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Study Groups

The BetaPlus Club runs a programme of Study Groups  -  small groups  normally with  a limit of 10 members who meet at 2 - 4 week intervals to study a specific area of computing. Groups enable members to share their knowledge and are sometimes project based. They also include taught sessions where members lead the learning. Study Groups often provide written information and present feedback about their activities to the other members of the Club. Such documents are made available to members on the club web site.

Current Study Groups are:-

Android Group
This group studies all things Android, both phones and tablets. We welcome both beginners and experienced users. We discuss, email,security, apps, printing and pretty much anything else related to using your Android device.
We meet at the West Stoke Village Hall, usually on Monday mornings. Please check the calendar in the Club webite Members' Area for the meeting dates.

Apple Group
The Apple Study Group provides a forum for those Club members who either have an Apple device or are interested in buying one. The objective of the Apple Study Group is to develop a community of interest around Apple's products and applications (MAC and iOS). The topics discussed within the group are determined by group members', but generally the Group addresses:
1. Apple Products
2. Cross Device applications such as Photos, the App Store
3. Education in product updates.
The Group will meet monthly. Please see the Club Calendar for details

Automation Group
Very much a hands on programming group largely aimed at Raspberry Pi and Python and includes other single board computers. We aim to have at least half of each meeting being hands on programming your own device. Our aim is to encourage and support our members to complete projects of their own. Beginners are welcome, although most members have prior programming experience with other languages. Numbers are somewhat restricted due to space at WSVH. Project aims include making Internet of Things devices, robotics, and just about anything you can do with a microcontroller. Our future aims include using other boards like Arduino and ESP8266.

Computing Skills
This group helps members to learn the day-to-day computing skills needed to use our Windows PCs and Tablets successfully. It also investigates and (hopefully) solves individual members'computer and internet problems, and generally looks into topics submitted by members of the group.
The Group meets on the third Wednesday morning of each month at the West Stoke Village Hall.

Digital Photography Group
Today, digital photography is used across many different devices. Learning, sharing and exploring in how to take a better picture, editing, scanning and copying of photos and slides, photo management from phones, tablets and cameras. Photo stitching, simplevideoing and beyond. The subject matter is quite wide but all levels of experience will be addressed. The emphasis will be on a practical approach to extract the most from the sessions.

Pop Up Group
The idea of 'A Pop Up' session is to take a topic that has been identified as something that might be of interest to the members of Betaplus and take a session to introduce it to others. The person with the knowledge of the subject will be the leading/presenting person at the meeting but of course this will vary from session to session. The scope of Pop Up is extensive and could cover anything from new experiences in computing and related technologies, e.g.:a new smart TV and the realisation that it has its own internet connection which opens up another world. Explorations and discussions on say new apps, gadgets, ancestry, ebook management are other examples. The Pop Up approach is flexible, could sometimes be spontaneous but open to new thoughts and shared experiences.

Technical Studies Group
This group is for those who are interested in finding out about issues in setting up and running computers such as hardware, drivers, Operating Systems, Security and Back-Up, Networking and Communications, etc. We also have an interest in the "Internet of Things". Members must be prepared to undertake research and present it to the Group.
The TSG also has a rotating chairmanship: each member is asked to take a turn at finding topics to discuss and chairing the resulting meeting.
The TSG meets on the first Wednesday morning of each month at the West Stoke Village Hall.

Tinkers evolved from a Python group which focussed on absolute beginners who wanted to learn Python. Finding that most Betaplus Python programmers are are also programming Arduinos and robots of one kind or another the group is now much more inclusive. We adopt a rotating chairmanship. See website for meeting dates.

Web Group
This group is to help members build their own web sites. All levels of experience are catered for. Beginners are very welcome and we have a buddy system to help. The club can provide web space to help those getting started. Advice is available on suitable web editing software such as NetObjects Fusion and also how to use ready made sites such as Google sites. We have also studied the two ways to use WordPress. Exciting new web technologies are constantly being explored; responsive web is a current example. We also have some experience of creating Android and Apple Apps. Our prime method of working is to tackle topics raised by our members. The group meets on Friday mornings.