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Bull City Solidarity

Submitted by Lindsay on May 4, 2015 - 11:36am

Approximately 500 or so people converged in front of the Durham Police Precinct for a march in solidarity with Baltimore (organized by the Durham Solidarity Center)  in the wake of the murder of 25 year old Freddie Gray. Citizens from all over the Triangle and all walks of life assembled on the sidewalk and eventually overflowed into the street. The tone of the rally was occasionally somber, but more jubilant than anticipated given the news of charges being brought against the 6 police officers responsible for Grey’s death. Many participants held signs commenting on the problems with police brutality. One woman who waved a large white sign with “Justice for Jesus Huerta” scrawled in big black letters volunteered that her marriage to a west Indian black man decades ago was a cause of much racism, said that she was at the rally because  she couldn’t bear her children living in a world as racist as her own.

Concepts of Coding: Keep Your Nest Clean

Submitted by Kady on April 8, 2015 - 9:21am

It's not uncommon for words that you thought you knew the meaning of to take on a different connotation when relating to computers. "Embed" doesn't just mean snuggle down into a mass of pillows, there's an actual tag called "embed" which performs a specific (albeit similar) function. Another word coders have misappropriated is "nest." In coding HTML you will often want to do several things to one object. In the case of a website, the simplest example is a piece of text. The example I'm going to give you with HTML is not something you will necessarily do anymore, because you can more cleanly accomplish it with CSS, but it will serve for showing the properties of nesting.

Let's say you have some text.

Hello World.

Being a diligent coder, you surround your text with paragraph tags, like so:

<p>Hello World.</p>

And maybe you are really excited about this text, and you want it to be bold. Here's where we have to start worrying about nesting.

Concepts of Coding: If you open it, close it

Submitted by Kady on April 1, 2015 - 9:27am

AKA: If you start it, end it

Have you ever thought about doing a little more customization on your website, and just been overwhelmed when you realized you'd need to know HTML, or Javascript, or CSS, or php or... whatever language you needed and didn't have? It's not unlike being in a foreign country and not speaking the language. BUT! When it comes to computer coding, there's good news. There are certain concepts of writing computer languages that are universal to nearly all coding languages.*

Today we're going to start with open and closed. One very basic concept of coding is that if you open something, you have to close it before the end of your file.

The Field Guide Manifesto

Submitted by Blake on February 19, 2015 - 12:29pm

In about three hours, our first day on the campaign trail will be complete. So far, it has been a fun ride - and there's 59 more to go...

For years now, some form of a Richir Outreach NationBuilder Field Guide has existed as part of an alternate reality. Today, it is closer to a reality than ever before. Throughout our tenure working as a custom NationBuilder shop, we have come across hundreds of well-meaning social justice organizations that wanted to continue their activism online - but didn't really know where to begin. These organizations have world-changing goals and shoe-string budgets. Typically, these organizations are trying to maximize their donors' dollars to serve their mission. Here's what we think - web development for activism shouldn't get in the way of that.

NationBuilder vs Salsa

Submitted by Katie on October 16, 2014 - 10:41am

Richir Outreach works with a variety of CRM's for many clients and under many different circumstances. Two of the popular options out there for our clients are NationBuilder and Salsa. This blog post compares those two platforms on several different levels.

Pricing

Both services charged on a sliding scale, based on the number of people in your database. NationBuilder starts its pricing model at a lower cap, with tiers as low as 200 email-able supporters. This is a pro for smaller organizations who may only have a few hundred or a few thousand supporters. However, NationBuilder tiers appear to stop at about 100,000 email-able supporters, at which point you may have to upgrade the account. Where NationBuilder's pricing model is relatively fixed, Salsa's is more flexible and in the past has allowed organizations to negotiate fees on a case-by-case basis.

Both offer additional services and packages at additional fees. Both have a host of tools and add-ons that come with an extra price tag. These packages are discussed in more detail below.

Politics

Americans for Prosperity Encourage Cats to Vote

Submitted by Kady on September 26, 2014 - 3:26pm

Americans for Prosperity, a national conservative group funded by the Koch brothers, has been “accidentally” sending out misinformation to North Carolina voters and, in some cases, their cats. The News & Observer reports that the information is labeled as an “official” form, and includes conflicting and sometimes incorrect information. It’s almost as if it’s designed to confuse voters rather than help them.

Tell the Koch Brothers and Americans for Prosperity to get out of our elections by signing this petition.

You can also check out the internet’s amusing response to this at votingcats.tumblr.com.

If you are not sure whether you are actively registered to vote, you can enter your name on the North Carolina State Board of Elections Voter Search page to check your current status.

Email Outreach with NGP VAN

Submitted by Megan on August 18, 2014 - 11:37am

At Richir Outreach, we build websites for various organizations, including political campaigns. A task involved in political campaigning might be to send email blasts, or eBlasts for various outreach purposes, fundraising, trying to recruit volunteers, etc. Eblasts are a useful and effective marketing tool for an organization desiring communication with their entire contact database or just a large group of people. NGP has a great reputation on the market for creating products that are useful to political campaigns, specifically their email blast software. Here is a step-by-step tutorial on how one would deliver an eBlast assuming an account is created, with a contact list.

Working with PHP and the NationBuilder API

Submitted by Nicole on August 5, 2014 - 1:43pm

Last year, NationBuilder released their API to the world, allowing applications to interact with Nations. You can find NationBuilder's API documentation here. This blog post will discuss how to create objects through the API.

The first step is understanding how the API and OAuth2 work. When working with OAuth2, the first request your client makes is to obtain an authorization token. Using that token, you can then make other requests through your application. It's important to note this two step process, as other APIs which use requests such as a RESTful or XML-RPC are generally one step processes. 

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