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Since last meeting, action occured - survey team created & working on membership survey

Stuff to decide:

  • unclaimed capital
  • hiring
  • membership fees
  • in general
  • student deal
  • how do we choose to buy kit
  • cycle every few months, proposals etc
  • laser cutter
  • subcommittee for new premises
  • purchasing process
  • linux or microsoft for desktops
  • Artists/Engineers event - 30th October, using main space (confirm okay)

who’s here?

  • Jonny (director)
  • Kim
  • Roger
  • Peter
  • Owen W
  • Chris A (CNC router)
  • Mat (laser, bandsaw)
  • Robert (lathe etc)
  • Laura (director)
  • Mark M (CNC Router, listening remotely)


unclaimed capital

No one has come forward to help organise/track activity. We need another 250 instances of 6 hour interactions on top of what we can count in this meeting.

What counts as interaction? Would a full day exhibition type event count? (yes with named people) 6h of anything for which we get £15k.

Clearer events process could help! Also funds for events - like say £10k events budget & better process so it’s easy for people to run events

Survey question: have you brought a friend for 6h + of makespace? -- add to next survey

events committee / event owners

We should have one which works. Handle enquiries, match people wanting to run events and members who can host. Making an events plan. Also encouraging members who can do events to do them

We’ll call this a new decision -- survey question to ask if people want to join it

currently: Laura, Jonny, Martin, SteveU, OwenW (the last 3 added today)

Survey question: will you run a course

Event admin: publicity, tracking people

can we use meetup to track events?

  • doesn’t have compulsory end time
  • the grant doesn’t have a deadline? -- not a formal one but if we don’t present a plan very soon it will go away as an opportunity :) we are already a long time over original deadline

Makespace Hacking ideas

  • Lost property conveyor belt


  • cleaner
  • events
  • workshop management
  • admin / first aid restocking / paperwork


cleaner - there is a proposal. £10 hour, to clean twice a week. what do we think?

useful because dirt accumulates over time

will make it easier to organise meetings - pre meeting cleaning is grim

or perhaps nature of space means dirt?/junk which would discourage meetings

difference between ‘cleaning up from project’ and ‘general cleaning’

but people who don’t clean up after their project aren’t thinking anyway

status quo - kinda fine? not super clean but it’s not terrible (It’s better than other hackerspaces)

is cleaning different from other stuff?

  • dishwasher
  • buying snacks
  • tidying
  • activating tokens and filing paperwork

alternative proposals :

cleaning rota - DON’T LIKE THIS ONE
  • monthly allocations
  • enough people that if a few people don’t do it it’s not hte end of the world
  • for some people the rota will be enough
  • people not on the rota would not clean
could it be a list that people sign to say they cleaned on that day, everyone must sign against one day by the end of the year - SET THIS UP NOW

like snack buying, seems to work could do this today to see if it works, and no cost!

more regular Big Cleans like we did before birthday party - WE LIKE THIS TOO
  • we members can do cleaning AND tidying
  • we can also make rearrangements if needed… thinking about use of space etc
  • scheduled at regular frequency through the year? eg every 2m or every 3m
  • party atmosphere
  • great way for new members to get to know space
  • what if we did this either before or after a hackathon???
  • more motivating to clean before hackathons!
  • eg clean one week, hackathon the next

SURVEY QUESTION: ask for people to coordinate

SURVEY: “here are jobs needing doing please volunteer” or “you must have a task” :)

we already push volunteering in inductions. we could push specific tasks there as well (emptying bins, publicity about finished projects, running events, buying snacks, sysadmin/web infrastructure)

require one to volunteer to complete induction??

does this all suggest a ‘getting up to speed with makespace culture’ issue?

push badges…

say ‘your induction isn’t complete until you have attended some thing’

say ‘your induction isn’t until you have signed up for some task’

newbie night - more awareness that folks there may be unsure… (that was goal of thursday maker night originally - maybe emphasise this more in induction)

what about focus at maker nights? eg 3d printing, router, whatever. help available on that kit. able to ask what kit might be useful for, ask about what you could do with a given bit of kit like a clinic. A lot of members aren’t sure of the capabilities of equipment and want to talk to an owner (or someone else experienced on that kit)

events committee could schedule this sort of thing & push it along.

Owners could potentially delegate ‘helping at maker night’ to other folks they’ve inducted :)

can we contact all owners of kit? we need an email alias. Could someone write up a list of owners, so we can create an alias, and run ‘owners club’, etc ??? this person would be active owner of kit. Who could that be? ACTION: we need someone!! EMAIL LIST to ask who is up for this. MM sent list of emails to Jonny to setup the mailing list.


  • try sign up list when you’ve cleaned
  • try big cleans
  • if not we’ll come back to cleaner hiring question


not to hire at this time - try last ditch events owners idea above

then if we want to get a coordinator/publicity person later we will come back to this

workshop management / admin / first aid restocking / paperwork

would do stuff like:

checking and restocking first aid kit

replacing small handtools etc

keeping consumables in stock (sellotape to nails)

making sure kit is pat tested and signage up to date and overall space in decent order

general caretaking stuff

general supplies purchase

remove small expenses claims etc

if there are people who would like to do this they might be happy to do it as a volunteer! can we find such a person? would they want to be around in makespace anyway

if someone would do it for ‘free membership’ let’s think instead about doing it for a £40/m honorarium! but it’s still goodwill basically ;) we don’t do free membership it is distorting.

if we pay people for stuff that isn’t working, we need to make sure it doesn’t become an argument about ‘well you get paid for X, i don’t fancy doing Y’

management of space, health and safety etc is not the same as community facilitation (printer paper etc). ‘technical’ vs ‘community/general’ also ‘management’ vs ‘admin’ also specialist skill vs generalist skill

Helpdesk ticketing system - so we share tasks around, see what’s taken, tag stuff that needs to be done in the space etc.

