How can I fix my damaged table veneer?

There has been an accident with our kitchen table. We accidently cut something on the table with out protection. This has left some pretty obvious gashes in this table. The main problem is we live in a rented accommodation, and this table was supplied with the house. I can see 3 options. 1. Own up to the letting agent and pay an unknown amount for the damage. 2. Replace the table. 3. Try to repair the table some how. Ideally I'd like to get this sorted as cheaply as possible. I have tried buying some coloured pens, but couldn't find the right colour and wax that seemed to be the right colour, but wouldn't apply correctly. Any suggestions?

Question by hackzilla   |  last reply


any ideas for a large dining room table with out having to actually spend tons of money on it? ?

Thinking about doors for the top, not sure what for the legs. thinking of a saw horse but not sure how this would work. wanting to seat 10 people. need the cost to be extremely low and it to be a mix of vintage, eclectic and earthy to match the rest of my house. anyone have any ideas?

Question by mamamae   |  last reply


Judging the contest is hard!

There's so many awesome entries! Judging the Laser Cutter Contest is going to be near impossible. Here's canida slumped over her laptop at the kitchen table going through entries.

Topic by ewilhelm   |  last reply


I want to Etch clear through Brass on a table-top Answered

I want to make some fake gears and such to decorate steam punk and sci-fi stuff.  I'd like to take brass or copper and etch clear through, and have a "clean" edge.  Sharp I don't really want. I need to transfer an image from a computer-drawn source.  Heat transfer with toner I know, etching, well, not so much.    I'd also like to do this on my kitchen table.

Question by hardlec   |  last reply


Standing desk

Check out the new standing desk that I built yesterday. My previous standing desk was working just fine, it just wasn't in the kitchen. Kitchen gravity has been pulling me out of the spare bedroom/office and into the kitchen, where everyone else hangs out. Working on my laptop at the kitchen table was killing my wrists, so I mounted a proper setup to the wall. The LCD is held to the wall with an Ergotron Lx Wall Mount, and the Kensington 60044 Keyboard tray (also seen in my Ergonomic Workstation ), is mounted to a small shelf built from triangular brackets, 2x4's, and a plywood top surface.It seems to be working pretty well, and the kitchen now appears to a have "helm."I've got an Instructable in progress on the keyboard shown in the pictures, so look for that soon.EDIT:How to make a vertical, ergonomic tie-fighter keyboard is done!See the on-the-go version of this standing desk here in Handy Tricks Six.

Topic by ewilhelm   |  last reply


Top 10 Instructables For the Home

Shelving, tables, lighting, and more: what better way to outfit your house with what it needs than to make the accessories yourself? Check out this list of some of the best Instructables to help improve your home.As always, they're in no particular order. Invisible Book Shelf by dorxincandeland Have an old book you're never going to read or use again? Free up some storage space and utilize that book to create a bookshelf that makes your books look like they're floating around. .   Concrete Kitchen Countertop by doubleabattery Combine the fun of DIY with the finished look of a professional product with these concrete countertops made from concrete. .   Simple Platform Bed by aeray Pick up your mattress from the floor: with only a few materials and easy steps, you can efficiently make a platform bed. For another option, try the Pipe Dream Bed.   Aquarium Coffee Table by x86Daddy You can give your living room a fishy feel with this sure-to-impress aquarium coffee table. .   Literary Clock by mdhaworth If (after the Invisible Bookshelf) you've got another book to spare, you can turn it into a timepiece perfect for any room . .   Laptop Stand by jumpfroggy Need to check the latest Instructables after you've already called it a night? This laptop stand will help you comfortably compute in bed or wherever you need a solid surface. .   Tennis Ball Chair by wholman Revamp an old chair into a stylish, comfortable work of art featuring tennis balls. .   Knife Block by engineerable A high-quality, wall-mounted knife block safely stores and organizes up to 30 knives of varying shapes and sizes. .   Minimalist Desk by arte.sano Create a functional workspace with your own very simple desk using workhorses and a door panel. .   Paper Lamp by drips Light up your house in style with this geometric table lamp made out paper, or opt for the classic Lampshade Polygon Building Kit .   Now there's no excuse for putting off those renovations. Add your other favorites below!

Topic by joshf   |  last reply


Can a solar light be charged indoors?

Hey guys, Can a solar panel like this be charged with indoor lighting, like a calculator is, or does it need to be actual sunlight? Its rainy and cold in Canada, and need to know if I can just sit it on the kitchen table all day (the light is on anyway) and charge it up. Working on a Sun Jar, and have disassembled the outdoor solar light. I want to know if the panel/battery/light is in working order (I found an opened box at H.D. on sale for 1/2 price!) :) Thanks

Topic by Fast Eddie 


Maker Fair: McMADSAT (Make And Do, Show And Tell) Glasgow Scotland Now DEFINITELY on Saturday 14th March 2009

There will be a Maker Fair in the Glasgow Science Centre ( http://www.gsc.org.uk ) on either 7th or 14th March 2009.This will be the first of the kind in the UK (as far as I can tell). There is lots of outdoor space, including two shallow pools for model floaty things. Indoors we have space for at least 10-15 table areas.Although we will be right beside the river I think safety concerns for this first effort would mean the river is not available. But we can all drift out to admire the incoming seaplane which is based there.This is an open invitation to get in touch and say you want to come and show us what you have made, share skills etc. Let no one say that UK kitchen tables are not cluttered with projects every bit as loopy and fun as those elsewhere. Maker Kids welcome, the more the wootier.

Topic by greensteam   |  last reply


Halloween Making: Why do we do this to ourselves!? ; )

Closing in on midnight on October 30th, and I found myself in a familiar situation . . .Making last-minute Halloween costumes and props for my kids!Here's a photo of my late-night kitchen table, where I was working on a homemade hover board prop from the "Back to the Future" movies. I paused for a moment to survey the scene and snap a photo, and couldn't help taking note of the silliness of the whole thing. It's midnight. I'm tired. My kids are asleep. And I'm up making this thing. WHY?Why do we do this to ourselves?! - - - - - -I know why I do it, but tell me why you do!Were you up late making stuff for yourself or for your kids? Share your reasoning and thoughts on being a creative Halloweener in the comments below. Be sure to include a photo or two of what you were making!

Topic by seamster   |  last reply


(newsletter) Hidden USB Storage, Skype Phone, Make a Tent...

