Race for the Future! Design it, build it, race it!

Attention all hackers and hackerspace members! The Alternate Power Initiative wants YOU to design and build an alternative energy vehicle! Their second annual “Race for the Future” will be held in August, 2011 in Whiting, Indiana. Better hurry! There are only 20 entries, and hackerspace Pumping Station: One has already claimed two of them! Who will be next?

Race to the Future

Attention all hackers and hackerspace members! Do you like creating with atoms instead of bits? Would you like to win fame and fortune? The Alternate Power Initiative wants YOU to design and build an alternative energy vehicle! Their second annual “Race for the Future” will be held in August, 2011 in Whiting, Indiana.

This race challenges you to:

Build a vehicle that can travel five miles powered by an alternate power source and race it through the streets of Whiting Indiana.

Here’s a subset of the rules:

  • Vehicle may not be powered solar energy or fuel cells
  • Vehicle may not be powered by a device based on existing conventional automotive or truck technology. Piston engines, rotary engines or turbines powered by detonated combustion gasses are not allowed. Piston engines, rotary engines or turbines powered by other sources will be allowed. These gasses would include but not be limited to those created by using gasoline, diesel, natural gas, propane methane or alcohol as fuel.
  • Vehicle must be self propelled (no pedal power)
  • Vehicle may not be powered by battery or capacitor stored electricity, (brake lights and turn signals may be powered by electricity).
  • Vehicle may be charged, (fueled or energized) before 5 mile trial but may not be charged, (fueled or energized) during run.

For full details, visit their website at http://alternatepowerinitiative.com!

Here are the rules and the entry form.

Better hurry! There are only 20 entries, and hackerspace Pumping Station: One has already claimed two of them! Who will be next?

If you sign up, please post in the comments!

Hackerspace Awards: Call for Categories

Do you know a project that has greatly improved the quality of your hackerspace?

What about a project that costs much, much less than the average off-the-shelf solution?

What about an astounding innovation that you’re used to seeing from the corporate sector, but
was designed in your home town’s hackerspace?

These projects and more are what the Hackerspace Awards would like to recognize.  Over the next few weeks members of all hackerspaces are invited to suggest award categories and post  them on the Hackerspace Awards wiki page.

Projects nominated to each category will be subjectively judged by a panel made up of one member from each hackerspace.  Dates and categories are not set in stone yet, but keep watch here at hackerspaces.org for additional information.  Once set, any project may be nominated for a category, with self-nominations encouraged.

Alongside the Merit Based Awards, the Workshop88 guys have offered to make their Hackerspaces In Space (HSIS) event the Competitve leg of the Hackerspace Awards.  The HSIS competition is encouraging all hackerspaces to launch a Balloon Satallite for as light, and as cheaply as possible,  and return with pictures of the Earth’s horizon.

As of the writing of this article, there are over 18 hackerspaces signed up to compete! The launches are set to begin on June 1st, and end August 31st.

For more details on the HSIS Competition, please visit:  http://workshop88.com/space/

To get involved in the creation of the Hackerspace Awards, visit:

http://hackerspaces.org/wiki/Hackerspace_Awards/Brainstorm
Or send an email to awards@hackerspaces.org

Updates: As March 5th, 2009, there are 29 groups signed up to compete in the HSIS!

Hackerspaces Xchange is now open for business!

In an effort to kickstart more cooperation between spaces, the Hackerspaces Xchange is now open!  It’s rather sparse at the moment, but I’m hoping you all can help change that and move hackerspace cooperation to the next level.  How to use it is simple.  Just add a picture/video of what your space is wanting to swap/share with other spaces and remove the image/video when it’s been exchanged.  Pretty simple right?  So get to helping out other spaces!

International Synchronous Hackathon!

What started as a few US hackerspaces having a hackathon the same weekend, has turned into an international synchronous hackathon!  Most if not all spaces will be streaming live video this weekend, Nov. 20th-22nd, at various points throughout.  So even if you’re not participating it’ll be a prime time to check out some other hackerspaces and possibly interact with them via live chat in #hackerspaces on irc.freednode.net .  The following spaces are participating as of the posting of this :

Alpha One Labs
Makers Local 256
Pumping Station: One
FAMiLab
FreesideAtlanta
syn2cat
Hackerspace_Barcelona
Hive13
Initlab
KwartzLab
TOG
Tetalab
Ann_Arbor_Hackerspace

Please see the wiki page for more details/updates, including links to the live streams.

