Hacker Housing – Rally To Restore Sanity

HacDC, Washington DC’s own hackerspace has been kind enough to open their doors (and floors) to fellow hackers planning on visiting DC this weekend for the upcoming Rally to Restore Sanity. They are taking registrations now, and space is limited, so act fast. They have a suggested donation of $20 a night, which will get you floor space and breakfast each morning, as well as the warm feeling of supporting a community based Hackerspace. Details can be found on their registration page, and please make sure you read the rules before registering. Thanks again to HacDC for supporting the Hacker community!

In other news, Hack a Day will be at the Rally, so keep an eye out for the writers wearing the Hack a Day shirts, as well as the HackaDay Twitter. If you get seen with one of us, you might just make it to the fan gallery. We will also be handing out some HackaDay Swag if you catch us soon enough on Saturday.

44 thoughts on “Hacker Housing – Rally To Restore Sanity

  1. Hack A Day, why in the world are you promoting political events? This is insanity. Please leave such nonsense behind. We Hack A Day readers aren’t interested in such things (at least not here). We can surf to the ends of the internet to find all the nonsense we need. Bits, bytes, and building blocks are all that we’re interested in. Please keep this a neutral place focused on our collective interest… and check the politics at the door.

  2. @Noooooo, All politics aside, we decided to share this because it is a wonderful example of the hacker community taking care of other hackers. I am sure the HacDC Hackerspace would welcome the community regardless of political beliefs.

  3. Please keep HAD free of politics. It’s one of the few places on the internet that has stayed away from it, and it’s one of the reasons I continue to read HAD. Please don’t ruin HAD with this bullshit.

  4. @Bushi, Glen Beck claimed his rally was neutral, too. It wasn’t, and neither is the “Rally to Restore Sanity”. When Beck says he’s just “Restoring Honor”, we know who he considers to be honorable and dishonorable. When Jon Stewart says he’s just “Restoring Sanity”, we know who he considers sane and insane.

    Just because a specific politician or party or philosophy is not mentioned by name, doesn’t mean it’s really neutral.

  5. personally I was very excited to see this posting. I was considering going to the rally but being unsure of where to stay, this is great community related news. Nowhere does the article promote anything political, besides stating that the HaD writers will be attending a public event together. Had YOU planned to go to the rally, wouldn’t you have appreciated being informed that a local hackerspace was organizing to help you out?

  6. This post is totally inappropriate. My finger is over the iGoogle Hack-a-Day delete button. I hate to push it because it is one of my favorite sites.

    There is nothing neutral about this rally.

    I supported Hack-a-Day last April Fool’s Day post. But the country is in serious trouble and tacitly supporting an extension of the Corbett mockery of the Congress is inexcusable.

  7. What a bunch of whiners! If you aren’t interested in the article then don’t waste your time by reading it and commenting on it.

    If I read and posted about every article I didn’t agree with that showed up in my feed reader I would never get anything done.

    This article is clearly related to hacking, and informs readers about a unique event that they can take part in.

  8. While I support the rally, I don’t support it appearing here on hackaday, even with the rationalization that it is newsworthy because it shows hackers helping other hackers. That in itself is not very newsworthy in my opinion, but that isn’t the point. This website is about human ingenuity, something everyone shares, it should remain politically neutral.

  9. This is a hackerspace offering a service to the hacker community, a subset of which may find useful. This, absolutely, belongs here.

    Yes, we get it, some of you have opposing political viewpoints from those being pushed by the rally (or, at least, what you perceive the rally as standing for since it’s stated goals are, simply, to combat rabid extremism on both sides.) This post was handled in an extremely neutral manner. There is no heavy pro-liberal comments and no anti-conservative/tea party comments. If you people have such a problem with it, then the problem is with you and your thin skins for anything that even hints at disagreeing with your political views. That’s just sad.

