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Technology  14, Oct 2009

What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common?

By

Picture 1

Editor’s Note: Wong Meng Weng co-founded pobox.com and karmasphere.com during his time in the US. In Singapore, he works with a venture-funded Red Herring Global 100 company on new product strategy. He has taken over 10,000 photographs of random strangers. When he takes yours, you will like it so much it will become your profile pic, or your money back.

They’re all home to hacker spaces.

Part living room, part hardware lab, hacker spaces are beginning to mushroom: back in March, Wired counted over a hundred hacker spaces around the world.

And “mushroom” is a surprisingly apt analogy: outside of tech hubs like the San Francisco Bay Area, hackers have traditionally stayed underground, like fungal hyphae, gathering furtively at 2600 events or at conferences like HOPE and SIGGRAPH and various motley Barcamps.

But in the last few years conditions have reached critical mass: after Make Magazine legitimized engineering as an avenue for creative expression, a generation of nerds have started to stumble, blinking, into the sunlight.

Where do nerds go when they leave the house?

I beg your pardon: they’re not quite nerds, they’re not just geeks; they’re hackers.

Hackers go to hacker spaces.

Starting in November, Singapore’s hackers will have a hacker space of their own: hackerspace.sg.

By day, hackerspace.sg will be a co-working shared office for entrepreneurs and independents. For people who want to get out of the house, but don’t necessarily want to make Starbucks their second home.

When night falls, the hackers come. Out of the darkness. Dressed in black. Like vampires. Geeky vampires. Who build robots. Because they have Asperger’s.

If you’re a hacker –
– if you misspent your youthful Saturday nights building Linux boxes…
– if your mental map of Sim Lim is oriented along green elevator vs blue elevator…
– if your childhood heroes were Richard Feynman, Einstein, Coyote, or Ji Gong and the Monkey King
– if your inner five-year-old never stopped asking “why”, and more importantly, “why not?”…

Come meet the others.

Hackerspace.sg will offer a space to build things and the tools to build them with.

It will also serve the community’s need for meetup spaces: rather than scrounging space at community centres, library branches, and off-peak restaurants, user groups can now meet at the hackerspace on any night of the week.

There might even be SuperHappyDevHouse weekends and TED talks and movie nights:

Blade Runner.
Monty Python.
Brazil.
Akira.
Alien.
E.T.
Bambi.

(“Bambi?” you ask. Yes, Bambi. What, don’t you like Bambi? Is there something wrong with you?)

Where will the hackerspace be?

After much house-hunting, the hackerspace.sg organizers settled on the Kampong Glam area: it’s bohemian, funky, artsy, and very close to good food at all hours.

The membership drive is now officially open. Regular memberships begin at $128 per month. Youth members pay $64. The hackerspace requires a six month commitment, three months payable upfront. If you’re really broke, you can pledge $32 and wash dishes while everybody else relaxes on the sofa.

Sponsors are also welcome: old wealthy hackers are welcome to donate $1024 or more.

How to join as a member?

Leave a pledge at the bottom of http://hackerspacesg.pbworks.com/HowToPledge. We’ll ping you again when it’s time to cough up the funds.

And join the mailing list, and post a description of yourself: what makes you a hacker? What hacks have you accomplished in the past? What are you working on now?

Guest

Guest

We invite members from Asia's tech industry and startup community to share their honest opinions and expert knowledge with e27 readers. If you are interested to share your point of view, please send an email to writers[at]e27[dot]co

  • http://twitter.com/E27sg E27sg

    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/E27sg E27sg

    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/mohanbelani mohanbelani

    RT @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/mohanbelani mohanbelani

    RT @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

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  • http://twitter.com/ruiwen ruiwen

    rt @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/hackerspacesg hackerspacesg

    RT E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/ruiwen ruiwen

    rt @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/hackerspacesg hackerspacesg

    RT E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/iamclovin iamclovin

    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg (via @E27sg)
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/iamclovin iamclovin

    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg (via @E27sg)

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/_dren_ _dren_

    RT @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/_dren_ _dren_

    RT @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Bjorn-Lee/214870 Bjorn Lee

    congrats meng on finding the right price point. :) awesome to see the hackerspace live out its concept-to-reality path thru the google groups thread. when can i chk out the place? i heart kampong glam

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Bjorn-Lee/214870 Bjorn Lee

    congrats meng on finding the right price point. :) awesome to see the hackerspace live out its concept-to-reality path thru the google groups thread. when can i chk out the place? i heart kampong glam

