757 Labs A Hackerspace in Hampton Roads, Virginia.


Fabric Hack Recap

Posted by telmnstr

The first ever monthly Fabric Hack meeting was a success. Several attendees worked on getting two sewing machines up and running. Being the first and introductory, the future looks good for this group. Please feel free to attend the next one! They are open to all.

On another note, if anyone knows of a multi-needle single head commercial embroidery machine that is available cheap that needs repair (electronic repair), please drop us a line. We'd like to add this to the range of tools available at the lab.



757 Labs Fabric Hack – Wed. Nov. 9, 6pm – 10pm

Posted by telmnstr

The first ever fabric hacking meeting at 757 Labs happens Wednesday, November 9th. The lab has had a sewing machine since near it's beginning and it's finally going to get some use! Come join at this public get together.

When: Wednesday, November 9th, 6pm to 10pm EST.
Where: 757 Labs, 233 W. Bute Street, Norfolk, Virginia.

Filed under: Hack Nights No Comments

First 757 Labs Hackerspace Passport Stamp Granted!

Posted by telmnstr

Mitch Altman of the hackerspace Noisebridge in San Francisco made a large quantity of Hackerspace Passports and has been selling them at a remarkably low price. These neat little passports were created with the idea that hackerspaces could create stamps for them, and stamp the passports of visitors that come to their space.

On Saturday October the 22nd, 757 Labs had two visitors from the HacDc hackerspace in Washington, DC. ITechGeek and HaxWithAxe arrived around midnight after visiting the Fredricksburg, VA hackerspace. The good news is our members created a temporary stamp by laser etching wood and acrylic. The acrylic didn't absorb the ink well enough, but the wood version did the trick! ITechGeek is the first visitor to 757 Labs to receive a hackerspace passport stamp and 757 Labs is the first stamp in his passport. While the physical stamp is beta, it's the permanent design of our stamp.


Some great news is that Angus has cut the design on his engraver in real stamp rubber. He also improved the second layer stamp which wasn't ready yet, but is to be stamped in UV ink.

In the past, 757 Labs has welcomed visitors from Houston's TX/RX Labs, Freeside Atlanta, All Hands Active in Ann Arbor Michigan, The Cowtown Computer Congress in Kansas City, one visitor from the Netherlands, HacDC, and most likely some others. If you're coming to the area, feel free to drop us an email, jump on the public mailing list (link is over on the right), or join #hackerspace on irc.757.org to catch someone. We can easily accommodate any time/day.

In the future, for those participating with the hackerspace passports, we'll have stamps for you!

Filed under: Projects No Comments

Start Norfolk, Starting November 11th.

Posted by telmnstr

Just a heads up that November 11th marks the beginning of the first ever Start Norfolk event. This event is being sponsored by We Are Titans, Grow Interactive, 757 Creative Space, Innovation Research Park @ODU, and the Norfolk Department of Development. Modeled after similar events in other cities, it is a 48 hour event where participants work to take an idea and turn it into a company. It is mostly focused around rapid start mobile/web applications. There is an exciting list of people who are involved in the event, and tickets are available to those interested in observing the events. In addition to all of this, are are musical guests and food involved! What more could you ask for?

Check out the event page and register at startnorfolk.com

A group of entrepreneurs brainstorm their next big thing.


757 Labs Class: Intro to CAD Design & 3D Modeling Saturday Oct. 29th, 1:00-3:00pm

Posted by Beau

Several people have asked questions related to using Google SketchUp and/or AutoCAD (for solid modeling). The two applications vary quite a bit in what they can do as well as the tools and interfaces. If you are interested, this will be the first class (free and open to the public) regarding CAD and modeling and should provide you with enough knowledge to get started with your own designs.
Background for the unfamiliar:
  • SketchUp is a free (also a paid version) application that can be used for all kinds of design (think tiny or large) and has been used on several projects at the lab already. Base product being free, the integration to Google Earth and its simple UI make it attractive but do not let that fool you, it is powerful and can be extended using Ruby scripting. This software works on Windows and Mac only at this time. Download a free copy here.
  • AutoCAD is a paid application which is known as the most common CAD platform out there (closed source-wise). This is an industry standard type of application, and originally the flagship product from Autodesk. AutoCAD works on Windows and Mac only at this time. Download a 30 day trial here.
Class Expectations:
  • This will be a 2 hour session that will start with one product, give you the working basics, Q&A, etc.. then move to the other design package. Stories, insight and open dialogue.
  • At the conclusion of this you will be familiar with the applications to create and work with your own designs.
  • This will also tie into the next 3D Printer (Makerbot) and Laser Cutter sessions, once you can design your own items you can print prototypes and usable pieces.
  1. Both applications are available within the lab on the graphics machine if you do not already have a copy.
  2. There are quite a few other software packages available, this session will be dealing with only the two mentioned above. It does not mean that these are better or worse than any that you have heard about, learned or used.
  3. If time permits we will share an overview of another application, Autodesk 123D, currently in free beta.

