Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Summertime, and the living is easy…

Hi everyone — it's been a long time since I last posted. We had our forum in Foster a couple of months ago and it went reasonably well. South Gippsland Shire councilors kicked in a substantial amount of money to help run it for which I'm very grateful! I was aiming it largely at the people who were on the panel and it may have had some benefit there. But it's all water under the bridge now — I feel personally that the time for consciousness raising is nearly at an end. Now is the time to start work with the new realities in mind!

But I'm having one last go at educating the public and it's a beauty! Stoneleigh (Nicole Foss) from The Automatic Earth is coming to Australia on a lecture tour and we are having her give a talk down here. It will be at the Leongatha (edit in response to comment: Leongatha is in Victoria) Memorial Hall in the Council meeting room on February 21st at 7:30pm (2 Michael Place Leongatha) for those of you in the area. Cost will be $10.00. It will (I suppose) be basically her A Century of Challenges lecture, which is pretty technical and requires at least some economic knowledge, but is very in-depth and far-reaching in its scope. Definitely a must-know for anyone seriously planning for the future at any level. I've just had a meeting with Malcolm McKelvie from Baw Baw Sustainability Network with whom I'm jointly running the talk and we're happy with our arrangements, so it should be a good show!

So what comes next? I'm working three part-time jobs at the moment while I have a think about what business to start. What I'm planning to do at the moment is to run classes for Arduino control systems programming and building. I'm thinking of aiming it principally at local kids (although some adults may be interested too). I want to (a) get a low capital and knowledge intensive start-up business going down here for the brighter locals and (b) find out who the best programmers and solderers are so I can employ 'em! Back when my exhibit building business was operational, John Banikos and I built quite a few things powered by PLCs (programmable logic controllers), mini computers used in industrial processes. The Arduino is a low-cost PLC essentially. There is also an ultra low-cost computer which has just been released — the Raspberry — which I will check out.

I'd really like to get some sort of hackerspace going and try 3-D printing too, but it will have to be one step at a time for a while!