Author Archives: d3c4f - Page 3

SLC Transistor – Founders Meeting Recap

As promised, here’s a quick recap of the Initial Interest Meeting. I know it’s a little later then I said, sorry guys and gals.

First off, thanks to everyone that came out to show interest and support. For those wondering: I think there were just under 20 people that attended.

From the meeting, it looks like we easily have the interest we need to found this new Chapter of TheTransistor. SLC Transistor “is a go”. Over the next couple weeks we will be collecting pledges and looking for suitable spaces in Salt Lake City. As planned, we will be looking for an open Office Space type of layout in “proper” Salt Lake City, close to public transportation and I15.

In order to determine the size of space we will need (likely 1000 – 5000 sq.ft) we need everyone interested to fill out the pledge form. We know there will be at least 10 founding members, and could easily be as many as 30. We absolutely need everyone interested to fill out the pledge form, the initial founding group will determine the size and quality of the space we will be leasing. Pledges will be collected when we have found a space and are ready to sign the lease.

This new Chapter will be focused on Information Security and Software Development. As such, you can expect a large variety of hardware, books, internet, and so on to be accessible from this hackerspace 24x7x356. You will also gain access to the other Transistor locations and the tools, people, and resources there. Core interests in the attending group included:

  • Security, Information and Physical (lockpicking, etc)
  • Routers, Switches, Firewalls, Servers, etc
  • Ruby, Javascript, C++, PHP, etc
  • Metaploit, Wireshark, Nessus, NMap, Netcat, and so on
  • Linux, BSD, Unix, (even windows), etc
  • Arduino, Pic, Arm, Propeller, etc
  • Automotive, Microbrewing, etc

In order to coordinate this effort, we have set up a public mailing list which we will use to discuss this space. As with all Transistor Chapters, these efforts are collaborative. This space will be whatever the members set up. I encourage everyone to sign up for the SLC Transistor Mailing List.

This effort to bring our community a new central hub is going to working directly with the local Salt Lake DEFCON Chapter, DC801. We are hoping to get this hackerspace more involved with the other local security and software groups in the valley.

This Chapter will also be holding public meetings. This will include theme nights, classes, CTF events, and other projects. These will be ran by the DC801 group. You can reach them on freenode at #DC801, or on reddit. I highly encourage everyone to attend the DC801 meetings. It’s a fun and very knowledgeable group.

CLOSED. Contact Us to set up a regular membership.

If you or your company would like to help us out please email contact[at]thetransistor[dot]com. For general questions / comments / etc, please direct them to the mailing list where they can be viewed and answered by everyone.

If you know people or groups that would be interested in this Transistor Chapter, please point them our way.

Thanks to everyone that has helped build the IT / Hackerspace / Makerspace community. And thanks to everyone that attended. We’re excited to see where this goes!

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tT:SLC Interest Meeting

We can’t seem to stop growing! (And we LOVE that.)
Recently, we have filled BOTH our Provo AND Midvale locations! And while we are looking into options to find larger spaces for both, we have decided to add ANOTHER expansion to our list!

There have been a couple people asking if this is a public meeting. This is a Public Meeting, please show up if you are interested. Please bring any friends, family, acquaintances, etc that are interested as well. :)

If you are interested in joining a downtown SLC hackerspace with focus on Information Security (InfoSec), computers, and electronics then you NEED to come to our PUBLIC meeting to gauge interest and start the hunt for a suitable location.

Here are the details on this upcoming meeting:
WHEN: Thursday, September 27th at 7:00pm
WHERE: Darlington Extension of theTransistor in Midvale

Some of the requirements and hopes for this space include:
Working directly with the Salt Lake DEFCON group DC801
24x7x365 Access
24x7x365 Access to our Provo Location, and all the tooling available there.
Good internet connection
Dedicated Rack for servers, network gear, etc.
Infosec Library (books, equipment)
Demo Equipment (servers, routers, switches, firewalls, etc)
Public Classes (with streaming capabilities)
CTF Games! (hosted and ran by DC801)
Office-Type Space (no warehouse) with an open layout.
Kitchen, Rest Room, Conference rooms
Close to the freeway. Easy, fast access.

Email: contact [at] thetransistor [dot] com
IRC: Freenode, #dc801 or #utahmakers

There are a lot of great ideas, and a lot of people involved in making this happen. (We estimate 10-30 founding members.)

If you are even remotely interested, come to this meeting and lets get this group off on the right foot. Don’t forget to bring any questions you might have. As with everything we do, this will be ruled by popular opinion.