  10. folks, irrelevant of how you feel politically, this announcement is for a fundraiser for a hackerspace.

    part of journalism is reporting on things that are happening in the field you’re working in. i’m sure if $hackerspace was opening it’s doors for a bbq competition or local make day no one would blink.

    if HAD feels that they will be served well by marketing themselves at that event it’s their prerogative to do so, and potentially alienate folks who disagree. the fact that you wish to disassociate yourself from someone with a potentially differing political view is inherently intolerant, and frankly mutual respect is pretty important in the hacker/maker community.

  11. Wow, how did I know when I clicked through Google Reader that the comments would be full of whiners?

    Props to HacDC for opening their doors and helping their fellow hackers.

  12. No matter what the opinion, I’m happy that it’s at least sparked debate. As the president of HacDC we actually had quite a lively debate about even doing this. In the end a) I’m happy we did & b) sad I won’t be around for the event. That being said, if you do come to town, check out some of the projects we’ve been working on. Like many of you, we’re high on the “fun stuff” priority and light on the “documenting the fun stuff” tip.

  13. Oh pish and tosh.

    The fact that a huge number of people from this community are likely going to be there (I certainly am!), makes the HacDC story relevant.

    As for politics — the rally itself is one big political hack. With this event, Stewart et al. are making a direct effort to change the US political climate in a constructive way. Those of you looking to politicize this rally in traditional shrill terms clearly are missing the point, and that is most of us are just sick and tired of every damned thing being destructively politicized and would really appreciate it if you lot would just tone it down long enough to allow for a little reasoned debate to take root in place of all the useless screaming and spin that currently rule the day.

    Hacking isn’t limited to hardware.

  14. @Bob, you know, you’re right. It’s not constructive. I apologize. It’s a shorter way of saying I know that there’s a whole segment of people for whom Stewart/Colbert’s message is just lost on, and that I was certain they would make themselves known in the comments. It’s a bummer.

  15. @slacker, saying that “there’s a whole segment of people for whom Stewart/Colbert’s message is just lost on” is itself condescending and is likely to provoke the angry responses Stewart/Colbert claim to want to reduce.

    I think Colbert is a very funny guy. But face it, his shtick is to ridicule a political group, and being totally fair about it is not his top priority. Colbert thrives on political conflicts as mush as Rush Limbaugh does.

    I know less about Stewart; I’ve never watched him.

    But to say that Stewart/Colbert’s message is “lost on” people is to imply that the only possible reason for people to disagree is that they’re stupid.

    Alas, there’s a lot of that attitude coming from liberals, and I say that as someone who is not a conservative and has no interest in defending them. I just think liberals bear more responsibility for the current climate than they care to admit.

  16. @Bob — it’s not necessarily stupidity that makes someone unable or unwilling to “get” this message. Confirmation bias and entrenched views plague even the smartest of humans, and people generally don’t like to face up to their own irrationality, especially the smart ones.

  17. Please let me reset this conversation and focus us back on the original point. Let’s begin with this language from Hack A Day:

    “…open their doors (and floors) to fellow hackers planning on visiting DC this weekend for the upcoming Rally to Restore Sanity…”

    This very specific language written in the post doesn’t at all read like HacDC is putting on a fundraiser as many of you have commented. It specifically sounds like support for a political event. In fact, if you read the HacDC sign up page, you’ll see that the only point of this offer is to provide sleeping accommodations to those going to the rally. Here is an excerpt of that language:

    “Thanks to Comedy Central, many of you may be headed to DC next weekend for the Rally to Restory Sanity/Keep Fear Alive. If you’ve been thinking about the trip, but worried you might not have a place to stay, HacDC — the capital Hackerspace — is offering some basic sleeping accommodations (breakfast provided) and a hackerriffic halloween party, along with other activities for visiting hackers. We’d be happy to host you and your hacker-friendly group.

    Crash space is in a separate part of the building so those wanting to sleep early won’t be kept up by the party. The suggested donation for people crashing at the space is $20/night and includes breakfast both mornings. Sleeping Space is limited so sign up soon.”