Oct 9, 2008 Sign-up for this newsletter: function openSubscribePopUp(src){ var emailValidate = /\w{1,}[@][\w\-]{1,}([.]([\w\-]{1,})){1,3}$/ if(emailValidate.test(src.value) == false){ alert("Please enter correct email"); return; } window.open("/newsletter/newslettersignup?email=" + src.value,"newslettersignup1","status=yes,scrollbars=yes,resizable=yes,width=420,height=250"); } Welcome back! The DIY Halloween Contest has launched! We've partnered with some of your favorite websites to bring you the biggest and best Halloween contest ever -- and we've got tons of great prizes to give away. Show us your best costumes, treats, gadgets, jack-o-lanterns, and more! Enter your food or kitchen-gadget hack into the Hungry Scientist Contest and win your choice of a Kitchen Aid mixer, a super nice knife set, or a Le Creuset Enamel Cast Iron Cook Set. Help us with your answers for our Burning Questions and win a cool prize pack!The Forbes Fabergé-Style Egg Contest still needs your eggs! Take an egg (real or fake) and decorate it inside and out in homage to the classic Fabergé style. You can win a Sonos music system, and get your egg featured in the Forbes Galleries in New York City!Live near San Francisco or planning a trip? Stop by for one of our build nights and make something awesome in our office! October 23: Halloween open build night. Hidden USB Storage by stonehenge360 Climbing Halloween Skeletons by mckeephoto Design and Build a Recycled Tent by bentm Motion Activated Spider from Ace by StumpChunkman Tons and tons of spooky andamazing prizes!Last weekend to enter! Low Cost Hobby Servo XY Table by CarlS Breakable Tombstone by ZogCast The Egg of Time - Fabergépunk by gmjhowe Brew Hard Cider from Scratch by actsofsubterfuge French Toast Recipe by mikeasaurus Art Nouveau Iris Emu Egg Shell by bbstudio Homemade Jam, the French Way by My House Boutique Alien Egg for Face Hugger by kristylynn84 Win some sweet tools for yourkitchen with a food hack! 10 Instructables covering basicskills to advanced techniques Turn a dead cell phone into a "SkypeCell" by JFDuval How to clean a hardshell gourd by indeepknit Ghost Shoes by fungus amungus Colored noodles, for eating! by caturday_projects Now go make something awesome, and I'll see you next week! - Eric Sign-up for this newsletter: function openSubscribePopUp(src){ var emailValidate = /\w{1,}[@][\w\-]{1,}([.]([\w\-]{1,})){1,3}$/ if(emailValidate.test(src.value) == false){ alert("Please enter correct email"); return; } window.open("/newsletter/newslettersignup?email=" + src.value,"newslettersignup2","status=yes,scrollbars=yes,resizable=yes,width=420,height=250"); }

Topic by fungus amungus   |  last reply


Fundraising for Non-profit Organisation?

Dear all, I am currently a Volunteer with an NGO (Aids info service and Sexuality) and we are planning to have activities on the 14th of February which is Valentine's Day to allow to get some funds that we can use to support the activities during the year.  My question would be what can we do in order to make this event very successful as well as to maximise revenue.  What we have plan is to have an event where couples would reserve a table and have dinner then by late night to have a dance party. Here are a list of things that we have/are still being discussed. Place of event Procedures/ Permits DJ Sponsorship Bar Kitchen Tickets Cash Desk Decoration Volunteers Marketing It would be very interesting to add use many cheap and DIY easy things to make the event look very different and more appealing.  For all the points mentioned above it would be nice to have more ideas about those as well and if new categories of things needs to be added you are most welcome to share it with.  Could ywe please shareme more ideas of what can be done to make the event more successful and memorable for everyone

Question by Chamburn 


Women who write: what would it take...

I'm researching starting an online magazine for smart, creative women. Like those of you on this site. I'd rather avoid writers experienced with magazines and girl-blogs because I'm sick of that generic "10 Things You ___" Cosmo style of writing. My question to Instructables women is: what sort of compensation would inspire you to write and/or photograph a blog post?  Notes on what kind of work I'd hope to publish: Insightful, funny, willing to be controversial, with the writer's unique voice, on topics such as work, family, home, DIY, cooking, unusual outdoorsy stuff, and what to do when your glue gun melts onto your grandmother's kitchen table. The more casual and personal the better, I want pieces that read like a note you dashed off to a friend. In other words, I want stuff that was fun for you to write, gives you a chance to show off your latest adventure/project/meal, and is equally fun to read. Tell me what kinda money you'd want to see! Or, email me an idea and we can get this party started right now with a deliciously huge $10-20 paid outta my own pocket for each piece. Best, Palmer

Topic by pdavis14   |  last reply


Macbook Pro and Following Heartbreak

I have a problem and the people on Instructables are so smart I am hoping someone can advise me.   A year ago I used my Macbook Pro in my kitchen and happened to leave it on the kitchen table over night. I never did this before.  We had a huge storm that night and my roof leaked.  I had it repaired following Hurricane Ike and it had been fine but then something happened (I got it fixed - kind of like locking the gate after the cows get out)  and that one night was the only time I ever left my computer there or had a roof leak that was pretty bad and covered my entire table with water. When I saw my table and computer I thought I would fall out!  I picked up the computer and water ran out of it!  I didn't know then to take the battery out and let it dry out completely and I don't know if it would have worked anyway.  I whined for a day or two and then bought a new Macbook Pro.  Now I can get it to power up and it seems like it is working but there is no display. First I wonder is there a way to get that computer to work again.....Second - Is there a way to recover my videos and pictures even if that computer never works again so I can have the pictures of my best friend who recently passed away and have the pictures and videos of the wildlife I love to photograph? I am a principal so I take a lot of pictures and videos at school and make videos for students and staff.  Previously I was the assistant principal and my best friend was my principal and I have a lot of video and pictures of all the fun stuff we used to do just on off time or at school.  My best friend and principal ended up with a brain tumor and passed away a few months ago. She was young and vibrant and larger than life. The staff I inherited from her would love to see some of our videos and pictures from the days when she was healthy and our principal.  It really bothers me that I can't get my videos and pictures for both reasons, the loss of the videos that would remind me and my staff of fun times with my friend at school and because of the animal videos I feel I have lost that I would love to be able to see and use again.I spend my free time making videos and doing animal photography. I have 10 game cameras set up on my property in East Texas and I love to watch the animals.  All of my previous pictures, video, etc....is on that hard drive. I removed it and I can save to it but I can not open up the picture and videos on it. The new Macbook has updated software and I have not been able to open up iPhoto, IMovie, or IDVD and get my my pictures and videos from it.    I really wish I could get those images and videos back.   I now have that hard drive in a hard case to be used as an external hard drive.   If you read all of this, Thank you! If you have any helpful ideas I would love to hear them.  If you have any interest in the type of videos I make feel free to visit my Youtube channel at FoxysMyGirl@youtube.com  Foxy was my first great dane and I was crazy in love with that dog hence the username!   Thank you! Amy

Topic by FoxysMyGirl   |  last reply


Where is the induction kettle or hot water system?

No modern kitchen these days is complete without at least a single induction cooktop.Convient to even place on the table to keep things warm but also nice to have 4 or 6 "hotplates" to cook on that are actually not getting hot at all.When it comes to efficiency induction cooking tops all others as no heat is wasted.Which brings me to the point...A single cooktop goes now often for well under 50 bucks.Although the base might end up slightly higher than a normal kettle I fail to see why we don't have induction kettles in our kitchen.Why wait 12 minutes to have the thing boil if you can do it cheaper and faster?Way more convinient too as there is no pesky contacts and heating elements anymore, no failure due to leaks either...But what really got me wondering is the hot water systems or heating options like prefered in Europe.Here you have a central "boiler" so to say and water circulates through valves into finned radiators, usually located under windows.We have oil filled radiators of this kind as free standing units that are now being phased out because they waste too much energy with their heating elements.Same story for just hot water :(On demand systems are getting more popular now outside Europe but still the common solution is to have a few hundret liters of water in a tank that is kept hot no matter how much of it we use.Be is gas or electric both types have their drawbacks and to get ahead of the corrosion that always kills them we now opt for expensive stainless steel tanks...Using induction it would be very easy to have a fully sealed tank and to actually only heat what needs to be heated without wasting too much energy.The "heating" element could be just a steel plate inside the tank with no connections to the outside.The gap between wall and element doubles to make the water circulate.And changing from a fixed timer to a temperatur control system to turn the induction element on and off is not hard either.Do you have an induction based hot water system, heater or maybe kettle already?Would love to see it...

Topic by Downunder35m   |  last reply


Help with school project!