This session is free and open to members and guests.


Microcontroller Mondays – Tonight – 7pm till 11pm

Posted by telmnstr

Heads up that tonight is the 3rd edition of the weekly Micro-controller Mondays at 757 Labs.

7PM until 11PM.

Bring your project, idea or come to learn!

AVR, Arduino, TI MSP, HC11, PIC, Xilinx, Altera, whatever!


Hack the Whole Weekend

Posted by markg

Friday, Oct. 21: Open Hack Night
Saturday, Oct. 22: LAN party
Sunday, Oct. 23: Comic & Cartoon Creators
Monday, Oct. 24: Microcontroller Monday

Ready to get your geek on for a whole weekend? Come out to the lab and join in an event! Or join all the events!

We begin Friday with our monthly open house, or "Open Hack Night". This is a great opportunity to see the lab for the first time and take a tour. It's a very casual atmosphere where you can shoulder-surf members actively working on projects or just chill and discuss ideas. Sometimes there is a loosely-coordinated dinner/drinks outing to somewhere along nearby Granby Street. A few people might even start setting up for the next day's gaming event, which is...

Saturday is the LAN party, which usually begins around 1 PM, but may have even began the night before. BYOC (bring your own computer) and try to do all your downloading and patching at home before joining in on the festivities. Team Fortress 2 is the most popular game, especially since it's free, though other games are certainly welcome -- Diablo, Minecraft, Quake, you name it.

Feeling creative? 3 PM Sunday is the 757 Comic and Cartoon Creators meeting. Bring something to draw with.

And just when you think the weekend is over, it's Microcontroller Monday! Beginning at 7 PM, discussions will focus on everything microcontroller-related; from hardware to software. Beginners and advanced users are both welcome.


Ignite HR – Five minutes, 20 slides. Oct 11 2011

Posted by telmnstr

Hello everyone! 757 Labs this year is a proud sponsor of the exciting Ignite Hampton Roads talks! This is the second Ignite Hampton Roads and it is being held in conjunction with the MODSIM World Conference and Expo at the oceanfront.

"Each presentation has 20 slides that automatically advance after 15 seconds. It is a worldwide movement. Ignite events were originally conceived as technology variety shows, but they have grown into much more than that. Ignite is about ideas. Ideas can change the world. And it takes less than five minutes to spread one"

Event time is 7PM. It's free, but ticket registration is required.

Website for more information and to get Free tickets:

See you all there!


Solar Boiler Update

Posted by snelson

I've gone through quite a few iterations of the solar boiler. The current version uses a 47" Fresnel lens to focus sunlight down to about 1 square inch. The sunlight will focus on an evacuated tube that will transfer the heat into water. The aim is to boil the water and turn a steam engine, ultimately turning a motor and feeding clean energy into the grid. The solar boiler can now pivot in two dimensions allowing it the ability to track the sun as it moves from east to west from the morning until the evening and from north to south as the sun moves between winter and summer. The next step is to build in the tracking system which will consist of two stepper motors that will turn screws pivoting each of the two dimensions to follow the sun. We'll then tie in an MCU attached to some photocells to track the movement of the sun. After the tracker is built the boiler section is next. Honestly, I'm a little nervous about pressurizing steam. That episode of the mythbusters where they blew up the water heater has me a little on edge.


Open Hack Night – Tonight (Friday) – 7PM until 11PM

Posted by telmnstr

Just a heads up that tonight there is an open hack night from 7pm until 11pm at 757 Labs!

Filed under: Hack Nights 4 Comments