On Sunday morning in January 2015, a member’s project finally took flight from Quelab, and caused a bit of a stir. Gonner was test-flying his solar balloon, and it managed to get away from him. The tetrahedral contraption (known as a Tetroon) broke free and floated free in the skies above Albuquerque, prompting local residents and a news-team to call the United States Air Force and the Federal Aviation Administration. KOAT-7 (ABC) came by to interview the creator, and put the story on the 5pm and 10pm news on 18 January. Click here for the News coverage (apparently, the 10pm coverage included a leader about UFOs in Albuquerque over the years).
I have always been into affordable entertainment and gadgetry. So when I finally found a source to buy a Google Cardboard, (a fancy name for a box you wrap around your smartphone to turn it into a Virtual reality viewer), I jumped at the chance. (one of our members had already lasercut one but the tricky part was finding strong enough lenses. figured id buy one, and then work my way around to finding ways to duplicate it. )
Its funny I knew exactly what it was physically, and was prepared to have some fun with it. But I must say my first 15-20min experience with the default app google put out first, It blew away all my expectations. Sure the cardboard rig was clumsy, the magnet switch was finicky, the pupulary distance was not quite right, and my big head and mismatched perscription eyes were less than ideal for it. but it was just a toe in the water. I could always modify(cut, tape, shape) the cardboard, or even lasercut my own wide enough to fit my face, (which I later did). but even withh all its warts, it was a very fun, “You gotta try this” thing. I love watching people when they realize they can actually look around, or fly around, or see the world with interesting camera effects.
But what amused me the most about google cardboard is, its really just a stereo-viewer, These things have been around since the 1800’s and those
view masters disks, full of Disneyland I remember so well (much better than actually visiting at age 5). But with the update of Accelerometer/gyroscope, and real time image rendering. (these contraptions we call smartphones are amazing bits of tech we take for granted every day). So from day 2, i decided i needed to retrofit Google Cardboard, into a classic stereo viewer. So i tracked down a small pocket travel stereo photo viewer and out of junk cobbled together a phone holder for it.
This was fun, and I liked it, but wanted to go back even older, so i kept hunting for an older wooden stick style of Stereoviewer/Stereoscope
“Holmes stereoscope” by User Davepape on en.wikipedia – Photo by Davepape. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons
One of the many things I’ve always dreamed of Quelab being, is a place various clubs and organizations which are inline with the interests of Quelab and the member interests could meet at. Aside from the now semi defunct 2600 meeting’s this has not been realized as well as I hoped. But the idea was kicked off in grand fashion by the visit of the New Mexico Radio Collectors Club (NMRCC) A dedicated group of collectors and restorers and repairs of everything from vintage console radios, to the tabletop tombstone ones, all the way down to pocket transistor, and some members are into the HAM aspects too.
The club held its annual potluck, swapmeet, meeting, Show and tell, and club auction, there were some beautiful radios. They also had an AM transmitter connected to a XM radio playing classic 1920’s-1940’s tunes, for one of the restored console radios.
More can be seen here on our flickr feed.
Thank you everyone Who came to Ignite 15, As part of Tech Fiesta, it it was great to see you all, and your support for the NM Makers group!
Below is a slideshow of some of the highlights. Images can be clicked on to go to the descriptions.
Or you can see them all here on one scrollable page https://www.flickr.com/photos/quelabnm/sets/72157647074549889/
Created with flickr slideshow.
See you this weekend at the ABQ Mini Maker Faire? http://www.albuquerque-minimakerfaire.com/
On this date in 2010 We signed the lease on the first location that Quelab opened. We knew at the time it was not perfect, but with less than 7 people onboard we knew this was a community we needed to grow before we could even dream of perfect.
Quelab 1.0 was a quaint little place, a pretty old converted house (previous to us it was used as a flower shop), less than about 1200 sq foot of usable space (billed as 1400), it was quirky, But it let us have a space to “build it and see if the come”. It was not the dozens of people we hoped for but a small trickle. Our first tasks were building workbenches and some shelving, moving in some tables (most scrounged), chairs. By our grand opening party on August 12th (note that date Its when Quelab is going to observe its birthday this year with some Cake and Icecream with the members.) We had some bits of equipment, and we were just starting to make a name for ourselves.
Can’t say the next 4 years were easy, most of the time we were broke and being propped up on donations, and there were many times where we could have just closed the doors rather than digging deeper, We grew at a slow pace, and there was little chance we could reach out far and fast enough to survive on memberships alone. And none of us were good at grant writing, or experienced marketeers.
To survive we turned to what we knew, how to tinker with geeky things and thought we we should share that with the world. So we put on events, LED’s, Attraction, March of the Robots, Sound of the electron, Eco MAcGyver, Air&space, HauntedLab
Swapmeet’s, Steampunk Crafting, Hacking_Chocolate and more. We started hosting the Albuquerque Mini Maker Faire, and the Ignite Talks meetings, We setup booths at Tedxabq, Ace, and various other spaces. We have been toured by Caleb Kraft of Hackaday, we have won several Contests (Inventables, Instructables).
In November of 2013 after more than a year of hunting, Quelab was able to move to the grand Quelab 2.0 Campus we are in now. With over 340 people in attendance at our @nd grand opening (that is a huge increase over the 24 or so people who made it to our first one.) And a membership in excess of 50 members we are still on rocky waters but we have come a long-long way baby!
Thank you Albuquerque Makers, and supporters everywhere!
Happy Birthday Quelab!
Here in the Southwest, we are entering Year 5 of the drought, and there are more firework restrictions than ever. So once again I have compiled a few ideas/links from my own head and around the net. Share and enjoy!
Milk jug rockets Got old snap top milk jugs? How about making little rockets for the tops, and pouring a little baking soda in the bottom, pour in a few table spoons of vinegar and snap the cap on, and stand back. (experiment option alka-seltzer tablets can work too, which works better?
For previous year’s ideas, check out:
Quelab’s Fireless Fourth Links from 2013
Quelab’s Fireless Fourth Links from 2011
I hope myself or one of the rest of us is able to adequately express the gratitude and joy that seeing Quelab visited by such numbers of people, and seeing so many people get engaged and inspired and having fun!
Thank you all! Quelab is proud to be part of this great community. Hope to see many of you back to do what spaces like this do best. Get people and tools Together to make dreams come true.
Thank you all whom attended or sent in a proxy ballot. Your input is very important to the future of Quelab!
One minor change to our bylaws was made under full board consensus, and that was to drop the Quorum requirement from 70% to 60% to better reflect our active vs mostly non-local/non-active membership ratio.
I don’t think that folks could have picked wrong with the candidates on the ballot. Everyone involved was passionate and would have been a fine choice, but while many of the previous members were re-elected we did change out 3 seats.
Please welcome our new and returning Board members,
Walter Duran, Ray Finch, Addie Fryweaver, Cameron Goble, Adric Menning, Charel Morris, and Geoff Nicholson. These folks are all here for the betterment and continuation of Quelab, if you have questions or problems or anything they can help with please contact one or more of them!
For everybody else there is a lot of room for help, and especially lots of room and need for Officers(the people who are effectively the managers and taskforces for areas and activities).
Howdy all, Greg here. We’re trying to get a huge turnout for today’s monthly membership meeting (and Potluck). Please join us at 680 Haines NW (near 7th) to eat some food, meet all the new regulars, and get a sneak preview of the new Quelab version 2.0.
Location Map: https://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=680+Haines+Ave+NW,+Albuquerque,+NM&aq=&sll=34.166233,-106.026069&sspn=17.309081,33.815918&vpsrc=0&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=680+Haines+Ave+NW,+Albuquerque,+New+Mexico+87102&t=m&z=17&iwloc=A
NOTE: The new space will be pre-occupied for the next month as Blackout Theatre uses it for an interactive haunted house (post apocalyptic zombie survival event). I’ve already seen their set up and its FANTASTIC! While we’re there today, please be courteous of their set and look but don’t touch. Thanks in advance.