Events Listings

Manchester Game Jam (April 2014 Ludum Dare!)

Monday, April 7th, 2014
MCR GameJam

MCR GameJam

Title: Manchester Game Jam (April 2014 Ludum Dare!)
Location: MadLab
Date: Sunday 27th April 2014
Start Time: 09:00
End Time: 18:00
Sign up: Get tickets via Eventbrite!

*** IMPORTANT NOTE: We’re running a jam at the same time as the Ludum Dare as always, but we are only open on the SUNDAY this time around ***

Are you a coder, artist or audio designer interested in videogame design? Or, are you a gamer who’s curious about how videogames are put together? If so, we’d like to invite you to come join us at MadLab for the next Manchester Game Jam!

Once again we’re throwing a jam on the Ludum Dare weekend, but PLEASE NOTE we’re only jamming on the SUNDAY this time around. If you’re taking part in the Dare then we’re inviting you to come and jam here instead of hiding away in your bedroom, and if you’re not doing the Dare then we’ll be running an informal jam on the day too (probably using the Ludum Dare theme though, so we’re all on the same page)

For our jam solo and groups are both A-OK, and it doesn’t even have to be a videogame: if board games or anything else is more your bag, that’s cool too. Our only rule is: you have to show your game off at the end!

UNDER-18 POLICY: we warmly welcome under 18s at our jam, but they absolutely must be supervised by a parent or guardian for the entirety of the event. Unattended children will be taught FORTRAN and released into the wild.

For more info, drop us an email: MCRgamejam@gmail.com

or, you can follow us on Twitter: @MCRGameJam

Here’s how our last few jams went down:

http://blog.danhett.com/2013/10/mcrgamejam-september-2013.html

http://blog.danhett.com/2012/11/manchester-game-jam-3.html

http://blog.danhett.com/2012/08/game-jam-2-madlab-august-2012.html

http://blog.danhett.com/2012/04/manchester-game-jam-in-photos.html

FAQ:

I’m not a programmer, will I be any use at the jam?
Absolutely! We’re encouraging a really diverse group of people: artists, designers, audio people and everyone in between. Most of our games are videogames, but in the past we’ve had board games and all sorts pop up. Go nuts!

What are the rules?
Rules? Pah! No rules for us. We’ll announce a theme beforehand, but apart from that you can do what you like. Our only request is that at the end of the jam you show everyone what you’ve been working on.

Is there a winner?
Nah. We’re in it for the games, the learning, and the fun. Let’s be honest: you’re all winners at our jam.

Do I need to bring a computer?
If you’re making a digital/computer game, then yes please: we don’t have any machines. We usually have some other fun stuff happening (board games, pervasive gaming), but generally most folks will be making videogames. There’s high-speed WiFi and lots of plug sockets, but you’ll need your own machine.

Who owns the games that get made?
You do! We usually share the finished games online, and we’re encouraging people to share their code too: looking at how people have built stuff is all part of the fun. Ownership of anything goes to the creator of the game, but sharing is caring, right?

Can I participate remotely?
For this event, no. It’s a hands-on, group event. Join us!

I don’t have a ticket, can I come anyway?
If we’re not sold out, you can pay on the door. Check the Eventbrite link on this page, or give us a shout!

I have a ticket, but now I can’t make it. What do I do?
Please let us know, so we can refund you and give someone else your ticket. Demand was high, so we don’t want to waste any tickets!

Build cool kits with Mitch Altman – Longsight Library

Sunday, April 6th, 2014
Build cool kits with Mitch Altman

Build cool kits with Mitch Altman

Title: Build cool kits with Mitch Altman
Location: Longsight Library
Description: Solder cool stuff! Make things!

Mitch Altman (Cornfield Electronics/Noisebridge Hackerspace) is back in the UK and has brought some awesome toys with him. Just bring yourself and some enthusiasm…

(The times for this workshop might change)

Date: 22nd April 2014

Start Time: 14:00

End Time: 17:00

Reserve your place

The first ten people to sign up via Eventbrite – who have a Longsight Library card – will receive a free kit on the day. Just bring your card on the day of the workshop so that we can check your eligibility!

Mitch Altman is back and this time we’re taking him to Longsight to run one of his famous workshops: Making (Various) Cool Kits. Mitch has taught thousands of people to solder and make cool things with microcontrollers – at workshops, hacker spaces, hacker conferences and schools.

