Hackaday is looking for a full time project builder/ video host!

Hackaday.com is looking for an experienced hacker/writer to join our team doing original hacking and modding projects on video. Are you energetic, outgoing, and passionate about hacking/modding? Can you solder AND explain what you’re doing and why? Come join our team and modify/hack/create things daily with a professional film crew to be aired on HackADay, then post a writeup detailing how you did your hack. Let your mind run wild, combine Mythbusters with Ben Heck, can you do it?

To be able to do this job successfully you need to be energetic, passionate and knowledgeable about hacking. The person who is perfect for this job will have experience with computer modding, hobby robotics, basic electronics, microcontroller programming, as well as some larger manufacturing skills like running a CNC mill and welding. Take a look at Hackaday.com to see the kinds of projects we would like to see created. Writing/blogging experience is a plus.

Job duties will include:
-following trends to see what the latest awesome hack would be
-brainstorming your own original hacks and mods
-executing those hacks
-breaking down the hacks to educate the viewers

This is a full-time, in-house position at our Santa Monica office. Pay is $30-$40k a year based on experience and includes benefits. To apply, please submit a cover letter and resume to our online job board (http://mhlo.co/ed886g). In your cover letter tell us why you’d be the best fit for the job, and please feel free to include any links to personal hacks/projects, or any future hack ideas you’d bring to HackADay.

Comments

  1. bogdan says:

    Wish i lived in the US….
    Looks like you we’re going to have a hack show. Can’t wait to watch it.

    Good luck HAD!

  2. NoX says:

    Indeed that would be a perfect job!!
    But I’m from Spain and my spoken English would be the fun of all people! :-D

  3. Chris Rojas says:

    sweet gig. You should make them post an application video and let HAD followers vote on the winner.

  4. Ninja says:

    that’s actually not a bad idea. ^^

  5. James says:

    Outgoing, passionate, knowledgeable hacker? Oxymoron! The wisest men/women are the least outspoken.

    You need to choose between someone who knows some fundamentals and is really fun and good at presenting, or someone who knows a lot and is not quite as good at presenting. You won’t find someone who is the best at both, it’s impossible.

    It does sound like a great opportunity though, and I’m sure some university graduates would love to do this.

  6. Bergo says:

    “You need to choose between someone who knows some fundamentals and is really fun and good at presenting, or someone who knows a lot and is not quite as good at presenting. You won’t find someone who is the best at both, it’s impossible.”

    jeri ellsworth, and ben heck come to mind as fitting their description. I’m sure it’s possible to find someone. Although, it’s hard to say if 40K buys you that skillset, I suppose it depends on the living costs in that region, which I am unfamiliar with.

  7. apolo8 says:

    You are full of nice surprises…and great ideas to improve even more HaD…

    I´m willing to see those great features near soon.

    Cheers!!!

    -a background reader.

  8. Simon says:

    Thank God for that. Came here earlier n my iPad, and had some sort of horrible mobile-only site foisted on me. This time it was the normal site. Please keep it that way, the other one (a) didn’t work properly, (b) didn’t let me comment, and (c) looked fugly.

  9. Renan says:

    Oh man… Sure it´s not to someone on other countries ? I´d love this job! I mean… The text was describing me. I started learning everything I could about robots, uCs, techonologies, and I still have the passion to do that.
    Too bad I don´t live in the USA, I have the skills to apply for this job…

  10. r_d says:

    I agree with James to some extent. I think the brightest hackers/engineers tend to be more focused on puzzles than communication skills. There is some trade-off there, but I think it’s better to err on the side of knowledge and passion rather than media professional, at least for this audience. We’re mostly technical people and knowledge will go further with us than energy.

    @Bergo:
    I don’t follow Ben Heck’s work super-closely, and I don’t want to diminish his work, but I wouldn’t say that he’s the perfect host for such a show. At least from what I’ve seen, he hasn’t really demonstrated a great understanding of electronics. His hacks are mostly wiring new switches to the pads of existing controllers and fitting hardware in shiny new cases. Fabrication is where he really shines, and the level of polish is what people like to see. It’s really a different audience, I think.

    Jeri Ellsworth has the knowledge and passion, but I wouldn’t really call her super energetic. Using hosts of Revision 3, or similar internet TV shows as a benchmark, I can think of very few who she exceeds in energy.
    That’s totally perfectly fine though. Like I said, we don’t really need ‘energy’. What we need is someone who’s actually capable of showing us interesting new tricks, and someone like her would be perfect for that job.