Hi guys,  I am an industrial design student at the University of Alberta in Canada looking for some help for my project. I have been assigned to redesign a soldering iron and research on how to make this tool better with input from users in the specified market. In this case, I am looking for first timers or beginners who have just been introduced to soldering and gear my improvements towards their needs. My primary design goal is to lessen the learning curve by addressing issues of safety and comfort. I have posted some questions as part of my research and would love the input. All input is welcomed regardless of skill level. Thank you for your help! Soldering Iron Design Survey 1. What is your experience and skill level? ( None, beginner, average, expert) 2. Which type of soldering iron do you use? The gun shaped one or the pen type? 3. In what environment / setting do you use it most? eg. workbench, kitchen table. 4. What were some of the needs you had for the too and were they metl? (Needs meaning minimum expectations, without which the product would be a failure) 5. What were some of the wants you had for the tool? 6. What were some problems you encountered when you first used a soldering iron? 7. Which aspects of a soldering iron besides functionality do you consider being the most important? eg. comfort, safety etc. Thanks for your help!  Justin

Topic by jchan3ualberta 


What New Useful Products Have You Recently Become Acquainted With ?

Here is My list. I recently saw an ible about sugru. Had neverheard of it, before  but can see its usefulness. Kind of expensive and not generally available. Have seen polymer clays, but cant see how it would replace epoxy putty Available at craft shops. Have heard Rescue tape ( fusible silicon ) . I haven't had a use for it, but it seems to be a great repair tape. It was available at Craftwood  Lumber, so it is a mass market product. Expensive, but can see it's potential worth. I'll wait til. I need it before I buy it. The oscillating tools have come down in price. Not exactly new, but extremely useful especially for people whose shop is their desk or kitchen table. If I were to have one power tool, it probably would still be the cordless drill driver. But if I were allowed a second power tool, this would be it. Blades are expensive.  Demolition Bags are very useful and cheap and generally available. I recently saw a device for bending PVC pipe. I have avoided using PVC because of the joints. I prefer thin metal conduit because it can be bent with the pipe bender I was able to acquire. That being said, the Pipe Viper may  be worthwhile. I am considering a small greenhouse made of arched PVV pipe and clear sheeting.  

Topic by Wilmette   |  last reply


(newsletter) 5-Minute Cake, Run Through World of Warcraft, Fake Scars...

Oct 23, 2008 Sign-up for this newsletter: function openSubscribePopUp(src){ var emailValidate = /\w{1,}[@][\w\-]{1,}([.]([\w\-]{1,})){1,3}$/ if(emailValidate.test(src.value) == false){ alert("Please enter correct email"); return; } window.open("/newsletter/newslettersignup?email=" + src.value,"newslettersignup1","status=yes,scrollbars=yes,resizable=yes,width=420,height=250"); } Welcome back! Our book, The Best of Instructables, Volume 1, is now on sale! We selected over 120 of the best Instructables and put it into an awesome book. Check it out and buy a copy today! Enter the Party Like It's 1929! Contest! With the economy in the toilet we need to find clever ways to save money, live with less, and reuse what we've got. Remember the Great Depression? We can definitely do better this time around. Share your cash-stretching tips and tricks, and win something useful! The DIY Halloween Contest is scaring up awesome projects! We've partnered with some of your favorite websites to bring you the biggest and best Halloween contest ever -- and we've got tons of great prizes to give away. Show us your best costumes, treats, gadgets, jack-o-lanterns, and more! Check out the entries and get inspired for the best Maker holiday ever. The Hungry Scientist Contest and this round of Burning Questions close this weekend. Enter now to win a Kitchen Aid mixer, a super nice knife set, or a Le Creuset Enamel Cast Iron Cook Set for your food hack or a t-shirt for your Burning Answer!Stop by our office tonight for our Halloween open build night and make something awesome! The Best of Instructables - Video by ewilhelm Run Through the World of WarCraft by ManaEnergyPotion 5-minute Chocolate Cake by scoochmaroo Easy to do VERY convincing scar! by BlackDidThis Tons and tons of spooky andamazing prizes!Closes this weekend! Leather iPod Touch Case using Water! by gmjhowe Clear a clogged drain with SCIENCE! by fultron89 Eat a Sprouted Coconut by TimAnderson Little Zen Garden by itschrys Cookie Periodic Table by maicoh Reclaimed Wood Table by drocko Is Your Printer Spying on You? by EFForg Journal to Save Your Life by johnnyallenshaw 10 ways to gross out your guests Share your best money-saving tips! Make a Laptop Stand with a Coat Hanger by tullytully Make a Shirred Fabric Summer Dress by threadbanger Homemade Spaghetti by gregr Sewable Arduino Interface by Plusea Now go make something awesome, and I'll see you next week! - Eric Sign-up for this newsletter: function openSubscribePopUp(src){ var emailValidate = /\w{1,}[@][\w\-]{1,}([.]([\w\-]{1,})){1,3}$/ if(emailValidate.test(src.value) == false){ alert("Please enter correct email"); return; } window.open("/newsletter/newslettersignup?email=" + src.value,"newslettersignup2","status=yes,scrollbars=yes,resizable=yes,width=420,height=250"); }

Topic by fungus amungus   |  last reply


Help with school project. Redesigning soldering iron for beginners.

Hi guys,  I am an industrial design student at the University of Alberta in Canada looking for some help for my project. I have been assigned to redesign a soldering iron and research on how to make this tool better with input from users in the specified market. In this case, I am looking for first timers or beginners who have just been introduced to soldering and gear my improvements towards their needs. My primary design goal is to lessen the learning curve by addressing issues of safety and comfort. I have posted some questions as part of my research and would love the input. All input is welcomed regardless of skill level. Thank you for your help! Soldering Iron Design Survey 1. What is your experience and skill level? ( None, beginner, average, expert) 2. Which type of soldering iron do you use? The gun shaped one or the pen type? 3. In what environment / setting do you use it most? eg. workbench, kitchen table. 4. What were some of the needs you had for the too and were they metl? (Needs meaning minimum expectations, without which the product would be a failure) 5. What were some of the wants you had for the tool? 6. What were some problems you encountered when you first used a soldering iron? 7. Which aspects of a soldering iron besides functionality do you consider being the most important? eg. comfort, safety etc. Thanks for your help! Justin 

Question by jchan3ualberta   |  last reply


Small Home/ Small Apartment Work Bench

Hello!  I am a senior industrial design student and I am currently working on my senior thesis, which is to design a workbench or work station for DIY people who live in small apartments or small homes with no dedicated rooms to build in. I am looking for ideas/experiences/input from DIY people who have experienced this issue. If you have any ideas or thoughts on this type of work bench design please post them here. More importantly please answer the interview questions I have posted below. The more information I can collect from potential users of this type of workbench, the better all-around design I can come up with for the final product. I am really looking forward to hearing for everyone. Thank you for you help! 1. When you need to build or make something in your home, in what space do you build/make? (Living room, bedroom, office, outside, etc.) 2. What type of surface do you build on? (Worktable, desk, kitchen table, etc.) 3. What types of projects do you build or make? (Home improvement, decoration, storage, furniture, etc.) 4. What tools do you own? 5. Which of those tools are most useful in your builds? 6. How do you store your tools? 7. What issues do you encounter trying to build in your small space? 8. Are there any specific ideas you have that would make your building/make experience better in your small space?

Topic by EKWeb   |  last reply


Read with your Kids

Hey this is Brett. I have something that's extremely important for you to know. You need to READ with your KIDS! You need to do it regularly! You need to do it at the same time each day! It's been proven that kids who are read to by a parent can read better, earlier! In this day and age far too many kids are dropped off at a daycare and plopped in front of a TV set. I remember the good old days, growing up on the farm. As a four year old I remember settling down with Mom in front of our wood-burning stove. I would stare at the dancing flames as Mom would read "Dick and Jane" to me. The older children would do something constructive like a jigsaw puzzle or draw pictures at the kitchen table. Dad would sit off to one side of the room and carve us some small animal figures out of walnut. Thinking back to those days really brings back those feelings of warmth and security. It tears my heart out to think about my grandchildren and what they might have to look back on. Instead of the glow of a cheery fire and the safety of Mom's lap. They might look back and only remember the cold glow of the computer screen and the uncaring embrace of a beanbag chair. Once again, Please. Please read to your children. This really works! Books on tape just don't cut it. I read to my own children every night from the books they picked out. They've grown up now and are starting their own families. I hope that they'll think back to their nights with Dad and pass on this tradition of reading to their kids. Thanks, Brett.

