A Home for Windsor's Tech Community

December at Hackforge

December 3, 2017

by Jeff Szusz in News

Makers Meetup: Metal Engraving and 3D Model Finishing
Wednesday, December 13 @ 7 PM | Facebook | Meetup

Meet up with local Makers for a double header presentation! Paul Anderson will demonstrate and talk about his metal engraving hobby, and Jeffrey Drake will show some initial stages of finishing 3d printed models.

Board Game Night
Friday, December 15 @ 7 PM | Facebook | Meetup

Join us for some of our favourite board games, or bring your own! Come on in and we’ll get you set up with a game and a group to play with as soon as there’s an opening. This event is open to anyone and the earlier you arrive the quicker you’ll get into a group playing a game.

Book Club: The Man In The High Castle, Phillip K. Dick  
Tuesday, December 19 @ 7 PM | Facebook | Meetup

Originally scheduled for November, but moved to December to give everyone more time to read the book.

Read The The Man In The High Castle, by Phillip K. Dick, and join us at this event to chat about it!

Goodreads says, “It’s America in 1962. Slavery is legal once again. The few Jews who still survive hide under assumed names. In San Francisco the I Ching is as common as the Yellow Pages. All because some 20 years earlier the United States lost a war, and is now occupied jointly by Nazi Germany and Japan.”

Pick it up at Chapters/Indigo, Pick it up at Amazon or get the Audiobook through Audible.

Windsor Essex .Net Developers
Wednesday, December 27 @ 6:30 PM | Facebook | Meetup

Topic TBA, but you can bet it’ll be good. Derek always has some great talks lined up! Feel free to join everyone afterwards for some refreshments while talking shop and socializing, too! Check out the Facebook event to get updates on the topic.

Taking a Holiday

The following monthly meet-ups are taking a break in December, but will be back in January:

  • Software Guild (Talk Night and Social Coding)
  • Electronics Club
  • Project Management Interest Group
  • AWS Users Group
  • Border City Data

October At Hackforge

October 16, 2017

by Jeff Szusz in News

We’re Hiring a Program Coordinator!

Hackforge is starting a new workshop series with generous help from the Libro Credit Union – TechBoost aims to improve the digital capacity of small businesses in Windsor and Essex County.

Hackforge is almost entirely volunteer run, but in order to provide this scale of community programming, we need a program coordinator to put it together and keep it running on the rails, and that kind of commitment can’t be handled by a volunteer. We’re looking to hire a program coordinator on a one-year contract at 20 hours per week to make it happen.

If you’re interested, check out the full job posting.

October Events

Detroit Tech Careers Q&A
Monday, October 16 @ 7 PM | Facebook | Meetup

Explore tech career opportunities in Detroit at a special Hackforge Q&A session with Emily Ciarvino, recruiter with U.S.-based IT staffing firm Optomi.

Rebooting Windsor: where do we stand as Project Managers?
Wednesday, October 18 @ 7 PM | Facebook | Meetup

​As a follow-up to Rebooting Windsor, and the CBC story on tech jobs disappearance in Windsor-Essex, we would like to hear about the issues you have as an IT/Digital project manager.

Are those struggles the same in other industries?

Come and share your struggle​​s and successes and let’s find solutions together.

Art & The Social Model of Disability
Thursday, October 19 @ 2:30 PM | Facebook | Meetup

David Bobier will introduce the audience to the concept of the Social Model of Disability, explore the cultural history and background and the current practices of the Deaf and Disability Arts globally, nationally and provincially.

You’ll be asked to think about the nature of diversity and inclusion in the arts, consider the excluded and imagine the notion of accessibility for all in the arts and finally to explore ideas, both independently and collaboratively, for integrating accessibility into your creative practice.

Participants will then develop an artistic work that has accessible tools built into it. These works could include sculptural objects, installations, performances.

Hackforge happily hosts this event in partnership with the University of Windsor School of Creative Arts.

Board Game Night
Friday, October 20 @ 7 PM | Facebook | Meetup

Join us for some of our favourite SPOOKY board games, or bring your own horror themed games!

This event is open to anyone and the earlier you arrive the quicker you’ll get into a group playing a game.

Electronics Club – Halloween Electronics Mash
Saturday, October 21 @ 1 PM | Facebook | Meetup

Glowing ghouls, dastardly Daleks, animatronic skulls — oh my!

