Regular Member Meeting 2015 04 14

From HacDC Wiki

Time and Location

April 14, 2015
Called to order at XXXX by XXXX
Members present:
Members remote:
Others present:
Quorum met?

Approval of Previous Meeting's Minutes

Regular Member Meeting 2015 03 10


  • 3D Printing at Phillips Collection Event
  • Dan Barlow - Teaching CNC mill class.
  • nootrope - Arranging Phillips opportunity.
  • Don Jones - Acquiring ham radio gear, seeking local opportiunities.
  • Julia Longtin - Many things. Pitching in many hours to make our presence at Phillips a success, volunteering for Treasurer, teaching 3D printer Thursdays, and more.
  • Ben Mendis - Providing laptop for Kinect 3D scanning.
  • Andrew Brown - Manning 3D scanners at Phillips.
  • Zachariah Mully - Manning 3D scanners at Phillips.
  • Many others.

Director Reports

President's Report

  • Stickers! (donated)
  • Bitcamp
  • We are bleeding members. Please, be nice. It is not worth being "right" all the time. You probably aren't anyway.

Vice President's Report


Explaining why something should be done differently is always better than venting personal rage.


"The Vice President shall be primarily responsible for the information systems and communication processes of the corporation..."

NetPLC (RFID & Occupancy Sensor)

System is technically ready, and the old Occupancy Sensor is returning valid data again. However, RFID access control has not been physically installed, as the strike plates we have on hand are a poor fit to the door frame.


New HacDC server, named Starlight, has been setup. With 8GB+ effective RAM available and 8 cores, this is a significant step up Shimmer.


HacDC server Shimmer has logged 143 days uptime. Ask for an account.

3D Printers

LulzBot Mini is extremely user-friendly. Simply turn on the laptop, start Cura, load an STL file, select the desired quality/matieral, and click print.

Rostock Max is performing well. New extruder has substantially improved performance and reliability.

Laser Cutter

Have discussed repairs to the laser cutter with Dan Barlow. Electrically, we should be good to go. Physically, mounting brackets are required, and the easiest approach is to 3D print them. Will work on this ASAP.

Treasurer's Report

  • Travis has resigned to focus on other things. Need a new Treasurer.
  • Julia has nominated herself for the position.

Secretary's Report

Director-at-Large Reports



Don and I composed and filed an appeal of our rejection for participation in the 2015 Combined Federal Campaign (CFC), with the local campaign office of the CFC. Timely help and suggestions from Jamie and Katie contributed to our ability to get this done before the deadline.

Project Awesome Reports

Project LASER






Member Reports

Old Business

Proposal for “Planning and Development” Committee Submitted by Phil Stewart, February 24th, 2015

To Vote Upon: The following proposal to form this committee that will report to the board and to membership, by which vote the committee's work will be authorized with the mandate of the membership.


I propose the creation of a “Planning and Development” Committee to create a coherent package of proposals geared towards refocusing HacDC’s priorities and aligning its activities and expenditures with its primary goals and purposes.


Recent discussions of our budget have highlighted the need for a renewal of purpose at HacDC. A number of proposals have been offered: to put together a fund-raising document, to fix one or another by-law, to re-assess the content of our 501c3 application (or otherwise notify the IRS of a planned change to our activities).

The budget concerns we need to address arise from the convergence of twin trends: a rise in rent over the last few years and a flattening of growth in membership subscriptions (our principle source of revenue). As members have left the area, or founded their own hackerspaces in DC’s suburbs, HacDC has not attracted new members at a similar rate. This most likely has multiple causes, but is at least partially linked to some changes in the direction and scope of our activities—acquiring equipment vs. offering programs, for example—paired with some less pleasant consequences of our light-handed approach to group governance: disorganization, a messy shop, incivility in our email discussions. With fewer members, fewer activities can be carried on, recursively impacting our capacity to attract and retain members. These interacting forces form a coordinated system. To solve them, we need to formulate a coordinated response.


To this end I propose that a limited-term committee be formed to create a coherent package of proposals that looks at our activities, expenditures, funding sources, by-laws, organizational operations, and anything else it deems to be relevant to get us back on track as a nonprofit organization serving the greater good of our community. For the purpose of this proposal, I am calling this the “Planning and Development Committee” (PDC).

The PDC should be composed of a mix of volunteers, board members (one or more), and people recruited by the board for their particular skills and experience relevant to this committee’s work. It should also actively consult with members who may not have the time to serve but whose input is needed. While the PDC should report to the board, its progress and findings should be fully communicated to the membership at large. The PDC is not conceived as a permanent committee. Once its proposals have been delivered and accepted / rejected / acted upon, the PDC will be dissolved and its useful functions reassigned to officers, the board, or standing committees.

The PDC should as part of its duties undertake the following:

• The PDC’s first task should be to find out what is working and what isn’t for HacDC. I have in mind a poll or survey of members, former members, and would-be members (e.g. who participate on Blabber). It may also be useful to survey or interview visitors to the space, and members or directors of other hackerspaces. Such a survey could be conducted online (at a site such as SurveyMonkey).

• As importantly, the PDC (or a separate subcommittee if appropriate) should explore ways to improve revenues, including grants, fees for workshops and events, dues increases—whatever will work, consistent with our mission. This may include entering in consultations with outside experts.

• The PDC should formulate a proposal to create several task-specific standing committees within HacDC as a way to address the club’s ongoing needs and activities. Standing committees would allow for focused attention to ongoing concerns while providing for continuity across terms of the board and the changing commitments of club

• The PDC should develop and present a coherent communication strategy for HacDC to ensure all potential donors, granting organizations, and the public at large are presented a consistent, accurate, and positive portrayal of what we do. Included in this task would be to create procedures and a reporting structure for HacDC to document its own activities (e.g. annual reports).

• The PDC should re-examine avenues for recruitment and retention of members, as well as assessing members’ satisfaction and future needs.

• The PDC should assess, report upon, and make proposals as needed for the suitable enhancement of the strong educational component of HacDC’s mission.

A PDC report including recommendations would be delivered to the board in a timely manner, with all action items requiring a vote at a subsequent regular members’ meeting. Interim reports would recur at intervals to be decided by the board.

Again, it is my feeling that we need to look at the big picture and develop a coordinated set of plans in response to our current fiscal and organizational challenges. Friendly amendments in the spirit of this proposal are welcome and invited.

A proposal that the SEM and the Museum should be made official HacDC Projects will be submitted for consideration at the next meeting. A proposal to change the HacDC storage and disposition policy will be submitted for consideration at the next meeting.

New Business

  • Vote for a BOD Treasurer
  • Vote for proposed Storage Policy
  • As of right now HacDC has reserved ownership of both the pfSense machine that is acting as the router for the church and the Cisco SG-300 series switch that is acting as the core switch for the church. The HacDC Admin Team has maintained full control over both devices. ITechGeek is proposing HacDC transfer ownership and control of both to the church.

New Members