ACTION: LJ/JA to investigate set/up ticketing system


  • we will see if we can share this work out in the community
  • we will set up a ticketing system to make sharing easier
  • we can talk more if this doesn’t work out about hiring

Kim might be interseted in putative role … maybe in fundraising & new space set up membership fees

should oaps pay less as they may be a prime volunteer resource?

we don’t have many/enough people at the meeting to make a decision on membership fees is it OAP discount, or a general discount for oaps/unemployed/students?

when people say ‘i can’t afford it’ they mean one of:

  • i have budgeted and i cannot afford
  • i feel i will not get £40 value
  • i am not willing to find the £40 because of other things

high cost means we have fewer very invested people. is that better than many less keen people? (or are keen people excluded?)

it’s tricky when you get into drawing lines. is an engineering oap more valuable to us than a media studes oap? how can we identify students or oaps or unemployeds, who validates id and on what basis

option: set up charity, which has aim to support membership for those with a good case. this should not be makespace. it is a charitable set up, takes donations. Would secure funds from donations, high net worth individuals, sponsors, etc.

Could have ‘when you sign up to makespace, option to donate funds to teh charity on top of membership fee if you want’

if turnover less than £40k per year you don’t need the hardcore charity commission audit.

we agreed this last year but ran out of energies. maybe we should blog the idea of the charity and see if anyone wants to make it happen? doesn’t have to be a makerspac member to make this happen.

ACTION: blog post.

“Wednesday nights free” - public maker night (no red kit etc!!) . nice idea we should have this ;)

What about discounts if you don’t use red kit? it encourages sneakiness which is bad! You’d not get training to dodge costs and then people would use the kit at midnight and they injure themselves… bad idea.

Can we run the numbers and revisit membership fees? not really because the future lease cost is totally unknown!

how do we choose to buy kit

Proposal from last meeting -

  • we gather proposals
  • they are discussed on list
  • at least 2 people per proposal!!
  • final proposals are set out according to some template / form in advance of hte meeting
  • there is a meeting every ?? months where proposals are reviewed
  • only for proposals with complete info
  • and therefore everything is closed.

agreed to do this!

steve U volunteered to draft forms.

If not done in 2w task released for someone else! (otherwise stuff blocks)

laser cutter

YES to another.

smaller/ same / bigger IN FORM FACTOR?

NOT SMALLER. do we have any evidence of need for a big job? no one has ever asked.

same kit - one set of training etc - makes life easier

smaller/ same / bigger IN POWER?

next step up becomes a totally different animal

are there better laser cutters lately?

Is HPC a pain? seemed ok by one anecdote on phone. a laser that requires less ‘tuning’ would be nice. current one seems to constantly require attention

what about just add sharks? hackspace mentality, but would get a smaller one (they don’t have a bigger one yet). Need access to spares long term. unsure of JAS longevity

Lasercut5.3 - so horrid people don’t monopolise the PC for CAD!

second laser cutter - dependent on extraction to outside, as it would be a lot of lasers and smell etc. that also means 2 filters, 2 coolers etc… on no noisy! noise might be bad. could we locate coolers in the trove? small hole through wall

note that extraction on LEV systems - both laser and workshop - should be inspected. Who do we call? Chris Abri to look into this.

DECISION: IF a way is found to make space not too noisy with 2 systems running and extraction is addressed and we have checked USB set up (action Mat??) -- by testing with a new PC THEN we agree to buy another HPC laser exactly the same as the current one

subcommittee for new premises

there should be one but what’s the scope of the work?

maybe a questionnaire and / or open meeting to work out scope.

action of subcommittee: run questionnaire and open meeting???

A note: the most active bits of makespace today aren’t doing admin execution at a rate that means we’d ever get a new premises.

we should talk with IFM, computer museum, cambridge science centre - get their interests/sense of this.

newbuild appealing get exactly what we want!

so there will be more talking in the future :)

Note: if we want big new premises we need a clear vision of what we all want. There’s lots of angles - training, outreach, incubation, hacking. we’ll need to work out what we want first :)

it is much easier to make stuff now than it was a year ago but a lot of folks aren’t making as much as they should.

was the original vision spread clearly to members? it’s in the guiding principles

ACTION: jonny to post original tinderbox paper on website.

purchasing process

some people concerned that expenses take a long time to pay out

need to publicise the expenses system a bit more! action: set up signs for how to buy stuff

need something seamless for small options - make it easy to buy simple things

steve will think about this in strawman purchasing approvals ACTION: make sure people don’t prepay in the honesty bxoes for a bunch of snacks! encourage people, mention in induction, make sign. borrow from a member not from the cash box

linux or microsoft for desktops

we have PCs. lots of software donated or which we need needs microsoft but people want linux too.

do we have one or the other or VM it somehow or what?

We need Windows 8, we have XP licences.

could we get MSR who sponsor us to get cheap licences? well they might say they sponsored us already!

we should just buy licences

btu which way round should we do it? dual boot or what’s the default? windows needed native so the hardware drivers work

Artists/Engineers event - 30th October, using main space (confirm okay)

event approved we should turn up!