A Home for Windsor's Tech Community

July 2022 Events

The OpenStreetMap Windsor-Essex Logo - a magnifying glass overlaid on a map of Essex County - rests on a teal background on the left side of the image.

On the right, teal text on a white background reads "OSM (openstreetmap) Windsor-Essex.

The black and white Hackforge hammer logo rests at the bottom centre of the image.

OpenStreetMap Windsor-Essex
Thursday, July 14 @ 6pm Facebook | Linkedin | Meetup | Register

To help support some of our new endeavours, Hackforge is starting up a new monthly meetup group!

OpenStreetMap Windsor-Essex will serve as a meeting place for anyone and everyone interested in cartography, data analysis, wayfinding, and more. As the group matures, we’ll help to make sure that the Windsor-Essex County region is accurately represented on OSM (and all of the sites and apps it feeds!), and will explore interesting ways we can use OSM data.

For this first meeting, we’re going to keep is casual. Attendees will have the chance to:

  • learn what OSM is
  • ask and answer questions
  • share any experience they already have with OSM
  • pitch ideas for future OSM-related activities and events

We’ll be meeting online for this one, and will discuss structure and scheduling for future sessions while we’re all together. Make sure to register in advance to receive the Zoom link!

If you’re unable to make this event, or would like more information, reach out to Lauren@hackf.org

A blue database design diagram is overlaid with the text "A Practical Guide to Database Design".

The black and white Hackforge hammer logo sits in the top left corner.

Border City Data: A Practical Guide to Database Design
Tuesday, July 19 @ 6pm Facebook | Linkedin | Meetup | Register

In this virtual, beginner-friendly session, Doug Sartori walks through the considerations and pitfalls of relational database design. Tune in to follow along and learn how to get started with designing databases!

This event is free to attend and open to all – register in advance to receive the link.

Snowflake Manufacturing
Thursday, July 28 @ 6pm Facebook | Linkedin | Meetup | Register

For their fist ever Hackforge event, leadership and advocacy organization Automate Canada is hosting Brent McPhail, CEO of Brave Control Solutions for a talk on “Snowflake Manufacturing.”

“Snowflake Manufacturing is not about how complex the product is or how many variations there are, it is actually about when those variations are introduced into the manufacturing process,” writes McPhail. “If a product is completely defined prior to the design of the machine to build it, then it is traditional manufacturing. If it continues to change after the machine has been fabricated, it is Snowflake Manufacturing.”

Register now for this free event to learn more about how McPhail and his team are overcoming this complicated automation challenge.

Hackforge News – August 2020

Hey folks, I hope this finds most of you well. I also hope that it finds you excited to find something to do, even if it’s yet another few hours in front of your favourite LCD screen.

Too Long, Didn’t Read: We’re having an AGM and PayPal is back up, if you’re interested in supporting us and getting involved in organizational politics. We’ll be organizing a video Happy Hour, and you can join us on Discord to discuss.


Hackforge has always been a membership-driven organization. What we have learned over the years is that membership in the Hackforge community means many things to different people.

Being a member of our community is as free as friendship and good conversation. Our video meetups and chat rooms on Discord are open to everyone. It may not be common knowledge, but it doesn’t cost money to “join Hackforge.”

If you are interested in supporting us by pledging a monthly donation, we fixed PayPal and now have Patronage levels of $5, $10 and $20. As before, the $20 monthly commitment does include a Voting Membership which – in addition to supporting us monetarily – confers eligibility for getting involved in organizational politics.

We hope many of you will volunteer to plan and run virtual events, moderate the Discord chat and video meetups, join in on discussions and have a lot of fun with us. We want you to help shape the community, the way the earliest Hackforge pioneers did when we first started out in a room in the Library. That’s what being a member of Hackforge really means.


An Annual General Meeting is where Voting Members get to decide who will replace exiting board members and run Hackforge for the next few years, and get caught up on current organizational status. We almost had an AGM in June, but postponed to leave oxygen for other, more pressing social concerns at the time.

I’m happy to deliver official notice to all of you now. We have several board positions opening, so I hope we will have lots of interested candidates.

Note that to be a “Voting Member in good standing”, you just have to go to our website and get a Voting Membership subscription with our new PayPal account before the day of the AGM. If you weren’t a member before, you can get on board in time for this AGM.



All Voting Members of Windsor Hackforge in good standing are invited to join us for a virtual Annual General Meeting on Friday, September 11 at 7pm. Voting Members in good standing have paid their monthly memberships dues at the time of the AGM. Please RSVP with a free Eventbrite ticket to reserve a spot in the video call and check your email on the day of the AGM for a message sent through Eventbrite with a video conference link.


