[Hacklabs] notes hacklabs workshop

ana anap at riseup.net
Sun Jun 27 11:52:19 CEST 2004

:::::::: H A C K L A B S . O R G :: W O R K S H O P ::::::::::




We skip the introduction of what a hacklab is, and do a round of
presentation/introduction of people and the projects they are in.

* Metabolik, hacklab in Bilbao, based on a squat. About 10 people working
usually and 20 around. Big project x-evian.org LiveCD. The main project is
to share knowloedge with non technical people, to give technical tools to
non techi people. Also to try to get wirelless conection in the whole city
but geographically, Bilbao is a mess.

* Zaragoza, Spain. There are political people and also people interested
in technical aspects... the hacklab is in a social centre.

* Cielito Lindo, one of the 4 hacklabs in madrid.It started from the labo,
and telematic area. cielito lindo has existed for 3 years. it is a rented
place. quite small. we share the place with other projects. there are
courses for inmigrants, we try to participate in the neighbourhood. 15
people in the nucleus of the hacklab about 100 people around it. it is a
meeting point. There is a mixture of people from the technical world, and
the political word.

* Milan hacklab was born after second hack meeting in Milan. started in a
squatted place, doing courses, connecting technical & political side of
computing. now faded away. the hacklab evolved in different directions,
after many years (started 1999) Now, in a place called reload. It is not
called hacking anymore. Now trying to push again the technical part, and
it is now called reality hacking. It is no longer in a squatted space, now
we pay the rent. in italy many hacklabs after a touring hack meeting. the
website is a collection of addresses (hacklab.it) of the different

* Milan. First, a group of tech & political people joined some 40 people
that came around the  hackmeeing of 1999. Now doing courses, etc.  a lot
of campaigning and lot of courses. In these early momnents there were
courses every night, from 6 to 11, it was a nighmare. The group was
working very together. Then they lost the electricity in the squat and
different people moved on to collaborate with different groups, there was
an important diversification. Now there have been attempts to gather all
the groups under a network or a space. This is how reload was born. They
also wanted to stay in the neighbourhood. Now there are 2 communities
merged and there is one space. Some people followed this process and some
fade away as they couldn't fit in this new project. But it was successful
in consolidating the social political aspects and the space, but there is
a lack of laboratory space. Feel the need for another hacklab.

* Hungary. from indymedia background. Saw the hacklabs project in the
website, was very interesting to see how many websites about hacklabs but
it was not easy to get the info because it is all in Spanish and Italian.
In hungary, there is no succesful squatting . If you do not work, you do
not cover your basic needs. They are thinking of doing a hacklab in
Hungary, but politics is the priority, technology is a tool that can help.

* Turin. We do some workshops to get people interested. The organisation
not very optimized, there are lots of little gigs, not interested, we try
to get them in the 'right way', as in  more interested in politics. The
political situatio in turin is not fantastic. The olymipic winter games
are happening in 2 years, and the squats in central city, included the
hacklab, will be evicted. until now, what is happening is very basic
technical stuff.

* Rome. There are two labs in 2 different social centres. At the moment,
are doing a big schedule of courses with another hacklab. People want a
hacklab where they can do their media work, like video. It started not as
a hacklab but as a space, where there were very technical people and
people who were not computer literate. wanted to push people to linux.

* Dijon, Fance. Not labelled as a hacklab. It is more a political network
of squats, anarchists... more focused in educating squatters. The first
aim was to put linux in a more political frame work. This was sucessful,
every one got used to linux, and there is no more windows around any more.
There is also the idea of stripping experts, empower every one, spread
knowloedge. It is based in a squat, and in there they try to rotate admin
tasks, so that knowloedge is not concentrated in one person or group. So
there is less stress. This has been been documenting already. In the
public environmnt, they have open hours, when doig workshops. We also
provide net access. Merging politics and technology. Non political people
came to the squat, which is labelled anarchist. In France, there are
represive laws for internet. Lots of gigs feel revolted by that, but they
don't have tools, they do not know how to organise, never been to demo.
Now they are workig in connecting those communities. This is very
difficult. Some peoplee come from political background, and there are also
very technical people. Proposal: to have a discussion about repressive net

