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New front door

New front door

The new door installed

Our front door was swollen, twisted and did not keep the cold outside well enough. I restored an another old door, removed the paint, filled, sanded and repainted it with “club colors”. Also, the emergency exit back door got a fresh new look too. Here’s a photo collection of the process:

Removed old paint from the replacement door
The old door
Starting point with some sanding and fillings
Emergency exit back door paint job
Inside details

Now it’s quite easy to give instructions how to find us: if you don’t see a green door with orange circles, you’re not there yet.

Jäsenhakemusten käsittelyssä viivettä

Jäsenhakemusten käsittelyssä viivettä

HKI Hacklab logoKesän kiireistä johtuen jäsen- ja avainhakemuksien jonoa ei ole ehditty käsitellä hallituksen kokouksessa. Jos olet lähettänyt jäsenhakemuksen, voit osallistua toimintaan normaalisti jo ennen kuin hakemuksesi on käsitelty.


Due to summer schedules, member applications and key member applications have not been processed in board meetings yet. If you have sent us a membership application, you can already participate in activities before you have been formally accepted.

Helsinki Hacklabin kevätkokous 2018 / Spring meeting

Helsinki Hacklabin kevätkokous 2018 / Spring meeting

Helsinki Hacklab ry:n sääntömääräinen kevätkokous pidetään lauantaina 19.5.2018 klo 14. Paikkana työtilamme Takkatie 18 alakerrassa.

Paikalle saa saapua jo 12 alkaen valmistelemaan ja siivoamaan tilaa. Virallinen kokous aloitetaan kello 14. Ennen ja jälkeen on epävirallista kokoontumista.

Tarjoilu nyyttikestiperiaatteella. Tervetuloa!

Helsinki Hacklab holds its annual spring-meeting on Saturday 19.5.2018, 14:00, at our premises in Takkatie 18. You can arrive starting from 12:00. After the official part there is general hanging around and snacks using the potluck principle. Welcome!


Siivoustalkoot / Clean-up day

Lauantaina 5. toukokuuta klo 14. Lisätiedot discoursessa.

Työalueena pääasiassa nosto-ovellinen varastohuone, roskien lajittelu ja piha-alue. Tule mukaan!

Join us on May 5th, when we clean up our storage room and the backyard. We start at 14.00.

Finnish hackerspaces meet in Jyväskylä

Finnish hackerspaces meet in Jyväskylä

Ten participating hackerspaces must be a record for the biannual gathering of Finnish hacklabs! Hacklab Summit Finland 2018 was arranged in Jyväskylä, and despite the local hacklab was in charge of the event for the first time, they managed to make this happening one of the best in the history of HSF.

Our hangout place

The major theme for this year was planning the way how to formalise hacklab.fi as an official organisation of hackerspaces in Finland. We now have initial idea how the organisation should work, based on opinions and votes of those, who took part in this meeting. Unanimous conclusion was, that the founding assembly is going to be the next HSF in Helsinki this summer. Hacklab.fi has a history of more or less informal co-operation between cities since 2012. The new organisation will be strictly for member-operated hackerspaces, supporting new groups to get started, offering web services, representing our local scene in events both in Finland and further away, and making all kinds of PR work to help people find their local hacklabs.

Jyväskylä Hacklab took the responsibility to arrange HSF in connection with Instanssi demoscene event. This enabled us to have more space, content and possibilities than before. As usual, the program was fixed weeks before the start, and a hourly timetable kept us on track with finishing robots ready for the competition, remembering to eat, presenting recent happenings in different hacklabs, doing something more than just sitting behind the laptop, going to a indoor trampoline park and of course, the sauna.

Staying active

Helsinki participated in the robot race track competition with two robots. The robot track is a 1 × 2 m box which has copies of itself in some of the hacklab.fi member spaces. Joonamo found his robot from last summer still working, and I assembled hastily some LEGO robot that had code running just few minutes before the competition started. The program was written in Python from scratch, the robot did zero practicing on the track, and I only knew it could probably move forward when turned on. For my complete surprise, it actually managed to make one clean complete round on the track, and didn’t even finish last on the results list. Joonamo’s robot came 3rd in speed results and 4th in popular vote, and the host city Jyväskylä took the first place. Robot competition was also included in the Instanssi program, so we had a great audience supporting the bots on the racetrack.

Posing before the race

The weekend ended in visiting Hacklab Jyväskylä, which is about to move to a larger location soon. Tampere Hacklab is  expanding its place with a new metal room and textile work section. There are also plans in other cities to look for larger workspaces and Nokia just started their own lab. This HSF had a very positive athmosphere where collaboration is taken for granted.

Definitely looking good for hacklab scene in Finland right now. A big thanks to Jyväskylä for hosting us!

