We know we're in the right place when the first words we hear are "OMG IT'S TIMMY!"
Have you ever been to a place and had the feeling of being surrounded by geek?
Not just geeks--that's any session waiting line at Comic-Con--but the actual, palpable embodiment of geekiness itself? We like to think we have that here at TG HQ, and we've experienced it at places like NASA Goddard, Luna City Arcade (sniff), and w00tstock.
We've got a new one to add to the list: TechShop San Jose, a magical place we visited recently. (Thanks again, Andy and Michelle, for the warm welcome and tour!)
If you're not familiar with the concept of TechShop or its 5 locations in the US, it's pretty simple. It's a hackerspace set up like a gym, but for geeks, and with equipment that's much more useful (and dangerous!) than a stairmaster.
Your monthly membership dues get you access to lots of tools and machinery--like a CNC milling machine, laser cutter, CNC waterjet, and 3-D printer--that would be difficult to come by on your own, and staff to teach you to use them without hurting yourself. They also have storage space, meeting rooms, and computer workstations with all the 2- and 3-D modeling software you need to get started, not to mention a community of makers for inspiration.
So it's pretty much a wonderland of awesome people who use awesome tools to make awesome stuff. We can get behind that--and we REALLY want one in our corner of northern Virginia, too!
Some highlights of our tour included:
Sparks indicate awesomeness is happening.
No tour is complete without a handmade lightsaber...
...and a lasercut Millennium Falcon schematic
...or a tiny cardboard TARDIS.
So if you're in the San Jose area or have a TechShop near you, check it out and tell them that they really, really need to build one in Fairfax, Virginia! 11216 Waples Mill would be an excellent location, in fact; we have this parking lot out front that's practically wasted space.