Building a hacker space in Leeds A short talk From Jonathan Powell
Terminology Hackers: people who take things apart to see how they work. Makers: people who build or repair things themselves instead of buying them.
Hacker spaces NCY Resistor. A hacker space in central New York with some tremendous output and a huge web presence. Chaos Computer Club. A huge affiliation of hackers in Germany with a number of venues around the country.
Geeks in Leeds GeekUp Leeds WYLUG linux user group Leeds Ruby Thing Agile Yorkshire And more... Lots of chances to meet each other
We met up and got excited “Hey! Let's make robots!” “Does anyone know how I can automate my house?” “How hard is it to build a hovercraft?” “Those 3D printers look cool. Let's build one!”
Wait, how do we build a robot? “How much will the kit cost?” “Can I borrow your tools?” “I don't know how to program...” “Where will we build it?”
Leeds has nowhere to build stuff We need our own workshop. We need a hacker space.
So... We got excited and raised money. Viewed some potential venues. Formed a company and did the sums.
Money is intimidating Weren't eligible for any sort of funding. We had no projects. Not eligible for grants when all you have is a lot of enthusiasm.
Hack Day! To drum up more support and keep momentum, we hosted a day-long event. Workshops and talks. Very well attended!
We built a car out of hard drives. We heard how one man takes photos from space by building his own blimp. We met more hackers and makers.
Breakthrough! The venue was looking further out of our reach But we found a cheap space in Holbeck, which is now our home.
Now... We make things We learn things We drink lots of tea
From start to space It took 11 months. That's not bad, is it?
Income 100% donations and membership fees. Only now, when we don't need grants, are we eligible for one.
Next step To put ourselves on the map. We're going to build awesome things and we're going to SHOUT about them.
Then we'll expand We still want a city centre venue. More events. More workshops. Always open. Always busy.
Watch out for us... Online At Light Night At Maker Faire