Extensis Volunteers at the Oregon Food Bank
Most people know Portland as a great city with great people, microbrews, coffee, and liquid sunshine (rain), but what makes Portland even better is our sense of community. For many years, Extensis has given employees paid time off for volunteering. On March 3rd, a group of about 20 Extensis employees decided to give back by volunteering at the Oregon Food Bank. Our tasks were divided into shifts.
Shift 1: Put the lime in the coconut or perhaps just put the coconut in the bag.
We spent a couple hours packaging, labeling and repackaging 3,800 pounds of shredded coconut from 40 pound bales. We also may have had a few small food fights, created a mess and tried to have friendly competition to see who could package the coconut the fasted. All this activity led to creating 3,100 hundred meals for local families. What can you do with so much coconut? Make delicious, tropical granola, top off yogurt or eat it by hand as a mid-day snack. It sounds great, but many of us will be taking a few days off from anything coconut related.
Shift 2: It’s a myth. One bad apple does not spoil the whole bunch.
We took several 1,000 pound crates of apples and packaged them into individual mesh bags, which by the time you get to the bottom of the barrel – there were definitely some that were spoiled. Although mom is right about almost everything, she was wrong about one bad apple spoiling the whole bunch. We packaged over 15,500 pounds of apples which created over 13,000 meals for families in Oregon.
Both shifts generated over 16,100 meals and packaged a whooping 19,300 pounds of food!
Thank you to the Oregon Food Bank for having us and thank you to those unheralded volunteers who help make Oregon special. Let’s all remember how blessed we are and be sure to give back more often.
For more information on the Oregon Food Bank, please visit www.oregonfoodbank.org
For the Thanksgiving Holiday, Extensis teamed up with Portland’s Metropolitan Family Resources, a non-profit organization that provides emergency support services to families in need.
Though Metropolitan Family Resources doesn’t typically doesn’t offer a Thanksgiving program, they were gracious enough to assist Extensis by providing us with two families to adopt for the holiday.
A whole week of activities was planned at Extensis. For a small fee, employees could request customized drinks from Blue Kangaroo Coffee Roasters or have lunch brought in from Los Gorditos, but the main activity was the breakfast feast on Thursday. Customer Service whipped up bacon, sausage (fresh from the meat market), eggs and French toast.
All the hard work paid off, because when the donation drive was over, we had enough donations to provide each family with a Thanksgiving meal they won’t forget and a gift card to Fred Meyer (a local grocery store). Extensis also provided Metropolitan Family Resources with several gift cards to go towards other families in need this holiday season.
If you’re interested in finding out more about Metropolitan Family Center services, you can visit them at http://www.metfamily.org/.
A single guy, Doug Wilson, is trying to do something important: create a movie to capture the relevance of the Linotype machine. And we want to help him.
If you can give a dollar- or $20- to the project, we can all help get this movie made.
The Society of Typographic Aficionados (SOTA) has launched Font Aid IV, a project that will raise funds for the relief efforts in Haiti.
Font Aid IV raises funds for the organization Doctors Without Borders through the creation and sale of a custom collaborative font created entirely of ampersands. You can participate by submitting your own ampersand, as well as by purchasing the finished typeface through a variety of typeface distributors.
Submit your black and white “ampersand” icon for the benefit font. It should be a vector image file, not a bitmap. Keep it simple, not too crazy. Send it in EPS format to firstname.lastname@example.org by January 29th, 2010.
When the font is available I’ll also post a link to the foundries that have it for sale.
So, Extensis has been in the business of creating quality computer software for 15 years! To celebrate this fact, and to celebrate the release of Universal Type Server, we had to get together for a fun little party in the courtyard of our office building.
The party included good food, carnival games and a fund raising raffle to benefit the Oregon Food Bank. As one of the carnival games, the executive staff sat in a virtual dunk tank with a balloon suspended over their heads. Some of the pictures of that game alone will keep us chuckling for a long time in the office.