  11. James says:

    “jeri ellsworth, and ben heck come to mind as fitting their description.”
    Nah, Jeri is not that knowledgeable, Ben Heck is not that outgoing. I said you won’t find someone who’s the best at both. Nobody is perfect. There’s probably some theory on it in some psychology study, but I can’t be bothered to find it. You always have to compromise in one of those areas.

    I also think $40k USD isn’t enough for someone older/better than a new graduate. It’s only £24.6k GBP. Most experienced people would want $60k USD and up, so this could be for a graduate or part-time job IMHO. No offence!

  12. biozz says:

    MY INVENTIONS TEND NOT TO WORK, I BARELY SPEAK ENGLISH, I HAVE A LISP AND A CRAPPY WEBCAM!
    when should i expect my first paycheck?

  13. Illuminator says:

    You do realize that a 30-40k per year job in that area of the country will be a huge turn off to a lot of potential candidates.

    The median household income in that area is well above your offered salary range, with housing costs not even close. Renting a place in that area would, likely, based on data found, run over $1000/month, which would be over 25% of the proposed salary.

    Thanks but no thanks.

  14. Jakezilla says:

    You are going to have to find a pretty big sucker to rope in; an electrical engineer with a strong mechanical background and a high level of media skill, to work for 40K? EEs in the area start at 75K, Cost of Living is at 254 in Santa Monica! http://www.bestplaces.net/city/california/santa_monica#

  15. r_d says:

    @James:
    Pretty sure you’ve got it backwards. Jeri might make mistakes once in a while, but she’s smart and persistent enough to make integrated circuits in her basement with an oven.

  16. r_d says:

    Also, Ben Heck has a show on Revision 3 which, I would say, is pretty energetic.

    This is all _really_ tangential though.

  17. James says:

    @r_d:
    Ok, maybe I got it wrong.

    Maybe HaD needs to be more specific about what knowledge the presenter needs to have. It’s debatable as to what makes someone knowledgeable… some DIY stuff is easy enough for primary-school children, and people can do stuff without understanding it fully.

    If you want someone who can explain the physics and chemistry behind their hacks in-depth, you need someone who understands what they’re talking about. If you want someone who presents really well, and reads a script, they could also be good because it makes hacking more approachable for lay-people.

  18. fartface says:

    Wow good luck filling that. that location and chump-change pay rate.

    Does it come with a cardboard box for them to live in? Santa Monica = gotta be rich to live here. and $40K is not rich.

  19. CutThroughStuffGuy says:

    Oh noes 40k is too little for me to consider this job. Protip: DON’T APPLY. Somebody else will be THRILLED to work doing what they love for $40,000 per year $160 / day, about $800 / week, $3,333.34 / month.

  20. Robot says:

    I am a well paid R&D engineer in the Boston area. . . while I only have 4 years in industry at this point I can still command a very good salary. Regardless, I would do this just as I would take a teaching job at a university. I suspect there are many post-docs out there who fit the bill for this position. Yes, industry can pay more than twice HaDs offer, but their offer is on par with anything that can be found in academe.

    – Robot

  21. Robot says:

    PS,

    What I am trying to say is that HaD is offering an opportunity that seems creative and fun, and that has (IMO) real value.

  22. James says:

    @Robot:
    Yeah, I guess people can get caught up in salary and forget about job satisfaction! Working at HaD is probably a great environment to nurture a sense of job satisfaction for passionate hackers.

    I’m side tracking but it would be cool if HaD or some other group made a “hackers guild” where people could physically come together, show and tell, and share their hacks, maybe even collaborate on bigger projects :-)

  23. Anon says:

    Do they have to have sex with an Arduino first, or can they attach their LED’s straight to a battery? Just wondering cause the number of real Arduino projects vs. the number of under-utilized LED flashing Arduino projects is a flacidizing reality.
    I would be willing to raise resistance against a swarm of useless development board projects centered around diode stimulation.

    ALSO, following trends? I thought hacking was much more about breaking trends. Fail on HaD’s part. And WTF is 30-40k for a full time position? One could work at a shitty intercity Radio$hack, part time, and have more money, time, and inspiration to hack.

  24. I could see someone that’s really good at this, starting for $40k… and earning a hefty raise as the ratings go off the charts… or vice versa. This would be a sweet gig for someone that wants to go have fun and be creative. The salary would get you a place to live, but it wouldn’t be great or anything. You would be consumed with hacking and having fun, so I don’t think that would matter much. I wonder if HAD will provide resources such as parts, PCB making supplies & services, tools and equipment… you know, typical stuff an engineering company would provide for you to do your job. If so, what would the annual budget be?

