greeting DIYcity users!
my name is Nick Normal and I'm an artist, maker and educator based in Long Island City, Queens, NY.
I wanted to let everyone on this list know that Maker Faire is coming to New York City - and by extension the East Coast! - for the first time later this year, on September 25th and 26th. There's currently an open call for Makers to submit proposals - the deadline is August 15th.
Maker Faire is the world's largest DIY festival - a blend of Art, Technology and Science, combined with family-fun, participation, robots, craft and do-it-yourself ethics.
I'm helping recruit Makers and we're looking for projects involving open-source code, robots, DIY makers, engine-hacks, solder fiends, hobbyists and enthusiasts, fixer-uppers, food makers, etc.
if you DIY we want you involved!
Here's the link to the open call:
World Maker Faire NYC Open Call
or if you have any questions, comments or conerns you can contact me. My email and phone are below. I look forward to hearing from all you Do It Yourselfers!
artist, maker, librarian, diplomat
email@example.com (email, gchat, etc.)
Reposted announcement from Philip Ashlock, The Open Planning Project:
I'd like to invite you to take part in the initiative to bring cities together in the pursuit of sharing technology and standards for 311 services. Please forward this to other interested parties.
To attend or see the current list of attendees including other cities: http://open311.eventbrite.com/ (So far the 311 teams from NYC, D.C., Toronto, Columbus, and other cities are attending)
On October 24th, The Open Planning Project will host Open311 DevCamp at their NYC office. Please register to attend either in person or remotely via Eventbrite (it’s free). This is a DevCamp style un-conference to coordinate a standard specification for 311 services. Washington D.C’s 311 API will be a major case-study for developing a more universal 311 API. In general, this DevCamp will be an opportunity to discuss and develop what’s needed to make 311 services more accessible and for cities to share knowledge for mutual benefit. The event is intended for developers, project managers, and policy makers involved with 311 services. We encourage those involved with 311 services from all cities to take part. If you cannot attend in person, please sign up as a remote attendee and we’ll provide you with information about how to connect to the DevCamp remotely.
Ultimately this conversation will lead to a standard specification for 311 services, but the very first goal is to create an environment for knowledge-sharing and best practices.
On the same day there will another event in NYC that focuses on coordinating open technology for mobile devices and we plan to coordinate with that event as well: http://openmobilecamp.eventbrite.com/
I hope you can be involved or can forward this to the most relevant person in your city. Please let me know if you have any questions.
My name is Alec Resnick, and I'm working to start up an open community research and education lab with a focus on educational outreach and data visualization called sprout. You can check out a placeholder page at http://thesprouts.org -- that'll be changing pretty significantly in the next couple weeks.
But, that's kinda beside the point of this email. While talking to some potential partners for the nonprofit I'm starting, I met with some people at the Executive Office of Transportation (EOT) in Boston. They're really keen to bring together a handful of developers who might be interested in working with them to develop applications on top of the data they're beginning to collect and open up (stuff like traffic cams, traffic flow, MBTA schedules, etc.) A few other hackers will be getting together with the Josh Robin and Chris Dempsey from the EOT to talk about what developers would like to see from the EOT and to discuss the potential for hacking on the data the EOT is opening up.
If you're interested, feel free to comment here or shoot me an email at alec::at::thesprouts.org. The EOT was hoping to meet with developers sometime next week, but they're flexible. . .
Following yesterday's presentation and working group session with the City's IT Manager at OpenWebVancouver09, Luke Closs has setup a Google Group specifically focused on the Open Data component of Andrea Reimer's "Open Data, Open Standards, Open Source" motion.
You can join the group at http://groups.google.ca/group/vancouver-data/
After I saw the huge success of @TamaleTracker I thought, we can't be the only people who could benefit from a real time messaging service like this. Why not utilize what Twitter has provided for me, a common data source that people are becoming more and more familiar with, combined with this technology and make it available for anyone who wants to create their own tamale tracker or other service to aggregate their followers content. So I created the Spotd service to do just that.
Spotd and its a free service that listens for @replies sent to a Twitter account and then relays those messages through itself. It's the same functionality as the Tamale Tracker but this can be used for anyone and anyone can set one up. Simply register a Twitter account to the Spotd service and any reply sent to the account will be retweeted.
In addition to being a bot for Twitter accounts, Spotd also is my try at creating a real time communication device for cities and towns across the world. I spend a lot of time walking around Chicago and see interesting things happen all the time - people getting arrested, car accidents, buildings on fire, bank robbery, protests and other news-worthy things. I tweet about them, but I wanted to create something to give people a common source of communication throughout their city to stay on top of things that are happening right now without having to wait for major media outlets to cover them. That’s where the Spotd news service comes in, it is an aggregated, user-submitted news feed for interesting things going on - so far, I created accounts for @SpotdChicago, @SpotdLA, @SpotdSF and @SpotdNYC; with more to come and any user can create their own Spotd news service for their own city.
I hope you can see the value in this as much as I do, if you'd like more information, have any suggestions or would like to help me work on this, please feel free to contact me.
I wanted to let share with the group a new project I just started working on this week using the same technology as the @tamaletracker (twitter.com/tamaletracker). I spend a lot of time walking around Chicago and always notice interesting things going on – from people getting arrested, to celebrity sightings and news-worthy events. I tweet about these sort of things, but have always thought it would be nice to have something or someone to tweet these to, a common data source and place to go for this sort of information. That’s where @Spotd (twitter.com/spotd) comes in, it is an aggregated, user-submitted news feed for interesting things going on, specific to the city you live in - Chicago for now.
I, like many people, always want to be on top of things going on in Chicago (from the standpoint of locals) – this is the perfect way for people to stay updated on what’s going on, right now, in their city. This includes and is not limited to crime reports, breaking news, celebrity sightings, traffic incidents, etc. Best of all with the support of Twitpic users can get actual footage of things that are happening instead of waiting for the major news networks to get out and report on them.
The functionality is the same as the @tamaletracker system. Users tweet a reply to @spotd when they witness said arrests, celebrity sightings and news-worthy events. The system then will relay their message through the http://twitter.com/spotd user account.
In the next couple days(I hope) I am going to whip up a web page and some more descriptive text about the service and make it more extensible than the built in Twitter functionality. As of now I only created an account for Chicago, however this can easily be expanded in a manner of minutes.
I hope you can see the value in this as much as I do, if you'd like more information or have any suggestions, please feel free to contact me.
Hey all -
You may have seen on the main thread that the DIYtraffic Bot is up and running in beta and we've got it tracking traffic right here in Chicago!
There are a couple ways you can interact with it:
1) follow traffic_chicago on Twitter to receive real-time updates (to your mobile phone, if you wish)
2) send a reply to @traffic_chicago to post your own traffic info if you see an accident or jam (no texting and driving, 'natch)
3) send the account a direct message with the name of a street to find out if there have been any recent traffic reports containing that street name (note, if you follow traffic_chicago, it will take about 30m for it to follow you back so you can send DMs to it).
Let me know if you have any problems / questions / comments or suggestions!
Everyone loves tamales and everyone loves late night situations where a friendly stranger delivers hot fresh tamales right to your bar stool. So, after some intense conversations surrounding the Tamale Guy here in Chicago, we came up with a great idea. What if it were some how possible to follow the Tamale Guy via Twitter as he made his rounds? A user community that would tweet when and where they saw the tamale guy and then users could be able to follow the progress by following the twitter.com/tamaletracker (tamaleguy was already taken).
How it works:
- twitter users send a @Reply to @tamaletracker when they see the Tamale Guy at their favorite pub in Chicago.
- then a scheduled listening service looks for any @Replies that have come into twitter.com/tamaletracker.
- when a new tweet comes in, the twitter.com/tamaletracker account then ReTweets on their behalf.
- twitter users sign up to follow twitter.com/tamaletracker or simply go to twitter.com/tamaletracker.
- choose to recieve sms alerts when twitter.com/tamaletracker tweets.
I created this the other day and have not tested it beyond my own tweets up until now. So if anyone does choose to use this little tool please let me know what bugs you find or if it just plain doesn't work for you.
The possibilities of this forum are practically limitless - so let's start exploring them! While we haven't had a physical meet up (yet) this space can be a starting point for Twin Cities specific DIY ideas. Please, respond to this thread with
-what the ideal DIY TC would look like
-urgent (TC specific) issues you want to tackle with DIY tech
-next steps in addressing those issues
Also: how can we spread the news about this project? Like any forum, it depends on a quantity of quality contributors - spread the word!
Disasters really are the ultimate DIY setting - stakes are high, centralized solutions are often insufficient, overwhelmed or disabled, and volunteers and donors are everywhere. Often you'll see new communications tools and practices go through major transformations - Americans didnt initially take to cell phones as fast as the rest of the world, but that all changed after 9/11.
I spent a lot of time studying the role of communications in disasters a few years ago when I was doing research at NYU's Center for Catastrophe Preparedness. I wrote a report, which I think is still a useful reference
"Telecommunications Infrastructure in Disasters: Preparing Cities for Crisis Communications"
Some other examples:
Sahana - http://www.sahana.lk/node/12 - general purpose open source disaster response toolkit
KatrinaList - http://discovermagazine.com/2005/dec/emerging-technology - good article by outside.in founder Stephen Johnson on how the Katrina victim and refugee lists were coordinated using Web 2.0
What other kinds of problems could DIY disaster response solve?
One thing that occurs is that none of these are particularly mobile friendly frameworks. There are loads of SMS alerting schemes out there, but most are top-down, intended to be used by authorities to alert large groups of residents. Are there any p2p disaster messaging platforms out there?