Feed on
Posts
Comments

Recently at the lab we were looking at AA batteries and I brought up the bounce test to determine whether an alkaline battery is good or bad. I could not remember the details at the moment but this video explains in good detail.

TL;DR; Bad batteries bounce, good batteries bounce less.

We are proud to be involved with the upcoming Chattanooga Mini Maker Faire!

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (May 29, 2014) – As a growing number of Chattanoogans embrace the global maker movement, local organizers are working to expand the spirit behind it by launching the region’s first Mini Maker Faire. The event, which celebrates invention, creativity and resourcefulness, will take place from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Oct. 11 at the First Tennessee Pavilion.

The Chattanooga Mini Maker Faire will feature projects, performances, competitions and workshops that advance the Do-It-Yourself (DIY) culture of making things. Signature activities will include robot battles, a 3D printing showcase, quad copter and unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) displays and a MacGyver Competition. The event will also feature soldering workshops, art displays, hobby presentations and sewing workshops, among other activities.

More details and registration information can be found on the official website here

All of our updates can be found on the Chatt*lab Makerspace Google+ Community. Please visit our page there.

ChattLab’s very own Lee Walker is hosting the first annual Chattanooga Drupal Camp on Saturday, November 9th, 2013. Drupal is a popular, free open-source modular framework and content management system (CMS) written in the programming language PHP. Drupal Camp Chattanooga is an attendee-driven, completely volunteer initiative modeled after the open, participatory nature of barcamps. The event is catered towards everyone – curious beginners, designers, developers, and business owners are all welcome!

The camp includes ‘Drupal In a Day’ training included in the ticket price, for anyone wanting to have a fast track to learn more about Drupal. This is presented by Doug Vann, Drupal trainer to NASA.

Discover how easy it is to build elaborate, flexible and secure websites without having any programming skills. At a $25 entry point, you won’t find a better value for your dollar. Follow the link for more information about this great event:

https://www.drupalcampchattanooga.com/information/about

Charles Guan gave a great maker presentation at DragonCon: https://plus.google.com/108592267518230419667/posts/b9vPdjmmVf2

japan-h-2a-rocket-launchThat’s correct…we are officially taking memberships on a go forward basis. We’ve worked hard to get the people and process in place to make this happen. It is almost certainly not perfect but we can begin the process of building our membership. We’ve combined what other makerspaces have learned to roll out a membership process that is quick and provides a sane approach to bringing on new folks.

The space is coming along amazingly well and the value has already been demonstrated over the past meetings where fellow makers have spontaneously stepped up and shared their expertise. This has been tremendously rewarding to observe.

There are a couple of things you will need to know before going to the Chatt*lab Member Application form:

  1. $50/month membership fee (PayPal request sent to you after you complete form)
  2. A current member in good standing who can serve as your Member Mentor (come to the makerspace any Tuesday at 7pm to meet one of us)

It was over a year ago that the idea for a makerspace here in Chattanooga was hatched. There have been a number of times I never thought we’d get to this post. So glad to be pushing the ‘Publish’ button on this!

Thanks to everyone who has helped make Chatt*lab a reality over the past year and beyond.

IMG_20130528_191528Last night we were delighted to have one of our largest turnouts with many new faces. Dan Baker, local mold-making expert turned graphic designer, who has piloted a replica R2D2 for years. This was a lot of fun as who doesn’t like R2? Dan gave us the full tour of the build (he brought his build log along) including the challenges and some overall information about the R2 builders scene. To see Dan and his R2 next, you may need some baseball; they will be appearing at the Chattanooga Lookouts game on June 28th which just happens to be Star Wars Night at the ballpark. Look for fellow makers there!

On the build front we are pleased to report that Jason Brown has the RFID access control working a charm. We are testing it for a few days before calling it operational but things are looking good.

The goal stated in our first meeting was to be open for memberships by June 1. That goal appears to be within reach. Stay tuned.

