Part of running a hackerspace is doing classes, events and workshops. Classes generally involved a teacher (and TA) and slides or a presentation. Workshops and Events are different from classes, and aren’t covered here. It’s sometimes hard to set rates and costs for classes, and it’s a tricky thing to make classes easy and affordable, but to make enough to support the space, and give people giving the class satisfaction of doing something worth the scratch.

I’ve heard some advice from different spaces on how to plan classes and costs, and (for me) one of the toughest parts was coming up with a decent cost for classes. My personal guidelines for the ‘don’t-expect-to-make-money’ classes (take it or leave it) is below. I use this for my own classes and events, and find it useful. If you also do classes or events, feel free to give us feedback on how you price yours, either by leaving a comment on the weblog, or updating the page on our wiki with your guidelines.
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Hackerspaces Video: Hive76

We were featured on Vimby.com… Andrew Watson did a great job shooting it. Here’s the video.


Edit: fixed embed code that Vimby borked. -eagleapex

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Hackerspaces in Space

Workshop88 from Chicago sent us this awesome contest information…

 

Rules
  • One team per hackerspace. Any size build team, but only 10 people for the launch and retrieval team.
  • Payload must be under 4 pounds.
  • Parts cost limit of $250.00. Must show receipts or have other proof of purchase.
  • Payload must return with pictures taken from the flight.
  • Only one official launch per team allowed. Notice of official launches must be given by 8 a.m., and a judge must be
  • present for the launch to count.
  • All local laws and ordinances must be followed throughout the entire competition.
  • Balloon camera must take pictures of the curvature of the earth.
  • The Event Board may judge any other conduct considered outside “the spirit” of the event and disqualify a team
  • that does not adhere to it by majority vote.
  • Scoring
  • Retrieval Time Base: 50 points. 1 point off for every minute past 45 minutes.
  • Weight of Payload 5 points added for every 1/2 pound under 4 lb.
  • Cost of Setup Base: 50 points. 0.5 points off for every dollar over $150.
  • Total Points Retrieval Time Score + Weight Score + Cost Score

Event Board & Judges

  • Judges are members of each hackerspace, and will be submitted to the Event Board. They will ensure all rules are followed.
  • One person from each hackerspace will be on the Event Board. The Event Board will oversee the event, judge each applicant, and declare winners.

Dates

  • Competition starts immediately upon challenges going out.
  • Teams will indicate acceptance of challenge by March 1, 2010 (either at workshop88.com/space, or the attached PDF form).
  • Launches will be held between June 1, 2010 and August 31, 2010.
  • Results of the official launch must be sent in by September 7, 2010.
  • Winner will be announced on or before September 30, 2010.
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We love MakerBot, but we needed a better way to print larger objects (like parts for a Mendel). So I started experimenting in the lab at UPenn for how to get a heated platform up and working on 3D-PO.

The first design involved multiple layers of silicone fused together around a nichrome core. We told MakerBot about it, and they wanted more! Then Eberhard Rensch in Germany heard about it (go Internets!), and he went to town on a simplified software design. Awesome!

Of course the design is very simple, totally open (and transparent!). Hooray for Universities. So Mike and I bought a bunch of materials, refined the design a bit, and made a bunch more platforms. It was pretty risky but we trusted our gut and listened to all the awesome members right here at our favorite hackerspace. And we also made use of plenty of Hive resources to get the job done.

But we had gotten ahead of ourselves a bit… we don’t have the infrastructure to sell/invoice/ship/advertise this type of product. We could build that infrastructure, but we really love the core MakerBot community and don’t want to see market fragmentation. So we shipped them off to MakerBot to sell through their store. Check out this blog post and also the wiki page explaining how it works and how to use it.

It’s been an awesome experience: idea -> it works! -> invest in yourself -> Success!!

And about that Mendel… Fynflood’s assembling like gangbusters, check it out!!

 

We here at the Hive are (un?)fortunate enough to have two large windows that don’t seem to want to stay open (read: safety hazard). What are we supposed to do with stuff that doesn’t work the way it should? Use it for something else, of course!

We are looking to increase some of our greenery and reduce our grocery bills by growing food and herbs at the space. Now, with your pizza or burrito, you can enjoy a fresh picked geek salad!

Though the build specifics(?) still need to be hashed out, you can be sure to see some plants in our 5th story windows this spring.

 

In case you missed it, Hive76 and Make:Philly collaborated to get Project Giant Operation done, and it was an awesome success. Make:Philly and Hive76, great job.

Check out this rad video from Tango Echo:


If you want to see the game in action, you still have a chance to on January 30th. Check out this weekends special event by Body Worlds 2, or Franklin Institute

 

Open House with Mitch Altman

Open House with Mitch was awesome. We had a fantastic turnout, and a lot fun was had. We look forward to his next visit.



 

Giant Operation board by Hive76 and Make:PhillyMake:Philly folks and Hive76 got together back in November and December to build a GIANT version of the board game Operation for an event they were having. We spent 3-4 weekends working on it, and got some nifty coverage of it by Tango-Echo ‘zine.

The project was for a Body Words 2 event at The Franklin Institute back in December. Unfortunately, the event got snowed out that weekend when we got a (mini) snow storm.

We just got notice that the event has been put back on the calendar for Jan 30th. The kids will be playing the board game ‘Operation’ form 11AM to 1PM, with the final round being played on our GIANT Operation board we built! Come on out, check out what we make and do!

Summary:
Operation Event, with Make:Philly & Hive76 GIANT Operation Board
Saturday Jan 30th from 11AM to 1PM
The Franklin Institute
222 N. 20th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103

 

Far McKon and Digital Snowart at 26C3

Far McKon and Digital Snowart at 26C3


Through some kind of GROSS error on their part (do they know what they are getting into?) I’m going to be speaking at Philadelphia Area Computer Society (aka PACS ) this weekend. I have no idea how or why I got through their sanity filters, but there is my name, on the schedule for a talk.

I’m going to be talking about Hackerspaces, how they relate to Software Libre and distributed software projects, and why the are going to take over the world (peacefully). I’m going to have a blast talking, and I hope I’m entertaining to the folks listening.

If anyone wants to come watch me make a fool of myself in person, the meeting is at the Community Center at the Super Giant Food Store of Willow Grove, and my talk starts at 12 Noon, and there is great stuff before and after it.

If you want to come and are not a member, You’ll probably need to grab a guest pass (from the right sidebar). Hopefully this is a first step in Hive76 and PACS working together on great stuff around Philly!

Hacker Dojo on Fox News

Hacker Dojo managed to get a decent video piece out of Fox News. The idea of talking about what hackers really are (hint: not criminals) and tying modern spaces to older movements like Homebrew Computer Club. I’m going to leave the editorial comments about quality of reporting to someone in the comments section, and just post the video.

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