[Noisebridge-discuss] why would hackers come to noisebridge?

Jake jake at spaz.org
Wed Mar 5 23:07:32 UTC 2014

well, you're doing more to fix the infrastructure than I have lately, but 
that is not the kind of problems i'm talking about.

my complaint is that the culture of noisebridge has become so 
uninteresting and unrelated to hacking that it is bordering on irrelavent. 
The fact that you are volunteering your time to maintain the internet at a 
homeless shelter is quaint, but it doesn't change the fact that most 
hackers don't want to go there anymore.

there are two categories of reasons why a hacker would want to go to 

1> other hackers are there, and people they can relate to and share 
interesting conversation with, or just be around while working on projects 
of their own.  People are there experimenting on things, hardware software 
and other, and one might learn something or teach something or make new 
friends with similar interests.

2> there is a "safe space" with technical infrastructure.  This means that 
people who refuse to be HIGHLY accountable for problematic behavior are 
simply not permitted to be present (a much higher standard than we have 
now).  Oh and lets not forget at least one usable bathroom with a decent 
toilet seat and toilet paper.

This also means that the technical infrastructure is in place and usable. 
For software people this means the internet works and there are outlets, 
clean places to sit (with decent posture, not fall-in couches) and tables 
for laptops and room to work with others.

For hardware this means that tools are more than just the bottom of the 
barrel (try finding a pair of scissors or a phillips screwdriver) and that 
there are actually nice things (a soldering iron with a temperature 
control instead of $2 china disposable irons), AND more advanced tools are 
available such as microcontroller programmers, blank microcontrollers, and 
other electronic hardware for raw material.

Noisebridge used to have a great collection of microcontrollers and 
programmers and breadboards and jumper wires and advanced electronic 
tools, but all of that stuff was REPEATEDLY taken down from the top shelf 
and scattered into the e-waste piles, and then thrown away.  Yes, our 
microcontroller and programmer collection has made its way to the trash.

categories 1 and 2 are related;  if a hackerspace has one without the 
other, hackers still may not decide to go.  Certainly I think both are 
equally important.  I also feel that at this time, and for too long, 
noisebridge has not had either.



On Wed, 5 Mar 2014, Ronald Cotoni wrote:

> You aren't.  We can totally improve it but it requires constant vigilance and new leadership to step up.  Right now, I am the point man for replacing stallion which I am doing a
> horrible job of since I have a ton of other things going on.   I was there on Thursday and knew of the door issues.  I was trying to get nohat (who claims to be a haxor) to take
> a look.  He spent a few minutes then gave up.   I suppose I could have helped and given him more direction but I didn't.   I should have also sent mail so this is 100% my fault.
>  I am sorry.   Speaking of that, I would like to write up a wiki page and put some stickers with a nburl on it so people can go to it if it is broken.  That way they can easily
> troubleshoot and completely understand the system.  I think there is already a wiki page but I haven't looked.   
> Sorry I failed it :(
> On Wed, Mar 5, 2014 at 2:17 PM, Jake <jake at spaz.org> wrote:
>       On Wed, 5 Mar 2014, Torrie Fischer wrote:
>             On Wednesday, March 05, 2014 00:42:03 Jake wrote:
>                   someone cut the wires to the payphone that allows people to open the gate
>                   with a door code.  probably because they figured (correctly) that people
>                   would just jam the door open so it doesn't ever latch, rather than fix it.
>                   nobody capable of splicing eight wires has fixed it yet, as of last night,
>                   because the only people who go to noisebridge now think that wire is for
>                   tying a sleeping bag onto your backpack.
>                   nobody has posted a message to the discuss list because people who know
>                   how to use computers no longer go to noisebridge to know to post about it.
>                   also, one of the toilets at noisebridge is now for "liquids only" because
>                   the skill and will to repair a clogged toilet are not available.  The clog
>                   is likely due to lack of toilet paper causing someone to use a handy rag
>                   to wipe their ass rather than buy toilet paper.  There is a mop there, and
>                   a sign saying to mop up "when" the toilet leaks.
>                   until the beaurocrats and blockers use their marvelous power of consensus,
>                   blockage, grandstanding and bickering to do something to improve the
>                   overall culture at noisebridge to a point where hackers actually want to
>                   go there, i refuse to acknowledge the results of this sham election and I
>                   hope others do the same.
>             What would you suggest this "something" is?
>             I understand the sentiments presented here, but it isn't productive to go on
>             about "something being wrong" without constructive suggestions of what change
>             you would like to see at noisebridge.
> I would assume you are presenting this question to everyone, but it is worded as specifically addressed to me.  I have made plenty of suggestions and put plenty of time
> into trying to solve problems like this and i have not had sufficient cooperation or backing.
> If you don't think there's a problem at noisebridge, then there is no need for you to ask me or anyone to waste our time suggesting solutions.  But if you do think there
> is a problem, I urge you to solicit input from everyone and work toward getting people on the same page to agree on actions to take.
> maybe i'm the only one who thinks noisebridge has become a sad shadow of its former greatness and things should change?
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> --
> Ronald CotoniSystems Engineer

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