Thanks for everyone who attended, with a special shout out to the Co.Lab makers that came by to check it out.

tvbg

 

So, you want to learn to solder?  Purchase a seat for our Soldering workshop.  Our brother makerspace at the Public Library has been generous enough to provide space for this workshop that Chatt*Lab will be teaching.  Many thanks to Nate and Meg for providing a location.  We hope to do future workshops at our space once the dust settles.

For you Mom’s out there that are looking for a good gift from the kids for their Dad, this is a great gift idea, and it will be ready for Father’s Day (workshop is the Saturday before Father’s Day).

The workshop costs $35 and you get a really cool device that turns off pretty much any TV you can find in the USA.  There’s even a way to make it turn off European and Australian TV’s if you prefer.

If you aren’t familiar with the TV B Gone, check out the Adafruit site: http://www.adafruit.com/products/73

The workshop will be June 15th (Saturday) at 10 am at the Chattanooga Public Library, 4th floor.  We only have 9 seats remaining, so register now to reserve your seat:  http://chattlabtvbgoneworkshop.eventbrite.com/  .

State of the *Lab

IMG_20130521_192927

Last Meeting Highlight: This small 3D printed vehicle has working wheels and doors!

Glad to report we have a few areas of progress since the last post. Our goal has been to prep the space for membership by June 1, 2013. Some accomplishments include:

  1. The most important: An energetic attendance of a variety of folks from the community!
  2. The space is secured with locks at each entrance/exit.
  3. We are managing our own internet traffic (50mbps).
  4. The leaks in the woodshop room have been fixed (!).
  5. An RFID electric latch has been installed.

We are still tracking toward that goal but a few things have to come into place in order of priority:

  1. Leverage existing wiring to power the RFID access system.

Beyond that there is (always) more work to do to get us set up properly:

  1. A large conduit and wire run to a new panel (think $$$).
  2. Workbenches and chairs.
  3. Pull down projection screen.
  4. Mount our projector (have the mount).

Once these are in place we really have a complete picture. Sure the circuit wiring and machinery need to be wired and placed but that is almost a celebration, not a chore!

We hope to see you Tuesday nights at 7pm for our public meeting.

From having several mentors at different stages in my life, I have noted two parameters that trend with age. This observation may be neither unique nor profound, but as a scientist, observe I must. The first is that as we get older, our bodies fail us. The second is that, as we age, our minds can continue to…

——————————–

That awkward moment, when you thought you saved a draft instead of publishing it. My bad. I’d finish this train of thought, but well, my project went totally sideways, and took my “deep and meaningful” observation with it. But that’s life. Fortunately, one of those mentors I was talking about recently told me, “If you haven’t failed recently, it probably means you’re not doing what you’re meant to be doing.” So I’ll claim that as a failure, and we can try to learn from it.

As makers, hackers or simply scientist, failure is no stranger to us. In fact, we depend on it. It’s not the destination, but it is certainly part of the journey. Start-up investors want the business to fail quickly, if it’s destined for failure. Artificially propping it up will only increase the amount of resources and time that is wasted. Instead, they often want to let it go, minimize the cost of ultimate failure and quickly take what was learned and apply it to the next venture.

Wildfires are a type of failure. But if the wildfire fighters avoid failure at all cost, the undergrowth has time to build up. When a fire ultimately does break out, the dense underbrush causes the fire to burn hotter and become more devastating than ever. Small, frequent fires, on the other hand, clear out the underbrush, but don’t get hot enough to damage the established trees.

Our failures are similar. Frequent failures can be recorded (a.k.a. SCIENCE!) and used as stepping stones to larger, more epic successes.

I think I speak for all of us when I say Chatt*Lab is a place that we want to be a safety zone for failing freely. We’ll try to steer clear of the epic failures involving injuries and property damage (as much as possible). But your ideas are safe. They may not work the first time, heck, they may not work ever. But you’ll never know–you’ll never achieve that epic success–unless you take a few risks.

Come on out Tuesday at 7:00 to the place in the map…uh…down there somewhere. We’re getting ready to kick things off, and we want you to be there.

Older Posts »