Early Latter-day Saints contributed their time and talents to build temples or work on Church farms, often when they were beset by harsh trials of their own. Today we have a similar opportunity to build the kingdom through our consecrated time and talent, but rather than chiseling stone for temples or toiling in the field, we can help build software applications for the Church. Even contributing a few hours a week can have a tremendous effect when the effort is multiplied by thousands of volunteers.
Regardless of your background, you can contribute to the technological work of the Church through the LDSTech community. If you have experience with software development, quality assurance and testing, interaction design, technical writing, usability, project management, database engineering, web design, or another skill, you can help build applications that will move the work forward. Nearly every tech-savvy member can contribute to a project. If you have IT skills and you want to volunteer to help build the kingdom, the LDSTech community needs your help.
What’s the experience like?
In the LDSTech community, volunteers work on teams. Teams can consist of as few as 5 members to 35 people or more. Each team is led by one or more project managers, who divide up the work based on team members’ skills and strengths.
The team members use virtual tools such as Skype or Internet Relay Chat (IRC) as they work together to solve problems, write code, test, design, engineer, prototype, and do everything else that’s needed to complete the application or product. Monthly LDSTech Service Days let volunteers work closely with their ICS counterparts in central locations.
How do I get started?
To get started on a community project, follow these steps:
Sign up for an LDS Account. Your LDS Account allows you to log in to Church websites, including LDSTech, with a single user name and password. Most likely you already have an LDS Account. If you don’t, go to https://ldsaccount.lds.org and register for one.
Sign in to LDSTech. Go to https://tech.lds.org, sign in with your LDS Account, and click Projects. The Projects tab has all the information about LDSTech community projects. This is where you can browse project descriptions, see team activity, and more.
Sign the Individual Contributors License. You'll be prompted to sign this agreement before you can view the list of projects. This agreement allows the Church to use the work you contribute. The license does not prohibit you from using your contributions for purposes separate from the project.
Complete the Profile and Skills submenus. Your profile and skills helps other team members get to know your skills and experience. The fields marked with a red asterisk (*) are required.
Join a project. After you sign the Individual Contributors License Agreement and complete your profile, you can browse and join community projects. To view the list of projects, click the Projects submenu. All projects are listed with brief descriptions. Click the project name to view more details about the project. To join a project, click Join on the project's detail page.
Contact the project manager. Don't wait for someone to contact you after you join a project. Introduce yourself to the project manager. The project manager's e-mail address is listed on the project page. Let the project manager know you've joined the project, describe your skills and desire to help out, and ask what tasks he or she would like you to work on.