If you’ve ever been curious about electronics, this is the workshop for you.

Anyone and everyone can learn to make cool things. And it’s fun. And easy. And may involve turning off TVs in the Arndale Centre*. You can learn to make something cool with electronics in one workshop, then you get to take your project home with you!

It is totally OK to come late. Stay as little or as long as you like. Most projects take between 1 and 2 hours.

Come and Join us

You don’t need to know anything about electronics, there’s no requirement to bring complicated kit or know which end of a soldering iron is which (although we will make sure you know that by the end of the session). All ages are welcome, children please make sure you’ve remembered to bring an adult with you.

4447688320_e4243d1186_z

Mitch brings lots of kits with him which cost between £10 and £20 each. (Participants with a Longsight Library card are entitled to a free kit. Please contact the library to secure your free kit from this workshop.)

The kits available are:

  • TV-B-Gone (turn off TVs in public places!)
  • Brain Machine (meditate, hallucinate, and Trip Out!)
  • LEDcube (cool cube of blinky lights!)
  • Mignonette Game (play fun games!)
  • Trippy RGB Waves (interactive coloured blinky lights!)
  • MiniPOV (write messages in the air!)
  • MintyBoost (charge your USB enabled gadgets!)
  • Microcontroller programmers (programme all your AVR family chips!)

But who is Mitch?

If you’re not already an active member of the geek scene you might not have heard of Mitch. He’s brains behind Cornfield Electronics, and one of the co-founders of Noisebridge hackerspace in San Francisco. Mitch is best known as the inventor of TV-B-Gone, but his list of great hacks and cool electronics includes a lot of other great projects. When he is not at Noisebridge building awesome and amazing things, he is on the road from hackerspace to Hacker-Con and back again, sharing his love of electronics.

* MadLab is very responsible and does not condone this sort of behaviour

Build cool kits with Mitch Altman – MadLab

Sunday, April 6th, 2014
Build cool kits with Mitch Altman

Build cool kits with Mitch Altman

Title: Build cool kits with Mitch Altman
Location: MadLab
Description: Solder cool stuff! Make things!
Start Time: 14:00
End Time: 17:00

Date: 21st April, 2014
Reserve your place

Mitch Altman is back at MadLab and running one of his famous workshops: Making (Various) Cool Kits. Mitch has taught thousands of people to solder and make cool things with microcontrollers – at workshops, hacker spaces, hacker conferences and schools.

If you’ve ever been curious about electronics, this is the workshop for you.

Anyone and everyone can learn to make cool things. And it’s fun. And easy. And may involve turning off TVs in the Arndale Centre*. You can learn to make something cool with electronics in one workshop, then you get to take your project home with you!

It is totally OK to come late. Stay as little or as long as you like. Most projects take between 1 and 2 hours.

Come and Join us

You don’t need to know anything about electronics, there’s no requirement to bring complicated kit or know which end of a soldering iron is which (although we will make sure you know that by the end of the session). All ages are welcome, children please make sure you’ve remembered to bring an adult with you.

4447688320_e4243d1186_z

Mitch brings lots of kits with him which cost between £10 and £20 each:

  • TV-B-Gone (turn off TVs in public places!)
  • Brain Machine (meditate, hallucinate, and Trip Out!)
  • LEDcube (cool cube of blinky lights!)
  • Mignonette Game (play fun games!)
  • Trippy RGB Waves (interactive coloured blinky lights!)
  • MiniPOV (write messages in the air!)
  • MintyBoost (charge your USB enabled gadgets!)
  • Microcontroller programmers (programme all your AVR family chips!)

But who is Mitch?

If you’re not already an active member of the geek scene you might not have heard of Mitch. He’s brains behind Cornfield Electronics, and one of the co-founders of Noisebridge hackerspace in San Francisco. Mitch is best known as the inventor of TV-B-Gone, but his list of great hacks and cool electronics includes a lot of other great projects. When he is not at Noisebridge building awesome and amazing things, he is on the road from hackerspace to Hacker-Con and back again, sharing his love of electronics.

* MadLab is very responsible and does not condone this sort of behaviour

Manchester Space Programme

Friday, March 28th, 2014

Manchester Space Programme

Manchester Space Programme


Title: Manchester Space Programme
Location: MadLab
Description: Manchester’s very own civic space programme for local space technology enthusiasts.

Date: 24-04-2014
Start Time: 19:00
End Time: 21:00

The Manchester Space Programme is a community initiative for anyone interested in space and space-related activities. It has been funded as part of the UK Space Agency’s ‘Space for all’ initiative and is the inaugural member of the ‘Makers in Space’ UK community network.

Introducing Arduino & Physical Computing

Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013
Introducing Arduino & Physical Computing

Introducing Arduino & Physical Computing

Title: Introducing Arduino & Physical Computing
Date: 10th May, 2014
Start Time: 10:00
End Time: 17:00
Booking: Grab a spot here, or drop us an email at office@madlab.org.uk

Your robot army begins here. For functionality, for art, or just for making life more interesting, you’ll learn: to configure and program the Arduino, to prototype circuits, to interact with sensors and other common components, and to communicate with Processing software running on your computer. After completing the course, you’ll understand not just the limitless creative possibilities of the Arduino, but how to integrate them into larger projects. The course includes your first Arduino Uno, as well as all necessary cables and a stash of buttons, sensors and LEDS to get you hacking the real world (worth over £60).

Arduino: For functionality, for art… for making life more interesting.

Real World Examples

Here are some of our favourite projects using the Arduino:

What you need to be familiar with

You’ll need to know how to use your computer, edit files, and save them.

Some programming background is useful, but not essential; if you’ve ever written Javascript, Pascal, C, C++, Java or Actionscript, you’ll find the Arduino programming language very familiar. If you’ve written Macros in Excel or any desktop software, you’ll find this will help you understand what’s happening.

Software and costs

'Beginners Arduino & Physical Computing' Omniversity course components

You will receive an Arduino Uno, breadboard, holder, USB cable and parts bundle. Each parts bundle contains jumper wires, two pushbuttons, two potentiometers, resistors, 10 LEDs, and a photoresistor.

Additionally, you will receive an electronic copy of the teaching materials, software, and programmes we write on a USB stick.

All software is freely available and copies will be distributed with the course materials on the day.

We will be using the Arduino IDE, which can be downloaded from http://arduino.cc/en/Main/Software for all platforms.

We will also be using the Processing IDE, which can be downloaded from http://processing.org/download/ for all platforms.

Equipment you’ll need

You will need to bring a computer, ideally a laptop, with a recent version of  Linux, Windows or OSX installed. Make sure it’s got a USB port, which you’ll need in order to program the Arduino.

Suggested preparatory work

  • Install the Arduino IDE
  • Install the Processing IDE

Make sure both applications start and run properly on your computer – on some Linux distributions, you need to install extra software.

Familiarise yourself with the introduction to the Processing IDE (the Arduino IDE is based on it) at http://processing.org/learning/gettingstarted/

Learning Outcomes

  • How to connect and configure an Arduino Uno, and upload programs to it.
  • How to use a breadboard to prototype circuits, and interact with components through software
  • What different kinds of components exist and how to use photoresistor, potentiometers, and LEDs
  • How to communicate with an Arduino using USB and Processing
  • How to expand your Arduino and where to find devices and support

Your tutor: James Medd

James Medd is an artist, musician, and maker who crams Arduino into every aspect of his life, whether it’s in robotic sculptures, interactive installations, email-checking lamps, or location-aware kettles.

He first picked up an Arduino in 2009 with the view to building his own music controllers and has continued to develop his physical computing skills through various self-led projects. In 2011 he used an Arduino to power a mask mirror (check it out) which was featured at MOSI’s Mini Maker Faire. He now runs an Arduino user group at MadLab which takes place on the last Tuesday of the month.

James has taught Arduino and all things digital art across Europe, and strives to bring ideas to life, whether they be practical, bizarre, or a bit of both. He is Technological and Retail Coordinator at MadLab and has recently run workshops for Blackburn is Open, a pop-up arts centre initiated by Wayne Hemingway and for Manchester City Council.

Booking

You can book a place on EventBrite

Alternatively, if you would like to be invoiced please contact office@madlab.org.uk

The class size for this course is smaller than usual, capped at 6 attendees. If you’re looking for a relaxed and intimate environment in which to learn, this is for you!

Image Credit: Snootlab