Pecha Kucha – Gumbo Labs Style

What is Pecha Kucha?

What is a Ignite Talk?

To put it simply they are all speed talking sessions, think lightening talks. That’s it, new branding, same old excellent thing for inputing a broad range of information in a short amount of time to people who don’t know anything about a particular field.

So the interesting thing people always ask, is, what is a hacker or hackerspace. Well…. Simon Dorfman from Gumbo Labs explains it really well inside of 5 minutes.

Simon Dorfman’s Pecha Kucha Presentation about Gumbo Labs from Gumbo Labs on Vimeo.

Membership idea: The Starving Hacker rate?

From @PumpingStation1:

The Starving Hacker Rate has passed! If you support the hacker community now is a good time! http://bit.ly/4d4t97

Regular membership in Chicago’s Pumping Station: One is $50.  However, they just passed the “Starving Hacker” rate, which allows for all the same privileges of membership, except voting rights.

What do you guys think?  Have you contemplated something similar in your hackerspace?

Done Filming!

I’ll admit, this post is coming a bit late, but we’re still recovering from our month-long sleepless, caffeinated, sprint across North America. On the plus side, we’re done filming! We visited as many hackerspaces and makerspaces as we could in a month, but that was the easy part….

Now begins the post-production work.

We’ll be working for a quite a while on getting everything just right, so unfortunately I can’t give an exact date of release. I can, however, tell you that we’re going to try to have it done by next spring. Believe me, we’re just as excited to see the finished film as you are!

I want to say thank you to the dozens of people who helped us out along the way. Without the car trips, beds, and donations of both hackerspace members and kind strangers, there is absolutely no way we could have done this. We may have had the cameras, but it was all of you who made this possible. Thank you!!

For updates on the film, check out www.twohandsproject.com! I’ll do my best to keep all of you in the loop here on hackerspaces.org as well.

Hackerspaces Visit CERN: Deadline Monday!

CMS experiment (100 meters underground) @ CERN
CMS experiment (100 meters underground) @ CERN, Courtesy of Zipckr

This just in from the Hackerspaces Discuss list:

The /tmp/lab is organizing a group visit of CERN, the world’s largest particle
physics laboratory close to Geneva.

We have to give a 4-6 month advance notice, which probably brings the visit to
February/March 2010. Because I must give an estimate of the attendees, I would
be grateful if you subscribe before Monday Oct 19th.

Link: http://www.tmplab.org/wiki/index.php/Hackers_at_CERN

While you’re there, maybe you should go try to find this little piece of history:

This machine is a se[rver!] DO NOT POWE[R IT] DOWN!! (Courtesy of Cory Doctorow)
This machine is a se(rver!) DO NOT POWE(R IT) DOWN!! (Courtesy of Cory Doctorow)

* * *

UPDATE!

Unfortunately, the list for /tmp/lab’s CERN excursion is FULL!
However, as there seems to be such a huge interest in making the trip still, probably somebody wants to step forward & start a list for a second group? [hint, hint]

site upgrade

Thanks to our night shift teamwork with Georgyo, we’re now running the latest Mediawiki, a brand new kernel and cleaned up the Apache2 configuration to avoid name clashes between sites. Yeah, it’s all behind the scenes and you may have missed it, but it’s done. 🙂 Thanks to Astera for backup! Support Abbenay!

A passing of a friend and fellow hacker

Dear hackers,

Just this weekend, our fellow hacker Leah Kubik, who some of you might’ve had the luck to call a friend, or the chance to meet at HAR in the Netherlands as part of the Hackers on a Plane 2.0 crew, tragically passed away.

The Sun writes on Friday:

A playful, late-night search for ghosts inside a University of Toronto landmark ended in tragedy yesterday when a 29-year-old woman plunged to her death. Leah Kubik, who was just two weeks shy of her 30th birthday, was found without vital signs inside a courtyard at 1 Spadina Cres. just before 2 a.m.

Kubik and a man were on a first date and were believed to be exploring an old building rumoured to be haunted, Toronto Police Const. Wendy Drummond told the Sun.

Leah was a fantastic cocktail maker, a huge Linux and open source advocate, and an excellent systems security administrator – her sudden death leaves a hole in the lives of her beloved ones, friends and collegues, as well as the hacker community.

Sincerest condolences from the hackerspaces team.