Topic by DELETED_Brett Briner   |  last reply


My experience as an AIR

Wow! What an experience. Probably the most enjoyable, action packed, creativity-loaded 2 months of my life.  I have been tinkering in what I used to call shops; building, hacking, creating, for as long as I can remember but this... this was more than I had ever dreamed. The residency program at Instructables is a dream come true. Access to a state of the art shop, surrounded by creative, inspiring, fun people. What more could you ask for. Take one of the most creative, forward thinking, cutting edge areas of the United States (the Bay); the coolest city in that area (San Francisco); the prettiest/most unique part of that city (the Embarcadero) and slap the worlds best creative work shop on it, right over the water (Pier 9). Walking in the doors for the first time was surreal. From the swinging meeting table to the coolest kitchen I have ever seen; water jet to brand new Bridgeport; 3-D printers to industrial sewing machines, Instructables has done it. Within hours of being assigned a desk I was signing up for workshop classes and using Autodesk software to mock up some design ideas for the bicycle frame jig I spent most of my residency building. I later used this jig to build a bicycle frame.  Not only was I having a blast building what I wanted to build, I was building skills I hope to use professionally. I am hoping to start my own business building custom bicycle frames. The time to tinker and build at Instructables gave me a tremendous jump start. I wish it hadn't ended.

Topic by Tanner W   |  last reply


Share Office Space with Instructables at Squid Labs in San Francisco

2010-04-05 Update: We've moved, and all our shared space is occupied!  Do you have a cool small company and are looking for some shared office and/or lab space in a really great environment? Share space at Squid Labs! Squid Labs recently opened a new office in San Francisco and we're looking to fill spaces in our shared work environment. The current tenants are Instructables (community project sharing) and HumCycles (electric motorcycles). Features of the space: - Tons of natural light. Windows on all 4 sides and skylights. - Landlord is awesome and tech/green savvy. - Space is clean/professional yet also stylish/zany. - Cool intra-space neighbors working on hot technologies. Lots of idea/resource sharing. - Close to BART, MUNI, and freeways for your commuting needs. - Parking lot with space for 9 cars. Shared resources: - Large conference room with table/chairs/projector. - Smaller meeting room for phone calls. - Two kitchens with fridges, microwaves, plates, etc. - 75 watt laser cutter - Lounge space for eating, hanging out, brainstorming. - Shop space in the garage with a mill, lathe, welding, and other power tools. - 4 unisex bathrooms. - Internet, wireless, firewall. Static IPs available. - Pizza parties, build nights, and meet-ups. What's available: - A mix of cubicles and large and small private offices. - Month-to-month cubicles, or longer-term larger-area leases are possible. - In the layout below, the blue and pink areas are available, and the green areas will be available in the future. White is open common space, and dark gray is bathrooms, closets, and the elevator. This represents single cubicles to 5000 sqft of the 7500 sqft total. Location: 489 Clementina St. San Francisco, CA (Right next to 6th and Folsom) Contact me if interested! Click on my username in the right-side column for contact info.

Topic by ewilhelm   |  last reply


First Day Interning at Instructables

Today is my third day as an intern at the downtown SF Instructables office. I thought I'd recount Day 1 as a day-in-the-life! It starts off with: "Don't come in before 10am" from Eric, and a mention from Noah (my more direct boss): "We recommend that folks bring their computers, a contractor trash bag, a good pair of running shoes, a banana and hard hat on their first day - that way, they are prepared for whatever challenges may await them at Instructables." So I walked out to the office, found the robot-painted door wedged between the liquor store and the Mexican restaurant, and walked up the stairs. It's one big room- open tables everywhere covered in stuff of all sorts: duct tape, paper towels, electronics, crocheted Pac-Man, a giant styrofoam face, an electric toaster. Everyone is at their workstations- one folding a 3D paper alphabet, another fiddling with a breadboard. The devs coding on one side of the room while walking on treadmills at the computer and DJ'ing the room. Anyway, I walked in and looked around, and was greeted with a tentative "Hello?" from someone at a desk*. I clarified that it was my first day of work, and that cleared things up. Bilal, the artist-in-residence, gave me a shoulder tap, and I was welcomed by Eric and Noah. *Apparently random strangers occasionally wander up the stairs. We now have a laser cut "days since a random stranger walked up the stairs" counter for the office. Noah showed me around, introducing me to the editors' corner, the marketing team, showing me the rooms along the back wall: "Office, sewing/electronics lab, office, store room, office, prize room, woodshop/laser cut room, 3D printer. Probably ask someone before you use the 3D printer. Test kitchen, game corner." And that was it. Back at his place in the editor's corner, he nodded. A brief pause, and then I asked, "Is there anything in particular I'm supposed to do?" Noah laughed. "Good question! Since you're just here for the summer, you'll be doing a lot of making stuff. You can use any of the supplies, or if you need to buy anything, let me know." There are a few other things I get to do, too. I can feature Instructables, and am encouraged to do outreach to people who aren't on Instructables but ought to be. But right now, most people in the office are working hard on entries for the Make it Real contest. So I got to work. You can check out my page for the fun things I've begun to make here at the office. A few other key points of the first day experience: -2pm check-in: everyone in the office meets around the lunch table to say what they've been doing that day. -Membership at TechShop- lots of fun toys for making things! -Picking up things from the MakerFaire -Getting project cards Since then, I've gotten some fabric and done some sewing for a project I haven't posted yet and worked with CNC paper cutting, 3D printing, taught myself Google SketchUp and Silhouette, and have begun to list all the things I'd like to work on this summer All right, that's enough writing. Time to make!

Topic by SelkeyMoonbeam   |  last reply


FREE DOWNLOAD 1915 ELECTRICITY FOR THE FARM

This is not a scan of the original book, but the original book converted to text with OCR, and strictly proof read with QC controls. Thus the charts, formulas can be copied and pasted into something else.  www.gutenberg.org/etext/27257   ELECTRICITY FOR THE FARM LIGHT, HEAT AND POWER BY INEXPENSIVE METHODS FROM THE WATER WHEEL OR FARM ENGINE BY FREDERICK IRVING ANDERSON AUTHOR OF "THE FARMER OF TO-MORROW," ETC., ETC. New York THE MACMILLAN COMPANY 1915   PREFACE This book is designed primarily to give the farmer a practical working knowledge of electricity for use a slight, heat, and power on the farm. The electric generator, the dynamo, is explained in detail; and there are chapters on electric transmission and house-wiring, by which the farm mechanic is enabled to install his own plant without the aid and expense of an expert.    With modern appliances, within the means of the average farmer, the generation of electricity, with its unique   conveniences,   becomes   automatic,   provided   some   dependable   source   of   power   is   to   be had—such as a water wheel, gasoline (or other form of internal combustion) engine, or the ordinary windmill. The water wheel is the ideal prime mover for the dynamo in isolated plants. Since water-power is running to waste on tens of   thousands of our   farms throughout   the country,   several chapters are devoted to this phase of the subject: these include descriptions and working diagrams of weirs and other simple devices for measuring the flow of streams; there are tables and formulas by which any one, with a knowledge of simple arithmetic, may determine the power to be had from falling water under given conditions; and in addition, there are diagrams showing in general the method of construction of dams, bulkheads,   races, flumes, etc.,   from materials usually to be found on a farm. The tiny unconsidered brook that waters the farm pasture frequently possesses power enough to supply the farmstead with clean,   cool,   safe   light   in place of   the dangerous,   inconvenient oil   lamp;   a   small   stream capable of developing from twenty-five to fifty horsepower will supply a farmer (at practically no expense beyond the original cost of installation) not only with light, but with power for even the heavier farm operations, as threshing; and in addition will do the washing, ironing, and cooking, and at the same time keep the house warm in the coldest weather. Less than one horsepower of energy will light the farmstead; less than five horsepower of energy will provide light and small power, and take the drudgery out of the kitchen.   For those not fortunate enough to possess water-power which can be developed, there are chapters on the use of the farm gasoline engine and windmill,   in connection with the modern storage battery, as sources of electric current.   www.gutenberg.org/etext/27257

