Author: john

"Happy Birthday To Me!"

DoES Liverpool will be celebrating its first anniversary in the next week! We’re putting on a few activities to celebrate and we’d love you to come along.

Friday 13th July Daytime – lucky for you as we’ll be offering a day of free Hot Desking. Come down and try out the space, use our laser cutter, maybe even 3D print something without paying a penny. You don’t even need to bring cake (though we won’t complain if you do)! A great opportunity to get some work done while meeting up with other freelancers and laptop workers.

Friday 13th July Evening – the luck continues as we’ll have a few drinks to celebrate the success of DoES over the past year. We’re still making plans but at there very least there’ll be alcohol and the opportunity to look around our existing space as well as the new room we’ll be taking over in the next few weeks.

Saturday 14th July Daytime – an extra special Maker Day, celebrate a year of making, by making! Bring your projects or bring yourself and get involved in someone else’s projects. We may even have some projects to enable us to hack DoES Liverpool itself!

Saturday 11th August Daytime – another special Maker Day for the grand opening of our new workshop space, come along to see our new space and find out how you can get access to and make use of it. Or bring your projects and get making, again we’ll probably have some projects on the go to hack DoES too.

(Click on the links to head over to lanyrd and let us know you’re coming, that’s optional but is a great help to know who’s coming)

Thank you to everyone who has helped and supported DoES Liverpool over the past year, we couldn’t do it without you, literally. DoES Liverpool’s services are paid for solely from people paying for our services, our running costs are not subsidised at all. So thanks to all of you friends, hot deskers, permies, workshop members, event sponsors, interns and everyone who has been involved in our events over the past year; here’s to great things in the future and hope to see you in DoES Liverpool soon!

For the fact fiends: DoES Liverpool CIC was incorporated on 10th June 2011, so by that date we’ve already missed our birthday! Worry not though as we didn’t really do anything until the 8th July when we moved into our space in the Gostins building, after that we didn’t actually open to the public until the 18th July. With all these dates it’s difficult to pick one so we simply chose an appropriate Friday which just so happened to correlate with Maker Day!

(If you want to make one, you can find the design for the laser cut cake over on thingiverse)

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"GEC 2012 Round-up and Thanks to ScraperWiki"

Well GEC2012 was such a great week it’s taken us a long time to recover!

Before GEC week even started we had some great coverage in the Liverpool Daily Post. Monday featured talks by Peter Bond and Ian Scott talking about invention and innovation. We had attendees from Canada, Spain and New Zealand who all seemed to enjoy the talks. In the evening the Knowledge Cafe 101 event was well attended and we had some interesting attendees to the Open Evening coming to see what DoES Liverpool was about.

Tuesday’s Lean Liverpool went well and we very much appreciated Mark Holmes not only giving a talk about The Startup Owner’s Manual by Steven Gary Blank but also donating a copy! Maker Night again saw new people being introduced to DoES Liverpool and discussing the interesting projects they want to work on, unusually there was a bit of a software bias to some of the ideas but the 3D printer and laser cutter were both active throughout the night as well!

The Open Source Entrepreuneurship talk went down really well and Adrian has done a great write-up and linked to the video over on his blog.

Finally Ignite returned to Liverpool for the 9th time with a fitting 9 great talks, including me (John McKerrell) talking about the birth of DoES Liverpool and giving instructions for how to set up your own amazing co-working maker space. See that link for the slides to my talk and see the videos of the talks on the UStream channel.

We also have to thank ScraperWiki for stepping in at the last minute to help sponsor the events we held in DoES meaning we could offer free tea, coffee and beer throughout. It’s great to have support from people like ScraperWiki and ACME meaning we can put on some great events!

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"GEC 2012 and Monthly Meeting"

Just a quick round-up post to tell you what happened in our Monthly Meeting last week and to let you know about our activities for GEC 2012 next month.

Global Entrepreneurs Congress 2012 – 9-16th March

GEC2012 is aiming to be “a festival for business where people, passion and potential will be celebrated, inspired and accelerated.” One of the aims of DoES Liverpool is to inspire people and help them to create new and innovative businesses in Liverpool so we had to get involved. GEC 2012 is running a fringe calendar of events, essentially an open calendar that anyone can submit events to, so we’ve put together a great selection of events to run throughout the week.

