[hackerspaces] Looking for some insight from other S.O.O.H.

Sam Ley sam.ley at gmail.com
Wed Feb 9 04:53:20 CET 2011

Hehe, a hard discussion to be sure. Our space (the Phoenix Asylum in
Boulder, CO) has a model where each person has some of their own space
(marked out on the floor, not separate rooms), and some common space. We
currently have about 20 members.

We occasionally have discussions about how "lively" the place seems. Some
days are awesome - 5 to 10 people at a time, working away on projects,
helping each other out, etc. Other days it seems like you can spend all day
there and not see another soul. While it feels great to have lots of people
there, I've had to realize that lives just come into play. As great as all
of our projects sound, we still have jobs, families, etc. I've been
unemployed for a month, and even so, barely found time to make it to the

I try to encourage livelyness in a few ways, without being pushy. The second
people feel pressured to attend, they will stop.
- Regular events - we have monthly art showings that get people together.
They may not be working together, but they are talking and planning
- Good example - I try to be there a lot, and if there are other people
there, I adjust my schedule a bit and stay later (if I can).
- Regular discussions about what is going on at the space - even menial
things like "I put a new keg in the kegerator today" can spark discussions
and create meetups.

In the end, a lively space has to build organically - it isn't something
that can be forced.


On Tue, Feb 8, 2011 at 8:44 PM, Far McKon <farmckon at gmail.com> wrote:

> Hey,
> I need some advice.  I'm having some concerns about the activity level
> in my space.  I feel our space's activity level is too low,  and
> (along with doing things myself) I've been bugging people to do more.
> And maybe not in not the most productive ways..  At this point, it's
> turned into some contentious but polite discussion on the mailing
> list.   It would be great to get a sanity check on my opinion and
> approach from another of the Secret Organizers Of Hackerdom (SOOH).
> Also, it would be nice to blow off some steam, and be told if I'm
> right, or just crazy.
> If anyone else has been through this 'how active should we be'
> discussion, and has some good advice, please email me off-list. I'll
> give the details there.
> now, back to your regularly scheduled hack on,
> - Far McKon
> _______________________________________________
> Discuss mailing list
> Discuss at lists.hackerspaces.org
> http://lists.hackerspaces.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss
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