Space Projects Discussion/Finagling

How about a replacement for the snarks. An esp8266 has SPI to talk to a RFID reader and GPIO for a relay. Plus it kinda has wifi built in, so no more ethernet. $3.50 for esp8266, $5 approx for rfid and $3 for relay, add another dollar for power circuitry and pcb. If that is realisable than we can make every gooddamn tool in the workshop locked down. May need more expensive relays though. Testing of the capabilities of the standard esp8266 module will need to be done.

The boneyard is once again full of things we shouldn’t have kept. That will need to be cleaned out

Using Iphones as cheap surveillance cams and just shove them everywhere there is power. Machine shop, soldering bench etc and a backend to recieve and record all this data. May need more wifi routers to cope with amount of data.

DIY roomba dock with arduino:

Fixing the smoke machine for eventual integration with the party button.

Taking inventory of what is in all the electronics draws and reorganising and labelling the lot.

glorious hobofire to celebrate accomplishments for the end of the day.

Hey @merseyless it might be better to focus on installing the ~$600 of snarc hardware we already have.

Using esp8266’s as sensor nodes for us to record and post onwards to would be something I’d be interested in talking to you about, given we can use it to track power consumption ( )

List of projects I know about/potentially need help with:

  • Web induction tool.
  • Tour scripting/virtual site tour
  • Capitalist(Payment processing/spacebucks tracking)
  • Vending machine backend code
  • Door open status checking
  • Power switching in greenroom using Orvibo S20

I’ll try to attend this event.

After chatting with the crazy pom from the uk hackerspace I will copy a saying from one of there members.

“does this generate more hacking or less hacking”

The space over the years will and has changed. You have to ask yourself is it for the benefit of the group or is it for my benefit. Putting the Snarc’s on the tools has been talked about for generations of people moving through the space. I personally don’t care which is why I have not done it. All it does is stop or slow someone down from hacking.

The argument is always because they will break a consumable. HSBNE should not supply consumable items eg. any item that is normally supplied to a employee. For me the space is about the people, tools and space. We buy stuff that never gets installed.

When someone does do something like when I built a prototype for the tool armory ages ago. I got critisied so much by members I decided to abandon the project and left it in Josh’s hands. (this is not a criticism of Josh we discussed options and worked excellently together on that project. Josh took all of my suggestions on board and it was not his critique that made me abandon the project)

I am guilty of critiquing people’s projects poorly. We all have done it by not communicating what we are saying effectively. I put my hand up to say hey I have seen this problem in myself and others around me have been doing it too. This is a group culture problem and needs be addressed by the group not the executive.

HSBNE has a massive amount of awesome people come to the space a couple of times and then leave. I think we need to look at ourselves and ask why we have not grown in membership and what we can all do to support each others projects.

@merseyless stop trying to fork the snarc project

@nogthree using power to track power use uses more power.

also the mag lock on the front door may have closed indication on it. I think it does I just didn’t run the wires for it when I first installed the lock. I can show you how to pull it apart and we can check if you like.

I also think computer controlled power switching in the green room can be dangerous and may just end up in more failed 3d prints.

So much of this. A couple of really simple timers that only go up to 30min would give plenty of time to make sure people supervise their prints and soldering irons, without overcomplicating the electrics.

I think the thing that we’ve missed regarding computerising all the things is the unavoidable debugging time that will have to go into it. It’s not going to work right the first time. This means that someone will eventually lose work and blame it on the implementer of the system, which is one reason that I won’t sign on for it.

As engineers, many of us tend toward complexity because we love elegant solutions and like to flex our intellect. We have to remember to balance that with practicality.

Hey @denominator, thanks for your input.

The esp8266 chips run on 3-3.3v so we can run our sensor nodes off two doublea batteries or even a coin cell. With some fairly conservative watchdog/sleep setup we should be fine :smile:

The computer controlled switching won’t be automatic, it will be integrated into the sign-in sign-out system at the front door and it will require user interaction (IE a yes I am the last one out please turn shit off button).

30 minute timers are ok with me too but I suspect we may end up arguing over the time the timers can be set for (see last time it was brought up in IRC as ‘too onerous’). You should be checking up on your 3d printer more often than every 30 minutes imo especially given they are a burn-down-the-hackerspace risk.

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Fair point about a half-hour being too long between printer checks; I was coming from a “buy 10 of just one simple thing” standpoint. It’s better than the system we don’t have right now, and frankly what we’re talking about is a big enough project that it would take:

  • Someone with a good grasp of software engineering to make sure the code is testable, concise and clear
  • Someone with a good grasp of he hardware involved to make sure the physical side of the system is reliable
  • These people to work together on a pretty regular basis to debug any issues that arise (and many will)

Since this hasn’t come together yet, it’s my personal opinion that we should put a solution in place for the time being – it may be quick-and-dirty, but I think it’s enough.

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I think there’s a misunderstanding of why this should be done. The idea of using snarks to lock down hardware is for the purposes of making sure untrained people can not use the equipment as well as ensuring it is shut down after use and also allowing us to add accountability into the system as we know when people were using the equipment, who was using it and possibly security cam footage of the event happening.


This facilitates hacking as it ensures that tools are always maintained and ready for use and for abusive users to be found and suspended from tool use.

On a side note, there’s a crate full of contactors in the bone yard that will switch anything you can think of. 240V coil though.