Photos from weekend:
Helsinki Hacklab flickr
Tampere Hacklab flickr

Robot competition:
Twitch video

Blog posts in Finnish:
Jyväskylä Hacklab
Tampere Hacklab

 

Next time:
HSF18½ in Helsinki, 8.—10.6.2018

Exceptions in Open Tuesdays

Exceptions in Open Tuesdays

Random stuff moved from other room
The hackerspace is waiting for new paint on its floors in some areas. We have already emptied two rooms in advance and moved all stuff to other locations. The electronics room and vinyl cutter etc. are not currently in use. We do not yet have the exact date when the painting will begin, but hope it will start soon.

Because of the painting and other renovation, there are currently no general Open Tuesdays until we inform otherwise. If you have the time, you can come help us with renovation, reorganizing and cleanup and other tasks on Tuesdays or other occasions. Please ask on Slack or IRC if you want to know more.

Sorry about the inconvenience. We hope that the lab will be even better than before once this all is over!


Disobey 12.-13.1.2018

Helsinki Hacklab, along with our friends from hacklab.fi, are coming to Disobey infosec event this weekend. Come say hi and meet us at our table.

This was 2017

This was 2017

Year 2017 at Helsinki Hacklab had some remarkable moments. Most importantly, we made a major expansion in the workspace, adding more room space from 215 m² to somewhere around 370 m² effectively, when excluding rented out areas. We also got a grant from Arts Promotion Finland (Taike) for our yearly children’s event and other expenses. The unfortunate piping leak, which happened closer to the end of the year, meant that some areas had to be rebuilt completely. While this is still ongoing issue and the floors waiting for a new coat of paint, we can hopefully now say that the end result might become something way better than the original ever was. Next year we have a usable separate workroom for chemistry.

The expansion and our new woodworking area

The expansion plans – including figuring out how to finance everything – had to start quickly because our behind-the-wall neighbor was leaving the building, and letting anyone else seize this opportunity would stall our hopes of any expansion for years to come if staying in this address. A quick draft showed that with some active keyholder member recruiting and finding subtenants would make this a feasible plan. The old woodworking room was in pressure to grow larger, as it could not fit more users to meet the demand. It had no room for table saw or any other new tools. The quickly negotiated expansion plan reserved most of the new free space for woodworking alone, one third for a subtenant woodworker with his separate workshop, and the remaining part mostly for storage. The new areas include a back door, a lifting garage door and a second WC. At the end of this year, we seem to be doing okay and call it a success.

Robots racing on a track

Robots in Strömberg Park, a family event organized by the hacklab.fi co-op network in Helsinki, was organized for the second time and is very very likely to happen in 2018 too. (How soon we can call it a tradition?). We had competitors from at least five other hackerspaces and a large new tent bought with Taike’s grant. The competition was preceded by weekly robot meetings, to prep the bots to be ready enough for the big day.

SHA2017 Finnish Village tent with sauna

The sauna we brought to SHA2017 hacker camp turned out to be a wildly popular, at least in number of photograph attention it got. Let’s say this was our contribution to Finland’s 100th year of independence festives. Greetings to all who were brave enough to try out the sauna and to all our Nordic fellow camping neighbors! We fear we have no other option but to try to bring a sauna for the next hacker camp too.

In organizational stuff: we started to have so much diverse discussion and many users on our IRC channel, that we tried using Slack and so far got stuck to it. The old IRC channel is available too, but many topics have now their own places in our Slack group. In the workspace, the layout of things got shuffled again. We switched all our tables for folding ones in the classroom – thanks to Stockholm Makerspace for the idea!

The FPGA course continues our many year long continuous tradition of digital technology Thursdays, which started sometime while still in our previous address. We again collaborated with visual artists and also helped a samba group building their costumes in our workspace.

Assembly Summer 2017

Some memorable member projects:
– steam powered maze robot, with Lego mechanics
– synced clock displays for broadcasts and event audiovisuals
– experiments with woodturning using our new lathe
– towable grill for bicycle
– large LED display matrix

2017 in numbers
– 2500 new uploaded Flickr photos
– 100% increase in rented floor area
– 128 member applications received
– 6 events visited and one organized by ourselves

New rental contract and extending our hackerspace

New rental contract and extending our hackerspace

The new contract waiting to be mailed

Helsinki Hacklab ry. has today signed a new rental contract that increases our floor area from 215 m² to around 430 m². The contract is both for our current workspace and its neighboring storage rooms, which are now combined. Some of this area is subrented for other users, which means a total of something about 360 m² area in shared use for all our members. The extension enables us to rebuild our wood workshop completely, with more room for working and handling larger workpieces.

The area that extends our hackerspace has both a lifting door and another door for exit. The right to use the loading area in the back yard, which is the ramp that leads to our main door, is now included in the contract. Starting from July, the whole basement level of the building and most of the back yard is now shared only between our organization and our subtenants. In case of large workpieces, twin doors were installed between the rooms that lead to the wood workshop in the other end of the building. Oh, and we now also have a second bathroom too.