    It is important for the community here to understand that my comments have nothing to do, nor are they motivated by any political philosophy I may or may not engender. My motivation is that I am saddened that the first thing I read about today on Hack A Day wa–in essence–a political promotion (complete with notice of attendance by Hack A Day staff). Rally X,Y, or Z might as well have been mentioned, because the affiliation is not important. What is important is for me to convey to you that my comments are not politically motivated except to keep this a politics-free zone.

    Hacking is a hobby that gets me away from all the nonsense directed at us 24/7. It is a respite that I look forward to. Hack A Day has more often than not been a part of that respite–but not today.

    My specific intent in the first comment of this post was to make a plea to keep Hack A Day out of politics, no exceptions. Sadly, the resulting dialog has deteriorated into exactly that–a meaningless political argument.

    BBQs, educational events, and bake sales supporting a Hacker Space are just fine with me, as those are directly aimed at fundraising for a communal space where tinkering is taught and promoted. Those events are neutral, and don’t anchor onto any political event. I would love to see those kinds of things here.

    The Rally to Restore Sanity, however, is specifically a political event—regardless of how clever or not the event has been promoted and packaged. To me, that says that Hack A Day and HacDC are open to those espousing the same political views as those attending and organizing the rally, and in my mind, that has nothing to do with the purpose of a Hack A Day, Hacker Space, FabLab, Technology Center, or any other place dedicated to sharing information and education about bits, blocks, and the airwaves. “Hacking Politics,” as one commenter put it, is still politics.

    So, let me attempt to reset this controversy and re-focus it on my original plea: that politics, plain-and-simple, be kept out of Hack A Day and hopefully your local hacker spaces.

    Perhaps Hack A Day needs to post it’s own code of ethics for how it runs its own shop. This post may serve as the poster-child of what not to do in an open, community Hacker space—virtual or otherwise.

    Thank you.

  18. News flash: everything is political. The computer you’re using to view this site, the data connection, ISP, web server software, etc. are all products of politics. The entire internet is a product of politics. So is the air you breathe and the water (or booze) you drink.

    Why does no one complain when HaD posts mention open source/free software? That area is heavily politicized — free software is political by its very nature, in that it subverts capitalism to some degree. How about when HaD posts about HDCP being cracked? No one complained then!

    That said:
    it’s funny how all the whiners commenting seem to be conservative blowhards angry that their pet right-wing nationalist “grassroots” group is being picked on.

  19. @P I see I can’t reach everyone here. It’s sad that you can’t see my plea as an honest and unbiased request. Perhaps you aren’t able to believe that people don’t all want to be bothered with such things all the time. What you have exposed about yourself in your last comment is sad.

    If you are fundamentally unable to remove yourself from the political banter on occasion, please don’t yell it at people, in neutral places, who don’t want to hear about it.

    @Everyone else: This will be my last post on the subject. I have made my position clear. I leave it to the readers here to have an honest and open discourse about the direction of Hack A Day and whether or not there should be some test or guidelines or standard of conduct that a post must pass before going live.

    If, like me, you don’t want to see your favorite site get dragged into the political muckery, please have an honest discourse here and now, but leave when it is clear that Hack A Day cannot be a politics-free zone.



  20. Politics on hackaday are usually the bitter Linux vs Microsoft or the Ipod vs Android variety. I agree that this “rally” is deliberately supposed to be a comedy event with a theme of silliness. So hakerspace is using all the publicity to help hackers. I have no problem with that.

    Hey Hackers are a group with some real public policy interests that seem to be ignored or at least not represented by Democrats Republicans or anyone else.

    I recently wrote both the Republican and Democratic candidate for my local district about provisions of ACTA and the DMCA that I oppose(and so would most of the people here I suspect).

    I received a reply from both that are almost Identical WORD FOR WORD!!! They Both seem to have the same author(the RIAA???)

    As a Hacker I’m not being represented by ANYONE, maybe WE should find some common ground for issues that we ALL agree on. Supporting other hackers is a good start. As long as no one brings up windows 7 mobile we should be ok.