Come to Hackforge to work on and demo your cool Halloween Electronics projects. Whether you have a finished product, a work in progress, or a budding idea that you’re not sure how to start, all are welcome!

Book Club: Lathe of Heaven by Ursula K. Le Guin
Tuesday, October 24 @ 7 PM | Facebook | Meetup

Read The Lathe of Heaven, by Ursula K. Le Guin, and join us at this event to chat about it!

“In a future world racked by violence and environmental catastrophes, George Orr wakes up one day to discover that his dreams have the ability to alter reality. He seeks help from Dr. William Haber, a psychiatrist who immediately grasps the power George wields. Soon George must preserve reality itself as Dr. Haber becomes adept at manipulating George’s dreams for his own purposes.”

Pick it up at Indigo, Pick it up at Amazon or get the Audiobook through Audible.

Software Guild + Windsor Essex .Net Developers, together again!
Wednesday, October 25 @ 6:30 PM | Facebook | .Net Developers Meetup | Software Guild Meetup

We are now having our Software Guild and .NET Meetups back-to-back on the same night, and everyone’s encouraged to attend for both.

Windsor-Essex .NET Developers @ 6:30PM: Reid Evans will delve into why null is dangerous, and see how code relying on exceptions can become entangled. Then we’ll see why an alternative approach produces code that has fewer defects, is more modular, is easier to test, and is easier to debug.

We will be giving away a 1 year license to any JetBrains IDE or Tool. Thank you JetBrains for the support.

Software Guild @ 7:30PM Jeff Szusz will host an open discussion about how corporate culture drives or hampers software product development. Whether you’re an employee or an employer, bring your questions or opinions about the factors that push and pull between personal freedom and solid work ethics.

Networking: Feel free to join us afterwards at Craftheads for some refreshments while talking shop and socializing.

AWS Users: Global Web Traffic Management with Amazon Route53
Thursday, October 26 @ 7 PM | Facebook | Meetup

Global companies require highly available web sites/apps that provide excellent response times. To improve the end-user experience the systems must be placed closer to users. This introduces requirements to route web traffic between many globally distributed end-points and to monitor health and utilization of those points.

At our October meetup, we are deploying several web server farms around the globe. Once our web farms are up and humming we are applying Route 53 traffic policies that will provide best response times to our global audience and make our web site highly available while taking into account any geographic restrictions we may have. We’ll also roll out a website update with no downtime just because we can.

Border City Data
Monday, October 30 @ 7 PM | Facebook | Meetup

Border City Data teaches aspiring data professionals the ins and outs of wrangling data to find useful insights. Attend to find out what Doug Sartori has in store for us this month.

August at Hackforge

August 1, 2017

by Jeff Szusz in News

Creating A Digital Theremin With JavaScript
Tuesday, August 1 7:00pm
This workshop will provide an introduction to coding in p5.js and JavaScript to turn your smartphone into a digital theremin. This workshop simplifies programming with p5.js and allows you to begin creating your own interactive project. A fun accessible way to learn coding. All required software is free and open source. Please bring a laptop and smartphone device.
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

Getting Interactive With Ableton Live
Thursday, August 3 7:00pm
Summer Art Festival ’17 presents an AbletonLive demonstration workshop showcasing how David Bergeron uses Max4Live and various tools to incorporate interactivity into creating electronic music, giving a chance to see some of the possible ways of navigating the technologies.
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

Open Coding
Wednesday, August 9 7:00pm
Work on a project, socialize with other devs, get help with a tutorial or show off your latest creation.
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

3D Printing Club
Saturday, August 12 1:00pm
The Flash Forge Creator Pro is now ready for action! Learn how to operate the 3D printer we have at Hackforge. In addition, bring your ideas for our first ever Mini Modelling Contest! You can use your new modelling skills to create a 3D printed design and compete to win prizes this Fall.
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

Board Game Night
Friday, August 18 7:00pm
Join us for some of our favourite board games, or bring your own!
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

Electronics Club: Creating Your Own Circuit Boards
Saturday, August 19 1:00pm
Do you have an interest in creating your own circuit boards? Stepan Tuzlov will briefly talk about printed circuit board production as well as share his industry experience in preparing a PCB layout for low volume print. He will demonstrate PCB layout concepts to accommodate for manufacturability and cost. He will also briefly talk about pros and cons of “auto router” feature in CAD software.
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

