[hackerspaces] Announcing the Space Directory (SpaceAPI Fork)

Danilo mail at dbrgn.ch
Fri Jan 20 21:02:40 CET 2017

Hi all

Those of you that have been involved with the SpaceAPI[1] in the last
2-3 years probably took notice that any related development has
essentially stalled. I personally did multiple attempts at improving the
situation and was in contact with the main developer, but with no
tangible results. The directory[2] was frequently offline, inconsistent
or incomplete (at the time of this writing the response returns with
HTTP 200 but closes prematurely without any content). Pull requests with
updates to the data about hackerspaces were not merged for months or
even years. Same thing with pull requests regarding website content.
Some of them were even merged but never deployed.

There were a few attempts at improving the situation, e.g. Fixme[3]
hosts their own fork[4] of the directory used by the MyHackerspace
app[5] which is actually reliable in contrast to the official one. But
it's not a good long-term solution, since many pull requests are still
directed against the official directory. We also contacted the original
author multiple times, trying to get more maintainers onboard, but that
didn't work out either.

At the Chaos Communication Congress last December, we (some people from
Coredump[6] and Fixme[3]) met and discussed a full friendly-fork of the
SpaceAPI. After some discussions we ended up with this:


The Space Directory has the same goals as the SpaceAPI: Providing an API
specification for sharing data across hackerspaces, fablabs, chaostreffs
and makerspaces across the world. We try to enable easy integration into
opening status systems, door locks, webcams, sensors, and so on. It
should provide a unified interface to get contact information for
hackerspaces. And the project should also showcase interesting
implementations / integrations.

Our current project status:

- We created a Github organization: https://github.com/spacedirectory
- We published a website: https://spacedirectory.org/
- We host the directory on a reliable server: https://spaceapi.fixme.ch/
  (will probably also be hosted on spacedirectory.org in the future)
- We maintain a fork of the API specification, ported to the current
  JSON Schema version (IETF draft 4):
- We provide API documentation automatically generated from the schema
  files: https://spacedirectory.org/pages/docs.html
- We started porting over the "apps" page:
  https://spacedirectory.org/pages/apps.html It's not complete yet, but
  we'll get there.
- We started writing a new schema validator:

The Github organization currently has 4 members, so the bus factor is
already up by 300%. But we're still looking for contributors! If you
would like to push the SpaceAPI ecosystem ahead, feel free to take a
look at the projects in our Github organization. For general discussion,
open an issue in the Meta-Project[7]. If you want to become part of the
Github organization, contact me or open an issue in the Meta-Project[7].

Last but not least, we'd like to thank Slopjong for the countless hours
he has put into the original SpaceAPI project. It's great what he
achieved and we'll continue his efforts! Thank you :)

We're happy about any feedback or ideas related to the project, be it
here or on Github :)

Danilo (Coredump Hackerspace, Switzerland)

[1] http://spaceapi.net/
[2] http://spaceapi.net/directory.json
[3] https://fixme.ch/
[5] https://github.com/fixme-lausanne/MyHackerspace
[6] https://www.coredump.ch/
[7] https://github.com/spacedirectory/meta/issues

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