Dimitri came to visit TAMI on Friday.
We talked quite a bit and Dimitri was keen to share information on how things are run at Bitlair, so maybe we can learn a few things from it.
Their site https://bitlair.nl/Hoofdpagina
Their site google-translate link to English http://tiny.cc/7r596y
- Founded roughly 8 years ago.
- Non-profit eligible for some discounts in NL but not “registered” for tax deduction, not eligible (parallel to clause 46 in IL)
- Space is ~330sqm, shared with “young hackers club” incl. rent split 1000: 600 eur/month
Some collaborations + Graduates of the young club (18+) often stay with Bitlair.
Talented young hacker club members have been challenged in the past to build something for the place. See lounge
- Membership fee 25 Euro / month . ~ 40 members , some paid more until they got to break even.
- Regular opening hours twice a week. Members get 24/7 access
- You get a key for the door only after 3 months of attending, to build trust.
- Key is an ibutton with private public key, also used to unlock the more dangerous / expensive machines, and for billing the owner of the key.
- Usage of more expensive machines is billed (e.g. laser cutter).
Members get a substantial discount.
- Snack bar & vending machine operates on trust, with QR codes. No alcohol sold, no liability. Revenue is about 200Euro / month
- They have an automatic billing and banking system called “revbank” developed by hackerspace revspace www.revspace.nl with whom they often collaborate and friendly provocations.
- Registering for the billing system is required, useful for reeling in new members with a free 1st snack.
- Each machine is QR’d leading to a link on their wiki. If it’s empty then you’re encouraged to fill it.
- Machines are often donated. There is also an arrangement where someone brings a machine, it belongs to that person and they allow everyone to use it, while the space is responsible for maintaining parts, materials .
- All their projects and workshop (e.g. arduino) available online for anyone to use.
- Other neat things:
- Virtual tour on their site.
- Bitlair dashboard (temp, humidity, occupancy etc) : https://dashboard.bitlair.nl/
- Bitlair have a camera on-site which anyone can use to document their projects and then the photos are automatically uploaded to their media server
- Events: lock picking, job-search advice for youth, social engineering, internet safety lessons for kids to teach their parents.
- Hacker hotel - 95 rooms rented once a year at cost for their big nl event