This area will be subrented for a woodworker. The room with lifting door can be seen in the background. Viewed from our our new wood workshop direction.

When we moved in our current address the wood workshop was designed too small, with possible future extensions in mind. We couldn’t fit a proper size wood workshop back then, so we built a tiny one instead. The new extension enables us finally to have more people working at the same time, build dust collection, and to have some floorspace reserved for possible future equipment purchases.

The lifting door makes it easier to work with large items. The room immediately behind it is probably used for storage purposes for now. Other near future plans are building compressed air piping lines in most of the hackerspace and installing the compressor in its own room in our new area.

We were generously given this June free for moving in and renovating the extension before starting to pay complete rent. So far we have progressed with necessary changes quite a lot, but we still need more volunteers to help us build and renovate the area. We also have plans for more work in the old section of the hackerspace too. Improvements could also be made outside when we have time for it.

Building the wood workshop in progress
We now have a second workbench
New shelves for tool storage in wood workshop
The dimensions of the extension before building new walls
Robots in Strömberg Park 2017

Robots in Strömberg Park 2017

Small robots try to find their way in a maze and bump against walls. This is our annual robot race in nearby Strömberg Park, which was organized by hacklab.fi last Saturday! (Or actually biannual, if you count in the indoors winter races organized in Hackerspace Tampere Hacklab)

The idea is to build robots in Hackerspaces all over Finland, and many spaces have their own copy of the “hacklab.fi standard robot maze” at their location. The track is 1×2 meter wooden box with corners that turn left and right. Although it’s a speed race, usually the best show starts when a robot has no idea of its next move.

This is the second time we have made our previously closed doors competition into a public event here in Helsinki, especially for families and children. New this year was a large and sturdy pop-up tent in case of bad weather, better marketing, posters, website, stickers, sound system and more better general idea how we should handle building the event site. This year all our robots were autonomous, and in total eight took part in the race. Robots from previous years were on display in the table and some of them (working ones) took laps on the track as well.

Most bizarre robot this year was thjt‘s Höyry robot, which consisted of a Wilesco steam engine, rotten plywood, bunch of old Legos and IR sensor electronics. It managed to go about ⅔ of a lap before literally running out of steam or dropping a pulley belt. Because it had difficulties to turn right, we gave it a special permission to run the track counterclockwise.

The race was dominated by robots from Kuopio, which took both first and third place. Second place went to Tampere with a robot that was controlled by external computer that monitored the course with hanging camera setup over the track.

Co-operation network hacklab.fi is an attempt to have more interaction between Hackerspaces in Finland, in similar fashion as UK Hackspace Foundation etc. Robot competitions such as this one have been in our schedule once or twice a year since 2012 as a part of Hacklab Summit Finland, which gathers Finnish Hackerspaces together making the scene work more with each others. Making the robot competition a public event became more obvious as the competition became more established tradition and the number of robots started resemble a real competition. This year’s race was supported by Arts Promotion Centre Finland. Participants in Hacklab Summit Finland event came from cities Helsinki, Tampere, Kuopio, Vaasa, Turku and for the first time, the small town of Virrat, which might see its own hackerspace in near future.

Photos by Helsinki Hacklab
Photos by Tampere Hacklab
Photos by Kuopio Hacklab

Results page in Finnish: http://robotit.hacklab.fi/2017

Taiken avustus työtilan kehittämiseen ja tapahtumiin

Taiken avustus työtilan kehittämiseen ja tapahtumiin

Helsinki Hacklab has received support from Arts Promotion Centre Finland (Taike) in March 2017. The 5 000 euro amount will be used in developing our workspace, helping the hacklab.fi coordination network and in participating SHA2017 event in Netherlands. Workspace improvement topics include storage organizing, indoor and outdoor lights, accessibility and chemistry workstation.

Taike logoTaiteen edistämiskeskus Taike myönsi Helsinki Hacklabille avustuksen työtilan kehittämiseen, hacklab.fi:lle sekä kotimaan ja ulkomaan tapahtumiin. Avustuksella voidaan organisoida työtilamme entistä paremmaksi, valoisammaksi, sekä huomioda esteettömyttä ja viihtyvyyttä. Avustuksella voidaan kehittää myös varastotilaa, kemian työpistettä ja koulutushuoneen käyttöä.

Osa avustuksesta on osoitettu hacklab.fi-yhteistyöhön, tapahtumaosallistumisiin ja omaan HSF2017½-tapahtumamme Helsingissä (Robotit Strömbergin puistossa). Haimme tukea myös SHA2017-tapahtumaan osallistumiseen.

Helsinki Hacklab kiittää avustuksesta, sekä erityisesti hakemuksemme lausuntojen kirjoittajia suuresta avusta!