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Laser Cutter: Beta Setup

After literally WEEKS of waiting, our Full Spectrum Laser Cutter is finally here! (They delivered on time, we are being sarcastic. <3 these guys.) This is a brand new model, the "New Hobby Laser” if you will, which expands the cutting area, increases the resolution and accuracy, has an updated CO2 laser tube, and even has a removable bottom!

After visiting Full Spectrum Laser while we were attending DEFCON 20, we were informed by Jason Pong (Senior Laser Applications Consultant) that they had a brand new laser out that is designed and assembled in the USA right there, in their warehouse, in ultra-hot Las Vegas. Looking at the new model and the old model there was no comparison. The new model is amazing and worth every penny. Jason was great and took the time to show us around their shops, and demo a few of their lasers for us. Any concerns that they wouldn’t be as good as their competitors lasers were quickly alleviated.

Jason took the time to run through a few demos and showed us all the cool stuff that had been done on their lasers. REALLY impressive stuff. And the new laser is VERY well designed with an extruded Aluminum frame and easily serviceable parts. The bottom line is that if you want a laser in the $2000 – $3500 range that will preform just as well as a $15000 laser from one of the “Big Guys”, but don’t want a cheap ebay laser, you aren’t going to have any regrets with one of these.

As far as support and parts, they are just a phone call away and have been AWESOME taking our calls. Also, I should mention that the software is SOOO easy to use. Any hacker should be able to figure it out in a few minutes.

We’ll do another post with some more technical details and operating procedures later, but for now here are some quick pictures of our initial run.

–[ Click the post title for the image gallery ]–

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September 1st: Free, Public Classes

Free Class: Using and Customizing Vi (aka Vim or V-Improved)
2012/09/01 @ 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Join us with the ever popular and technically awesome Josh as we all learn how to better use this awesome editor.

In this class we expect to cover:

– The basics of Vi
– Different Modes
– Customizing Vi for programming and advanced editing

Please bring a laptop with Vi installed to follow along if possible.

Free Class: Who left the WPA2 backdoor open!?
2012/09/01 @ 8:30 pm – 9:15 pm

In a world where people always forget to secure their protocols, we find that nearly all home Wifi routers are vulnerable to a brute force attack agains the Wifi Protected Setup *feature*. This talk will discuss how WPS works and why its vulnerable. We will also walk through a demonstration of how to attack your neighbors for fun, no profit, and possibly jail time. Oh, and we’ll show you how to protect yourself, because that is whole point of this topic isn’t it?

**Bring your promiscuous wifi adapters and laptops**

Free Class: Bluetooth Sniffing, Very Possible and Cheap!
2012/09/01 @ 9:15 pm – 10:00 pm

Bluetooth packet sniffing is getting a makeover in the VERY near future. In the past, Bluetooth sniffing has never been an easy task for anyone who doesn’t have thousands of dollars to spend on equipment. However, these days, there is a project in the works that will likely put the power of bluetooth sniffing in the hands of those with just a couple hundred dollars.

It’s called the Ubertooth One. This presentation will discuss the current development of the Ubertooth One as well as how it can be used to sniff Bluetooth packets.

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Join Darlington, our extension in Midvale

Oh noes! We need more members in our extension! While we do have a limited amount of space in our Midvale, Ut location, we need more members to help cover rent! If you would like a tour of Darlington, or are interested in joining Darlington, please send an email to

Enough with the crappy writing, details!

BastionTech Building
175W 7065 S
Midvale, UT 84047

Right off I15 and central to Salt Lake County!

Member Benefits:
24/7/365 Access to Darlington
24/7/365 Access to theTransistor! (no desk / personal space however)
Your own personal cubicle at Darlington!
Kitchen / Restroom Facilities
Work with other members to customize this awesome space
80mbps/80mbps fiber internet! (both wired and wireless access)
Hardware VPN to theTransistor Provo
Soldering stations and other tooling available at Darlington
(If you make friends with Isaac, he MAY let you use his massive 6×10 CNC router)
Access to theTransistor tools in Provo!

Membership at Darlington is $40 / month

Member Responsibilities:
Be awesome
Be respectful
Clean up after yourself

Other Notes:
There has been some question over the differences between the two spaces. I will do my best here to explain this.
– Darlington is an extension of theTransistor in Provo. Darlington is focused primarily on electronics, computers, software, InfoSec, etc; while theTransistor has more room for public classes, band saws, drill presses, laser cutters, larger work areas, and more.
– While a membership at Darlington DOES give you full access to theTransistor in Provo you will not have the option of getting a desk at the Provo location; you WILL however get your own personal cubicle at Darlington.
– Membership at theTransistor is almost full and does usually come with a personal desk, however it does not guarantee you access to Darlington; as Darlington has limited space.
– Darlington is a quieter workspace (though you can decide to make it loud if the members there would like) while theTransistor tends to have a bit of a ‘buzz’ going on whenever there is a large group there.

