The third Hack Circus event, Access All Areas, took place at Lighthouse last night and went down a treat. We learned everything about killer bulldozers, found out how to make a living from urban infiltration, discovered who's trying to visualise our thoughts and discussed why you might not, in fact, want to make a plasma forcefield. Huge thanks go to the speakers, who were all entertaining and informative and had all travelled some distance for the event:
Thanks too to my fellow Lighthouse residents for converging on this project and working like crazy to make everything happen. Seb Lee-Delisle filled a room with robots, invented a light-based countdown clock, collaborated with Sinead to extrude brainwaves from a 3D printer, and basically worked solidly all week to get everything up and running in time for the night. I can't really stress how much work this was for Seb and his engineer friend Paul – it's not just a case of re-writing Arduino sketches; there have been late nights in the office and in workshops – motors have been completely re-built!
But in the end it all went so smoothly you'd never have suspected. We had a side room filled with Seb's amazing inventions, including a fully playable Lunar Trails, which was very well received. Another resident, paper electronics designer Coralie Gourguechon, spent at least a day on the wonderful poster and was generally supportive beyond the call of duty, and Lighthouse not only pulled the stops out to make sure we sold out but also took a chance on the event with only a vague idea of what it might entail! Having Natalie and Andrew and the bar staff present made everything go very smoothly on the night.
Audience members travelled far and wide, too. We had a packed out house ("I've never seen so many people in here" – Andrew, Lighthouse), and some other Hack Circus contributors, Sarah Angliss and Matt Westcott showed up just to watch; a lovely surprise.
By way of a write-up, here's some of the media that was created on the night.
1) The excellent Lucia of Seed The City spontaneously offered to livestream audio of the show to the internet and sat very still through the whole thing, pointing her phone at the speakers. The result is here (you might have to click 'tracks' to see all the clips.)
2) Seb and Sinead got a spectacular 3D printer to produce a model of Matt Westcott's brainwaves over the course of the evening, and many lunar trails were plotted both on the wall and from a smaller 80s plotter.
4) Video. I believe the first half of the show was filmed, more on that anon.
5) Audio. Lighthouse recorded audio too, and I'll be making a podcast episode with highlights from the show.
A few grabs of what people said: