OMG I wrote a book on React Native

My main project of 2015 is finally done. I wrote a book! Learning React Native is a practical guide to using JavaScript to build mobile apps for iOS and Android, taking you from the very basic starter application through deploying to the iOS App Store and Google Play Store.

You can get a copy at Amazon or directly from O’Reilly. (The O’Reilly ebook is DRM-free.)

Before you ask: the animal is a ring-tailed possum! And nope, I wasn’t involved in choosing it. If you want to talk to me about JavaScript / mobile / React / etc, come find me at Craft Night.


Exhibition Day – Saturday, 13 February

On Saturday, 13 February, we’re having our first Exhibition Day of the year.

From 10am until 3pm, we’ll be open to the public for tours, exhibits, demonstrations, and workshops, giving you a chance to see everything Nottingham Hackspace has to provide to its members.

The Exhibition Day is completely free, although the workshops will require a fee, such as our Useless Machine Workshop. Buy your ticket to make a Useless Machine for only £15, and come in at any time during the Exhibition Day to pick up your kit and make this clever and fun machine.


Hang out at Nottingham Hackspace Skatenights

Join fellow skaters at the Nottingham Hackspace Skatenights.

Watch skate videos and films, do board maintenance, and thoroughly utilise the Hackspace for skating fun. Whether you’re just starting out or you’re been skating since the 80s, we’re a friendly place for skaters of all types to come hang out and shoot the breeze.

Skatenights run every first and fourth Tuesday of the month, from 6pm onwards.

Hackspace members and non-members are welcome – and if you’re not a member, you can get a tour of the space as well. To find out more, check out Nottingham Longboarding on Facebook for more details on upcoming events.


Learn the basics of Inkscape

Learn the basics of Inkscape, an open-source vector graphics program, at our workshop on Thursday, 10 March, from 7pm until 9pm.

Inkscape is free to use and provides a convenient way to design for any project that requires vector-based artwork, such as designing for the laser cutter.

This workshop will cover the basic functions, then move on to more advanced techniques, such as drawing lines and shapes, converting to paths, Bézier curves, cutting and joining paths, bitmap tracing (and why drawing it yourself could be simpler, and exporting to DXF format.

Ticket are only £5 and are available to purchase now. While computers can be provided, it would be preferred if you brought in your own laptop, with Inkscape pre-installed.

Also, while this workshop will teach you how to design for a laser cutter, this will not teach you how to use a laser cutter. Only Hackspace members are able to book an induction on a laser cutter, and only trained members can use the laser cutter. Tours will be provided on the night to introduce you to the Hackspace and explain how membership works.


Bobby the Biker, hacker of all the things, needs our help

If you've ever been to an event at 23b Shop, you probably know Bobby, the loveable biker dude from a few doors down.

Bobby has been to nearly every hacker potluck in the last four years, every single Sparklecon, and is always willing to lend a hand in causing some random mischief.  Ever crank handles on our old Bridgeport mill?  That came from Bobby's shop.

Bobby isn't a hacker in the sense that he's writing bash scripts (although he's using Linux Mint as a daily driver, with a microwave bridge hooked up to our NAS device).  Bobby is more of a life hacker. 

Bobby works on Harleys, a trade he learned from his Ex-Father-in-Law, Neal.  Neal has operated a Harley shop in Orange County since the 70s.  Neal is now in his 70s himself, and is falling apart slowly from Parkinsons and dementia.  Bobby has taken it upon himself to look after Neal over the past few years, at immense personal cost.  Bobby is Neal's full-time, unpaid care giver.  Bobby has a heart of gold, and is self-describes as being "patient as a rock".

Neal used to be a real bad dude, 6'4" of big mean biker gruff.  Now, Neal is 98lbs soaking wet, hunched over, barely able to speak, requiring 24-7 live in care to help manage things like catheters, gastric tubes, showers, going to the bathroom, back and forth transportation to the local VA hospital for numerous procedures and appointments, and all sorts of things like that.  Neal is also a stubborn old coot who would rather die on his terms in a motorcycle shop than rot away in a frog pond.  Bobby does his very best to indulge Neal's wishes.

