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Hack-a-Thon Nov. 21, 2009

I know I'm late getting around to posting these pics from the Hack-a-Thon that freeside participated in on Nov. 21, 2009, but got some pics from the projects I worked on. Here are some pics from the social side of the Hack-A-Thon: This is a quick project I did to make a hook system for my dogs food/water bowl so she didn't tip it over while in her crate. And this is some pics from my model rocket engine project. More details can be found at:

A project of light proportions

Taopunk was spotted last night working on a very intresting project. Can you non-freeside members figure out what it is??? Hmmm... Click on the picture to see a larger image. First guest to figure it out will win a Freeside T-shirt and sticker.

Photos From the Last Welding Class

Freeside Atlanta featured in this weeks Creative Loafing

Yesteday, Freeside Atlanta was featured on the front page of Creative Loafing Atlanta. Creative Loafing is a weekly newspaper focused on local culture, events, and entertainment. So grab one while supplies last! The online article and video can be viewed here on this Link as well.

MythTV InstallFest and Conference

Thanks to all attendees for making the day so great. Special thanks go to our generous sponsors: Schedules Direct, Inc. and pcHDTV, Inc. and to Jarod Wilson for autographing a copy of his "Hacking MythTV," Keith Watson and Aaron Ruscetta for providing their throughly enjoyable presentations, Scott McBrien (Fedora Ambassador) for stopping-in and supporting the event, David Knowles, Robert McCurdy, and everyone else from Freeside who donated their time, monitors and computer equipment. Clearly, the event could not have happened without you. Click for more photos Raw event specs and stats: The day started at 8:30 AM and eventually lost steam at 4:30 PM. Thirty five folks filtered in throughout the day. Keith Watson and Aaron Rusecetta delivered two highly appreciated and well attended presentations. We completed five fresh installs, but two other installs failed due to hardware issues. We raised about $100.00 for Freeside Atlanta. We raffled off one copy of "Hacking MythtTV

Welding Classes at Freeside

I attended my first Freeside welding class this Sunday. While I have done some kinds of welding in the past, this was a new beast on its own. ARC welding! Arc Welding uses a welding power supply to create an electric arc between an electrode and the base material to melt the metals at the welding point. We spent most of the day cutting off sections of pipe and then welding them back on. This was a bit more challenging than it sounds. Below is some footage of Matt teaching a Freeside member how to weld a gap. In the future of this class we will continue learning ARC welding methods and then expand into Mig welding. Hopefully some TIG as well (if we can find a TIG welder). We also plan on designing and building gates for the back doors. I encourage all members and non members to come check it out and participate. It's like grown up soldering. Check the Freeside calendar for upcoming classes. Suggested class donation $10.

Circuit Bending Workshop December 2nd!!!

Hacker, makers, DIYers, noisemakers, and anyone interested come out to Freeside Atlanta the night of December 2nd between 7 and 9 pm for our monthly Circuit Bending Workshop. If you are not familiar with Circuit Bending please check out these videos and links: What is Circuit Bending (wikipedia) Please RSVP using EventBrite Thanks, DANtheMAN Circuit Bending Master

Surprise Unboxing

We made a group order of surprise boxes from Electronic Goldmine to have some fun and jump-start our stock of interesting components. The boxes arrived yesterday, and after the meeting today we opened and sorted them, finding some interesting stuff along the way. The choice bits consisted of: 4x 10x2 character 14-segment VFDs 7x 96x64 1" monochrome LCDs 4x motors with high resolution encoders 2x passive infrared motion detectors 2x window/door security sensors 2x small R/C cars 5x GSM cell phones 4x security keypads The small component haul was mostly capacitors, with some resistors, potentiometers (dual log!), and fuses in reasonable quantity as well. I think the outcome, in parts and fun, was well worth the ~$70 we spent in total. We already have a small contribution towards the next order, which I tentatively put 3 weeks away.

Using Shelves

Our space continues to fill with donations, and open floor space for actual projects is getting scarce. Enter another set of shelves. Before: After: Look at all that wonderful floor space! Now we just need another set to hold all the stuff against the wall.

Building Shelves

It is becoming increasingly evident that one component of a successful hacker space is good storage. The problem is that most shelf systems out there are pretty expensive. After a recent meeting we started brain storming different shelf designs and finally settled on one. Convinced that we could save money by building our own shelves we set out to the local hardware store with a materials list. After rounding up all the needed materials and renting a truck we headed back to Freeside. We quickly refined a procedure and started building our shelves. We were only able to complete the first four sections of shelves by the end of the day, but we were very proud of our work and we still have enough material to make 8 more shelf units. Many thanks to everyone who helped build shelves and I hope you are able to make it to the next work day! Here is an album of the build and some pictures of the completed shelves: