Our first Hack-A-Thon!

We’re going to be holding a Hack-a-Thon on Sunday January 17th at 2pm. Many of us will be converting PC power supplies to bench supplies, either to donate to the eventual Workshop 88 space, or for ourselves.

You DO NOT have to be a member to participate in the project or come to the Hack-a-thon. So please, tell your friends! The cost of the parts for each power supply ($11) you’d like to convert will be due to our treasurer at our next public meeting 01/04/2010. You are responsible for bringing your own power supply to the Hack-A-Thon to convert.

And as mentioned at the meeting if you want to bring another project to work on that’s great, just keep in mind Jay graciously volunteered his house, so let’s keep it reasonable. Those interested in attending will be given an address and directions at our next meeting (or upon request if you cannot make it).

Please stop by the forum thread for more details and let us know if you’ll be attending.

Public Planning Meeting 1/4/2010

Our first meeting of the new year will be held on January 4th, at 6:30 PM. We’re going to meet on the main floor of the Boilerhouse Cafe at North Central College (29 N Loomis St, Naperville, IL 60540).

As always, this meeting is open to the public, so if you’re interested in what we’re doing, we encourage you to come out and share your ideas!

This meeting is an important one for several reasons:

  • It will be our first meeting as an official entity!  Adam and Jay did a great job getting the paperwork filled out and submitted last week, so Workshop 88 is actually a legal entity!
  • We’ll be collecting dues for the first time.  This has some bearing on the next point.
  • We’ll be electing officers and committee chairs.  If you’re interested in serving in one of these positions, and you haven’t told us yet, send email to info@workshop88.com and let us know how you want to help!  To vote in this election, you’ll need to pay for a full membership ($50 per month, or $500 per year).  If you want to contribute, but can’t afford the $50/month, there is also a $25/month supporting membership that doesn’t come with voting rights.
  • We’ll be approving our bylaws.  This document will lay out the membership privileges, operating procedures, things like that.

Two Brothers Brewery Tour

When I first arrived at the brewery, I actually passed it up. It’s a very unassuming industrial building with a little silo on the side. If you didn’t know where to look for it, you might never know it’s there. Continuing the trend of unassuming, the door itself into the “Tap House” restaurant is just a single door that looks almost like a side entrance, with a little sign that says “Two Brothers Tap House Main Entrance.” Once you step through that door, you know you’re in the right place. You’ve been transported into a modern bar and restaurant who’s food and beer rival’s that of anywhere I’ve been in the suburbs. Everything in this building has been finely crafted, from the food to the beer to the environment. It’s obvious they take great pride in it all.

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Memberships Now Available

In preparation for the first meeting of the new year, we’ve been clearing some of the legal hurdles.

We are officially incorporated as a NFP, and are going to begin the process of getting Not-For-Profit tax status.

We are now able to accept membership dues! You can pay in person at a meeting with cash or check, or you can pay online at http://blog.workshop88.com/membership. As that page mentions, there is a small surcharge for paying online, since Amazon charges us a little bit for the service.

In order to vote in the elections on January 4th, you’ll need to have a full membership paid up, so you can do it ahead of time online, or at the meeting. This is an important meeting, since we’re making decisions about structure and electing officials and committee chairs, so we look forward to seeing a big turnout!

Public Planning Meeting 12.21.2009

I’m continuing two traditions with this post, neither of which I’m proud of.

1) It is rather late notice, yet again, though we did send out email announcing this meeting a couple of weeks ago.

2) Upon looking back at the previous meeting announcements, I noticed I’ve used a different date format for each one.  So here’s yet another one, just to confuse your calendar a bit more.

EDIT: Okay, three traditions!  I’ve forgotten to put the time in the post as well… 6:30 PM.

Here’s the agenda for this evening.  We’ll be meeting at North Central College again, on the main floor of the White Academic Center (the same place as the meeting on the 7th).  We should have the place mostly to ourselves again.  If you can’t make it because of holiday commitments, we’ll see you after the new year!

The link below has some more details (and I don’t believe you need a Facebook account to view it.).

Facebook Event Page

Committee Call to Arms!

For those who missed the meeting on 12-7, the first meeting post
holiday season (tentatively set for  Jan. 7 of the coming year) will
include the election and installment of our officers and the
assignment and delegation of our first committees.  The following is a
list of proposed committees from our previous meeting, and some of
their proposed duties/purposes.  Anybody with interest in heading or
working with any of the committees, feel free to volunteer (either by
email or at a meeting) as we’re ready to mobilize and start getting
things done with the coming year!