Again if you have any questions, would like a tour of Darlington, or would like a membership ASAP please shoot an email over to:


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Craft Lake City 2012

Hackers, Makers, Curious folk. Old, young and in-between. Craft Lake City is back again, and this year with a whole new category of presenters.

If you are interested in crafty / diy / electronics / robots / live music and more you should stop by Craft Lake City this year.

As a bonus, we will also be there in a booth that will probably be ignored. ;) For those not crippled with a fear of other human beings (or even if you are) ask us for a free decal. :)

August 11, 2012 (SOON!) 12pm-10pm at XMission’s Science and Technology Building
Admission is FREE, and there are over 200 Exhibitors this year!

Additional Details:

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August 4th: Free, Public Classes

Free Class: Introduction to *nix
2012/08/04 @ 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm

Introduction to *nix.
Brought to you by d3c4f, yukaia, and a whole lot of caffeine.

In this class we will cover:

– Flavors
– The different *nix histories
– Basic file system structure
– What the f*** is a kernel?
– Basic commands
– What else can I do with *nix?
– Scripting?
– Compiling from source?
– We may also walk through the setting up a basic web server, time permitting.

You are welcome to bring a laptop to follow along. We will provide live-boot cd’s for people without linux installed.

Free Class: node.js
2012/08/04 @ 8:00 pm – 9:30 pm

Come join as as Josh describes the Dark Art of node.js

Stop on by, bring a friend, and see why node.js is gaining such a rapid following.

“Node.js is a platform built on Chrome’s JavaScript runtime for easily building fast, scalable network applications. Node.js uses an event-driven, non-blocking I/O model that makes it lightweight and efficient, perfect for data-intensive real-time applications that run across distributed devices.”

You are welcome to bring a laptop to follow along.

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Elefu RA Kickstarter: An alternative 3d printer control board

Get em’ before they’re hot! A couple of our friends over at Elefu have launched their new company with a kickstarter project.

The Elefu RA, as it is called, has MANY cool features including support for a heated bed and up to THREE extruders! Very cool. Check them out, and get your pledges in today.

Also, check out their Facebook Page here, and their homepage here.

Good luck guys!

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TheTransistors Red Bull Challenge Entry

The Transistor recently (just a few days ago in fact!) entered in the 2012 Red Bull Creation Challenge. For this challenge we built a fully automated, pneumatic Can Dispenser, Drink Extractor, Drink Cooler, and Can Crushing machine. This ensures a constant stream of Energy Drinks / Caffeine for those late night projects at the hackerspace. ;)

The cans are loaded into the hopper (which holds roughly 16 cans) where they wait for you to press the dispense button. Once the button is pressed, all kinds of magic (errr science) happen. First a pneumatic ram drives a spear through the front-most can, causing it to drain into an aluminum pipe which is wrapped with 10 copper pipes that ice water is circulating through. This effectively cools the drink from room temperature to roughly 40 degrees or less in about 30 seconds (the time it takes the can to drain). From there your drink runs into another funnel and into your cup. Finally a second, larger pneumatic ram crushes the empty can and ejects it out the side. As the ram retracts, gravity automatically loads the next drink into place. (Thanks gravity!)

This project was completed over the course of 3 days. Video below. Thanks for watching!

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July 7: Public, Free Classes

Free Class: Blender 101
2012/07/07 @ 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Join us for a Free Class on Blender, taught by our very own Josh.

This will be a basics class covering (but not limited to the following):
– Using the Blender Interface
– Basic Mesh Modeling
– Materials
– Rendering

You are welcome to bring a laptop to follow along. Please have the latest version of Blender installed and make sure that you have a good mouse (you will have a bad time with your trackpad).

Free Class: Building your own Arduino Libraries
2012/07/07 @ 8:30 pm – 10:00 pm

Ted will be teaching this Free Class on creating your own Libraries for the ever popular Arduino platform.

Join us and bask in his glory.

You are welcome to bring a laptop to follow along.

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Darlington Open House

Come join us as we celebrate the opening of our Midvale, Ut location! Festivities begin Saturday, June 16th 4:00pm-10:00pm.

Join us for Projects, Demonstrations, Hackerspace-made Root Beer (and possibly Liquid-Nitrogen Ice Cream) at our new Midvale location at the following address:
175 W. 7065 S.
Midvale, UT 84047

We’ll also have a few projects that we will be working on that the public is free to help out with, including a Fowkes Combat Wing from our very own Eric Fowkes. There will also be a number of past and current projects on display for everyone to view and ask the creators about, including:

– 3d Prusa Printer with the new Elefu control board!
– Large LED display
– Alex’s aluminum frame mini-CNC mill
– Other RC projects
– Misc. smaller projects

Come down to mingle and check out the new space. And don’t forget to bring a project to show off if you would like.