We’re working with Knowledge Café 0151 to create a day of talks and discussion on entrepreneurship and alternative economics, with Digital Creativity in Disability and DefNet Media we’re holding an Open Source Entrepreneurship panel to answer your questions about collaboration between startups, we’re also helping to put together a great line-up for Ignite Liverpool 9. Along with these events we’re also running our regular Lean Liverpool event and Maker Night and opening them up to the attendees to GEC.

Click here for more information about all of these events.

Monthly Meeting

We held our second open meeting last Thursday, 23rd February. As agreed at the first meeting we will be alternating between lunchtime and evening so this was our first evening meeting. Attendance was pretty low but we still had some good discussions. We had an update on plans for the GEC 2012 as mentioned above, Adrian confirmed that Maker Days will be starting on the 10th March and we discussed a new RFID PAYG system amongst other things. For a full round-up of the meeting take a look at the minutes, note that the next meeting will be at 12:30 Thursday 22nd March, be there!

DoES Liverpool’s GEC 2012 events are supported by Merseyside ACME

"Meeting Summary and Open Day Next Week"

Our recent meeting went really well. We had a good mix of people turn up, including someone making his first visit to the space. I’m not going to go into depth about what we discussed as the minutes will cover that but we wanted to highlight a few things, first things first, you can find the minutes of the meeting here on the wiki.

Second thing to mention, hinted at there, is the wiki! We now have a wiki for DoES Liverpool, anyone* can edit pages on the wiki so it’s a great place to put information about DoES, about projects we’ve got going on, pledge drives, events, all sorts of things. For now here’s a few important pages to highlight:

* – because of problems with spam we’ve had to restrict edits to users within a specific group but just let us know your username and we’ll add you to the group

The wiki still needs some love and attention, the front page could do with some more information about what DoES is and a bit more organisation so if you want to help out with that, sign up for an account, let us know and get started!

Open Day

On February 16th we’re going to be holding an Open Day at DoES Liverpool, come along and make use of our hot desks for free! This would usually be a Jelly Liverpool day but as it’s not on next week we decided to open our doors instead. We can’t offer a free sandwich but you’ll get free tea and coffee and use of our internet and power. Bringing cake is entirely optional and it won’t count as a paid hot desk for our existing members. Come down and try us out!

Ada Lovelace Day Attendees

"DoES Liverpool Unveils Laser Cutter at Maker Night"

DoES Liverpool is looking forward to unveiling the new laser cutter they have recently received to enable members of the community to better understand the potential of rapid prototyping using digital fabrication. The laser cutter will be available for use by members of the community free of charge and will be unveiled at Monday’s Maker Night from 6:30pm in the Gostins Building, Hanover Street.

The laser cutter supplements the existing digital fabrication tools available in DoES Liverpool – a 3D printer and a CNC machine – and will vastly extend the prototyping capabilities available to the community.

Many members of the community have already been working with laser cutting, using the device that is available during Maker Nights in the Art and Design Academy of Liverpool John Moores University but the availability of one within DoES Liverpool’s workshop means that work can continue on projects beyond that monthly visit.

John McKerrell, one of the organisers of DoES Liverpool, had this to say:

“I’m very excited to see what interesting things will be built with the help of the new laser cutter. One of my own projects – the WhereDial, a device for showing locations of friends and family as they check into places using their mobile phone – has taken a long time to develop as I’ve had to wait a month to try each new iteration. I will now be able to iterate my designs much quicker and should be able to get the product to market very soon.”

Preparing designs for the laser cutter is surprisingly simple. Any vector drawing package can be used such as the free and Open Source Inkscape or commercial packages such as Adobe Illustrator and Corel Draw. Once prepared designs are simply sent to the laser cutter which can very quickly engrave and cut the designs from plywood or perspex. Objects can then be constructed, any problems revised and a new version cut out very quickly. Help is available from the DoES Liverpool community for those who need it and lots of designs are freely available on the internet too.

In fact it’s possible to cut more exotic materials too, Maker Night regular Beth Edmondson works with leather and fabrics to create interesting clothing designs and decorations. Local artist Susan Brown has also been experimenting by using the laser to etch her own designs onto perspex blocks which she then uses to make prints.

