So far, we’re absolutely amazed at how energized and excited people are at the prospect of a collaborative DIY center in Worcester, even people who don’t really adhere to the DIY ethic. We’ve had people talk to us about what we’re trying to do, and they get the same twinkle of excitement in their cornea that us Makers do, simply at the prospect of something interesting happening. It’s inspiring.
We’re learning that the hackerspace should be a fixture in any community, no different from a local convenience store, cafe, pizza shop, or gas station. This is a technologically saturated world, and it only makes sense that there be some kind of place to obtain affordable service and training with this technology. Long ago, hackers were seen as sorcerers, who understood the hidden tongue spoken by electrons.
Those days are over, folks. Yes, there are skills that will be beyond most end users, but it isn’t magic. I don’t know about you, but we’re a bit fed up with encountering users who look at me quizzically when we use the word “defrag.” This is basic PC maintenance, and most people who own a computer don’t even know how to do it. It’s like not knowing that your car ever needs its oil changed, or being completely oblivious to the fact that the stench coming off of you means that you need to bathe.
That’s a huge part of why we’re doing this. The average user has spent too long at their system’s whim. And when that system doesn’t behave how they’d like (often due to poor maintenance or ignorance) they just junk it and buy a new one. That’s a bad decision on many levels – for one, it’s wasteful. For another, it’s lazy. And it’s not the user’s fault – they don’t know any better, don’t know what’s out there for alternatives, and are typically oblivious to the fact that they can choose what to do with their computer.
We’re here to help that. We want more people to know how to use basic office applications. We want more people running linux on their old computer instead of pitching it into a landfill. We want to empower people when it comes to how things work – on the desktop and beyond.
But most of all, we want that twinkle in everyone’s eye when they make something work. We want to be so inspired to see the Hacker in everyone come out. Because it’s Hackers who built the best of this world, and the more of us that are around, the better.