Spoke with Jason Simons, "Madstringer": Treasurer
How are you doing? How do you feel about the space?
- "We've been doing pretty well. Added a few new members. Setting up new classes: beginning electronics, arduino 101, analog electronics. This and next Saturday, we have an intro to Python class. Work from DenHAC day every Thursday so people who are remote get together. We find out whenever people are done with work they're already at DenHAC, working on each other's projects and helping each other.
- New classroom of 500 sq ft - had to build a wall and work together - will be holding classes.
- Thu evenings do geeky movie night.
How do you feel about it?
"I always had the vision that the place would be what members wanted it to be. Conglomerate of different people's ideas and experiences that can offer people a lot. So I am all for this."
How are the members and who are they?
- Raised $1800 with six people (x$300)
- Started at $100 a person until we got to about 20 members
- Then dropped to $50 per person at 27 members, 2.5 years
- Donation box is raising $50 a month from all the meetups chipping in stuff
What kind of people are the members?
- Mostly men. 25 men, one woman, one transgender. The transgender member is one of the most active members. Also into art and amazing at it.
- We're very computer-based, no laser cutter, more into the programming and comp sci / computer security side. Yet, "we are not like witches"-- if people wanted to do something different we'd welcome them.
- Had to address a member mis-representing the space. Member was making promises we couldn't keep. We had to catch that and take action before it became a real problem. We got the board together and handled it openly and transparently.
What are the sticking points?
- Task poor
- Tasks not evenly distributed across members
- Tasks dont have a central list
- Only 10 of 27 members are publicly vocal.
- Wide range of people who arent always social.
- Many paying members are not active.
What are the victories?
- Able to reach consensus on challenging decisions
- Setting up permanent workstations based on function
How do you communicate?
- Member mailing list
- Board mailing list
- Public mailing list
- Have been trying to build stronger social networking presence: promote classes through G+, website, etc.
- Recommended dabble.co, meetup.com
What's your membership count and are you making rent?
- 27, 10 active, yes
How are you doing outreach with educational organizations, schools, and other community groups?
- Have not been talking to schools
- Have some colleges within 20 miles of space
- Need to go out and do this, lots of people could be engaged
What are your upcoming events like, and what else is going on in your wider community?
- Classes are coming up (see above)
- did not ask about community events
What new things are you trying? What outcomes do you hope they will have?
- Trying more classes
- Wanting to bring in new people
What could Space Federation do to serve you better?
- More timely receipt letters instead of last minute like this year
- More timely donation processing