About rlankenau

I'm a software engineer. Right now I make a living writing C, Java, and .NET. I grew up in Naperville, live in Batavia, and work for a company based in Redwood City, California. In previous lives, I was a landscaper, a metal sculptor's assistant, a carpenter, a library clerk, a volunteer blacksmith, and a visualization programmer, among other things. In my spare time, I work on games for Windows and the XBox 360.

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


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!


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


Scanner Challenge, Part 1


As part of our first public meeting this Monday, we handed out a bunch of :CueCats to everyone who attended, along with a challenge: tinker with them, see if you can get them to do something fun, and share it with everybody at the next meeting.

I’m planning on using mine to build a handheld barcode scanner based on an Arduino and the touch screen from a Nintendo DS that stopped working a while back.  It may be a bit ambitious, so I’ll probably need help along the way.  I thought it might be helpful for others to see what I’m doing in case they get stuck in their own projects.  The Arduino is in the mail, but while I wait on that, here’s the progress so far.

Continue reading


Agenda for Tomorrow’s Meeting

The agenda for tomorrow’s meeting is posted on the Workshop 88 wiki:


The abbreviated version is included below:

The meeting notes will be posted on the same page after the meeting.


Thanks for all the Interest!

The post on Make: Online yesterday generated quite a bit of interest, so thanks to everyone who wrote in!

If you’re interested, but aren’t able to make it to the meeting on Monday, there are some other ways you can contribute.

  1. Become a fan on Facebook: Workshop 88
  2. Follow us on Twitter: @Workshop88
  3. Add yourself to the wiki availability page so we can take you into account when scheduling meetings: Availability

Planning Meeting – Monday 11/23/09

We’ll be having a planning meeting on Monday, November 23, at 6:30.  We’ll be meeting at the North Central College Boilerhouse (29 N Loomis St Naperville, IL 60540).

If you’re interested in being part of the planning process, feel free to drop by.

Look for the Workshop 88 logo, stop by and introduce yourself!  If you know you’re planning on being there, leave a note in the comments and we’ll look for you.


Some of the things we’ll be discussing:

  • Legal structure of the hackerspace
  • Membership structure and guidelines
  • Work that still needs to be done to build out our online presence
  • Current projects

For more information, or to be added to our mailing list, please email info@workshop88.com.