  25. Dino says:

    I could sooo fill that position but not for anything less than $50K.

  26. HurpDurp says:

    Neat idea, but you’ll never get any real talent with that salary. Talent costs money. There’s also an obvious expense cap here; this writer will be severely limited to what they can make by the salary received: no jetpacks, no fusion devices, no high powered lasers. I fear more arduino and Not-a-hacks.

    This job posting is almost a disservice to the community: You’re going to take someone out of their current profitable, comfortable hacking environment and place them in this high-pressure job where they’ll have to crank out ‘original’ hacks every week. There’s nothing original about something forced.

    I can see the shit-storm now. Has anyone ever thought that maybe HaD should die with it’s original creator’s intent? That instead of trying to reform HaD every once in a while, that it just dies and lets other sites take over so we don’t end up with a mediocre lull?

    • Caleb Kraft says:

      @HurpDurp,
      1. no, we haven’t considered letting it die. that’s pretty silly.
      2. the original creator, Phillip Torrone, is in constant contact with us and loves this idea.
      3. What an odd point of view you have where offering to pay someone to hack (though admittedly not a ton of money) is somehow bad. We’re not holding a gun to some scientist and forcing them to quit their “current profitable, comfortable” hacking job.

  27. Dino says:

    Also, @ James
    “Jeri is not that knowledgeable…”
    …umm, are you high on something??

  28. Sariel says:

    @James

    they have those, they’re called hackerspaces.

    http://hackerspaces.org/wiki/Hackerspaces

  29. NatureTM says:

    It sounds awesome to me, but I don’t think I have the EE chops. If noone else wants it though, I might have to apply…

  30. Robot says:

    @Anon: LULz: “Just wondering cause the number of real Arduino projects vs. the number of under-utilized LED flashing Arduino projects is a flacidizing reality.”

    One of the best things I read in a long time.

    – Robot

  31. JC says:

    @Jakezilla – My thoughts exactly (although I’m an ME with a good electrical background not the other way around like you). Sounds like a feally fun job, but it might be hard to get the right person for it :(.

  32. James says:

    “…umm, are you high on something??”
    Ughhh… she’s not Einstein…

  33. Erik Johnson says:

    I wouldn’t look at this as a “full time job” but a side job on top of/complimenting something you already do, assuming your current work allows you free time holes throughout the day… At least not at the rate HaD currently churns out articles.

    Maybe even students @ the local college(s) if you need them in-house. Post fliers around their engineering buidlings

  34. Zizzle says:

    $40K … I LOLed… good one. :)

  35. Ratty says:

    Great idea. I actually, and very rudely, thought “About time they got a real hacker on the team”.

    But this bit “This is a full-time, in-house position at our Santa Monica office.” shoots it in the foot. You want someone who is very skilled professionally and socially, to already be living in or move to your city, (meaning most likely US citizens only) work full-time and be paid peanuts. I swear that whoever drew this up works in every HR department of every company currently operating and does their job advertisements too.

  36. Jason says:

    Thanks for the great feedback everyone… really hoping we can take HAD to the next level and double traffic. if we do we will have a budget for 2-3 f/t staff and can do many, many more sick hacks.

    best jason

    ps – should we move comments to disqus?

  37. Jac says:

    Following trends… Check.
    Brainstorming hacks and projects: Might need some inspiration from others about what projects to do but otherwise… Check.
    Executing hacks… Been there done that. Check.
    Educate the viewers… Done, doing and will do. Check.
    Santa Monica… Nice! Check.
    $30-40k… Oh wait, I get it. April Fools.

  38. r_d says:

    I’m thinking what Ratty said is probably true. I do think HaD would probably get better skill if they were willing to accept someone to films the video elsewhere and sends them to HaD. Maybe request a sample video explaining a project to see if they’ve got the skills. You get a much larger pool of candidates that way.

    If this was the case — and I actually owned a camera — and I was actually good at speaking — I would probably apply. One could still write an Android app or two for a little extra cash, right?

  39. r_d says:

    Oh and the trends thing does sound a little “traditional journalist”.
    I probably shouldn’t speak for everyone, but I think many HaD readers feel pretty strongly about it. It’s not really fun to have a week of nothing but Aruduinos, followed by a week of nothing but ‘Steampunk’ (all from Instructables, of course!), then four days of Twittering appliances and bunch of LED cubes just because it’s what’s “trendy” at the time.