John adds, “People have developed lots of different designs that can be cut out and built, many of which are freely available on the Internet. From small sculptures of animals, through clocks, containers and camera mounts, all the way up to 3D printers. Though many of these involve other parts – nuts, bolts, motors or other electronics – their strength and structure is based on a very simple 2 dimensional design cut out on a laser cutter like ours.”.

Maker Night is a free to attend event organised by DoES Liverpool with support from Open Labs at Liverpool John Moores University providing a space for people to learn, experiment and work on projects related to physical computing, digital fabrication, Arduino and electronics. They’re informal, friendly events and everyone is welcome, of any ability level. The next event takes place in DoES Liverpool’s space on the 4th floor of the Gostins Building, Hanover Street.

Laser Cut Piggy Bank

See our flickr photostream for more laser cut goodies.

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"Help improve DoES Liverpool with our survey and open meeting"

UPDATE: The start time for the meeting has now been confirmed for 12:30, 26th January 2012

DoES Liverpool has been in its new home for almost exactly 6 months now. We’ve had an amazing time so far; some great events like the return of BarCamp Liverpool, meeting lots of interesting freelancers and co-workers, and helping people learn all sorts of things – including using a laser-cutter, sewing, and better ways to run their business. We want the next 6 months to be even better though and so we’re asking for help from everyone that has had some involvement in DoES. Yes, that means you!

We’re going to have a meeting later this month, most likely at lunchtime on the 26th (January 2012). We would call it a “Resident’s Meeting” but we don’t want people to think it’s only for people who have a permanent desk here. In fact we want as many people as possible to turn up who would like to be involved in the future of DoES Liverpool. We’ve previously had “Organisers Meetings” that involved only the people who were initially involved with setting DoES Liverpool but we now want to open this out to allow more people to be involved.

In preparation for this meeting we’ve put a survey on Google Docs, please fill in the survey so that we can get an idea for how you think we’re doing now and what you’d like to see happening in the future. We’ll report the results of that on here and at the meeting.

Keep an eye on this blog, sign up to the Google Group or follow us on twitter for final confirmation but barring any major changes, we’ll see you on the 26th!

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"Season’s Greetings from DoES Liverpool"

We thought we should have a little festive gathering for everyone who has been a part of DoES Liverpool over the past 5 months.

This Friday (16th) from 4pm we’ll be having some mulled wine, mince pies and frivolity in DoES Liverpool. We’d love if you could join us, come along and celebrate with everyone!

On Friday evening there is also the Twitter pub crawl. After our mini Christmas party we’ll probably grab some dinner before heading off to the pub, anyone who wants to come along is welcome. Click here for more info on the pub crawl.

Best Wishes,

All at DoES Liverpool

"Celebrating Ada Lovelace Day at DoESLiverpool"

Ada Lovelace Day aims to raise the profile of women in science, technology, engineering and maths by encouraging people around the world to talk about the women whose work they admire. This international day of celebration helps people learn about the achievements of women in STEM, inspiring others and creating new role models for young and old alike.

Taken from About Ada Lovelace Day

To celebrate Ada Lovelace Day, and to celebrate the achievements of women in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and entrepreneurship, we have decided to hold an Open Day for women at DoES Liverpool. On Friday the 7th October, all of the services of DoES Liverpool will be free for use by women. Use a hot desk for the day and have a welcoming place to work with power, wifi and tea & coffee available. If you’re a more crafty type use the facilities of our workshop to work on your projects, getting feedback and help from the other attendees.

DoES Liverpool is successfully bringing together people of various disciplines and allowing great collaboration and sharing of ideas. With this Open Day we hope to bring even more people into the space to enjoy the benefits of co-working.

This offer is open to all women, including existing friends of DoES Liverpool. The day will not count towards your hot desk quota and if you’ve never been before you will still be able to come at a later time and get a free day when you bring cake.

Men are, of course, welcome to come and work from DoES and find out more about what the women of Liverpool are achieving. This will count as a normal day for you so you will need to pay for a hot desk day or bring cake if it’s your first visit.

We’re really hoping that we’ll see some new faces in the space as a result of this so come along and see what we’re about. Ping us on twitter or sign up on lanyard if you think you’ll come, or just turn up on the day.

If you are at DoES for Ada Lovelace Day, you might also be interested in attending:

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