Topic by Lateral Thinker 


"Miracle Liquid" - Electrolyzed Water

Http://articles.latimes.com/2009/feb/23/business/fi-magicwater23I think someone with more time than me should see how to do this most efficiently and see if it work!The article:Sounds like the old "Saturday Night Live" gag for Shimmer, the faux floor polish plugged by Gilda Radner. But the elixir is real. It has been approved by U.S regulators. And it's starting to replace the toxic chemicals Americans use at home and on the job.The stuff is a simple mixture of table salt and tap water whose ions have been scrambled with an electric current. Researchers have dubbed it electrolyzed water -- hardly as catchy as Mr. Clean. But at the Sheraton Delfina in Santa Monica, some hotel workers are calling it el liquido milagroso -- the miracle liquid.That's as good a name as any for a substance that scientists say is powerful enough to kill anthrax spores without harming people or the environment.Used as a sanitizer for decades in Russia and Japan, it's slowly winning acceptance in the United States. A New York poultry processor uses it to kill salmonella on chicken carcasses. Minnesota grocery clerks spray sticky conveyors in the checkout lanes. Michigan jailers mop with electrolyzed water to keep potentially lethal cleaners out of the hands of inmates.In Santa Monica, the once-skeptical Sheraton housekeeping staff has ditched skin-chapping bleach and pungent ammonia for spray bottles filled with electrolyzed water to clean toilets and sinks."I didn't believe in it at first because it didn't have foam or any scent," said housekeeper Flor Corona. "But I can tell you it works. My rooms are clean."Management likes it too. The mixture costs less than a penny a gallon. It cuts down on employee injuries from chemicals. It reduces shipping costs and waste because hotel staffers prepare the elixir on site. And it's helping the Sheraton Delfina tout its environmental credentials to guests.The hotel's kitchen staff recently began disinfecting produce with electrolyzed water. They say the lettuce lasts longer. They're hoping to replace detergent in the dishwasher. Management figures the payback time for the $10,000 electrolysis machine will be less than a year."It's green. It saves money. And it's the right thing to do," said Glenn Epstein, executive assistant at the Sheraton Delfina. "It's almost like fantasy."

Topic by elnino2783 


Free Hardwood, Dragon Eggs, Green Explosions...

Sign-up for our newsletter here. Jan. 24, 2008 Welcome back! This week we announced the Get the LED Out! Speed Challenge. Make an awesome Instructable featuring LEDs and win a TV-B-Gone kit! The Homemade Holidays winners have been announced. See who won here! Which of our 14 great finalists should win the $15K VersaLaser? Help decide! Check out these cool instructables! Make a gorgeous Dragon's Egg Turn a regular egg into a fantastic looking dragon's egg in a few minutes with a bit of hot melt glue gun glue and some paint. posted by KaptinScarlet on Jan 23, 2008 Encode data in 2D on your T-shirts, business cards and stickers ! Use QR code, a 2D bar code, to encode fair amount of data that can be read with cell phones! posted by 5Volt on Jan 17, 2007 How to Start Fire with Water! Start a very cool green combustion with just a few drops of water!posted by pudi.dk on Jan 17, 2008 Carrot Caviar Jump on board the Molecular Gastronomy train by making up some carrot caviar in your own kitchen. posted by mzed on Jan 18, 2008 Awesome led cube You never know when you might need a glowing cube to convince people you are from the future. posted by AlexTheGreat on Jan 23, 2008 Speed Challenge! Vote on the finalist pages! Book shelf? ...what book shelf? Here is a method of displaying the artistic covers of a book when space on a table or shelf is not available for displaying it. posted by watermelon on Jan 20, 2008 Make your own Roll-Up Keyboard Have you ever wanted one of those pricey roll up keyboard but didn't want to spend the money? Here is a quick and dirty way to make your own. posted by Auger+Duval on Jan 22, 2008 How to Remove A Fishing Hook Using Fishing line If you get a fishing hook stuck in your finger, salvation is a quick tug of fishing line away from you. posted by back-cast on Jan 23, 2008 Build your own computer Why buy a computer from a manufacturer like Dell or Gateway, when you could build a more powerful computer for less money? posted by bmlbytes on Jan 19, 2008 How to Get Cheap or Free Hardwood Lumber Here's how to buy new lumber in bundles for less than firewood. This seems to work best for hardwoods, cabinetmaker type stuff. posted by TimAnderson on Jan 21, 2008 Show us your yarn! There's still time to enter pictures of your yarn projects in the Lion Brand Yarn Challenge!! Here are some of the 222 projects already entered- check them out, talk to the crafters, and get inspired! Hats Afghan Shawl Ornaments Goldfish   Now go make something awesome, and I'll see you next week! - Eric

Topic by fungus amungus 


Ch. 1 In which SHIFT! comes to Instructables and is very excited to begin

Hey Instructabrarians, So here I am.  Headquarters of Instructables.  In 82cd Second St, San Francisco.   AND IT'S FREAKING AWESOME! Seriously, I still can't believe I get to come here every day!  While the outside may appear small, the entire facility is huge.  Immediately upon entering the building you are greeted by a long  ascending brick encased stairwell, which gives a very good impression of a classic London bookstore, which lead up to about a 15 foot high rise above the SF Streets.  Then, at the top of the stairs the whole building unfolds to reveal the entire HQ of Instructables, a place where you can instantly tell there's always something new going on.  It's quite filled with different projects, and various workshops that decorate the interim of the facility.  Exactly like an oversized engineering student's dorm room might look.   This place is amazing!  As soon as you enter you can immediately tell this is a place where DIY and homebrew are the norm.  Each room is actually organized like the Category section on their site- they've got a Kitchen for Food and Cooking, an awesome Workshop (complete with Laser Cutting Printer), Electronics and homebuilt ardruino Robot table, shelves filled with Arts and Crafts.   As a huge fan of the site I couldn't help but point out how many classic 'ibles I recognized.  Another awesome fact about instructables. While most companies would provide the usual simple shed or bike rack to employees, Instructables is smarter and more creative.  They hang their bikes on the wall. WOW.  I can say I never would've thought of that. Even their bathrooms are awesome- they decorated one of their doors with a Portal Cake sign! Honestly that alone is worth several points on the TV Tropes "So Cool It's Awesome" factor.    And I haven't even come CLOSE to describing the rest of the facility!   However, most important to me, is that the people are so friendly.  I was really worried about my first day job, but everyone was extremely nice and welcoming to me and I can't wait to begin work!   But the truly best part is that they're not just awesome Instructabrarian Employers, they themselves are also huge fans of the site and have their own personal instructables.  Tuesday is show and tell day where everyone presents something new they're working on and I can't wait to see it!  They're also completely understanding and are even giving me some time to work on my DIY PIXAR booth for the Maker Faire!   Thanks!  Anyway, today is Wednesday so not a ton of people are in today.  Luckily I got a chance to talk with Instructables gurus such as Sarah, Christy and Eric Wilhelm (yes, THE Eric Wilhelm!).  Right now a NBC new crew, or is it CBS?, is filming a special report on Fenix on their latest project- a portable power generator for the Middle East!  Overall, this is such an amazing introduction for me.  I'm still totally geeking out about all of this and I hope this dream doesn't end soon! -ME PS I'm sorry if I forgot to mention anyone.  Also, 3-DMO (my N3DS) pictures will be uploaded on my flickr site soon.

