Hackerspace Tour: Kwartzlab

Located in Kitchener, Ontario, Kwartzlab is a 3000 square foot hackerspace. In 2009, the group was founded and set up their space in a former box factory. We dropped by the space on one of their Tuesday Open Nights to take a tour. Join us after the break for a quick walk through of Kwartzlab.

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Hackerspace intro: Skullspace and AssentWorks in Winnipeg

The signs on the front door might be a little small, but the space which AssentWorks and Skullspace inhabit is anything but. [Matt] takes us on a tour of the Winnipeg, Canada makerspace and hackerspace.

The two spaces occupy one floor of the building but are partitioned for different purposes. AssentWorks, which is called a makerspace, is a business incubator. The tour shows it as a large and tidy area where small businesses can pool resources to maintain and stock the various shop and work areas. We can’t help but think of it as an OSB jungle as it seems all the interior walls have been built from Oriented Strand Board.

The second part of the video shows off the hackerspace: Skullspace. This is much less polished, but shows a lot of promise. There are several work spaces for electronics, machining, and woodworking. There is also an arcade room, a classroom, and a few other offerings. All in all there’s 8350 square feet of space between the two.

You can see the ten-minute tour embedded after the break. [Read more...]

Southwest tour: OhmSpace in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

OhmSpace in Oklahoma City is the very first stop on our southwest tour.

When we arrived it was around 2 in the afternoon and the temperature outside was nearly 110 degrees. It was HOT. [Stan] met up with us to give us a tour of the space.  As you can see, the facility is huge. While at first glance it may appear somewhat disheveled, there is order to the madness. There is a nice community work area set up in the middle as well as several different stations throughout. Since the facility is almost just one giant room, storage is out in the open giving the illusion of a mess. We were there in the early afternoon, so there wasn’t anyone around working on anything, but you can see projects in various states of progress throughout the tour.

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Hackaday southwest tour

Earlier this summer, I took a trip through the southeast of the country. On this trip I was able to visit several hackerspaces and meet some really great people. We started at Squidfoo in Springfield Missouri. Then Moved on to Makers Local 256 in Huntsville Alabama. After that we saw 7hills hackerspace in Rome Georgia as well as Freeside hackerspace in Atlanta Georgia. The final leg of the trip took us to Chatt*Lab in Chattanooga Tennessee and the Hacker Consortium in Nashville.

For this trip, I am taking my family to the Grand Canyon. Well, that’s the part the kids are looking forward to. I’m looking forward to more hackerspaces and fantastic people. If you’re along the route from Springfield Missouri to Flagstaff Arizona, let me know (we’ll be hitting roswell NM on the way back too). We can go a little out of our way, but not hours.  I would really love to visit some hackerspaces on this trip and do a video tour. You can comment here or hit me directly at caleb@hackaday.com.

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Hackerspace intros: egMakerSpace in East Gippsland Australia

[Scott Lambshed] took some time to shoot a video tour of egMakerSpace’s new digs. This hackerspace is located in East Gippsland Australia, which is to the East from Melbourne. We know the banner image we chose isn’t all that descriptive, but just look at all of that space! They’ve got a bounty of rooms to use for everything from crafts, to machine/wood shop, to retro computing. There’s even a nice outdoor patio area which was a bit overgrown to start with but cleanup has already begun.

The group is just getting moved into what must have been an old hospital or school. Aside from some network infrastructure, a room full of couches, and a few tools, there’s not a lot in place yet. But one thing that is already looking quite good is their horde of electronics components. The latter half of the video shows boxes, bins, trays, and tackle boxes full of goodies just waiting to make it onto the next protoboard project.

[Scott] is hoping to get the word out in the area about egMakerSpace, and that’s exactly what these introductions are for. So grab you favorite video capture device and send us your own local hackerspace tour.

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Hack a Day visits LVL1 hackerspace in Louisville

We recently had the pleasure of visiting the LVL1  hackerspace in Louisville, Kentucky. Any hackers in the Louisville area who haven’t visited yet are doing themselves a big disservice.  The space recently had its one year anniversary in July, but it’s hard to tell. The space features many of the things you’d only expect in older spaces such as a laser cutter (added while we were visiting), CNC machines, extensive electronics workbenches, and even a section for those who are into music. The best part about the LVL1 hackerspace is it’s members. We’ve all heard horror stories of hacker spaces with drama or overly restricting rules, but the people at LVL1 are extremely friendly and willing to help.

The Micro Colonel (president, if you wanna go that route), [Christopher Cprek], gave us a tour of the space and its current projects. One of the most impressive is the White Star Balloon project, which aims to fly a balloon across the Atlantic. There’s also the Louisville Soundbuilders which meet at the space every other Monday at 8pm to make new instruments. Some other projects include a telepresence robot, a pony that breaths fire, and a power wheels race car for the Detroit Makerfaire. There are also things such as the Kentucky Open Source Society (KYOSS) that meets at the space. Even a few sumobots were scattered around. We were fortunate that at the same time we were visiting [Brandon Gunn], who regularly does video tours of the hackerspaces he visits, was there too; watch his video tour of the space after the break.

The space usually has an open to the public meeting every tuesday at 7:00, but be sure to check out their calendar for more.  If you’ve never been to a hackerspace before you should definitely make an effort. It’s not the tools that make a space, but the people, and LVL1 delivers.

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Tour ThinkGeek’s offices

If you’ve ever been curious what it is like to work at ThinkGeek, check out this video. [John Frazier], a purchasing agent, talks about the history of ThinkGeek as well as what daily work is like. Fairly interesting, but the summary is that it’s just like any other job, with more toys. They probably have to test all the products fairly thoroughly, we know we would.

[thanks Yan]

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