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How To Start A Hackerspace: Part 1

If you’ve ever wanted your own place to work on projects, learn a new skill, build a new company, or to co-hack with others for camaraderie or info sharing, then it’s time to start a Hackerspace.

There are hundreds of Hackerspaces around the world and growing, they come in many different flavors, and they are used by all kinds of hackers. These posts provide the basics on how to set up your own space, no matter what kind of hacker you are, and is inclusive of the different kinds of hackers you hope to share your space with.

Map of Active Hackerspaces as of 11/12/12 from Hackerpaces.org

Map of Active Hackerspaces as of 11/12/12

This guide – which will be expanded and detailed in upcoming posts – will hopefully show you that the only limitations for your dream Hackerspace and the hacks you and your co-hackers can do are the limits of your imagination.

Hackerspaces are for all the hackers.

Hackers come in all ages, sizes, genders, and from all backgrounds and skill levels. Your first step is to identify who your space is going to be for: who is putting the space together, and what kind of hackers will be wanting to hack there?

It’s essential to narrow down who the space is for when you first start out, even if you plan on including a lot of other kinds of hackers in the future – make a solid core! Is the space primarily for computer hacking, hardware hacking, or do you have people that hack in a variety of materials? The answer to “who” will come from you – and also the people you’re starting the space with.

Take a look at other Hackerspaces you admire or are inspired by. Check out what other hackers have done at global resource hackerspaces.org, and find shared info and wisdom at hackerspaces.org/wiki/Documentation.

Nailing down who the space is for (you and your co-hackers) gives you key information to make important decisions about the space itself, the tools you need and the resources you need to put together.

Examples of who your Hackerspace might be for:

  • Computer hackers
  • Hardware hackers
  • Food hackers
  • Metalwork hackers
  • Chem hackers
  • Textile hackers
  • Multimedia hackers
  • UAV hackers

Now that you know which hackers may initially populate your Hackerspace, you’re ready for the next step.

Up next! How To Start A Hackerspace: Part 2 – A Place To Hack All The Things Stop back tomorrow!

Also check out the intro.


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