Topic by SHIFT!   |  last reply


Can I power 3 small electronic components (video game, LCD screen, audio amp) with a 6 volt adaptor?

Hi, I need help working out the power supply issues on this project of mine. Once I have the parts defined I'm going to teach a DIY class to 5-10 young under-privileged kids where they can build their own arcade machine. I'm hoping to keep the costs down to under $50 as I will be self-funding this. I'm building a small desktop video arcade system using one of those old Namco Joystick boxes which are battery driven (4 AA batteries) and have an audio and video RCA jack which you hook up directly to a tv. There are 3 main components. Video Game/joystick box http://bit.ly/1lpVuXr Regarding the power requirements. All I know is that it takes 4 AA batteries. So 6 volts. I don't know how much current it draws. Can I use a multimeter to measure this? Do I need this information to move forward? 4 Inch LCD Video Screen http://amzn.to/1lUq0Kj Here is the range of power options for this device. Voltage/Current/Power 5.1v / .27a / 1.377w [lowest stable voltage] 6.0v / .25a / 1.5w 6.6v / .23a / 1.518w 7.4v / .20a / 1.48w 8.0v / .18a / 1.44w 8.6v / .17a / 1.462w 9.2v / .16a / 1.472w 9.8v / .15a / 1.47w 10.4v / .14a / 1.456w 11.0v / .13a / 1.43w 11.6v / .12a / 1.392w 12.0v / .12a / 1.44w [highest recommended voltage] Small Audio Amplifier board to drive a small speaker. Probably not more that 1 watt I'm guessing would be loud enough. Not sure what to use here. Any ideas? If this also can take 6 volts then everything can be powered by one 6 volt power supply. This looks interesting. https://www.sparkfun.com/products/11044 I would just have to add a speaker and a potentiometer for a volume control. It says it will take up to 5.5 volts. I wonder if I could push it and give it 6 volts or if not whether I could reduce the voltage slightly in order to keep everything at 6 volts. I've already built one of these desktop arcade machines ( http://www.jochumson.com/project7.html ) but ended up using both the video game batteries (which powered the video game) and a separate 12 volt power supply (which powered both the LCD and an audio amp board) and I didn't like that as you had to replace the batteries as well as have it plugged in all the time. I ended up using a small 3 watt amplifier which was WAY too powerful. I could only turn it up a little before the volume was earth shattering. And this was a small audio amplifier board.  I would prefer it to be as simply as possible. Just need to amplify the RCA audio output to levels appropriate to playing on a kitchen table. Not very loud. Ideally I would like to: Power all three things with the (4 AA batteries) that comes with the joystick. That would be ideal as it would allow this small video arcade machine to be portable. Assuming though that the batteries didn't drain way too fast. If the batteries don't provide enough current then the next best thing would be a power adaptor. Something like this assuming that it could power all three components (video game/joystick, video screen and audio amplifier).  http://amzn.to/1rza3bG So my issues are: Can I power all this with one power supply? And are there issues like voltage spiking that I have to worry about when connecting multiple components like this to one power supply? Or can I just hook them up in parallel assuming they all take 6 volts and the total current draw is less than the power adapter is rated? Any help you could give me would be greatly appreciated. Here's my first attempt from last year. http://www.jochumson.com/project7.html Thanks very much! Chris Jochumson

Topic by cjochumson   |  last reply


Yellow Roses a fairy tale and horror story

I awaken in a place I'm not familiar with. Seems I am in some sort of hospital, the white walls, they look padded, could it be I am here because of something mental? I really haven't a clue. The only thing I really remember is the man, I recently met, what I would call the man of my dreams. I just don't understand why I am here. I guess I will figure it out eventually. In the mean time I will think about my new suitor, this will calm my nerves. We met inocenntly enough, by bumping into each other literally. He was coming out of the dime store as I was going in and we just collided. He was so good looking, with his dark hair, beard, and blue eyes. He looked so good, he actually took my breathe away. After bumping ino him I say," Oh my goodness, I am such a klutz. I am so sorry" He replies," No harm done. I should have been watching where I was going. But it's not every day I bump into some one as beautiful as you. Let's start over, hi, my name is Dillion." Blushing, I answer back, " Strange way to meet some one. I am so sorry. Thank you for the compliment. I guess I at least owe you my name. My name is Laura. Again I am so sorry for bumpimg into you." " No need to apologize, maybe us bumping into each other was destiny. Maybe it meant for this to happen, so we could meet each other. Anyway, I would be honered if I could take you to dinner. How about tonight? We could meet right here, if you like, at least until you get to know me a little better. I want you to be at ease with me, not to think I am Jack the Ripper", then he laughs. " You aren't shy are you? O.K., we will meet here say at seven? I guess the least I can do is give you a chance, so I will see you here at seven." Dillion agreeing, the we part ways and I go back to shopping, but I can't get Dillion off my mind. I am just so excited about our date tonight, I literally can't be still. Soon it is almost six, so I rush back to my apartment to freshen up before I go to meet Dillion. Almost being seven, I rush back to the dime store, I surely don't want to be late for our first date. Arriving I see Dillion is already there, nevously pacing back and forth like an expectant father. I notice he is carrying a bunch of yellow roses, my favorite color. I make sure Dillion sees me so I don't startle him, walking up to him I say," Hi, have you been waiting long?" Dillion says," I been here for a few minutes. May I say you look beautiful. Also, I got you these. I hope you like them. " I am very flattered by the roses. Thank you so much. How did you know I liked yellow?" " Remember when I first met you, you were dressed in all yellow, just like you are now and may I say the yellow looks great on you because of your dark hair. Anyway I figured you like the color because of how you were dressed and it appears I was right. I thought maybe we go out to dinner, then we catch a movie, how does that sound to you?" " Dinner and a movie sound really good. You lead and I will follow." Here in Lake Charles, Loisiana not that many things to do like you would in a big town. We are just Cajun folk. We choose the movie 2012, because I have been dying to see it. But first we settle on great Cajun food at a restaurant known as Hebert's. Before that we make a quick trip to my apartment so I can put my roses in water. We arrive at the restaurant and lead to a table by the hostess. Then we are greeted by the waiter. I order catfish and Dillion orders gumbo. Waiting on the food, we have a couple of beers as we talk. Dillion says," Have you thought since we meet that maybe it was pre-ordained? I think you are one of the most beautiful women I have ever seen, since we bumped into each other you have been the only thing on my mind. I feel privileged just to be in your presence." I look at Dillion feeling my face blush I say," Thank you for your kind words, you so flatter me. You could be right because since I met you I can't think of any thing else but you. There is definitely some kind of chemistry here wouldn't you say? I am always on guard because I have been hurt before, but with you I haven't even thought of this and don't really care. I just couldn't wait to see you again." " I must say I feel exactly the same way. I want to get to know you, do things with you and I hope this won't be our only date. You just leave me breathless." " I want to see you again also. You know I have lived in Louisiana a couple of years now and I have never been sight seeing. I have always had an interest in the supernatural and two places I wanted to see here is Magnolia Plantation and the Myrtles Plantation. The stories behind these places just fascinate me." " Well, we have something in common, an interest in the supernatural. I visited Magnolia Plantation once, all the voodoo practiced there, to think of it just gives me goose bumps. So if we agree to see each other this is something you would like to do? Soon our food arrives and we continue talking through out the meal, I love getting to know someone on this level. After we finish our meal we go to see 2012, after that Dillion drives me to my apartment, after arriving Dillion says," I was having such a good time, I hate for the night to end. Do you want me to walk you to your door?" " No, I will be fine but thank you for asking. I hate for the night to end also, so would you like to come in for a while?" " Are you sure it will be alright? I would love to come in." After we both reach the door, we walk in, the first thing I do is put on some music, then go to the kitchen to get a couple of beers. Dillion walks around the living room looking at pictures and things. Arriving back in the I hand Dillion his beer, but he puts it on the table, lightly grabbing me around the waist and starts dancing with me. This totally surprise me. I am totally swept off my feet. Then before I realize it we are sharing a very passionate kiss. Then he picks me up in his arms, us staring each other romantically in the eyes, and he heads toward the bedroom. I usually don't sleep with some one on the first date, but this I just couldn't help myself. We end up making wild passionate love all night. The next morning we wake up and after breakfast we decide to drive to and tour Magnolia Plantation, the plantation steeped in voodoo. After arriving here the feeling one gets , well there are no words for the depressive feeling one has. Dillion walks around like he is in a trance like he notices everything here. After that first date we become quite the the item. We are always together and do everything together. Dillion sends me yellow roses every week, to show his feelings for me and he knows these are my favorite flowers. After a couple of weeks things start to change as Dillion starts spending more time with himself and then claiming him not remembering where he was or what he was doing. But I love him and I trust him. One night we stayed together we get up the next morning and in the local paper is a story about a horrific murder. " It says here they think this murder was some how connected to voodoo because they found a mojo bag. The murder they think was some sort of sacrifice to the Gods. The mojo bag was made of red flannel which signifies love. They say the victim was a young male around the age of twenty. Now that will send chills up your spine. Now we have a killer that worships voodoo Gods. How appropriate." Dillion says, " It is probably just some nut after their fifteen minutes of fame. I don't think you have anything to worry about. Why worry? You will be safe as long as you are with me." Two weeks pass with no more incidents, until one day another murder reported in the paper with the same M.O. Dillion says," Are you still worried about this psycho? I can tell from the look on your face after reading the paper. No need to worry my darling. " I guess you are right but I would think any woman that lives alone would be sort of alarmed, don't you?" " I tell you what to ease your nerves why don't you come stay with me until they apprehend this nut. I promise you will be safe." " Perhaps you are right. I will stay with you for a while." Time passes about three months now and I am still staying with Dillion. This thing really scares me. We both go to work, go out sometime together, but there are times Dillion just disappears for hours and he has no explanation. One day I'm cleaning the apartment and there is a knock at the door. Upon answering it, it is the police wanting to speak with Dillion. I ask," Why do you want to see him? Has he done something?" The police say," We want to speak with Dilllion because we think he is involved in something." "Involved in what? He is with me most of the time." " All we can tell you is that we think he may be involved with the voodoo murders, I'm sure you have heard of. The mojo bags being red flannel, doesn't Dillion's work have something to do with red flannel?" It all starts to make sense now, the red flannel, the times he disappears with no memory, Then this thought just overwhelms my mind and my next moment I am aware of, I wake up here in this mental ward. According to the doctors here, Dillion was made up, just something in my mind. I was lonely so Dillion was a fabrication. The murders were real enough though and they bothered me so much I fit them in to my illustration. So they say I can't distinguish between reality and imagination. I see it is almost time for me to see the doctor again but first I hear a knock on my room door. I say," Come in." In comes an orderly carrying a bunch of yellow roses.