  21. @Noooooo
    i’m not yelling at anyone. this is text, on the internet. get a grip!

    also, your “plea” is a thinly veiled attempted at silencing criticism.
    you are what’s known as a “concern troll”

  22. Whining is one of the defining characteristics of a HaD post. Always somebody to tell the HaD staff what belongs on their site and what doesn’t. Feel free to not consume items that don’t interest you, just like you do all day, every day.

  23. Thank you Hack-a-Day, for passing this information on! It certainly didn’t seem too politically motivated, and hey, it’s a rally to RESTORE SANITY! This is a good thing right? After all, much about hacking is about the FREEDOM to hack, much as this rally is about FREEDOM from irrational laws and policies passed by irrational lawmakers and promulgated by irrational media figures.

    To the nay-sayers: Did you happen to start a really cool hacker info-sharing site called “hack-a-day” back in the day? No? Well then tough luck!

  24. @Trollicus
    You bring up a very important point: the major political parties do not support hackers. In fact, I would go so far as saying, they actively deter hacking. I don’t think this article was at all an attempt to promote one political view over another, but it does hint at the topic of politics. Sooo, I’m going to take this chance to comment..

    I agree with P, who said that everything is inherently political. “Politics” comes from the Greek word for citizen. It is a general term for describing the complex interactions between groups of people. As a haven for a specific group of people, HAD is by definition political.

    It is unfortunate that people think politics focuses on fiscal policy, health care, immigration, gun control, etc.. It’s why things like hacking get shoved to the side, or even worse – outlawed. I think that largely the media is to blame. But what can you expect – anytime something remotely political gets posted on a non-political blog people get up in arms. It seems to me that HAD would be the perfect place to discuss political movements that promote individual freedom – something that all hackers could support. But alas – we Americans would rather pretend that politics does not permeate everything we say and do.

  25. Really? Calm down. I live near DC and had never heard of HacDC. (Never really looked) Glad they are helping out the community here. I will definitely support them in the future.

  26. I guess some people are offended that other people are offended because some people are offended by everything.

    Just in case it wasn’t that obvious… and hilarious, i thought Georgian argumentation

    I know I’m not the only one that has a little benign interest in just being among events like this- to take it all in; regardless of context and political alignment. It is possible some curious minds might want to have a look and listen to what other people think, ie. to formulate their own opinions by gathering information.

    It would be a terrible thing indeed if citizens of a country did not to participate in political events simply because they contributed to a media outlet, were members of a hackerspace, were hackers, were students of higher education and were on a path to expand their understanding- of all things- of peers in their generation.

  27. “anytime something remotely political gets posted on a non-political blog people get up in arms.”

    There is a good damn reason for this. We are so tired of seeing political Bull everywhere else.
    When I go to a site like this I’m not looking for somebody else’s political views. I come here for good old politics-free homebrew hacking and not to hear what somebody else thinks about Pelosi or Palin. If I want politics I’ll go to Drudge or Salon.

  28. @P writes: “it’s funny how all the whiners commenting seem to be conservative blowhards angry that their pet right-wing nationalist “grassroots” group is being picked on.”

    And it’s funny how all the personal insults (“whiners”, “blowhards”) are coming from the defenders of a rally that purports to favor ending personal insults.

    Hypocrisy in action?

  29. @Noooooo
    Not gonna get into details, but my insider opinion is that this was motivated by recent fundraiser discussions, not a desire to push politics on anyone.

    Also, there will be other events going on at HacDC this weekend if the rally doesn’t interest you. We have lasers and 3D printers if that’s more to your liking.

  30. Uh, James (the previous commenter), are you affiliated with Hack-a-Day in any way? If not, then why not just STFU? James Munns is listed as an author here (with a good list of very appropriate articles under his belt), so ya, I’d say he’s “qualified to post” on HaD. You, on the other hand, are only “qualified to post” in the comments section.

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