My Summer @ NYC Resistor


This sum­mer I was a resi­dent at NYC Resis­tor (NYCR), a hac­ker col­lec­tive based in Bro­o­klyn, NY. I’m now back home in Lis­bon and would like to share a brief round-up of this won­der­ful expe­ri­ence.

First of all I must men­tion how incre­di­bly wel­co­ming and fun all the mem­bers of the col­lec­tive are. Not only did they let me share their space for two whole months, pro­vi­ding me with a great lear­ning oppor­tu­nity, but also made me feel at home among them and showed me a great time.

I was lucky to get there just as their Awe­some August chal­lenge was star­ting. The idea here being that NYCR mem­bers chal­len­ged each other to finish one great pro­ject until the end of that month. The pro­jects were indeed awe­some, from an Eight Foot Lite Brite, an FPGA-based DNA sequence align­ment acce­le­ra­tor, a Monome, a Player Toy Piano, and some very civi­li­zed smashing… to name only a few.

Another of my favo­rite sta­ples, and the one I think I’ll miss the most, was Craft Night. Every Thurs­day eve­ning NYCR opens its doors to those of us “who like to make stuff… so you don’t have to make stuff by your­self.” On these nights, NYCR mem­bers help visi­tors with their pro­jects by sha­ring tips and kno­wledge, and everyone just has a great time wor­king together around one big table.

And then of course, there was the unfor­get­ta­ble Inte­rac­tive Party, during which some of Awe­some August’s pro­jects were shown, and that even inclu­ded a giant robot cake, chalk drawing on the floor, a Wimshurst machine, and crayola model magic.

NYCR is cur­ren­tly offe­ring a series of really inte­res­ting clas­ses, which I’m very sad to miss.

During my resi­dency I wor­ked on a few (really fun) expe­ri­ments with paper/cardboard pulp and soft cir­cuits, as well as other (frus­tra­ting) ones with car­bon nano­tu­bes. More on that later — I’m still unpac­king 🙂

Thank you NYC Resis­tor!