Except now.

They have to be out by the end of the month.  The landlord denied a renewal of their lease on their Harley shop.

This would be an inconvenience to anyone, for sure.  Beyond the decades of accumulated stuff they have scattered about their shop, there's another complication.  Their shop is also their home. 

Bobby has a bit of a Catch-22 on his hands.  Neal would qualify for some more assistance through the VA if he had a residential address, but they live in a commercial space.  The business doesn't make enough money to support an external residence, and Bobby has been spending so much time caring for Neal that no real meaningful work can be done in the shop. 

Bobby is the resilient sort, he will be fine and land on his feet somehow.  It's how to take care of Neal that is the concern.  Neal would be homeless were it not for Bobby, but it's beginning to look like that hand is being forced.

Short of taking care of Neal myself which I am completely unqualified to do, I believe we can come together as a community to give Bobby a little monetary boost to help him in his time of need.  He has some good stuff in exchange as well. 

Neal's big old Hendey lathe is for sale. 

Bobby the Biker, hacker of all the things, needs our help

This lathe is a BIG boy, a very fine example of machinery worth preserving.

I'd like to get Bobby a good price for this lathe and move it over to 23b Shop.  That money would be enough to foot the bill for an apartment for a month or two, long enough for them to get on their feet and the wheels cranking for VA benefits that would apply to them now that they would have a residential address, or to find Neal more permanent skilled care and free Bobby so he can find work himself. 

But wait, there's more -

The lathe that is currently in heavy rotation at 23b Shop would be moved to Mag Lab as a hand-me-down, but still a quite excellent machine no less.   There's even a whole slew of tooling that will come along with both machines, so no one leaves empty handed.  I've already worked out the details with Trent and Arclight, this plan is a go once we put some much-needed cash in Bobby's hand. 

I started out at 23b Shop on the lathe.  All the success in my adult life I owe to the things I've learned at 23b, and I'd like to give back to you guys.  If anyone donates $100 or more, I'll make time to teach them a half-day, hands-on lathe class at their hackerspace of choice.  I also do 3D CAD, 3D printing, 3D scanning projects, services and lessons as well, all of which I'd be happy to exchange for donations toward this worthy cause.  Anything helps, cash is best since bikers don't really do Bitcoin, but we can certainly take a Paypal donation in their name.  Let's make this happen by this month's Hacker Potluck on February 20th.

Can't make a monetary donation, but are able to lend a hand?  We'll need a few strong backs toward the end of this month to help sort and process and package their inventory before it gets sent off to storage. 

Perhaps someone out there has some insight to social services that we aren't aware of that would make their challenges less painful?

By helping Bobby and Neal, we also can up our own game and hack better by putting more of Neal's good old machines back in the hands of hungry hardware hackers, where they will be loved and fostered as their original owner fades away into the inevitable, never-ending night.  

Stained Glass Workshop & Kiln Work

Hi All, Gav here!

You know the space is no stranger to eletronics, lasers and 3D printing, but that’s certainly not all we get up to.

Recently, I got a bunch of glass tools, and a bunch of us have been having fun making stained glass pieces, as well as doing some kiln work. Here’s a few pieces we made:

It’s a rather addictive medium to work with! There’s a huge range of colours and effects you can get. Stained glass is quick to get ideas out with, but for more intricate stuff we can use a kiln to mix and fuse pieces together.

Glass cutting during the workshop:  

Stained Glass Workshop & Kiln Work

The pieces laid out and ready for copper foil to be added. The table is actually a light-box, which helps positioning translucent glass for various effects:

Stained Glass Workshop & Kiln Work

Also that table isn’t just a slab of egg-crate. According to the vendor, it’s a entire sophisticated glass cutting system, and it comes with a 50 page manual showing how to set up templates for various angles, reliably repeating cuts, etc. A few of us have ideas for giant hexagon themed pieces, and that’ll make doing hundreds of pieces a tad easier…

The space already has a large kiln, but for testing ideas and various glass combinations, I recently bought a microwave kiln. This allows small glass pieces to be slumped, tacked or fully fused together. Here’s a pieces ready for firing:

Stained Glass Workshop & Kiln Work

And some pieces we finished earlier:

Stained Glass Workshop & Kiln Work

Most of these are just playing with settings, rather than being a particular design. By controlling the time of firing, we can select how much the glass fuses or slumps together.