To renew your membership or to join as a member to be eligible to vote at the AGM, go to https://hackf.org/join-us/ and make a monthly or annual pledge at the $20 Voting Member level before the AGM.


If you are interested in joining the Board of Directors of Windsor Hackforge, send an email with your expression of interest, relevant personal and/or professional information, and any questions to Jeff Szusz, Chair, Board of Directors jeff@hackf.org by September 1st.

Members who submit their names for election will be added to the slate to be voted on by the membership. The Board of Directors are responsible for managing the activities and affairs of the corporation in accordance with the articles and conditions set out in the by-laws. Executive positions will be determined at the next Board of Directors meeting following the AGM.


If any members are not able to attend the AGM, you can submit a proxy vote by September 8th to Jeff Szusz, Chair, Board of Directors jeff@hackf.org who will vote on your behalf.


If you would like to add an item to the agenda please send it to Jeff Szusz, Chair, Board of Directors jeff@hackf.org by September 1st.


1. Call to Order – Chair, Board of Directors
2. Approval of Agenda
3. Approval of 2019 AGM Minutes
4. Report from Chair and Program Updates
5. Report from Treasurer and Approval of 2019 Financial Statements
6. Updates to Bylaws
7. Election of Directors
8. Adjournment

The AGM package will be emailed to members one week prior.


We’ll be organizing a video call to hang out and chat and catch up in the next week or two, prior to the AGM. There’s no agenda, just bring your coffee, beer, soda, etc. with you to a video call and have a chat. If you want to get in on that discussion, head over to our Discord chat and we’ll figure out date and time together. First download the client and then click this invite link.

Thanks for all your support! I hope to see many of you soon!

Jeff Szusz, Hackforge Board President

May at Hackforge

Google Developers Group: Flutter and Firebase 
Like peanut butter and chocolate for mobile development
Wednesday, May 15 @ 6:30PM Facebook | Meetup

For the past month, Don Ward has been digging into integrating Flutter apps with all of the Firebase services available as he partakes in the #100DaysofCode challenge. During this event, you will learn how to build mobile apps using Flutter backed with Firebase services and how they work with Flutter mobile apps.

Introduction to 3D Printing: Part 2
Saturday, May 18 @ 12PM Facebook | Meetup

Come out and meet people interested in 3D Printing! We will be showing how to print something from the web. No prior experience is required.

Border City JavaScript
Monday, May 20 @ 7PM Facebook | Meetup 

Following the free-form discussion at our April meetup, we’re having a more structured discussion for May’s meet-up that dives a bit deeper into some topics. Come prepared with a short list of 2-3 topics we talked about that really interested you. It’s even better if you have specific questions you’d like answered.

If you missed the April meetup, you can choose any topics related to web development or JavaScript that pique your interest.

We’ll all write our topics or questions down on sticky notes, and we’ll organize the topics into categories. Then we’ll process through the topics, talking about each as a group. This format, a structured discussion with no predetermined agenda, is called a Lean Coffee, and it’s really fun!

Project Management Professionals Meetup: Activity Management and How it Helps to Reach any Goal
Monday, May 27 @ 7PM Facebook | Meetup 

This month’s guest speaker is Jules Champoux, CPCA. Jules is a licensed advisor since 2006 and Sales Manager for Desjardins Financial Security Independent Network since 2012. He is also the current Director of the Town of Tecumseh BIA and the past Chairman of Eldercare Life Guide Services. As Jules is very involved in the community and in his career, he will share his insights about using activity management daily to reach his goals.

Border City Data: Intro to SQL
Tuesday, May 28 @ 7PM Facebook | Meetup
A practical introduction to SQL. The Structured Query Language is one of the most common ways that users interact with databases, and it’s an essential skill for all kinds of professionals who work with data.
WindsorEssex .NET Developers
Context is King: Finding Service Boundaries
Wednesday, May 29 @ 7PM Facebook | Meetup
Are you having trouble defining service boundaries? We know there are benefits in splitting up a complex system, such as more focused models and modular deployments.

Defining the correct service boundaries is incredibly important but can be pretty tricky. When defined correctly, the model feels natural and cohesive. Defined wrong can make a system overly complex and end in disaster.

Join Derek as he explores the use of key terminology in real business systems. How dissecting simple words and asking the right questions led to insights that helped define the service boundaries in real business systems developed over the last decade.

April at Hackforge

Call for Organizers & Ideas

Did you know that Hackforge is entirely volunteer run?  Would you like to be more involved? Do you have ideas for Hackforge? We need your help! If you have ideas for new talks, meetups, workshops or groups, send us an email at info@hackf.org to let us know. We can help bring people together who are interested in the same topic and help you organize and promote your events!

