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Afgelopen woensdag zijn de eerste 8 kinderen op de workshop computerspellen bouwen geweest in de bieb van Eindhoven in hetcomputerlab en het was een groot succes : de kids vonden het in elk geval erg leuk en wilden er graag mee verder gaan ( dit was toch nog een onzekere factor )
Tevens is er gewerkt aan levensflitsen.nl : het enthousiasme hiervoor neemt ook al snel toe!
Yesterday I picked up the keys for my work space in Eindhoven.
Idealisers will start from there : working on your or my ideas.
If you have a good idea but don't know where to start, I can facilitate you in doing it yourself. From web hosting to web marketing to education to development.....
As of 6 March 2013, ID-Day for "HetComputerLab" has started in the library of EIndhoven in The Netherlands.
I'll be keeping an eye on most of my homecomputers, which are put on separate tables , fully functioning. The idea is that young people can get into contact with the way the homecomputers from the 80s changed the way we look at computers. In those days it was very easy to create something with a computer : every computer had a built-in basic interpreter which was ready from the moment you switched on the computer.
HetComputerLab will be teaching you how to program a computer. To make it appeal even more, several game chaning games will be displayed ( Like Zork, the first text adventure, PONG, the first true multiplayer game and Elite , the first true 3D open world game )
I added Augmentorz@ to the ideas section.
Been working on it for quite some time now and decided to communitize it.
Yesterday I had my weekly visit at MadSpace in MadLab in EIndhoven. The hackerspace of Eindhoven inside The Netherlands. The theme for that evening would be about Pleio , what it is, how you can use it and more importantly how the community could contribute. I would also be given some time to talk about my idea about communitizing Harmoneco.
Koen Aben arranged for Pizzas to be delivered so people had a chance to eat something before the presentation. I need to check on the contents of those meetup invitations, because if I would have known about the pizzas I would have left a little space for it :-) This time I brought a laptop with me though....
Wim Essers introduced himself and explained how he got in the situation he was currently in. He is one of the cart-pullers and ambassador for pleio ( www.pleio.nl ) . It's based on elgg ( shares the same code base ) and elgg is an open source content management system ( CMS ) . It has some nice features like drag and drop repositioning of content panes and since it's based on elgg, it can be modified in such a way as to fit in any kind of organisation. Harry is not the technical person behind pleio, but his colleague Harry Custers is. Harry would be available to give live support of needed.
Wim talked in length about the hurdles he had to take and is still taking in order for the local government to adopt pleio as their tool to use to share information and co-create. Since local government is tied to IBM and Microsoft as their major supplier due to vendor lock-in, Pleio could be a very cheap alternative for them to use but alas, all is not that simple. Wim is currently actively lobbying to get the tool accepted as the de facto standard and Pleio already has around 45k users and even outside The Netherlands there are more and more organisations using it as a content management system.
After his talk, many questions were asked, also by the local Groen Links politician Hans van Zijl who also showed up. Some ideas were proposed as to where to go for technical support for the tool and how it could grow it's user base. When I think about it, we might have a workshop ( of course led by Joost ;-) ) where we build a plugin in PHP for the pleio platform, we learn how to do this and pleio has the needed extra support.
When I got a chance to introduce my idea about harmonizing with your ecosystem via www.harmoneco.nl ( check the website for more info ) , there was no beamer so we had to improvise a bit, but I think we managed. I put the presentation on the website itself, so I could start from any computer with an internet connection. I think I transfered the idea well enough so the people understood what it was all about. I even got some pointers as to where to go next with the idea ( like integration with local measurement devices and smart home devices ) Ferdinand Veldmans even mentioned that he would be able to have a student work on this for his/her graduation paper.
After talking with Guus, Tom and Koen we came up with the idea of having a workshop ( name is still needed ) in 2 weeks on 27 Februari 2013. The general direction for this workshop is to create something with an arduino and have it read data and send data to a local webserver where another computer can then retrieve it. Of course I want to use a version control system for any code produced ( GIT ). It should be do-able with just a few parts ( I have some arduino's plus Tom and Guus also got some ). We will do an inventory and start from there.
I would also like to liven things up a bit by taking pictures and creating little movies on what we are doing and how we are doing it. I want to post those things on madspace.nl. I can arrange for madspace.nl to be hosted on my server ( since it's idling most of the time anyway, a classic example of over-dimensioning )
All in all I'd like to thank the organizers of this event again for this evening and good luck to Wim , because his task is not an easy one.
So today ( 6-Feb-2013 ) I went to visit our local so called "Hackerspace" . It's this one here : http://madlab.nl/madspace
From their site :
MADspace is the Eindhoven hackerspace. Members gather to work on collaborative projects, discuss and meet informally. Every week a meeting is scheduled on Wednesday evening, and regularly a workshop or hackathon is organized. The MADspace Blog can be found here: http://blog.madspace.nl/ MADspace MEETUP here: http://www.meetup.com/MADspace/
My reasons for visiting :
I recently got into contact with a very nice englishman via Ebay because I wanted to buy an 80s homecomputer called a Memotech MTX. His name is Sam and we got into chatting about the reasons why I wanted to buy such an old computer. I explained to him I am trying to set up an interactive home computer 'museum' where people can come in and physically interact with the computers that spawned a whole generation of IT specialists. You see, those computers had a basic interpreter right from the moment you turned them on. You only had a blinking cursor and in those days, software was hard to come by ( not to say very very expensive ) so what most young guys from my generation did was to program on it , in Basic. I remember me typing away my basic program on my first computer on our local V&D ( shopping mall ) who displayed a TI99/4A. I typed in my little programs and enjoyed the moments people would pass , watch that weird thing being displayed and actually played my basic game. That was the moment I decided to make it my career. I would like to pass the 'spark' to mainly young people with this interactive computer lab. Too many young people shy away from technology these days and it is becoming a huge problem in The Netherlands.