Topic by lanaia74 


The Middle East and the Global Hackerspace Movement

Please follow me and imagine this. You're in a city and are taking a rattling train somewhere to the edge of town. The buildings get shorter as they get wider. You are entering the industrial area where the jobs dried up long ago. Where there are more broken windows than whole ones in each building. You pass the streets your parents warned you about and a street covered in "DO NOT CROSS" tape. Two stops later you get off at the stop your friends told you about questioning your sanity and wondering why your friends brought you out there. The graffiti is beautiful though, and somewhere in the distance you can hear the thump of heavy bass. The address your friend gave you can't be right, you look up and see a massive complex thankfully this one seemed to have more of it's windows intact. You push the rusting door noticing the rough texture and surprising heft. You walk in and see a roughly refinished hallway. The drywall isn't yet painted but it appears that this massive factory has been transformed on the inside. You pass a few drywalled off artists studios on the first floor and they smile at you with plaster in their hair. It smells like lavender and you notice you just passed an artist making candles. The "hackerspace" your friend told you about is on the second floor. So you walk to the cargo elevator and push the call button. It makes a horrifying rattling sound as it descends to meet you, instead of a door it has a grate. You take it up and as it slowly moves you can see concrete, then wood and suddenly the thumping bass get's louder - Hello Skrillex. It's too much to take in at first, you only notice the chaos. There are tools everywhere and in every state of operation. A wall of computer monitors lines the back wall. There's someone binding books in the corner, and what appears to be a viking with knitting needles sitting in what appears to be a lounge, he looks up and smiles at you and says "welcome to Scrumspace*!" you've arrived at your first hackerspace. Notice an open basket of dollar bills and place a 2 dollar donation in the basket near the fridge and grab yourself a drink from the fridge in the kitchen. You walk into a common area painted like a scene from Super Mario with what appear to be server racks painted as the tubes. Finally you see your friend. He walks in with a scorched shirt and you see his eyes twinkling through the welding goggles. "Told you this place is awesome!" he says. Hackerspace Values and Culture Hackerspaces like this exist almost all over the world. These places collect (and perhaps helps inspire) people who are passionate initiators. Walking into one you might find someone who wants to share a new iPad application which monitors the GPS on the weather balloon they've released -"It's over //CHINA// right now!!". People in hackerspaces are happy to share, it's a part of the culture! Interacting with them is often uplifting and inspiring. They are building and creating things they think is amazing. They may be playing with technology or science or art without concern for the categories. The only apparent question they ask themselves is how AWESOME is this!? It's a contagious atmosphere of capability where people learn from each other constantly. They can't help it! People are so passionate about what they are doing, they inadvertently teach. The other feature of a hackerspace which is more important is that they give people a venue. It's an open space that is owned by the members. Need a place to host a workshop on hat felting, it's yours! Need a place to build the first prototype of your product? Just make sure you pack it in the lockers when you're done working on it! The atmosphere is fundamentally collaborative. It can't be anything except participatory because of the way the spaces are most often organized and run. There is no single owner. Everyone pays for a portion of the rent, and more importantly everyone brings something new to the table. They might bring with them a new tool, their coffee machine, a desire to set up a program to run a STEM program for children. The spaces become a snapshot the local community of amazing people and their projects. Many of these people started developing their projects during their final years in university. But their is a gap between a school project and feeling capable to take it and turn it into something yourself. I'd love to start here. With these fresh graduates. These young people who (perhaps not coincidentally) are also the driving force behind the revolutions of the middle east. This is a great place to start. These are the young people changing their countries today. They feel empowered to change long standing traditions and the culture of oppression in their governments. Perhaps it's also time to give them the tools to do the same for their local communities. Where they have the ability to have a more direct impact. Who the heck cares about the government if you are free to repave your roads, create alternative energy from solar power, clean your own water and start your own online webstore distributing products that are rapidly prototyped and drop shipped to other places around the world. Sure you might call this line of reasoning anarchistic. But when the systems around you are falling apart, banding together to pick up the pieces is the admirable thing to do. Social entrepreneurship in the states often focuses on countries outside the states. They basically act as for profit NGOs. Non profit organizations as they operate in America don't exist in the middle east. Thus I'm beginning to think that the concept of social entrepreneurship might just be a great way forward for these countries. Doing well by doing good! This concept is a development hack, and one that could possibly have it's roots in the Hackerspace scene. There are features of hackerspaces that I see can give rise to more DIY social entrepreneurship in the middle east. They are: 1) The culture of good. Make something wonderful. Share it with others online and off. Be inspired and inspiring. 2) The availability of tools along with the docracy culture. If you want to see it, do it. 3) A supportive global and local community which has within it stories of other successes to emulate. Where does this culture come from? It appears to be derived from the open source movement. Open source technology is often spearheaded by a few individuals but is maintained, built and supported by a global community of makers who want the tech for themselves as well. Do you want to see that feature? Write it? But don't edit the program and keep it to yourself! Share! That's a doocracy combined with the culture of sharing that the internet helps so much to support. All of this seems to be directed by the common value for people of all ideologies. The golden rule. Do for others as you wish to have done for yourself. Do you want free tools. Freedom. Access to clean water? A cheap space to build projects? Free vector drawing software? Be a doer. Be a part of the change. And then share with others. Your vision is what makes the future. These are some of the amazing features of these spaces. This is why I am in love with hackerspaces, open source technology and makers of all types. They are beautiful people who come from all types of backgrounds who get together to create a culture of sharing and collaboration that enhances their local communities and connects them globally. If you have not visited your local hackerspace yet, visit it. If you live in a place without a space, put your name up on hackerspaces.org, I'm sure you will find like minded people who crave this type of community. Hackerspaces