[hackerspaces] How do you define YOUR hackerspace

Edward L Platt elplatt at i3detroit.com
Mon May 9 04:59:25 CEST 2011

Sounds like there might the makings of a design pattern here...
Edward L. Platt
i3 Detroit: i3detroit.com
Cell: 248.320.5061

On Sun, May 8, 2011 at 10:23 PM, Deech <deech at ninjacow.net> wrote:

> At Arch Reactor, we feel much the same way.
> We are the board. We are Hackers. When our board hat is on, it's not our
> job to tell hackers what to hack. It's just our job to keep the lights on
> and the soldering irons hot and occasionally deal with situations as they
> arise to keep the peace.
> We've discussed this a few times and we feel we are a community workshop.
> Our first priority is to build. Our second is to find other people who need
> us and bring them in. We are not politically or religiously motivated, in
> fact, we disdain that sort of talk in the shop at all. Keep your rants at
> home.
> We try really hard to let the members lead the way. If there is a need, we
> form a group to do it that's outside of the board structure. If enough
> people want it to happen, it happens, if they don't, it doesn't.
> One thing that I push as Pres, and this is me, is community inclusion. I
> want to make sure we make an effort to involve people. For instance, we're
> staring American Sign Language classes in a couple weeks so we can include
> our friends in the deaf community. I think everyone has a point of view and
> you need someone to pick some big goals and follow them.
> -Deech
> On Fri, May 6, 2011 at 6:32 PM, Ross Smith <rsmith at i3detroit.com> wrote:
>> Who out there has actually had a discussion about the feel or definition
>>> of their space and what direction you want to go in? Has it always just been
>>> a natural progression, or have you actually sat down to discuss what you
>>> want to be? I get the feeling that PSOne must have had some discussion of
>>> this type when you got offered funding and turned it down.
>> OK, I'll bite.
>> At i3Detroit, we've talked about it at length and decided on two things:
>> first, that our space as an organization with an elected board of directors
>> is a somewhat different organism from its members; and second, that the
>> "organization"'s job is to make it as easy as possible for the members to do
>> all the interesting stuff - build statues, run 2600 meetings, etc.
>> As a result, the job of the board of directors is to arbitrate big
>> resource/conflict decisions, keep the lights on, the paperwork tended, and
>> the real world off our backs.  Then our members go about their business, be
>> that welding, movie props, hardware hacking, or stationary trapeze
>> performance.
>> The benefit of being this vague and open is that our members do use our
>> space for all those things.  Our members bring their own purpose and use the
>> space for it.  In this way, the space doesn't have a purpose until a member
>> gives it one.
>> Being open like this doesn't mean we have no focus; we have several, but
>> they are only as strong as the members who lead them are determined.  In my
>> mind that's how it should be - you get out what you put in.
>> --
>> Ross Smith
>> i3Detroit President
>> www.i3detroit.com
>> "Whether you think that you can, or that you can't, you are usually
>> right." -- Henry Ford
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