AWS Users Group
Thursday, August 24 7:00pm
In this second meetup, we’ll deep dive into IAM (Identity and Access Management) Roles and Policies. Come join us and become an IAM policy ninja.
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

Border City Data
Monday, August 28 7:00pm
Border City Data teaches aspiring data professionals the ins and outs of wrangling data to find useful insights. August’s Topic will be announced soon!
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

Book Club: Makers by Corey Doctorow
Tuesday, August 29 7:00pm
“Barefoot bankers cross the nation, microinvesting in high-tech communal mini-startups like Perry and Lester’s. Together, they transform the country, and Andrea Fleeks, a journo-turned-blogger, is there to document it.” – Goodreads

Download the book for FREE from the author here: http://craphound.com/makers/download/
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

Software Guild: Lightning Talks!
Wednesday, August 30 7:00pm
A full slate of speakers will spend 5 minutes each telling you and each other about something cool they know, discovered, learned, built or love. Want to share your own 5 minute talk? Slides optional, email jeff at hackf dot org to secure a slot.
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

*N.B Project Management Group and .NET Developers will be taking the summer off*

July At Hackforge

July 1, 2017

by Jeff Szusz in News

Repair The World (FIELD TRIP)
Tuesday, July 4 7:00pm at Green Sun Rising Solar
Meet us at Green Sun Rising Solar for a tour of their space, where they develop solar electricity and thermal systems.
Facebook event
Meetup Event

Canada150 Indie Game Showcase
Thursday, July 6 7:00pm
Play and discover truly homegrown games.   A group of local programmers, artists and game developers are celebrating Canada’s 150th anniversary by showcasing a collection of Canada themed video games they have created for the occasion.
Facebook event
Meetup Event

Board Game Night
Friday, July 7 7:00pm
Join us for some of our favourite board games, or bring your own!
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

Open Coding
Wednesday, July 12 7:00pm
Work on a project, socialize with other devs, get help with a tutorial or show off your latest creation.
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

AWS Users Group
Thursday, July 20 7:00pm
Learn how Amazon Web Services handles security, the foundation of your future AWS infrastructure.
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

Border City Data: Connecting Data (Data Basics 2)
Monday, July 24 7:00pm
One of the ways we derive value from data is by connecting it to related data sets. In this beginner-friendly session, Doug Sartori will explain the concepts and demonstrate joining related data with Excel and SQL.
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

Book Club
Tuesday, July 25 7:00pm
Read William Gibson’s The Peripheral and join us at this event to chat about it. We’ll also pick the book for September.
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

Software Guild: Web APIs and Linux Containers
Wednesday, July 26 7:00pm
Topics: how to design an HTTP API that looks less like your database tables and how to use Linux Containers (LXD) to scale your infrastructure and simulate the cloud on your laptop.
Facebook Event
Meetup Event

*N.B Project Management Group and .NET Developers will be taking the summer off*

Event Calendar: June 2017

June 1, 2017

by Sarah Morris in Events, News

A Multi-Cloud Solution using Azure & AWS
Windsor-Essex .Net Developers
Tuesday,  June 6: 7:00 PM
While some cloud users are evaluating AWS vs. Azure, many enterprises are planning to use both cloud providers to avoid vendor lock-in and latency while creating redundancy. The session will cover:

1) AWS vs. Azure differences for compute, networking, storage and pricing.
2) Recent and coming enhancements for AWS Lambda and Azure Functions.
3) Multi-cloud environments can be complex so let’s discuss the best practices for cloud deployments when using both AWS and Azure.
Facebook / Meetup

Smart Garden Workshop: Soil Sensors & the Internet of Things
Saturday, June 10: 1:00 – 3:00 PM
Take your indoor garden to the next step with this all-levels workshop. Learn to create a device that will tell you when your plants are thirsty by turning on a light, sending a text, or tweeting! At the end, you will have a full, functional Particle Photon kit to take home.
Register Now!

Summer Jam: The Great Canadian Game Jam
Sunday, June 11: 1:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Less than 30 days left to submit your project to The Great Canadian Game Jam! In the 150 days leading up to Canada Day on July 1, game developers across the country have been busy making games to show off their Canadian pride!
Join us for our final local meetup before the deadline, share a free pizza supper to keep up our energy, discuss how to add final touch-ups and take a peek at projects our developers have in store! All while E3, the biggest game conference of the year, occurs live online!

