New meeting schedule

Workshop88 is happy to announce a new meeting schedule staring February 2012. Meetings will be at 7 pm Thursday evenings every week, and the open hack night will be Monday nights. Class schedules and the meetup schedule will be updated to reflect these changes. Board meetings will be scheduled once a month.

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We look forward to seeing you at our new weekly meetings.

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Learn to Program! For Kids (Session 1)

Sure, you know how to play games on a computer, but do you know how to program one? How awesome would it be to actually control what the computer is doing instead of just playing someone else’s game? If you come to Workshop 88′s kid’s programming lessons we help you learn you how. We use a variety of tools like Kids Ruby and MIT Scatch to learn and practice the fundamentals of programming. All interest and ability levels are welcome. Ages 8 – 16. Please bring your own laptop and power cord. We will provide you with the software needed. $25 per class and $25 for the textbook (or join W88 for $50 / month and come to all the classes you want!)

 

Each Session is independent and the classes will be ongoing, so come whenever you can!

 

Session 1 January 5th, 7-8:30pm

Session 2 January 26th, 7-8:30pm

Questions?  Email info@workshop88.com.

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Hackerspaces in Space: Year 2

A few days ago we launched (no pun intended) Hackerspaces in Space: Year 2.  HSIS (as we like to refer to it) is a challenge that we extend to other hackerspaces (and like-minded groups of people) to design, build and launch a weather balloon equipped with cameras to take photos at near-space altitudes. The HSIS website has all the rules regarding the contest which you can check out if you’re interested.

Last time we ran the challenge, we had a great response from the makerspace and hackerspace community.  We’re hoping to make HSIS better this year.  We want to use HSIS to promote science exploration and discovery in schools.  We want to take whatever best designs come out of this year’s challenge and send kits based on the winning designs to schools, so that student can launch their own balloons to near-space.

To make that happen, we’ve set up a kickstarter project. (You may have seen the banner at the top of the page.) Take a look at some of the prizes we’re offering and consider becoming a backer to this project so that we can get kits into schools!

Also, we need your help spreading the word about HSIS.  Please link to the page, tweet it, facebook it, retweet, upvote it on reddit, or just post it wherever you share your information online. We can’t make this happen without your help!

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Introduction to Arduino class (Arduino 101) October 2011

Workshop 88 is offering our introduction to the Arduino platform at our new space in Glen Ellyn. Class attendees will learn how to configure their arduino programming environment, how to design simple circuits for interfacing with the arduino and how to write simple programs to control the arduino. What is Arduino, you ask? From their home page:

Arduino is an open-source electronics prototyping platform based on flexible, easy-to-use hardware and software. It’s intended for artists, designers, hobbyists, and anyone interested in creating interactive objects or environments.

You can order Arduino systems from several places, including Adafruit and Sparkfun. Both companies have lots of tutorials and howtos to get you started with Arduinos. If you choose the tuition + materials option, we will have an arduino and assortment of electronics components for you to take home after the class.

You should bring: a laptop with the Arduino environment installed.

Please contact us (info@workshop88.com) if you have any questions.

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Learn about EAGLE / Hack the scrolling LED sign

Jim has volunteered to come in and show off what he knows about EAGLE and continue working on the LED scrolling sign this Thursday (8-25) at 6:30 pm at the space. EAGLE is a PCB (printed circuit board) layout design software package. It’s useful for designing your own circuit boards for whatever you want to do with them.

If time (and interest) permits, we’ll continue hacking on our scrolling LED sign that we started working on last month.

This event is FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. Come and bring your friends.

Image credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/maurymccown/1122213940/

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The ShapeOko and Buildlog projects soon to Workshop 88

Remember the ShapeOko project that we linked to a few weeks ago?  Ed is going to be coming to Workshop 88 on Tuesday, August 16th at 6:30 pm. He’ll be bringing the latest revision of his ShapeOko as well as telling us what he learned about running a successful project on Kickstarter.

But that’s not all!  We recently learned about a really cool DIY laser cutter/engraver project.  The brains behind that project belong to Bart Dring, a maker from the Chicago area.  Ed invited Bart to come along and tell us about his project on the same night!

If you have any questions about this event, please email us: info@workshop88.com

See you on the 16th!

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Learn to solder class!

Image credit:MJN123

Have you been dabbling in electronics and building all your circuits on breadboards? Maybe it’s time you learn how to solder with Workshop 88! Want to improve your soldering skills? Come to our soldering class and see what you can do to make you soldering better.  We’ve got some great new soldering irons that you’ll get to make use of during the class.

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Educube Progress

We got another couple shipments of parts for our Educube project:

The main component of our project is a Arduino clone called the Diavolino, sold by Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories .  The Diavolino uses the same ATMega328P microcontroller that comes in the Arduino Uno, but is quite a bit cheaper.  The nice folks at Evil Mad Scientist were nice enough to sell us a few without microcontrollers, and we ordered the 328Ps from Element14.

Each individual cube communicates with adjacent cubes over IR.  We ordered 10 Vishay IR transceivers, but they came sealed up in this package  covered in dire warnings, so I chose not to break them open until we have boards ready for them.

I spent a couple hours tonight putting the Diavolino kits together.  They were pretty quick, and should be a good platform for the rest of the build.

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