Mini Maker Un-faire DIY Fair @ MLKJr Library

MLK Library“The Adaptive Services Division of the DC Public Library will host a Mini Maker Un-faire DIY (Do It Yourself) Fair in the Great Hall of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library on Saturday, Nov. 17 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and on Sunday, Nov. 18 from 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.  The Library is accessible from the Gallery Place and Metro Center subway stops.” More…

HacDC will be among the participating organizations at this event.

Admission is free. Register at


HacDC Rocks SciFest

Last weekend, HacDC hosted a booth in the USA Science and Engineering Festival at the DC Convention Center. HacDC members who volunteered at the booth report that festival participants kept them plenty busy throughout the duration of the festival. Thank you to everyone who stopped by!

The HacDC booth demonstrated a variety of gadgets including a 3D Printer, the chassis of Spaceblimp 5 (or, “This lunchbox has been to space!”), a montage of beautiful Spaceblimp photos, a pen plotter writing portraits of people, various LED hacks, and a tank of water with a bubble ring generator.

A picture of our booth at the fest in case you missed it. Not quite the same, but we try.

I asked the volunteers and festival attendees to tell me about things they saw that they found particularly interesting:

  • Baby hacking, or in other words, how babies learn to distinguish speech sounds that are present within the language of their environment.
  • Ever want your own personal submarine? (Only if it comes with a periscope, right? Same here.) The Personal Submersibles Organization has one that is light enough that it can be carried on a trailer and lowered into the water on a ramp.
  • Extracting Banana DNA and wearing it on a necklace was a highlight.
  • As one member said, “There was probably something for every kind of geek.”

It sounds like everyone had a great time and we’re looking forward to attending more festivals in the future!

Making Tubular Bells with Keith Sinzinger (HacDC and DorkbotDC)

On July 7 at 7:00PM, HacDC and DorkbotDC will together sponsor an event with a very innovative and interesting local musician, Keith Sinzinger.

Sinzinger goes under the performance name Fast Forty. He calls his genre of music Intense Ambient: “found sounds, altered electronics, scrap metal and other devices, blended to soothe and stimulate.” His music is anchored by homemade tubular bells which he plays and routes through various audio effect processors.

He is originally from Cleveland, Ohio and his music reflects the industrial sounds of the Ford plant and the railroads of his early surroundings.

At HacDC and Dorkbot, he will explain how he conceived of, researched and constructed the tubular bells, and will then offer a demonstration of their sounds. The audience will also be able to play them afterwards.

Below one can listen to a full set of his from a recent Sonic Circuits performance, posted by District of Noise. Also see his MySpace site for more information.

Where: HacDC (1525 Newton St NW, Washington, D.C.)
Date: Tuesday, July 7, 2009
Time: 7:00PM

Hack the Genome Shmoocon Presentation


Had a bunch of really interested folks at the “Hack the Genome, the age of biomolecular cryptography” talk today at Shmoocon.  Lots of fantastic ideas and great discussions afterwards with interested hackers.  It is great to see how much creative knowledge and energy there is in our community.  I was asked to share my slides, so I have put them up on my site over at Radio Free Genome, and you can download the presentation directly from here.