Project Management Professionals: PMBOK & PRINCE II
Monday, April 15 @ 7PM Facebook | Meetup

Join us for a high level talk on PMBOK & PRINCE II, two popular project management methodologies and how they can work for you. We’re pleased to be joined by Elana Freeman, a Senior Project Manager at Thyssenkrupp Materials NA.

​This group is for all professionals from any industry, and business owners to come together and exchange ideas and good practices ​ in a fun and relaxed atmosphere.

Makers Club: Introduction to 3D Printing
Saturday, April 27 @ 12PM Facebook | Meetup

Join us for an introduction to 3D printing! We expect to have a Delta printer and a Prusa MK3 to demonstrate and explain. Additionally, we will have a slide show from the Midwest RepRap Festival 2019.

Border City Javascript
Monday, April 29 @ 7PM Facebook | Meetup

Join us for this month’s Border City Javascript meetup. Interested in doing a talk? Email us at info@hackf.org.

Border City Data: Connecting a web API to SQL Server with SSIS
Tuesday, April 30 @ 7PM Facebook | Meetup

This month, Doug Sartori leads a tutorial on using scripting in SSIS to consume data from a web-based REST API. This is a basic-level tutorial – beginners can benefit from it although the content is aimed at programmers and database professionals.

March at Hackforge

Hackforge Annual General Meeting
Tuesday, March 12 @ 7PM Facebook

At 7:00 pm on March 12, 2019, Windsor Hackforge will hold its Annual General Meeting (AGM) at The Accelerator at 1501 Howard Ave, Unit 101, Windsor, Ontario.

At this meeting, all members deemed to be in good standing (up to date with member dues) as of March 1st, 2019 are welcome to attend.

This meeting will cover the current state of Hackforge, our plans for the coming year, as well as presenting our Interest Groups. If you want to work with Hackforge to bring something new to the community, come ready to proposal your ideas!

Border City Data: Building the Megahospital Challenge
Thursday, March 14 @ 7PM Facebook | Meetup

Join us for the first Border City Data event at our new home: a talk about the Megahospital Challenge. The discussion will cover solution design, tech tools and what we learned from the launch and debate around megahospitalchallenge.com.

Project Management Professionals: PMBOK & Prince II
Monday, March 18 @ 7PM Facebook | Meetup

Join us for a high level talk on PMBOK & PRINCE II, two popular project management methodologies and how they can work for you. We’re pleased to be joined by Elana Freeman, a Senior Project Manager at Thyssenkrupp Materials NA.

​This group is for all professionals from any industry, and business owners to come together and exchange ideas and good practices ​ in a fun and relaxed atmosphere.

Border City Javascript & .NET Developers: Lightning Talks! 
Wednesday, March 27 @ 7PM Facebook | Meetup

It’s time to get back into the swing of things at the new Hackforge location! Let’s get to know each other a little bit and talk about some cool tech-related stuff. This event is open to the general public, and we enthusiastically invite the rest of our new community at The Accelerator to join us either in the audience or as a speaker.

A lightning talk is a 5 to 10-minute talk on a topic of your choice (most likely tech related, but not necessarily!). You can share knowledge, showcase a project, get feedback on new ideas or gush about something that excites you. Slides are optional.

You do not need to present a lightning talk to attend! All are welcome as an audience to listen and take in all the content.

If you haven’t done a talk before, lightning talks are a great way to get started and practice public speaking. If you’re old hat, a lightning talk is a great opportunity to try out that talk idea you haven’t fully fleshed out yet.

If you’d like to deliver a talk at Hackforge’s Lightning Talks at 7PM on Wednesday March 27, 2019 at The Accelerator (1501 Howard Ave, at Shepherd), sign up below.

You may sign up to deliver more than one short talk, but any additional talks after the first are subject to time constraints at the event.

Signup: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScwga688Jxy8pC-hjSSEfpSgDndZW7Pji7td4-hlxboIQ6ckw/viewform

Art + Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-thon
Saturday, March 30 11AM-5PM Facebook | Eventbrite

Hackforge, Arts Council Windsor & Region and the School of Creative Arts at the University of Windsor invite people of all gender identities to take part in Windsor, Ontario’s Art + Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-thon.

Only 10% of Wikipedia editors identify as women. The Art + Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-thon is seeking to change that statistic by offering a a do-it-yourself and do-it-with-others research and teaching session for editing and contributing to Wikipedia. Tutorials will be provided for those who are new to the editing process.

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