Archive for the ‘Events’Category

International G+ Hangout & Speakers Event: Taipei Hackerspace, Pumping Station: One edition

This is going to be one of the odder events held at Pumping Station: One so far. It’s a 6 hour hangout from 8PM CST to 2AM CST (yes, timezones are crazy!) with people physically located in Taipei, Taiwan; Chicago, USA; San Francisco, USA; Wisconsin, USA, and probably a few other places!

The purpose is to bring people together from all over the world to show the people of Taipei what a hackerspace can do for them, and why it’s so cool that one is coming to their city very soon!

I’m personally giving a talk for a few minutes about how life changing finding hackerspaces can be, and how important their social aspects are. It’s a tall order to talk after the other two speakers, and I hope I can even remotely compare to them. Inter-space social activities like this and so many other things online allow our culture to transfer amazing ideas from far across the globe with so very little friction.

Below is the description by Taipei Hackerspace, the event’s organizer.

First Hackerspace event – (and accidentally Groundhog Day too)

The purpose of this event is to get people interested in joining the first ever hackerspace in Taipei. We will be gauging interest in the hackerspace to help us select a large enough space that we can afford to open. This will also be a chance for the organizers to meet people that can help us find the perfect space. Our goal is to have the space ready for a Hack the Hackerspace event by the time Maker Faire Taiwan arrives in May.


10:00am Doors open
10:30am – 10:50am Speaker: Mitch Altman – The Philosophy of Hackerspaces
10:50am – 11:10am Speaker: Ben Heck – 3D Printing and Hardware Modding
11:10am – 11:30am Speaker: Eric Stein – Creativity in the Hackerspaces
11:30am – 12:00pm Speaker: Open floor – Hackerspace members answer questions
12:00pm – 16:00pm Learning stations open
16:00pm Doors close


Google+ Hangouts
The will be a main G+ Hangout that hackerspaces from around the world can join as a group. This will be displayed on the main screens at the event as well as smaller screen throughout the event. Local people will be able to interact with the members of the hackerspaces. This hangout will also be broadcast On Air.

Learning Stations
Each of the 4 learning stations will have a public G+ Hangout so anyone can join in to learn or teach. Each station will cover one topic that can be completed in about 30 minutes. Each station will have room for 4-6 local participants. The topics will be “Learning to Solder”, “Getting started with Arduino”, “Clothes Hacking”, and an open topic for the last station.


The Speakers

Mitch Altman (PUBLIC)
A co-founder of Noisebridge, a hackerspace in San Francisco, and a pioneer of Virtual reality. Mitch has been featured many time is Make: and many other magazines.

Benjamin Heckendorn (PUBLIC)
Console modder, internet celebrity, pinball enthusiast and designer, host of the Ben Heck Show. There are so many publications about Ben, I can’t even begin to count (Although Google say 3.9M hits!)

Eric Stein
Programmer extraordinaire and insatiable hacker. Eric discovered the hackerspace PumpingStationOne when he was transplanted to Chicago. He immediately took an active role in the community and is now president of the space.

The Organizers
Gergely (Greg) Imreh
Ex-pat living in Taiwan and founder of Taipei Hackerspace. He has been driving the online presence of the group.

Tom Haynes (PUBLIC)
Recently relocated to Taipei from San Francisco. After discovering Gergely through, they joined forces to found the physical space for Taipei Hackerspace.

The Media
Brian Song
Make: Magazine Taiwan

Amber Yan
Editor with Make: Magazine Taiwan

Caroline Hsu
Head of Google Communications, Taiwan

Lan Chang
Google Public Affairs Senior Associate, Taiwan and Hong Kong

Google Taiwan office, Taipei 101, Floor 73
Meeting at Taipei 101 Ground Floor

Of course, don’t go booking plane tickets! That’s what the Internet is for. We’ll be posting the G+ hangout information here, but for the best experience come down to Pumping Station: One for the event, we’ll have the live video up on the projector… and maybe our in-house brewed Pumpkin Ale on tap.

Nitty Gritty

* What: Meet people from all over the world, talk about your projects, and see speeches by Mitch Altman and Ben Heck! You’ve probably heard me talk already, so that’s not the fun part for you.
* Where: Pumping Station: One, 3519 N Elston Chicago IL
* When: Fri Feb 1, 2013 at 8PM to 2AM Saturday (no, you don’t have to stay the whole time!)
* RSVP: not required, but add yourself on Facebook if you like.
* Who: Any member of the public for the first hour and a half (through 9:30PM) and perhaps later, but no guarantees unless I can get someone else to take over hosting the event.


01 2013

Beer Church Beer Tasting & Brewing a Rhubarb Wheat Ale: January 20th, 1PM

Hello again from Beer Church, the brewing group at Pumping Station: One! This past Sunday the 6th, we tasted & kegged a beer (the Doppelbock’s leftover batch, titled Kinderbock Son von Doppelbock), tasted our previous foray into Mead-making (I Didn’t Mead It That Way, and brewed an American IPA with Cardamom titled Putting the India back in IPA, all grain. It was an all-around great day and the ferment bucket for the IPA is bubbling along crisply in the fermentation chamber. Today at N00B’s Paradise (Pumping Station: One’s event for newcomers), we tapped the Doppelbock – it’s good.


