What’s your perfect Sunday? Mine seem to be going to events organised by Jonty Wareing (@jonty), Russ Garrett (@russss) and the Electro Magnetic Field team organise (including EMF itself). This one day (well 12 hour) event was held aboard 1960s East German fishing vessel MS Stubnitz which is currently moored in Canary Wharf.
There were plenty of activities laid on for the ticket buying punters including the London Hackspace LHS Bikeshed spaceship simulator which had a queue to play. Brilliantly the team had set up a monitor so you could watch the antics of the hapless crews from outside. A variety of workshops were offered including Mitch Altman and Jimmie Rodgers doing soldering tuition. They were kindly lent soldering irons yours truly! Lock picking from Warren Rockley was on offer as well as Matt Little offered soldering up on deck too. A big thank you to James Folwkes who very kindly collected names for the various activities that were happening.
I spent much of the day making t shirts in the sunshine. I was pleased to be able to offer a pressed-on-demand service for both EMW branded t shirts and the GMJ Howe “Rule Zero – Do NOT be on Fire!” t shirt that was very popular indeed. Had I of approached this with any sort of plan other than turn up I’d have sold at least double the number of t shirts I think. I enjoyed it so much I’m seriously considering my mobile Hackspace idea again and this time (somewhat inspired by LHS Bikeshed spaceship simulator) think a caravan with making gear inside it would be perfect. I’ll write about that at some point in the future.
The day also included some excellent talks. Highlights included Simon Willison who did a very interesting and enjoyable talk about Zeppelins. Hackspace supporter Tim Hunkin did an excellent talk to a packed room on the history of coin operated arcade machines, he has extensive experience of this running his own arcade of brilliant machines at the “Under the Pier Show” in Southwold. Tim told me he’d been fixing his arcade machines that very morning.
Elephant & Castle Mini Maker Faire partner in crime, Tom Lynch delivered a talk on the Open Source vacuum cleaner, his initial nervousness seemingly evaporating when someone at the back shouted “Breath, and GO SLOWER!” I feel certain that this will have been a great experience for Tom and am looking forward to working with him at London’s first Mini Maker Faire.
Problems with being issued a licence were epically sidestepped by simply giving drinks away. Several pints of Doom Bar were enjoyed (as well as a glass or two of Port (no idea why) and Lemonchello) the crew of the Stubnitz were actually very nice (I’d not expected that) and I was surprised how much I like Canary Wharf itself.
Jonty and Russ seem to be lucky with the weather and able to pick the best venues. I for one applaud the ongoing success of Electro Magnetic X and hope that Electro Magnetic Field 2014 is half as good as the 2012 and 2013 events. I’ll certainly be stepping up to help in a more official capacity in 2014. Prominent members at Nottingham Hackspace (yes James Hayward you) have already volunteered NHS to run the workshop village (or similar) and I sincerely hope to have some sort of mobile hackspace to offer by then as well.
My only pondering is now we’ve had Electro Magnetic Field (in a field) and Electo Magnetic Wave (on the water)… will we have Electro Magnetic Cloud … I’d be up for that.. (the vomit comet perhaps?)