This site was last updated in 2011. I've kept it here for historical reasons, but I haven't worked on it in ages. If you are interested in the ideas you find here, send me a note. I'm still keen on the idea!
Rakontu is free and open source software that small groups of people can use together to share and work with their stories. It's for people in neighborhoods, families, interest groups, support groups, work groups: any group of people with stories to share. Rakontu members build shared "story museums" that they can draw upon to achieve common goals.
Rakontu is about small groups sharing stories for a reason. Rakontu communities are private spaces where people share personal experiences about something they all care about and in the process build something they can all use. Usually people in a Rakontu community will have something they want to do together, some common goal, and they will be interested in collecting and working with their stories as a means of getting there.The Rakontu elevator pitch gives you a quick-skim overview of what Rakontu is for and like.
Rakontu the software is in deep sleep, waiting for an opportunity to be recreated. It is still theoretically usable, but as it has not been developed for two(?) years and its platform (the Google App Engine) has moved on, it would need some attention to get actually working again.
Rakontu the idea is hopefully traveling the world enjoying the varied hospitality of many fine minds.
Take a look at the screencast tour, screenshots or features pages to find out more. (Actually, that's what Rakontu was like; but looking at these things should still give you a pretty good idea of the point of the thing.)
Rakontu is free and open source (GPL) software; anyone can use it. To start a new Rakontu, get a free Google App Engine account and install Rakontu on it. (You can still do that! But as we are no longer supporting the GAE version you have to make your way through making it work for you. Still works last we checked but that was a while ago ...)
I'm Cynthia Kurtz, a researcher and consultant in the field of organizational and community narrative. I created Rakontu as part of my effort to bring the methods and ideas of the field to aid every small group with a goal. The other part of the effort is my free on-line book Working with Stories.
Check out the theory page for more information about Rakontu's origin, concepts, purpose, goals and vision. If you need even more information contact me at cfkurtz at cfkurtz.com.