I’ve left a big selection of the specialist tools and glass stock for people to play with. If you’ve got an idea for a fused or stained glass piece, feel free to have a go!*

(Get one of us to show you how to handle & cut glass safely, of course).

There’s also a prize for the first stained glass Robots and Dinosaurs logo to be made :-)


Immortalize yourself forever in the garden of CRASH Space

Remember that time Barb made that crazy face plant / pot head?

Well, On Saturday, Feb 20th, Barb and I are going to hold a workshop to help everybody else make their VERY OWN pot head out of their VERY OWN face.

And then we’re going to stick them in the CRASH Space garden, turning our wholesome garden into some kind of super creepy easter-island-esque mount rushmore of CRASHers.

Immortalize yourself forever in the garden of CRASH Space

Don’t miss out on your chance to be forever immortalized in the Garden of CRASH Space.

>>>> JOIN US <<<<

PS ticket purchase covers all the materials and tools you’ll need, so don’t sweat it.

PPS you don’t have to be a CRASH member to join in. Everybody’s welcome.


FATTO IN CASA II (taller de construcción de placas arduino-compatibles)

El labo regresa a la acción en el 2016 con un taller para que te construyas tus propias placas arduino-compatibles. En éste caso construiremos la versión Fatto in Casa , totalmente compatible con el software de Arduino y con cualquier shield diseñada para la placa original. En ésta edición incluimos el programador usb/serial listo para usar (desarrollado y construido en el labo, 100% compatible con otros productos como el Arduino Nano) para que tengas todo lo que necesites para iniciarte o continuar en el mundo Arduino. Además de ensamblar y soldar las Fatto in Casa, veremos el paso a paso en la realización de un circuito impreso para que puedas replicar cuántas quieras en el futuro. Si el tiempo alcanza, veremos y practicaremos las nociones básicas de este entorno para quienes no hayan tenido experiencias previas. AUNQUE BIENVENIDOS, NO SON NECESARIOS CONOCIMENTOS PREVIOS DE ELECTRÓNICA, SOLDADURA O PROGRAMACIÓN.

Duración: 9 horas

Lunes 22, Miércoles 24  y Viernes 26 de febrero

Dos opciones de horario : 15 a 18hs. o  19 a 22hs.

Casa Abasto (Anchorena 632)

Valor: $900 (incluye todos los materiales + el programador)

+INFO e inscripción:

(del 7/2 al 13/2 no se contestarán mails. Paciencia!)


FATTO IN CASA II (taller de construcción de placas arduino-compatibles)

Raspberry Pi Workshop

Hey y’all, It’s Jared! On Saturday, February 20th, 2016 @ 1:00 PM I will be running a Raspberry Pi Computer Workshop. Bought a Raspberry Pi and never took it out of the box? Bring it in early (@12:30) and we’ll get you set up! Own a Raspberry Pi and are comfortable booting? Bring it at […]

Samstagsvorträge #1: ESP8266 Debugging

Am Samstag, dem 6.2.2016 um 19 Uhr starten im shackspace in Stuttgart wieder die beliebten Samstagsvorträge.
Dieses Mal hält slaff einen Vortrag zum Thema „Debugging ESP8266 devices“.

ES8266 ist die aktuell beliebteste Platform um günstig Internet der Dinge zu entwickeln. Wie man Probleme auf dieser Platform behebt, lernt ihr in diesem Vortrag.

Eine Demo zum Thema gibts im folgenden Video.
Wir freuen uns über Besucher!

Zum Event:
Eintritt frei! (Spenden an shack e.V. sind gerne gesehen) Jeder ist willkommen!
Datum: Samstag, 6. Februar 2016 ab 19 Uhr
Anfahrt: U4/U9 Haltestelle “Im Degen”, Ulmer Straße 255, Stuttgart Wangen (gegenüber Kulturhaus Arena)

Samstagsvorträge #1: ESP8266 Debugging