Volunteering at The Centre for Computing History
The Centre for Computing History needs your help!
Our volunteers are achieving great things but there is so much more we would like to do.
We understand that your time is valuable so offering to volunteer for us is something we really do appreciate.
Whether you live locally or far away we have a number of activities that would really help move the museum forward. We are an 'inclusive' organisation and really want to create 'jobs' for anyone regardless of their capabilities. If you have a specific ability that you think may help us, please do contact us and tell us about it. Otherwise below is a list of potential projects that would help us enormously.
CURRENT REQUIREMENTS (Summer 2016)
eBay Lister - Do you know your way around eBay? If so, we need you at the Centre! We receive lots of donation offers of items that we already have in our archive and handling collections. We sell these items to raise funds for the Centre. This is both a valuable source of income for the Centre and an ethical way for people to recycle computer equipment.
If you have any experience of selling on eBay, you could provide an incredibly valuable service to us, allowing us to raise funds, create storage space and help donors pass on their unwanted equipment. Please contact us on the address below if you would like to help out. We really need your help!
Visitor Guide / Reception - We're looking for 'people people' to help monitor our galleries and welcome visitors. You needn't have a deep knowledge of computing history, as long as you're able to chat and act as a friendly face to visitors. If you do have knowledge, so much the better, but we try to keep conversations on a social level, and talk about how computers have changed our lives. These roles are fun and sociable, and on quiet days you're more than welcome to find a chair and read a book whilst keeping a weather eye on the exhibits!
Our reception desk requires most of the same skills. You needn't have any retail experience - we'll train you up on using the till and how to talk to new arrivals. As long as you're happy to chat, we'd love to have you here.
We also run a simple cafe serving teas and coffees, which is another great place to work if you like to chat and help people enjoy themselves.
Other possible volunteer roles
These are some of the roles our volunteers may undertake. We won't have need of them all the time, but please get in touch if you have something to offer.
If you live locally...
Pac Lunch Shop - We have a very simple cafe but need people that can make tea and coffee, be happy and serve our visitors. Quite often our visitors will chat about their day at the museum while waiting and it a really nice relaxed atmosphere.
Photography - Good quality and multiple images of our exhibits is something we strive for. Edited JPG images can be uploaded to our site using the content management system which immediately updates our website. If you can help us with photography it
Computer Maintenance / Repair - If you have the skills we always have machines in need of TLC. Whether it be a ZX81 or an IBM Supercomputer, we'd like all our machines on display to be working and interactive. Can you help?
Archiving - This involves scanning or photographing the item and completing the online form. This will automatically add the item to our website and document important information about it. This is a vital role and one that needs a number of volunteers. We have over 12,000 items documented on the website. Can you help us increase that?
If you live miles away ...
With the web at our fingertips, volunteering remotely is quite possible ...
Web Buzz - We always need people to write articles about the museum and what it is doing. Publish them on blogs, post to news goups, tweet, facebook, wherever ...
Search Engine Optimisation - Can you help our site race up the search engines? There's a thousand companies that say they can but we need the help of an individual that can help with specific keywords and phrases. We have done a substantial amount of work ourselves, but more is needed, especially with off-site optimisation!
Computing History Timeline - We aim to create the largest, most detailed computer history timeline in the world. You can help us do so. We have many weekly and monthly publications containing date sensitve news and this needs to be entered into our timeline. It can all be done online via our content management system. Playing a part in recording this history and seeing your efforts immediately online is very rewarding.
Computer Write-Ups - We have a huge number of computers and finding time to do good detailed write-ups on them all is difficult. Perhaps you can help? It is simply a case of researching and verifying other sources and compiling your own description. This can be done remotely by logging into our content management system.
Company / People Write-Ups - As well as computers we also have details about companies and people in computing and again finding time to do good detailed write-ups on them all is difficult. Our current list is also no-where near complete. Perhaps you can help? It is simply a case of researching and verifying other sources and compiling your own description. This can be done remotely by logging into our content management system.
Friends of the Museum Group - We would dearly like to organise a friends of the museum group, however, it would need to be managed, we would need to keep them updated on events etc. Can you help set-up this vital support group and run it?
Fundraising - To keep us going we NEED cash! Lots of it! Perhaps you could run a fundrasing event and help us generate that cash? We are a registered charity and donations can be made through Just Giving or through PayPal.
Drop-Off Points - Even simply acting as a drop-off point helps us accept donations of computers and related artefacts. We are trying to arrange a network of drop-off points around the country. All we ask is that you look after the donated items until such time as we can arrange a collection or even better you could drop them into us. If you know a local company that travels from your location to ours regularly would they be happy to act as a free courier?
Graphic Design - We need a graphic designer that can put together event banners, website graphics, flyers and brochures. We are looking someone with a clean contemporary style and maybe a bit of retro fusion thrown in when needed. The look we are after is quite specific, so please email us with examples of your work.
Web Front-End / UI Programmer - There are a couple of features that we would like to develop on the website. We would like to re-vamp the timeline section and create more user interaction. The site is based around a LAMP configuration so knowledge of MySQL, PERL or PHP would be vital. The look and feel of the website is important so if you can make your code look great too, so much the better!
If you are interested in volunteering your time and playing a vital part in our museum, email us with your details, what you are good at and what you would most like to do.
Thank you and we look forward to hearing from you ...