Turns out this englishman is a fervent supporter of his local hacker space, even though he is well beyond his pension age , he still likes to support people with this passion because it reminds him of the days when he was young and got into contact with technology. He even casually mentioned the fact that he made coffee for and quizzed the famous Alan Turing ( You know , from the Turing Machine ). This was also the moment I decided to visit our local hacker space so I guess you could say he prompted me to this visit I had today. I was curious as to see what the Eindhoven hacker space community was all about. Thanx Sam, I hope you get the opportunity to give a lecture on the opening of my 'museum'...
The Visit :
So I entered the MadSpace and immediately found out I wasn't well prepared. Of course I needed to bring a computer. Everybody had one, but I just completely and utterly forgot how intertwined Hackers are with computers. I also turned up an hour too late , so I entered well within the lecture by Ir. Paul Wagener. ( Something went wrong with the agenda invitation ). About 12 people showed up and it was a bit crowded , you see , MadLab is used for a lot of purposes, but mainly for people working on creative projects, the space wasn't really meant to give a presentation, but for this it just worked out. If more people would have showed up there would definitely be a space problem. I got myself a chair and positioned myself next to Joost who was kind enough to let me watch what he was doing for the tutorial. MadSpace provided the WiFi so everybody could access the internet. This was also needed because Paul prepared a very good presentation on GIT ( a version control system ) and it was very interactive. The flow of the tutorial first made you create a local repository and then sync up with the repo at github.com. Since I already worked with GIT ( by using Drupal ) I knew a lot of commands already. What I noticed about the differences with a version control system I use a lot ( SVN ) is that the system seems more friendly in command prompt use , but when I attach Tortoise/Cornerstone to an SVN repo I can do almost the same things GIT can do in a shell. So all in all if I were to work in a shell and needed a VCS I'd use GIT, but for dev work on for instance a windows or mac machine I use Subversion with Tortoise for the PC and Cornerstone for the Mac.
Paul did his homework well : he prepared little assignments and everybody was invited to try out their newly gained GIT commands and he walked around to check if everything he said made sense. At the end of the tutorial he taught us to 'sync' between our local repositories and his repository he had on GitHub. This showed me something I did not see before : the graphical branch viewer is excellent and runs from any browser on Github. Really well done, the only problem I see with the business model for GitHub is that they ask money for Repos which are not public. So you only get a free account if you share everything you code. For open source projects this is perfect! But for a business this could be a serious issue since companies I worked for would never disclose their code in such a way. So they would have to get a paid account, but then there is that free alternative called SVN ( Which I set up in just a few hours on my own server ) and is also extremely well supported. So I guess, github is mainly used ( and perfect ) for open source projects and as I understood from the talks that sparked between the MadLab members this is also the case.
When the knowledge transfer was finished, a talk started about the goal and purpose of the hacker space and how each viewed the direction that was chosen for the group as a whole. I'm not going into a detailed description of what I saw and heard, but it was a good moment for me to view the coherence of the group. You see, they only formed a group like they are now only about a year ago and I could sense 'growing' pains. I'm impressed with what has been achieved until now, I mean, it's not easy to get a group like this together every week and certainly it can't be easy to have interesting topics every week, but somehow the group formed and got into the state it was what I saw today. I could sense the passion for technology I have had since I first created my basic game on that TI99/4A so it was really really nice to feel that vibe again.
The End :
Next week I will be given a chance to talk about this idea and I will of course write about the outcome on my blog.
All in all I'd like to thank MadLab, MadSpace and Paul Wagener for the experience. I came home very late, and mostly that is a good sign :-)
Today I worked on a lot of updates on the aivia site.
Moved knowledge transfer parts to separate section.
Ideas now have their own section.
Added most recent mrinterface videos as links.
For homecomputerz.com@ and vangebruikertotbouwer.nl@
Contacted Best School : still waiting for reaction
Contacted Best library : Got a response : they don't have a vacant space
Contacted Eindhoven library : Got a response : will have a meeting soon(!)
Contacted hacker space : Got a response : will have a meeting soon(!)
Contacted TU/e : still waiting for reaction
I created my first 2D game.
Well, not really a game, more a prototype to see what can be done with HTML5.
Try and drag the mouse with the left button pressed. Slow and fast.
Click on any picture with the right mouse button and see how it gets shot away.
Try and kick the pictures in the target to score.
Try it at www.aivia.nl/Me2
Figuring out how to do a multisite install of drupal 7.
This will drastically reduce the administration needs for all the various drupal sites which are online.