What have you been watching

I had never been a big fan of watching youtube videos but it has been a long year of lockdowns without the benefit of EMF Camp or interacting with other making folk as much as we like to, picking up new ideas, inspirations and projects along the way. After all I have always been more inclined to do than watch when it comes to making stuff.

So initially, perhaps out of desperation. Needs as needs must when the devil vomits in your kettle. I started to watch a few videos on youtube and discovered that there is a quantity of really good content on there hidden under a great pile of wasted video mileage. I guess though it takes all sorts and there is no reason why everyone else should not be catered for too.

Anyways to help pick some golden nuggets out of the dross here’s my recent techy/making shortlist of vloggers with stuff IMHO worth watching.

It is not all techy/making though there are a whole bunch of quality short scifi and cyberpunk films on youtube as well as the progress on the SpaceX Starship project we have been following. This combined well with Spacex’s own footage of the Starlink and Starship projects and Spaceflightnow’s news and launch scheduling.

I have listed so few links relating to the Starship project and Youtube here as quite frankly there is so much and much of it is wild supposition, opinions, outright bilge and regurgitated footage. Mary (Boca Chica Gal) and Jack Beyer through Nasaspaceflight seem to have got the video over watch for Starship nailed, without out a lot of surplus rubbish tacked on or overlayed. I found the rest of Nasaspaceflights commentated footage too irritating to watch. Of the better commentaries Scott Manley seems to do a good job, he keeps it punchy and informative whilst having a decent grasp of the science and engineering. He even goes so far as to analyse parts of the footage and decompose the frame rates to estimate speed of touchdown/RUD etc, making valid contributions.

I did spend a little while watching Nasa’s live ISS feeds especially some of the spacewalks, interesting stuff even if it can only be described as “Slow TV”. I do get the whole procedurally driven aspect of safety and protecting the investment etc. It does though show how outside of historically significant events being an astronaut must have a whole bunch of the potential joy procedurally micromanaged out of it. I think I will pause my astronaut aspirations and await the wild west of space becoming populous enough to support an outlaw class.

The above shortlist is far from exhaustive, it is a very personal choice, and as a relatively late comer to watching youtube video’s there’s bound to be a ton more good stuff amongst the dross that is yet to be found. What have you been watching ??

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Looking forward to meetings

The lockdown seems to be progressing towards opening up, and boy has it been along one. We took some time out to get in touch again with The Railway Hotel in central Doncaster where we meet up and see how they are getting along, it has been a tough time for so many business especially pubs.

Jordan replied to our email really quickly, they are still with us, doing OK and looking forward to opening up and having us back again which is good news. So this quick update was in order, we are all still here and just awaiting the nod to resume our regular Thursday meet-ups.

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Local Shoutout

We are big fans of supporting the wider local hacking and making community. To this end whilst in conversation recently I had my attention drawn to some local creative folk who we would like to give a shout out to.

Firstly there is prolific Podcaster Dave Lee.

Dave then mentioned Doncaster Maker Group.

So we will give a local shout out for both.

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Hackspace Meetings Go Virtual

We are gutted, due to the coronavirus restrictions now in force we are no longer permitted to hold our weekly meetings on Thursday evenings at The Railway Hotel. This is set to be the case whilst ever Doncaster is in the top two tiers of the new restrictions.

Rest assured though that as soon as Doncaster is no longer in the top two tiers normal service will resume.

In the mean time we will be continuing meeting virtually (bring your own pub, or workspace) via Zoom. If you want to come along or just drop in to talk, contact us via our contact pages and we will send you the joining details for our zoom session.

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Dome Prototyping

Prototype C60 Bucky Ball

Hard at work having fun during last nights meeting musing on dome prototypes for the next EMF Camp.

Initial design ideas that we are iterating upon are based on Fullerenes specifically the Buckminster Fullerenes C60, C70 and maybe C90. The prototype C60 ball above was made using bamboo lolly sticks bolted with M3 bolts at the intersections. So the M3 bolts are in effect pretending to be Carbon atoms. Next job is to prototype a C70 and have a think about where we want to section the ball to form a dome.

Other possibilities are forming a sectioned carbon nanotube type structure with a closing C60/C70 type dome at each end. Sort of like a high tech Viking long house for our EMF Camp village. So many choices and such a short meetup, but at least there is next week, restrictions permitting.

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Doncaster Hackspace has a weekly physical meetup

The Railway Hotel Doncaster

The Railway Hotel in Doncaster has kindly offered us the use of their snug for our weekly Thursday evening meetup. So a big thank you to Jordan and the guys at the Railway Hotel, @Railway_Donc, @railwaydoncaster.

We will be meeting there on Thursday (or is that thirsty) evenings 19:00 til 21:00 every week unless we post otherwise. Needless to say we will be monitoring the pandemic situation in partnership with the landlord and if there is a change to this we will post out an update here, but will continue meeting virtually via zoom until the situation improves and we can return to our watering hole. Bring a mask if you have one as the snug can get erm, snug, if too many arrive all at once. More importantly bring along your projects to show, tell and exchange ideas.

The venue is centrally located in Doncaster a spitting distance from the Railway Station and the travel interchange. There is free on street parking nearby available after 18:00 and also the well lit, CCTV monitored station car park (parking fees apply) just behind the pub.

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Zoom Upgrade

We have upgraded our Zoom account @zoom_us so that our scheduled sessions and user group meetings are no longer time limited. Many thanks to our members whose subscription has made this possible. Out next task is to sort out a place for physical meetings.

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First official session

As most of the initial hackspace founding is now complete we had our first official session (virtually) using Zoom on Thursday 23rd July. So we are now, officially open for business and new members.

We have picked Thursday evenings 19:00 till 21:00 as our weekly open sessions for both regular attenders and also for new faces. We are also looking forward to scheduling new regular sessions in support of our members activities and special interest groups.

Once the current pandemic situation allows and potential venues re-open we will be additionally running up a physical location for the weekly open sessions. We would like to continue with virtual presence/attendance along side all our scheduled sessions as well as a physical meetup because this a great way to facilitate inclusivity. I guess it also allows members to take part whist travelling or working away.

To help with getting the message out there and letting visitors to our web site know about upcoming events and scheduled meetings we added a simple events calendar to our web site.

If you would like to join up or check us out, come along to one of our open sessions. For our Zoom session details contact the Secretary who handles all matters to do with our membership.

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Doncaster Hackspace has IRC

It has been a fun and eventful weekend setting up our IRC channel #DoncasterHackspace on freenode. Fuchs from freenode was pretty awesome and incredibly helpful even helping us along over the weekend. He even pointed us at their webchat IRC client which its pretty useful.

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