This year, the eighth annual Gender Census was fully funded by Patreon contributions, and there were over 44,000 participants. This was pretty incredible, and as always I had a lot of fun processing the results, which you can read here.
I use Google Sheets to mash the numbers around, and if you've read this year's report you will also know that 44,000 is perilously close to breaking the Google Sheets cell limit of 5 million! It's official, I'm going to have to learn how to use Excel and switch over permanently.
But my current laptop just isn't powerful enough.
What is the situation?
A few years ago I tried to use Excel to process the data (about 10,000 participants) and my computer was alarmingly, nay, unusably slow. This year's participation is likely to be at least four times that.
This year there will be more demographic questions, and it's going to involve many, many hours of work promoting, processing and publishing, and I am very happy to do it, but I will need some better tech!
Are there any perks, or...?
Yeah! If this gets fully funded I will process, write up and publish the UK-only report. I'm not actually sure what else I can offer that I would sustainably be able to do, but I am open to suggestions!
How can we help?
Any amount, big or small, is really helpful, obviously! And whether or not you can donate, sharing the link to this crowdfunder on social media is also really great. Even if you only have 5 followers, one of them might be Tilda Swinton looking for a good cause, you know?
What will you buy?
I'm going with a MacBook Air (the more powerful one), because it's the upgrade for my current laptop and I get on really well with it. It has to be a laptop because I can't sit at a desk for long, due to my genetically terrible collagen (EDS). Also it needs to be light, because if I travel I need to take it with me, so the less weight I have to carry on my elastic band joints the better. It's £1,249.99, so I'm going to round up to £1,300 in the hope that it covers some of the Crowdfunder fees too.
Not gonna lie, it feels extremely cheeky to crowdfund for this; I'm definitely going to use the laptop for non-Gender-Census things all day everyday for the rest of the year, and for many years to come. But when I've discussed it with other people they've presented the following arguments:
- I'm on government income only, due to disability;
- I do all the work for a really useful set of data and some readable reports, and I shouldn't be out of pocket from upgrading if I only need to upgrade because of the Gender Census;
- It'll enable me to do the Gender Census for many years to come;
- People are grateful and want to help!
So I'm just going to go for it and see what happens. Without a doubt, a new and better computer would make next year's Gender Census much easier and less daunting for me!
Anyway, thank you for reading this, and I hope you're all doing well!
Cassian of gendercensus.com