[hackerspaces] Hackerspaces away from the city

Ryan McCoskrie ryan.mccoskrie at gmail.com
Thu Jul 21 07:10:46 CEST 2011

On 21 July 2011 15:51, Jerry Isdale <isdale at gmail.com> wrote:

> It does make a difference. I've been involved with starting two spaces -
> CrashSpace in metro Los Angeles, and Maui Makers in middle of pacific ocean.
> Crashspace quickly accumulated a critical mass of people to cover rent, etc
> and have interesting events.
> The island (Maui) is fair sized with a total local population of about
> 120,000 (whole bunch more visitors too), that is fairly well dispersed. It
> takes about a half hour to get from my home to what passes for city here.
>  We are fortunate to have some high tech biz here including a supercomputer
> center. Finding a space that was convenient to enough people was
> problematic. There are a couple population areas that are geographically
> isolated with 1+hr drive (Hana is 4hrs away on a good day).  I have settled
> (for now) on an equally inconvenient location thats about 15-30min from most
> people. It is also rent-free, which greatly helps keeping membership rates
> where people will consider it.
> Its been slow building up membership, given the small community. There are
> not that many hacker/makers around.  Many of the Makers that are here
> already have their own decent workshops (some pretty dang awesome ones!).
> These folks while kindred spirits, are not interested in community workshop.
>  They might come by and talkstory sometimes.  We are only just beginning to
> get our space settled in. Our initial 40' container has filled up with work
> benches and a little storage. We dont have enough space for people to sit
> and talk comfortably anymore.

You're projects look really exciting, I'll have to pass the URL around and
explain how you guys started as inspiration to other members.

> I also helped kickstart the Honolulu hackerspace (Hi-Capacity). They have
> benefit of a big city with lots of high tech. Once I got them started
> meeting up for dinner, etc they took off quickly. They dont have a permanent
> space yet, but do have a fair number of people who show up regularly to
> events.

> What sort of public/community spaces exist in your village at present?

There's a largeish domain (tused mostly for the soccer club and the A & P[1]
show) which has a  two story hall available for events. We also have a
public caravan park that might be useful.

Is there a library,

Writing from there.

> youth/adult/community center?

Not exactly. We have a few separate groups that provide parts of that sort
of thing, including a member of the district council who organises teen /
pre-teen activities in the holidays.

How many hacker/makers do you think are within a 40minute drive?
Hmm. There's me, a neighbor who used to design electrical and guidance
systems for aeroplanes, various clan-armies of vintage tractor enthusiast.
Probably more I'm not aware of. One of the guys at the auto-electric place
seemed keen as well.

> If you can identify 4-5 people quickly, with another 5-10 possibles, you
> might be able to get something going.  Try getting them together for a
> techie dinner.

Sounds like a good way of starting. Maybe a picnic so I can save a little
money though. We'll have to use a very broad definition of techie as well.
[1] Agricultural and Pastural show. I'm not sure if this term is used
overseas. A rural trade show with country fair on the side.
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