Engaging with the next generation: A Tale of Software, Skateboards, and Raspberry Ice Cream
06-13, 15:30–16:50 (Europe/Prague), A218

The book Ada & Zangemann (licensed under Creative Commons BY-SA) tells the story of the famous inventor Zangemann and the girl Ada, a curious tinkerer. Ada begins to experiment with hardware and software, and in the process realizes how crucial it is for her and others to control technology.

During the last months, Matthias has read the book to >1000 children (from 6 years onwards) and adults, at schools, libraries, or other events. Afterward the readings there are long discussions about how technology works, aspects of sharing software, helping others to use technology to shape their future, and other ethical questions. There were programming workshops afterwards, and in some cases we had ice cream machines at the reading. It was an amazing experience getting standing ovations from 160 3rd graders in a cinema, 30 children who want to get a high five on the school yard after a reading, over 100 children translating the book into French, or children doing project weeks with their teacher about the book, or young girls telling you they now want to start programming.

Together we will read the illustrated story (~33 minutes), Matthias will briefly share experiences from readings, and we will discuss concepts how to engage with younger audiences about Free Software. The goal is to enable each participant to better connect with young audiences about technology and together further develop a reusable tool kit for such readings: https://git.fsfe.org/FSFE/ada-zangemann/src/branch/main/Readings-Organisation.md

"This book illustrates the power of free and open source software in a way that's both fun and accessible." - Chris Wright, CTO and open source technologist

The book is published in English, German, French, and Italian, translated into Arabic, Dutch, Ukrainian, Valencian, and more translations are currently on the way.

All materials of the book is available under https://git.fsfe.org/FSFE/ada-zangemann/

Matthias Kirschner is President of FSFE. In 1999 he started using GNU/Linux and realised that software is deeply involved in all aspects of our lives. Matthias is convinced that this technology has to empower society not restrict it. While studying Political and Administrative Science he joined FSFE in 2004.

He helps other organisations, companies and governments to understand how they can benefit from Free Software -- which gives everybody the rights to use, understand, adapt, and share software -- and how those rights help to support freedom of speech, freedom of press or privacy.

Recently, in his spare time, he has written the book "Ada & Zangemann - A Tale of Software, Skateboards, and Raspberry Ice Cream", which is available at publishers in English, German, French, and Italian, and translated into Arabic, Valencian, Danish, and Ukrainian.