Finance Committee
– Prioritize wanted/needed items from the wants/needs/have list for
the initial space and build-out.
– Explore alternative means for the acquisition of needed things,
freely if at all possible.
– Create a proposed budget and explore and create a proposition for
membership dues and payment options (e.g. student rates, family
rates).

Legal Committee
– Investigate zoning laws, insurance needs and waiver requirements for
the space.
– Find/talk to experienced persons to find out what mistakes to avoid
in both the incorporation process and insurance initiatives.

Events Committee
– Act as the liaison for workshop88 and the community.
– Organize proposed in-house events, and explore new out of house events/ideas.
– Create workshops and teaching sessions to foster technological and
cultural education while promoting activism.

Marketing Committee
– Explore various internet outlets for growing our web presence.
– Consider setting up an affiliate program for other hackerspaces.
– Recruit, and spread the word of what we do!

These are just the first four groups we considered, there will be
others, and nothing is set in stone.  If you have suggestions, get
them in by the meeting where we install people to these positions and
really get things underway!  Again, don’t be shy to volunteer to help
out with any of these tasks, the more input we have, the more likely
we get things right on the first try.  The more involved people are,
the more we can accomplish, and the more fun for everyone!

Here Inside: Hack-brush

Hi, my name is Kevin, but you can call me Roofus, and I’m a member of Workshop 88. Right now I work as a Service Technician in a tool rental business. I often find my self peeking at the insides of tools the average person wouldn’t venture into. My job has given me a firm belief that the only thing keeping everyone else from fixing what breaks is the fear that you’ll make it worse! So I’m doing this series Here Inside, to show people, that it’s okay to peek inside, and you never know if you can fix it, until you try.

I own an old Braun Oral B electric toothbrush.  It was a gift, and I consider it a luxury I wouldn’t own otherwise, but I have grown accustomed to it.  Recently it’s decided to show it’s age by slowly charging less and less.  So, like any good maker who doesn’t like buy new things, I found the seal at the bottom and cracked it open.

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Lunch/Brewery Tour/Good Times

Picture 008

We’ll be meeting at Two Brothers Brewing Company this coming Saturday (12/19) at 2:30PM for a brewery tour.  This’ll be our second Workshop 88 outing, and, from what I’ve been told by Russ, should be quite the scientific (and awesome) experience.  We’ll have lunch beforehand at 1PM if anyone wants to join the pre-gaming festivities.

In other news, the Workshop 88 beta blog is up and running here.  Please drop by and leave suggestions (maybe in the comments of this post?) on what you think, and what improvements we can make.  Look for the design to be implemented within the next week or so.

Finally, for the holidays, Workshop 88 will be doing a (sort of) last minute impromptu Toys for Tots collection — we’re calling it 70y5 4 7075.  So if you want to bring toys to our next meeting (preferably of the maker-oriented kind!)  on 12/21, feel free!  I know I’ll be hitting the stores for Legos and K’nex.

Public Planning Meeting 12-7-2009

Sorry again for the late notice on this, but we’ll be having a planning meeting tonight, December 7th. We mentioned before that there would be a meeting tonight, but weren’t sure of the location. We were waiting until we were sure we’d have the space in the Boilerhouse available, and at the last minute, we found out that it was in fact closed for winter break at NCC.

We’ll be meeting in the White Activity Center (325 E. Benton Ave, Naperville, IL), just south of the Boilerhouse. We’ll be on the main floor, on the east side of the building.

Here is a quick agenda:

  1. Opening Remarks
  2. Introductions of any new attendees
  3. Review of previous minutes
  4. Review and approve agenda
  5. Reports from officers
    1. Acting President
      1. Web site improvements
    2. Acting Vice President
      1. Location Search
    3. Acting Secretary/Treasurer
      1. Incorporation Progress
  6. Old business
    1. Budget
      1. Volunteers for a budget committee?
  7. New business
    1. Instructional committee
      1. Volunteers to teach
      2. Discuss organization/pricing
    2. Legal committee
      1. Research zoning laws
      2. What kind of insurance do we need
      3. What kind of waivers do we need members to sign
    3. Membership Committee
      1. Do we need one?
      2. When do we start collecting dues?

We hope you’ll be able to make it out tonight, and if not, we’ll see you next time!

Edit:

The meeting will begin at 6:30 PM, and is open to the public!