in the Middle East Now that we have described hacker culture and hackerspaces can a space like this become a the hub and home of amazing people in the Middle East? Does the west have a monopoly on awesome. Absolutely not. Are middle easterners creative Heck yes! Are they inspired to work collaboratively? Heck yes! Are they educated? Heck yes! Do they want to fix the problems they see around them? Heck YES! Are they powerful? Heck YES! Again and again I've seen example after example of the young people in the middle east (yes, those that are 30% unemployed) showcasing example after example of incredible projects. And talking to them a message I hear over and over is that they want to show the world that in Beirut, Baghdad, or Cairo things other than violence is created. They want to create positive news that goes out to the world. They want to reach out to the world and participate in sharing! Here's a short list of incredible people I've met personally in my two short trips to the middle east: Bassam Jalgha Tarek Ahmed Ahmed Tohamy Salma Adel Rami Ali's Smart Breadboard Marc Farra Maya Kreidieh Cairo Hackerspace Book Scanner Project An awesome home automation system in Baghdad Iraq Mustafa Elnagar Furkan Alp Pehlivan Hind Hobeika's Butterfleye Project Jad Berro's Tank Robot Mounir Zoorob Octocopter! Here's a video of Munir's octocopter: Beirut is beautiful:   One incredible graduation project by Cairo Hackerspace organizer Salma Adel is one that focuses on the very heart of the maker movement and looks at the artisan as the creator of value. How do you take new design, match it with old technology and create amazing new products. I'm proud to know she's an active memeber at Cairo Hackerspace:  I hope I have shown you that there are already "hackers", makers and entrepreneurs there in the middle east. People with the open source attitude Arabs with the culture of sharing and collaboration. There are many here that work with the Google Technology User Groups or other open source initiatives. Linux user groups. Tons of coworking spaces. And some incredible incubators and entrepreneurship cultural development projects. Android phones are more popular in Egypt than the iPhone from my own small survey. It might have initially started as a cost issue has turned into a passion with Ubuntu, firefox, Android and other open source technologies really taking off. A few things were missing though. If you read hacker news you will begin to think that anyone with a desire to make foursquare mashups is an entrepreneur. In the middle east we have incredibly skilled people languishing after college while their counter parts in the west are out attempting to recreate Facebook. Why?! I think it has to do with the lack of proper story telling about entrepreneurship in the Middle East. Wamda seems to be helping greatly in that regard, but we need more publications talking about this issue! This also comes in concert with an inability to find cofounders. Why? A lack of collaboration? Why? A lack of self initiated projects? Solution? Do stuff. Just do it. Where? Here. At your local hackerspace. Do you have an interesting idea you want to try? A drone to take ariel pictures of the pyramids? Or a service like Utlub which delivers soap to bathers who are wet and realize they ran out of soap. Well in a space like a hackerspace you can do it! The tools are there. But more importantly you will find collaborators! People who are willing to jump on board to help!al Patterns of Propagation The Arab world is not just ready for Hacker culture, hacker culture is already there. My work with GEMSI is simply to connect the right people together and showcase the awesome possibilities hackerspace afford their communities and attempt to create the right environment to allow these amazing people to take their own future into their hands like they already are, but to do it not only politically, but financially, and with direct community education and organizing. Before I went to the middle east I was privileged to participate in the rise of the hackerspace movement in the United States. In 2007 there were very few (if any self identified) hackerspaces in the United States. That same year Mitch Altman, Bre Pettis, and Nick Farr went on a trip to Germany visiting the hackerspaces that were there. Being filled with inspiration and the realization that these spaces were created by PEOPLE who wanted to set them up. They came back to the states and started Noisebridge, NYCResistor and HacDC respectively. Due to the culture of sharing, they started putting up projects online. They shared the process of creating these spaces. And slowly at first people started noticing that they too could start their own local community spaces for creation and we started seeing them grow rapidly. The mathematical name of the function that describes this type of growth is exponential. The more spaces that existed that have this culture of sharing the more people heard about them and wanted them in their own cities. Then something wonderful happened. The economy collapsed in 2008 which had two very positive effects on the development of hackerspaces:  People were freed from their jobs  Space was becoming cheap as tons of manufacturing facilities were abandoned. Check out this chart which shows the rapid growth of hackerspaces and the acceleration around 2008/9. Hacker culture is an attitude that anything can be done by any resource available. MacGyver will make you a mouse trap from your sunglasses and your underpants. A hacker would use it to make a one way privacy screen for your cellphone. But how do you transmit a culture? This is why a space is so important. Having a place where people can sit with others and recognize the possibilities. To see the value in the stuff they know, to share it with others and to build together. The first few hackerspaces that are being set up in the middle east have the same property of viral transmission as we saw in America. Istanbul Hackerspace and Base Istanbul are both hackerspaces in Turkey. Istanbul Hackerspace being in the European part and Base Istanbul in asian section. As widely spread apart as they are, they both have something in common. Both founders had visited a hackerspace, one in Japan and the other in Germany before coming home and deciding they wanted to start one there. It's kind of incredible to see the same pattern repeat in the middle east. This appears to be a universal need, the need for community, creativity and having a open space to build your future. The pattern has been proven in Egypt as well. Alexandria's hackerspace initiative was galvanized after a delegation of students visited  Cairo Hackerspace two hours to the south. It's exciting to see the very same forces at work that took the hackerspaces from being a concept barely known to having a large impact on the American Entrepreneurial and cultural landscape in five short years years at work in Egypt. Cairo Hackerspace currently is without their space but is actively seeking a new one and it's one of my current goals to help in any way I can. Let's conclude with the list of hackerspaces just starting up in Egypt and Beirut. This is just the start. Keep an eye on these guys and know that there will be many many more to come: Egypt: Cairo Hackerspace El Minya Hackerspace Alexandria Hackerspace Mansoura Hackerspace Egypt Fablab (Same idea ;) Lebanon: Beirut Hackerspace (link coming soon) If you'd like to talk more about the global development of hackerspaces. Let's continue talking online at GEMSI's facbebook group. *Scrumspace does not exist as a hackerspace. If you like the name take it!

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