News

Makers Look at Potential Hackerspace on Southern

by on Jun.10, 2010, under News, Workshops

Photo by Mary Potts

So for those who aren’t aware, we’re still alive and looking for potential locations to call home. After our visit to Nashville’s Hacker Consortium, spirits are rekindled and the drive is on again. Earlier this week we scheduled a viewing of a space that was located at 3527 Southern Ave, Memphis, TN 38111, and I must say that it was awesome! Now I know, we don’t want to get too excited about it as we may not get it, or even better find a space that is just that much more outstanding. Even still, it really is pretty cool. It really is a shame that more of the members couldn’t make it to check it out, but in place of that we did try to document things as best as possible on the Wiki. Pictures of the space are on the Wiki if you click on the thumbnail on the previous page, or you can always checkout the pictures on the Flickr account as well. From the pictures you’ll see that it could use a little care, and does lack a garage door, but everything else about it just screams “makerspace!” With everything around it like Brother Juniper’s, RP Tracks, and the University of Memphis, we could make great use of this location and the room that it has in it.

The space is approximately 2000 square feet and used to be a TV repair shop. The great thing about that is the fact of three phase power already being run to the location! It already has workbenches on one wall, and has a storefront that we could re-purpose for other things. You can check out simulated 3D photo of the main workshop at photosynth. There is just a lot to be said for the potential of the space. From the layout of the place, we would be able to build us a server room, possibly a kitchen, a storage closet, plenty of workbench space, individual cubbyholes, a lounge, and a maybe even a learning lab. We will be discussing all of this with everyone at the next couple of meetings to get ideas for potential layouts and what we can do to make the most of what is available. The owner has even generously agreed to give us the first month for free and $800/mo for the first year before raising the rent to the requested $900/mo. If we can get enough paying members interested this it really could become a reality quite soon.

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Makers of Mass Destruction: Recycling Edition

by on Jun.01, 2010, under News

Photo by Mary Potts

Today we have taken a step in the direction of recycling in Memphis.  Some of our makers went out and collected up scrap pipe from a deconstruction zone downtown.  After the heavy goods were relocated it was time to condense our load into much smaller, more manageable pieces.  Time for Daniel to use one of his toys, and for him to attempt setting the daisies that line our drive way on fire! Check out Flickr for more photos.

An hour and a half later and 3 metal cutting discs down, we had a pile of pipes in manageable pieces.  The discs themselves only cost about $3 for all, so I think we snagged a pretty good deal.  Also, I think Daniel had fun causing all of the mayhem, I can’t think of many things that he likes better than tearing something apart, it is a pretty good stress reliever.  As you can see from the pictures, some of the pipes were pretty massive. The largest one took down 2 discs on its way out.  Thankfully it was the last pipe that Daniel clashed with.

Midsouth Makers-1: Monster pipe-0

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Memphis Makerspace Can Help Arduino!

by on May.03, 2010, under Arduino

Arduino Diecimila

The Arduino Diecimila.

For those of our members who are interested in helping in the Arduino community you now have a chance! It is very simple, you don’t even have to do anything heavy duty. The Arduino Designers are looking to make the next model, Arduino 1.0, and they need to collect information. If you own an Arduino, or have used one, then you can go to the Arduino website and fill out this survey (http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/ArduinoUsage) they have put up. They are looking to use this information collected to assist in the development of the next model. It is very short, only takes a few minutes to do, and it could be Memphis’ way of helping out with such a great community. So take a few seconds, hop on over to the website and answer those questions!

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Local Memphis Hackerspace is Growing, Looking for a space

by on Apr.15, 2010, under Business, News

Looking towards the front of the space

Fellow Members, Builders, Tinkerers, Creators, and Makers,

Today, four of the board members met with a real estate agent, Bud Worsham, to scope out a potential space. We wanted to give Bud an idea of what we were about and what kind of space we were interested in. He showed us a small 1800 square foot warehouse at 132 Cumberland St. pictured is the inside of it. This did a couple of things for us. It gave us the feel of what we might be able to obtain as a group, a little better understanding of the interactions needed to obtain such a space, and an idea of cost that we could expect. The cost is slightly daunting at first, but is certainly not out of reach if we can all pull together to accomplish what we want.

At first glance it seems that everyone is very interested in the idea of having a space to work on projects and various other events. The catch is that everyone seems very interested, but lacks the interest to assist in the formation of a location of our own. This puts us in a very strange position. We need members to have funds, we need funds to have a space, and we need a space to have members. It becomes cyclical very quickly, and if we are unable to break that cycle, we will stagnate equally as fast. All of this means that we simply cannot do anything without biting the bullet, pulling together, and building our funds before we have a space.

With that being said, everything that we have asked for thus far in the way of dues is not mandatory. Since it is very obvious that we do not have a space to provide in turn for a fee, we are unable to set any sort of dues that could even remotely be considered mandatory. In fact, we never have, and never will set any type of mandatory payments so long as a space is not provided. It is best to instead consider this a pledge or donation to the group for a means to accomplish the goal that we have all expressed interest in. So currently we ask that anyone who wishes to assist us in moving forward, make a donation to the group. If it is a monthly pledge, fantastic. If it is a one time thing that you can do, wonderful. Every little bit helps, and we can’t make any of this possible without the help that you can provide.

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MidsouthCon Table

by on Mar.12, 2010, under Events, News

Hi folks!  Midsouth Makers will be promoting the group at Midsouthcon today, tomorrow and Sunday.  If you can stop by please do, and bring any projects to show off or work on there.  Daniel H, Mike D and I (Jim H) will be at the “Fan Table” area to hand out literature, show off projects and spread the Maker word.

MidsouthCon is being held at Whispering Woods Conference Center in Olive Branch, MS the 12th through the 14th of March.  There is a fee to get in the door, so be prepared to spend money.

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