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Bjorn-Lee/214870 Bjorn Lee

    just a note of feedback, hackerspaces in singapore always run the risk of being “zoos” for the start — i.e. lots of first-time visitors asking for tours to see the “exihibits-hackers”.. i am sure you guys might hv considered this problem already. but IMO, u do need to find a balance between the hackers having some peace and quiet doing stuff they like vs getting interested folks to sign up and sample the culture and atmosphere of the place b4 signing up. the peace and quiet is even more essential if u want it to function as an incubator..

    juz my $0.02

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Bjorn-Lee/214870 Bjorn Lee

    just a note of feedback, hackerspaces in singapore always run the risk of being “zoos” for the start — i.e. lots of first-time visitors asking for tours to see the “exihibits-hackers”.. i am sure you guys might hv considered this problem already. but IMO, u do need to find a balance between the hackers having some peace and quiet doing stuff they like vs getting interested folks to sign up and sample the culture and atmosphere of the place b4 signing up. the peace and quiet is even more essential if u want it to function as an incubator..

    juz my $0.02

  • http://www.e27.sg Mohan Belani

    You might want to check out the pics here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/mengwong/sets/72157622542162738/

    The location looks great!

  • http://www.e27.sg Mohan Belani

    You might want to check out the pics here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/mengwong/sets/72157622542162738/

    The location looks great!

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  • http://twitter.com/nazroll nazroll

    RT @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/nazroll nazroll

    RT @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/bleongcw bleongcw

    RT @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/bleongcw bleongcw

    RT @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/SeattleTowing SeattleTowing

    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both …: Tweets that mention What do Seattle, Silicon V.. http://bit.ly/2f2YE
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    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both …: Tweets that mention What do Seattle, Silicon V.. http://bit.ly/2f2YE

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  • http://twitter.com/jasonong jasonong

    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/jasonong jasonong

    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/SeattleNews360 SeattleNews360

    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both … http://bit.ly/2f2YE
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    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both … http://bit.ly/2f2YE

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  • http://twitter.com/donaq donaq

    RT @jasonong: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/donaq donaq

    RT @jasonong: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg

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  • http://twitter.com/triplez82 triplez82

    RT @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/triplez82 triplez82

    RT @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/danimir danimir

    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both …: e27 – Discovering Web Innovation in Asia — To.. http://bit.ly/a75cV
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  • http://twitter.com/danimir danimir

    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both …: e27 – Discovering Web Innovation in Asia — To.. http://bit.ly/a75cV

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  • http://andrewhyde.net Andrew Hyde

    I’ll be in town October 21-24th, would love to stop by and help out! My first visit to Singapore!

  • http://andrewhyde.net Andrew Hyde

    I’ll be in town October 21-24th, would love to stop by and help out! My first visit to Singapore!

  • http://twitter.com/geekonomics geekonomics

    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin & Cambridge have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg via @mohanbelani @E27sg
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/geekonomics geekonomics

    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin & Cambridge have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg via @mohanbelani @E27sg

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://news.ycombinator.com/user?id=donaq donaq

    Good move, though the price of membership is a tad steep for a debt-ridden code monkey such as myself.
    This comment was originally posted on Hacker News

  • http://news.ycombinator.com/user?id=donaq donaq

    Good move, though the price of membership is a tad steep for a debt-ridden code monkey such as myself.

    This comment was originally posted on Hacker News

  • http://twitter.com/sgentrepreneurs sgentrepreneurs

    RT @e27sg What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin & Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/sgentrepreneurs sgentrepreneurs

    RT @e27sg What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin & Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg

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  • http://twitter.com/TNxtSV TNxtSV

    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://tinyurl.com/yknhybv
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/TNxtSV TNxtSV

    What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://tinyurl.com/yknhybv

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  • http://twitter.com/cedric_chee cedric_chee

    RT @e27sg What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin & Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/cedric_chee cedric_chee

    RT @e27sg What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin & Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/mhisham mhisham

    rt @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/mhisham mhisham

    rt @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg

    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/ganglu ganglu

    RT @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg
    This comment was originally posted on Twitter

  • http://twitter.com/ganglu ganglu

    RT @E27sg: What do Seattle, Silicon Valley, Berlin and Cambridge (both Cambridges) Have In Common? http://bit.ly/14GDwP #hackerspacesg

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  • http://www.tencube.com Darius

    why do all pricing (including 1024 sponsorship) exist in power of 2??

  • http://www.tencube.com Darius

    why do all pricing (including 1024 sponsorship) exist in power of 2??

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