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Free Classes: June 2

Free Class: Introduction to Arduino: Hosted by The Transistor
2012/06/02 @ 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm

If you haven’t used Arduino before (or even if you have) this class should be fun. We will go over; What exactly is Arduino?, The Basics of Arduino Programming, and Basic Electronics for Arduino.

You are welcome to sit-in, but if you would like to participate, you will want to bring the following:
– An Arduino board: We recommend an Arduino UNO, however if you want to attend the Awesome-Button Class, you will want to get a Teensy.
– A laptop (we have power and WiFi) with the Arduino IDE loaded.
– A breadboard: Sparkfun offers a few, but you can get them from almost any vendor.

We will provide leds, pushbuttons, etc. for free!

Free Class: Build an Awesome Button: Hosted by Gordon Cooper
2012/06/02 @ 8:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Come on down and build an Awesome Button using Arduino, and a Staples Easy Button! Don’t worry if you have little or no experience with Arduino, the 6:30-8:00 class just before this one has you covered.

You will need to bring the following to participate in this class (you can still sit-in if you want):
Teensy ($16)
Staples Easy Button ($6)
– You will also want to bring a laptop (we have power / wifi) to program the teensy.

Email questions to deven [at] or gordon [at]

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CMKT 4 returns! Special classes open to the Public!

CMKT 4 returns to The Transistor, Provo’s Hackerspace Friday, May 25, 2012 7:00pm until 10:00pm!

Join the members of the circuit-bent rock band CMKT4 for a workshop on building your very own EconoMIC Bottle Cap Contact Microphone (from Creme DeMentia). CMKT4 will show you how to solder up a piezo-electric pickup and house it sturdily in a recycled bottle-cap housing of their own design! Stick around for a set from the band as the tool-handle dip on your freshly built contact microphone dries. Additional take-home kits and other surprises will be available, come build a mic and see and hear some of the circuit-bent instruments you’ve read about on up close. Bring your own instruments and objects to amplify!

Build an EconoMIC Bottle-Cap Contact Mic with CMKT 4 $15

Circuit-bending rock trio CMKT 4 will help students build a sturdy, working piezoelectric pickup using components and recycled materials. The band will help you learn to solder and ensure your success in building the kit. The comic book instructions will help guide you through their special process of soldering, drilling, gluing, zipping, and dipping – Voila! You are the proud owner and maker of your very own EconoMIC Bottle-Cap Contact Microphone (from Creme DeMentia). This simple transducer will create an audio signal from physical vibrations – like an electric stethoscope! Stick around for a performance from the band while the tool-handle dip dries!

Circuit-Bending 101: Build a Bending Buddy $15

Circuit-bending rock trio CMKT 4 never want you to bend circuits alone – that’s why they’ve developed The Bending Buddy. Want to learn the basics of circuit-bending but don’t know much about electronics? Building a Bending Buddy will introduce necessary skills for circuit-bending – soldering, reading a schematic, drilling, mounting components, wiring. Once you’ve built your Bending Buddy, you’ll be prepared to embark on a journey of discovery, using it to probe battery-operated circuits and divine new sounds. The comic book instructions and informational packet will help you understand broader concepts of circuit-bending – different types of bends, understanding components, building simple control circuits, bread-boarding and proto-boarding.

Build Mr. Mixer $25

Circuit-bending rock trio CMKT 4 want to introduce you to their new friend, Mr. Mixer. Mr. Mixer is a simple 4 channel passive mixer built from components and recycled materials. Students will build Mr. Mixer from comic instructions with help form the band. Mr. Mixer will allow students to mix together different audio sources to a single audio signal. The kit also introduces students to the magic of CdS or Photo Cells, which translate light into resistance. The Photocells will act as faders on the mixer, allowing students to duck sounds in and out, changing their volume with light!


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New Web Server

Please beer with us as we switch servers. So far it looks like we have broken the calendar. Ooops.

We’ll fix it soon. :)

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Congratulations Cymon

Tinkercad Announces the MakerBot Chess Challenge

“With over 180 submissions, we have selected the winner of the Tinkercad & MakerBot Chess Challenge! CONGRATULATIONS Joseph Larson! Your Action Chess Set and love for designin’, teaching and makin’ has won you a MakerBot Replicator! Bask in all the greatness that is 3D printing! Joseph’s Action Chess Set managed to WOW in so many ways. Instead of explaining them to you, take a look for yourself!”

Congratulations from everyone here at The Transistor. We can’t wait to print an Action Chess set of our own!

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