* London, lets not call it hacklab. Squats in london do not last
especially if they are publicised as political. So this lab will be in an
anarquist bookshop, very small room that was not used. There are very
political people, also very technical people, and both. It was initiated
by wombles who have been very successful in attraching people from all
backgrounds. On consequence is that there will be machines with windows in
the hacklab. this has caused flames on the list, peole making enemies...
it's quite sad.

* ASCII internet space in amsterdam. started 1999 in a squat, then moved
to an anarchist bookshop, had to rent a room, this was very expensive, so
they moved to a squatted space again. Activities have been to teach
squatters how to use internet, teaching linux in general... now workshops
are in a standstill, they are thinking what todo in the next 5 years.
Maybe we want to re invent ourselves. One bad thing is that people just
come to use internet and they do not talk to you. Also, in the same street
there are 20 internet cafes, we are the only one using linux but maybe we
are a bit redundant.

* Group called the unix militia. When it first started it was not
originally for a political issue, jut people using unix system. Then in
the last 4 years more and more people became political and the
organisation moved to political issues. We don't have the infrastructure.
Most of us are in indymedia, we want to set up some laboratories but there
is no infrastructure so its' difficult. We don't have any set plan, people
just do what we like. The project is more and more political. At the
moment we are struggling to get our own server.

* Bologna. The lab is not any more a squatted place, although it is self
managed and self funded. People are not so interested in origin with
digital issues.

* Casa encantada in Galiza. We try to mix the technical, the political and
the magic as a way of doing things possible. Technical: we provide
websites, wikis, mailing lists. Political: we are debian fundamentalists
and have enemies for this. We have debianised all the websites. It is a
power conflict, non technical people think that they are goint ot control
the physical space because we put debian on the server. Magical: use
telepathy as way of communicating all minds, the net is a poor way. We
apply magic, for instance, in the distribution of passwords. We wait for
full moon and we do a ritual to change the root password because it
represents the power. Galiza has a strong magical background, this is a
cultural thing. We don't have a physical space, only a few server in a few
social centres. Yes we do have power, things happen thanks to us
[techies], if we don't do anythign then nothing works, people are afraid
of this. But we think knowloedge is power, power is knowloedge, but power
is to share that knowledge, if you don't share the knowledge then you
don't have the power.

* Poland. there is no hacklab yet. We have an anarchist community, some
good squats. Indymedia poland is a kind of connection between them. There
is a building with artists there, few people have internet and some people
from indymedia are there, there might be some hacklab in the future.

* Pula. Thre are more pople from pula in amsterdam than here. people who
work then move to another place, it's difficult to work on something if
people keep moving.


* Proposal: decide what the website should be for, maybe name for it, how
we have it as a network.

* Most of what hacklabs do is locally. The website would be a common place
for these things that we do, place to look for information. First thing,
information on physical location. Second thing would be information on
experiences in each hack lab, activities, articles of those, manifestos, 5
year plans, interviews they do... then get idea of what it's all aobut.

* We can also use the website for for common campaigns, then use that site
to collect diferent materials.

* But not as in general website that needs to be updated; "i dont see or
want another site that i would have to admin. just the functional things".
This exists already, a map of people and collectives. best to move on and
work on internationalisation.

* Problem: languages. stable translations.. maybe use spip.

* As we have common problems, like patterns. we could use the site to
comment on them. for instance when some group does some action, they can
put in a determined place, then a group does some thing similar and can
look for the info there.

* To spread information, best thing is to use the existing email list.
translate what there is and then move on and add more things and

* next year in tunisia the second part of wsis. maybe a good opoortunity
to work around this.

* questionnaire for every hacklabs? xabier to send link to thk list of the
hacklabs list. list of sites, see: techcoop.info.

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