Hello, and welcome to Ubuntu California! On this page, we'll give you some pointers for how to get involved with our community. We'll cover how to get onto our discussion channel and mailing list, where to find the projects we're working on, and how to use our resources to stay up to date with team events and to help with personal advocacy.
We have an email list that we use for announcements and discussion. If you join the list, you can then email the whole team just by sending email to that address, and you'll receive messages that other people send. We use this to make announcements and to discuss upcoming projects. To join the list, visit the list's info page, put your email address into the first text box under "Subscribing to Ubuntu-us-ca", and click "Subscribe". You'll get a confirmation email with a link to click to make sure that you want to join the list. Once you click that, you're all set!
Our IRC channel is a "chat room" for real-time communication with other team members. It has a smaller audience than the mailing list, but is useful for less-serious discussions and for planning events. It's also where we have meetings every two weeks. If you've never used IRC before, it's really easy to get started: you already have everything you need! You can connect straight from your web browser by visiting freenode's webchat page, putting in a nickname (It needs to be something unique, and freenode is a large network, so be creative!), and clicking "Connect". After a few seconds of loading, you'll be in the channel! It's just like using an instant messaging client, except with a group of people instead of one person. The list on the right-hand side says who's in the channel right now, though people often "idle" (stay connected when they're not around) so they might not talk right away. If you want to use an actual program, instead of a webpage, to connect, there's a list of "IRC clients" on Ubuntu's general IRC page that you can click to get instructions.
As I said, we have meetings every two weeks on IRC. You can find more information about them on our meeting page, including the date and time of the next one, our agenda, and a summary of each previous meeting. If you have any questions about our meetings, let us know in the IRC channel or on the mailing list, and we'll help!
There's also another site you should get set up with, called Launchpad. Launchpad is the system that all of Ubuntu uses to keep track of membership, activities, and voting. We currently don't use it for much, but it'll be more important in the future, so you should get set up with it now. To join our Launchpad team, visit the ~ubuntu-california page and click "Join this team". If you don't have an account already, follow the instructions under "Not registered yet?" to make one. If you do, login (if you haven't already) and click to apply to join the team. You also need a Launchpad account to edit our wiki pages, which is our next topic!
The wiki is really easy to describe and use: you're using it right now, in fact! Ubuntu Wiki is a set of team pages that can be edited by anyone with a Launchpad account. All of our pages begin with https://wiki.ubuntu.com/CaliforniaTeam. If you look at the Ubuntu California menu near the top of this page, you'll see links to all of the various sections of our section of the wiki. For example, there's the Meetings page, which I mentioned earlier, and this page! Another page you might find interesting is our projects page. It has a list of all the events we've done in the past, all the upcoming events, and LoCo resources that we're working on. Take a look and see if there's anything you'd like to help with or that you can use!
Finally, if you use social networking sites, we have a few places you can subscribe to if you'd like to get news about upcoming events and meetings. We have accounts on and Twitter, and a Facebook page and Google+ page that post announcements. We also have a subforum on Ubuntu Forums.
That concludes our whirlwind tour of ways you can get involved with Ubuntu California! We've covered how to join our mailing list, IRC channel, and Launchpad group. You now know a little about our wiki, and where to find information on the projects we do. And if you use social networking sites, you can visit our pages there, too. If you'd like more information about our resources, or need help with them, feel free to ask on IRC or our mailing list for help, or contact one of the administrators for the thing you're having trouble with! If you have any feedback about this page or advice on how to make it easier to read, we'd love to hear from you. Thanks for reading!