Doppelbock, one of Beer Church’s brews.

We just cleaned the taps. The bar is operational. We’re rocking and rolling.

sterilizing tap valves

sterilizing tap valves

So, on the 20th we’ll do it all again. This time we’re going to create a Rhubarb Wheat Ale; this is something few have done. The idea comes from Brittany, who is so enthused with the idea that we’ll oblige and make it happen. If this kind of idea appeals to you – and why wouldn’t it – then you should come visit Pumping Station: One on the 20th at 1PM. You don’t have to be a brewer; you can watch, or participate. Before the brew we’ll go over the basics of how brewing works while tasting our previous brews, including:

* Doppelbock
* I Didn’t Mead It That Way
* Pumpkin Ale
* Whatever bottle you bring! Find something in your fridge or the store that you think most people haven’t had, and introduce us to it.

Another new addition to equipment is our BeerGun which we can now use to bottle beers. This and future brews will have a small amount taken aside for a limited run bottling. Part of that bottling run will be granted to those who took part in brewing of the beer; 2 bottles for the brewmaster and 1 for all the helpers who stuck around until the end. Of course, this doesn’t happen immediately; the brew has to make it through brew day, fermentation, maybe racking for secondary, kegging, kegging, and bottling first. This in mind, if you help out on brew day you’ll get something to show for your efforts that’s a little more solid than being able to come in and try your brew on tap. The rest of the bottles will be saved for future Beer Church events so we get to savor them for a little bit longer. Our brews tend to go by pretty fast after they go on tap, since they’re so good (so far).

Nitty Gritty

When: Sunday January 20th, 1PM. We expect to brew brewing until around 7 PM or so, but you don’t have to hang around the whole time if you don’t want to.
Where: Pumping Station: One, 3519 N Elston, Chicago
What: Beer tasting and brewing hands-on
Who: Anyone 21 or over, Pumping Station: One members or not!
Why: Because beer is a worthy purpose for your Sunday afternoon
To Brew: “Rhubarb Waves of Grain” – Orange Ginger Rhubarb Wheat Ale
Brewmaster: Eric Stein

See you on Sunday. Follow along at our twitter, @ps1beerchurch.


01 2013

Not Exclusively Raspberry Pi meetup Mon. 1-14-13 7pm

The new year’s first NERP Meetup will be at 7pm tomorrow night.

In the first half hour, we’ll have a beginner’s look at the Raspberry Pi board and software. We’ll see what extra hardware you’ll need to get started with the Pi and how to boot up a new board.

In the second half-hour, we’ll connect a homemade circuit to a Pi and see one method for controlling stuff with Python. You can find out more about NERP at the Meetup page,


01 2013

N00b’s paradise: introduction to PS:One Sunday January 13 @ 4pm

Are you new around here?

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that, and you’re hardly alone. PS:One has seen explosive growth in the past year or so, and we’ve decided to create a formal way of teaching new folk how to be a healthy, happy member of the PS:One community.

Meet with PS:One old-timers (including at least one former president) to learn the many opportunities available to PS:One members, plus hacks for getting around easier.

You’ll learn:

  • the one and only rule you need to remember at PS:One!
  • what mailing lists and IRC channels you should join
  • how to get discounts on classes, tee-shirts, stuff around town, and even monthly dues!
  • how to get certified on equipment
  • how to bring new equipment into PS:One
  • how to create a class, event, group, meeting, or what have you
  • how to request a class, event, group, whatever
  • how to blog
  • the wiki.
  • do-ocracy and how to do-ocratize things

The basics:

  • Who: anyone who wants to learn how PS:One works
  • When: Sunday January 13th, 4 pm until about 6pm
  • Where: PS:One 1st floor
  • Cost: free

Here are the class notes – please feel free to read beforehand or if you can’t make it.


01 2013

Analog Game Night This Saturday!

Bring your favorites!


Anyone got a cool new game to play this holiday season? Wanna play it with a bunch of other gamer geeks? Got any awesome new minifigs, counters, or gaming dice sets that you want to show off to people for some geek cred? Just wanna hang out with some fun people and play games, drink beer, and eat some tasty snacks?
Bring  your favorite games over to Pumping Station: One this Saturday, the 5th, at 7pm and play the night away! As usual, all games are welcome [even cuddle dice, though you may have a hard time finding people to play with], major gamercred to homemade games.

See you there!


01 2013

Nerp tonight! Monday Dec. 17 at 7pm

Allen Kapusta will make a presentation on types of task dispatching. Any processor more complicted than an Arduino will be shared by different pieces of running code. Allen’s presentation will be a general overview of how tasks are selected for execution by the processor and what guidelines the task should follow in order to co-exist well with its neighbors.

Drew Fustini will show us how to display tweets on a character LCD connected to a Raspberry Pi. His Python examples will demonstrate a simple way to make a read-only connection to Twitter and print tweets on a 4-bit parallel connection.

NERP will not meet December 31st, but will resume its regular bi-weekly schedule starting Monday January 14th.


12 2012

Automation Night – Thursday, 1/10 at 7PM

Eric Gregori will be giving a talk about doing computer vision on the Android platform using the OpenCV library. It will take place at Pumping Station: One’s ( Automated Manufacturing Night on Thursday, 1/10, at 7pm.

Manufacturing applications for computer vision include assembly:

YouTube Preview Image

And inspection:

YouTube Preview Image

After his talk and questions, we will discuss, repair, and build CNC machines ranging from 3D printers to electronics pick and place machines.

Thanks to Eric for a wonderful talk and to everyone who came out.

Eric included the presentation, and the links he mentioned during it, here:  He has written an article on the topic here:

A recorded version of the talk is available here.  Unfortunately, the video and audio quality are low.
YouTube Preview Image

Eric is the President of EMGRobotics ( He is a robot enthusiast with over 19 years of embedded firmware design experience. His specialities are computer vision, artificial intelligence, and programming for Windows Embedded CE, Linux, and Android operating systems.

Automated Manufacturing Night is a monthly event where a speaker will discuss a topic related to Automated Manufacturing on the third Thursday each month. It is affiliated with the CNC Build Club (, a group where folks work on automated manufacturing machines at Pumping Station: One. It is also open to the public.

Pumping Station: One is a Chicago hackerspace located at 3519 N Elston, Chicago IL 60618.

This talk was organized by Jeff McAlvay, who is working with a team from PS:One on an open pick and place machine (


12 2012

Monday Dec. 3rd. is back-to-basics night at NERP

Monday Dec. 3rd. is back-to-basics night at NERP. In Part 1, Carl
Karsten and Bonnie King will give an introduction to Python programming
for novice programmers. The target will be the Raspberry Pi, and the
focus of their teaching examples will be on input/output to simple
hardware. In Part 2, yours truly will demo control of output devices
including simple circuits for interfacing electronics to
electro-mechanical devices.

Find us here…



12 2012

Beer Church – Sunday 12/2 at Noon: Dopplebock or not to Bock?

Hello again, with a fresh Beer Church event hot off the presses! No plans this Sunday at noon? No problem! Now you’ve got one: come down to Pumping Station: One at noon, sip a few unusual beers (bring one of your own, potluck style – we’ll supply the tiny steins), theorize on the nature of brewing and Sundays, and – Ninkasi willing – we’ll brew a doppelbock all-grain style. It’s possible we’ll also keg “I didn’t mead it that way”, but it may well need another week in the fermentation chamber.

Kegged beers set to condition for a few weeks

Due to the lager nature of doppelbocks, we may find that we need to modify our fermentation chamber to support lower temperatures and/or split temperature. That means physical build and some software tweaking; if you want to pitch in on that, by all means join us. Everyone is welcome who is 21 years of age or older, even if you’ve never brewed before, and aren’t a member of PS:One. A tour of the hackerspace will be available for the curious at some point in the afternoon.

Kegs tapped in the PS:One beer fridge

The brew may last until 4PM or so, depending on the complexities that arise. You’re of course welcome to come and go, but it’s advised to come at the start so as not to miss the beer tasting – which will feature the last of Anisethesia on tap at our bar, which we first tapped for Locktoberfest.

If you can’t make it in person (or if you’re just that intrigued, which you should be), you can follow @ps1beerchurch on twitter. We post updates frequently! See you Sunday.


11 2012

Beer (and Wine or Mead) Church, 11/11/2012

Beer Church is doing great lately. We’ve made 3 beers so far – 2 stouts and a spiced pumpkin ale. We just racked the spiced pumpinkin ale last night. We’re not sure how good it is yet, having only tasted it warm and halfway through the ferment, but it’s quite unique and we look forward to kegging it in a few weeks.

We served both our stouts on October 20th, at Locktoberfest Chicago 2012, alongside Cross of Gold beer from Revolution Brewery. Good times had by all, and all the beer poured out into waiting cups at a spirited pace. We look forward to seeing what happens with Locktoberfest 2013. We served out of our brand new taps built by Ryan Pierce!

Bar taps at the PS:One bar

Kegs tapped in the PS:One beer fridge

More developments are… developing, on the bar! It’ll be even cooler later, when we’ll post a full writeup with pictures.

This Sunday, we’ll have a standard Beer Church event; with the addition of a random chance of whether we’ll be making Wine or Mead. Depending on when we hear back from participants, it’ll go either way – this post may be updated in a few days.

For those new to Beer Church, we hold pot-luck beer tastings, where everyone brings their favorite unusual beer and we taste them. We discuss the state of technology, brewing, and science in an informal midday Sunday setting at Pumping Station: One.

Once we’ve satisfied palates and our conversational avenues, we’ll either make wine, or mead! That depends on whether our winemaking correspondent is able to make it. Either way, we’ll be learning something new and making a delicious beverage. Come on down – both ends of the beverage cycle will be covered!


* Date/Time: 12:30 PM, 11/11/2012
* Location: Pumping Station: One, 3519 N Elston Chicago IL
* Attendance: Public, no RSVP required, must be 21 or over


11 2012