Tuesday, May 21, 2013

A Longmont Hackerspace

So, I'm going to take a shot at starting up a hackerspace in Longmont, CO.


First meeting isThursday night this week.  7pm.  See the link above for details (If you live around here.. come on down!).

Longmont:  It's a very interesting town.  About 90,000 people.  Great school system with a special STEM program (6 grade schools, 3 middle schools and 1 high school...).  They start teaching the kids how to program computers, in the 'feeder' grade schools, at 6 years old.

It has a ton of greenway bike paths.

It has a gigabit network buildout in process.  The city council here just gave the go ahead to build out a city owned (municipal) gigabit fiber network.  Think:  Google Fiber level connectivity to every home and business, but, from a not for profit city that will never raise prices (just speeds).  The city also sponsored a City Hackathon in April (first ever... went great). They're well on their way to turning the city itself into an open data platform.

Oh yea.. it owns it's own power company already (Longmont Power and Communications.. i.e. LPC) that provides power, water, sewer and trash service.  All at 30% lower costs than the for profit services in the other cities, and the most reliable electrical grid (historically) of any town in the state.

There's a bunch of high tech companies here as well.  Microsoft has one of the worlds most advanced datacenters (running all of BING maps) in Longmont.  Seagate's got a plant here along with an R&D division working on building cloud software into hard disks and SSD devices.  Digital Globe already feeds all the satellite images you see today on Google Maps (and many others).  Amgen (Biotech) has an R&D plant and factory here.  Western Digital has an R&D group here.  Boulder County (where Longmont lives) has Boulder in it... tons of startups.  And, MANY of the highly educated people that can't afford the stupid high real estate prices of Boulder, work there, but live in Longmont.

And, houses here are (compared to most places) cheap.  An average 1500SF house goes for under $200K.

So.. interesting town.  Kind of a high tech center with a great quality of life that's been kept a secret.

I'll bet we can get us pretty darned sweet Hackerspace set up here in Longmont.

An excellent read from an ex-evangelical.

  As you know, I once was an evangelical megachurch pastor and my pastoral career stretched over many years. Eventually, I could no longer t...