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2014 in review- TinkerMill, Makerspaces, Startup Longmont and more

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It's been an amazingly interesting and productive year here in Longmont, CO.

We created a makerspace in mid-2013, but it really took off this year.  We call it TinkerMill, The Longmont Makerspace.  We received our 501(c)3 public charity status this past summer.

We went from a small group of 6 people showing up for a meetup at a local school's 'Career Development Center' facility in May of 2013 to a few dozen folks  at the beginning of 2014 to over 150 paying members and almost 640 meetup members as of the end of 2014.  Not bad for 18 months.

This makes us the largest makerspace in Colorado and, as far as we can tell, the largest makerspace in this 7 state region.  You have to go all the way to Austin, TX. to find one larger.

Our primary charter as an educationally focused non profit is to create a collaborative commons where our members can learn from each other, teach each other and create, pretty much, anything, from art to personal projects to new products, services…

All Wheel Drive Does Not Make You Safer

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Every so often I read a blog post that's really relevent our day to day life.  This is one of those.  A friend of mine, who writes an outstanding blog on living a simpler life,wrote up a great post on exactly why AWD just isn't worth it.  Worth a read.




Copyright and software

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Every so often I run across an article that really makes me rethink a position I may have had for a long time.  This blog posting from Foss Patents had that effect on me this morning.

In Oracle case, Google has gone from fighting API copyright to attacking all software copyright
I have to wonder on this one.  I'm not sure the author is thinking clearly about the intent of what Google is doing re: copyright.

Personally, I think software copyrights have been severely abused over the last couple of decades, and what Google is doing now is trying to put copyright back to where it should be:  A tool to protect written works, not software products.

I'd also go on to say:  Opensource.  Yea... opensource.  Eventually, I would hope, everything will become opensource and companies will compete on capabilities and not the size of their legal teams.  This applies to hardware as well as software.

And something to consider:  The (now) largest economy in the world.

China's lack of beli…

Hackerspaces and innovators

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I really should post here more often. :)

I've been having quite a bit of fun founding and getting a hackerspace off the ground.  We now have a better understanding why TinkerMill’s grown so fast in the last 6 months*.

Local Newspaper Story in the Longmont Time Call.

Apparently, a Hackerspace/Makerspace is something our town’s needed for awhile.  :)

Average number of Patents per 10,000 people in the USA:   4

Average number of Patents per 10,000 people in Longmont:  45

You read that right, 45 vs. 4.  More than an order of magnitude more than the rest of the country.

*50+ members, 3000SF space with lots of great tools and activities, more at: www.tinkermill.org.