Hidden in Mountain View, California, few minutes walk from Castro St (downtown) is one of a kind 13,000-square-foot (1,200 m2) community center and hackerspace. It is called Hacker Dojo. Every since finding this place I have been less frequent at Red Rock and more at Hacker Dojo where I am also a member and occasional acting staff.
What is Hacker Dojo
Hacker Dojo is a community center for hackers and thinkers to meet, discuss, learn, create, build and play.
Hacker Dojo is a community center in Mountain View which is about 1/3rd coworking space, 1/3rd events venue, and 1/3rd a big social living room. In the spirit of DevHouse, a physical community space for hackers and thinkers on the Peninsula in the San Francisco Bay Area. This is a location for events, lectures, parties, BarCamps, DevHouses, LAN parties, hackathons, knitting circles, tinkering, brainstorming, coworking, etc. While Hacker Dojo is technically a “members only” private club, they welcome visitors to many of the lectures and classes, and invite people to use the space on a drop-in basis as well. It is not a residential space. The Dojo is a community space first and foremost – this means that the focus of the layout and activities is to lend itself to be a useful place to throw classes, host parties, brainstorm, and hang out. * Source HackerDojo
Hacker Dojo: Origins, Context, and Future
This slide is good at explaining the origins of Hacker Dojo and where the concept of hacker space is heading: http://www.slideshare.net/dweekly/hacker-dojo-origins-context-and-future
Why a community space and not home?
A number of reasons, but the most important one is that it’s very hard to study and tinker in an environment that is set aside for living, eating and sleeping – the home. Like they say to never study in bed since it’s used for sleeping and if you do you will disturb your sleeping pattern. Which is why libraries are effective as a study environment – not just for the quiet zone but because you are in an environment with positive energy that encourages education. Hacker Dojo is that environment with the energy and resources which encourages hacking, tinkering & learning. It just works. I’m sure there is a proper psychology explanation behind this but I’m sure you know what I mean.
Let’s look inside
Here are some snaps I took while attending a mobile development class and then later hacking in one of the private rooms. Click each photo for a full size version.
The dojo has it all for the nerd inside you
- Ton of interesting and smart people either running their own startups or networking,
- 3 bathrooms,
- A kitchen with filtered water and all sorts of teas and occasional freebie snacks,
- Library with a vast number of technical and business books – both new & old,
- 6 x private rooms with whiteboards big enough to fit a team,
- Top floor sports a living room style area where you can watch movies on a projector and kick back on a couch or bean bag,
- Fully ducted air condition – perfect temperature year round,
- Plenty of spare LCD screens to hookup your laptop to with converters,
- Laser & injet printing facility (in Savanna room),
- Fiber Optic Internet – fast up and down (see below). Great for working with remote servers.
Larry gives a video tour of the Dojo
Hacker Dojo is Located at
Address: 140 South Whisman Road in Mountain View, CA. (map it)
More info: http://wiki.hackerdojo.com/w/page/25437/FrontPage
Become a member: http://wiki.hackerdojo.com/w/page/25447/JoinTheDojo
Other Hacker Spaces in California
If you see me at the Dojo come and say G’day to this Aussie!
Hacker Dojo in the News
April 4, 2011 4:00 AM PDT
At Hacker Dojo, Silicon Valley techies build toward success
Read more: http://news.cnet.com/8301-13772_3-20050179-52.html