More to come later, so stay tuned to Manage This!
March 31st, 2008 by Jim Kidwell
We work with a wide variety of organizations at Extensis – from the largest Fortune 500 companies to sole proprietorships. In addition to for-profit companies, we also work with a wide variety of non-profit groups who each pursue causes close to their hearts.
We recently donated our Extensis Portfolio software to a group who works to foster creativity in young people. The group, Destination ImagiNation® organizes competitive events that allow students to work on problem-solving and creative skills.
I asked Wayne Kurtzman who volunteers as the Web Team Lead for Destination ImagiNation to tell us a little about his organization and how they utilize Extensis Portfolio to help them with their events.
“My team of volunteer photographers have the unique job of capturing the world’s largest student creativity tournament, Destination ImagiNation Global Finals. The top student creativity teams from most states and various countries advance through various tournaments to Global Finals.
Destination ImagiNation, or “DI” is a non-profit, school-friendly program where teams of up to seven students solve complex Challenges that incorporate core school subjects with a focus that is based in Technical and Mechanical Design, Structural and Architectural Design, Science, Theatrical/Literary/Fine Arts, Improvisation, Research, or International Studies – or a blend of several disciplines. This is the ultimate “kids hands-on; adults hands-off” program, as all the ideas, planning and execution must be done solely by the students.
No team solution is the same – an insane task for the photographers and videographers (and is part of the fun!). Their pictures must tell the story of Global Finals and DI – and transcend language, as many teams come from non-English speaking countries.
When we arrive at the University of Tennessee, host site for the 8,000+ students at Global Finals, we have a matter of hours to setup and test the infrastructure before the first photos start coming in. This requires us to use Portfolio to help us get everything done. Here’s our basic workflow:
- The photographer shoots, then catalogs the images with Portfolio using the Copy/Move/Rename feature to uploads their photos from their camera’s flash drive to a shared drive.
- From the large batch of images added to the catalog, the photographer uses Portfolio to create a gallery of images that are worthy to publish on the web.
- For the selected images, the photographer adds pertinent metadata: a full description of the images including school, city, state/province and country of children in the photo – no small feat with thousands of children at an event!
- When the photographer is satisfied that the gallery of images is ready for publication, the photographer then renames the gallery to start with an underscore. This puts it at the top of the list of galleries, and indicates to the editors that the gallery is ready for the next step.
- The editor takes the gallery of original images. as well as the preview images created by Extensis Portfolio, and implements a custom CSS for a web page that is compatible with the Linux web server.
- The entire package of images, preview, originals and HTML is then FTP’ed to the site and linked.
In addition to the competition, many other events ranging from speakers to an alumni meeting to sponsor showcases all add to the positive atmosphere where creativity is expected – and needs to be captured, cataloged, captioned and published. Quickly.
The down side of the methodology is tweaking something requires the album be republished and uploaded again. The team, made up of professional, amateur and talented program alumni, has gotten very good at getting their photos right the first time. Now, less than 0.05% of photos ever need adjustments to the text, image or otherwise.
The up side is huge: We have well organized photos with tags that can be easily recalled when making marketing collateral, need a web site image or a photo for a sponsor.
After the evening shoots (around midnight), the day’s photos are reviewed to see if we missed any good ones in our rush to get new content to the web.
During the event itself, GlobalFinals.org has over 10,000 unique visitor sessions an hour from families and classrooms around the US and the world. We compliment the photos with several live video streams, including that of opening and closing ceremonies.
We’re proud to help Destination ImagiNation with this event and wish everyone involved the best of success. If you’re interested in the event, be sure to check out the event site and volunteer opportunities.
- What: Destination ImagiNation Global Finals
- Web: www.GlobalFinals.org
- When: May 21st through May 24th
- Where: University of Tennessee
- To Volunteer: click here
For photos of last year’s event check out d2k7.globalfinals.org.
More information about Destination ImagiNation can be found at DestinationImagiNation.org.