  40. DanAdamKOF says:

    Can I join as a proofreader? Hell I’ll even do it for free.

  41. HurpDurp says:

    @Caleb Kraft

    Oh sure, now you’re positive that this’ll turn out great and that there has to be someone out there creative enough to constantly pull hacks out of their behinds, but have you considered you’re idealizing a bit here? One does not pay for creativity, creativity pays for itself.

    And you think this person you hire is going to be some sort of unbiased hacking dynamo? With your guys’ luck you’ll probably find some sort of arduino freak who posts 7 arduino varients of the LED cube every day.

    It’s cool, but it gets old, and you’re going to hire someone who builds LED cubes to work full time making various sizes of LED cubes on a very limited budget. You’ll tell them to be original and creative, they’ll cry, and instead of making that arduino lawn mowing robot that that person would have made if they would have stayed in their mom’s basement, you’ld be giving them free reign to make impractical, sensationalist, ‘hacks’ that can only cause infinite butt hurt for this community. Seen it before, TLDR.

    • Caleb Kraft says:

      @hurpdurp,
      What? You’re just being argumentative here. We are offering a job for someone to make cool hacks. You’re assuming all kinds of odd things and projecting waaay too much.

      here are the basics: cool job offer, hopefully cool result. that’s all. I think we’re done with this exchange.

  42. Jason says:

    HurpDurp: Well, the person could also modify and expand on other well-done hacks out there. I’d also like to do a hacking 101 series for Mahalo.com as a bridge to get some folks into the space who might be intimidated.

    finally, we might be able to have this person take requests/crowdsource project ideas.

    i’m really into mobile/video/wearable/car/clothes hacks….. i think the lifecasting + mobile + interweb + sensor space is going to be big.

  43. zool says:

    so you want someone with all that knowledge to sacrifice the job they probably already have to work for less than half as much and be ridiculed by HAD trolls…sounds like a great deal

    maybe try kip kay? lulz

  44. JamesMK2 says:

    Don’t diss Jeri she’ll thermite your
    work bench and test equipment while you
    watch on, helpless, crazyglued to the spot.

  45. Robot says:

    I just wanted to throw it out there that working in industry can be rewarding or really awful.
    There is no shortage of busting your hump, working unpaid overtime because you want to keep the client happy and being thrown to the wolves by your boss when things go wrong (even though it was the client that forced engineering to use an ultimately unworkable solution.)
    Even in the fast paced world of R&D there is unbearable monotony, compliance, documentation, TPS reports, memo memo memo, kill me now.
    If you’re good you eventually get to manage your own projects which means under bidding projects and yet more unpaid work.

    I would say that $40k is looking pretty good.

    Just sayin’

    – Robot

  46. addidis says:

    This is an awesome opportunity.
    Getting paid to hack….
    I look at this as HAD giving back to the community. That money coulda gotten some one a nice vacation or bonus. Instead they recycle it into the community.

  47. Sal_The_Tiller says:

    I would love to do this, and I’m pretty good at explaining, but my skills aren’t that great…

  48. Bill D Williams says:

    40k a year in Santa Monica?

    For people that don’t know California real estate and living costs, that’s works out to be about 15k a year compared to the rest of the country. For someone with the combined skill set of hacker, inventor, camera man, editor and producer – you’re offering peanuts.

    Shame on you HAD. Shame on you.

  49. Aleks Clark says:

    salary is redonculous. srsly? move your office to Clarkston, WA, and then pay people like that, no problem.

    Admittedly it’s a “fun” job but I hope a cardboard box or a space in the janitor’s closet comes included.

    also lol “trends”.

  50. macegr says:

    If you up the pay rate to something that an older, experienced hacker could stomach, you would be spending more but ultimately putting together a much higher quality show. Ideally, the right person would have more knowledge and experience than any of your current writers. Someone who still enjoys electronics and hacking things, but who has a lot to teach us all. I’m thinking someone on the level of Windell Oskay, Bill Hammack, Tom Igoe, etc…not someone who figured out one or two cool things for a senior project, but someone who has made a career of this stuff and miraculously doesn’t still have one. Gonna be tough to find. But you’ll get way better investment from your money, compared to putting someone inexperienced into a situation where they have to think what to do next with an Arduino, RC servo, and an LED.

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