Downs Regional Council. More recently the CCC - OPAL project has worked with Ayr, Ingham and Dysart libraries.

When we were delivering the program in regional areas it became obvious that the internet access taken for granted in metropolitan or suburban areas is not always available regionally. Compounded by delivering in restricted IT environments such as schools, libraries and juvenile justice facilities, these limitations forced the team to focus on developing solutions that allow for self-contained delivery:

  • The core of the CCC program runs offline - using portable media and/or a LAN
  • Computers are broken down and transported to workshops by facilitators or,
  • Packed and shipped by road on a single standard pallet

Tools, consumables and training materials need to be:

  • Portable
  • Recycled or inexpensive
  • Donated to community where possible

In keeping with The Edge's commitment to open source and Creative Commons licensing, all training materials should be:

  • Creative Commons or open source
  • Transferable - left behind after the workshops
  • Freely available online when possible

Funding from SLQ for regional library development has furthered the development of this training platform and the onsite delivery of pilot programs in Dysart, Ayr and Ingham in April and May 2015. A pallet of computers was shipped to each location, and the workshops were delivered by Lachlan and Andrei.

Behind the scenes

Once the program had been piloted, the feedback and learnings from the pilot resulted in the release of the entire CCC program under a Creative Commons license, with all training, marketing and promotional material provided.

  • about_ccc_history
  • by Andrei Maberley