Industrial Automation Group: PLC Design Patterns
Monday, June 12: 7:00 PM
Programmable logic controllers are far from open source, and programming them can seem like an arcane art, but there are certain algorithms and patterns we use over and over. This month at Hackforge’s Industrial Automation Club, we’ll share and learn tricks of the trade. Everyone from beginner to expert is welcome.
Facebook / Meetup

Open Coding Night
Wednesday, June 14: 7:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Have a project you’re working on? Need to bounce ideas off other programmers? Want to try out a tutorial for new programming language? From beginners to pros, Open Coding Night is designated time for you to hone your craft.
Bring your laptop and get coding!
Facebook / Meetup

Artist Talk: Neighbourhood FREE SPACE Residency
Thursday, June 15: 7:00 PM
Hackforge is pleased to partner with Arts Council Windsor & Region (ACWR) for their latest neighbourhood FREE SPACE – Self Directed Residency. Alex Beriault (Toronto), Béla Varga (Windsor), and Laura Horne Gaul (Kingsville) will be giving a talk at Hackforge about their work. Hackforge is hosting Beriault and Varga for the June FREE SPACE – Self Directed Residency.
Facebook / Meetup

Board Game Night
Friday, June 16: 7:00 – 10:00 PM
Join us for a night of board games and card games from 7-10PM. This event is free and open to everyone. If you’re new to board games, we encourage you to come by as we will have trusty Hackforgers there to help get you started.
Facebook / Meetup

Border City Data: Crash Test Data Dummies
Monday, June 19: 7:00 PM
You wouldn’t test a car’s safety features using a real person – they might get hurt. So, why don’t we do the same thing for software test environments?

Is protecting your test environments as if they were production environments a pain? Do you want more flexibility in who gets access to your test environments? Does developer access to sensitive data keep you and your auditors up at night? This talk is for you! Come an learn the fundamentals of changing test data so that it’s no longer sensitive but still useful for tests.
Facebook / Meetup

Repair The World: Field Trip to Green Sun Rising Solar

Tuesday, July 4: 7:00 PM at Green Sun Rising Solar
This month, we will venturing out into the world for a field trip!

We’re going to visit Green Sun Rising Solar for a tour of their space. “Green Sun Rising Inc. is a Windsor Ontario based company focusing on developing and supplying solar systems, both solar PV for clean electricity, and solar thermal for clean heat energy. ”

Repair the World is a monthly meet-up of those who want to learn more about the technologies and policies we can employ in Windsor-Essex to lead us towards a carbon-neutral future and to help our community cope with the effects of global warming.
Facebook / Meetup

Project Management Group: Project Scope and Requirements Docs 
Wednesday, June 21: 7:00 PM
In a real work environment, each requirements definition is written slightly differently. As a group are we able to define what works well in each of them to come up with a list of best practices for writing good requirements definitions (e.g. how to write a good requirement, what to avoid, sections to include in the document, etc.). We are looking for examples of well-written scope documents and requirements definition documents, so bring your own and talk about your experiences. Come and share your experience, provide new ideas and learn from others!
Facebook / Meetup

3D Print Club: 3D Sculpting
Saturday, June 24: 1:00 PM
Join the 3D Printing Club for this afternoon event all about 3D sculpting!
Facebook / Meetup

Fireworks Night Drop-In
Monday, June 26: 7:00 – 9:00 PM
Before heading down to the fireworks, drop by Hackforge for tech demos and kids activities! This interactive event is great for all ages. More details to come.
Facebook / Meetup

Book Club: Infomocracy by Malka Ann Older
Tuesday, June 27: 7:00 PM
Join us this month for a casual discussion on Malka Ann Older’s 2016 sci-fi thriller, Infomacracy. The Verge says, “It’s an intense and intriguing thriller about how technology and the flow of information can help sway public opinion and policy across the planet.”
More Info Here 
Facebook / Meetup

Software Guild
Apache & Nginx at Scale: A Comparison
Wednesday, June 28: 7:00 PM
Apache, which accounts for 1/3 of all web servers on the internet, is robust and popular web server software that’s been the defacto standard for almost 20 years. Unfortunately, it often can’t stand up to the kinds of punishment modern web traffic throws at it. Find out how Apache fails at scale, and how Nginx fills the gap.
Facebook / Meetup

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