This past Wednesday was the inaugural meeting of the Hartford hackster.io meetup group. The meeting, courtesy of group owner and hackster.io ambassador Paul Langdon, was in an awesome industrial loft/incubator/co-working space called reSET near downtown Hartford.
hackster.io, based in San Francisco, is a pretty cool concept - part hardware meetup organization, part hardware-sharing library. So far there are about a hundred meetup groups throughout the U.S. (globe?), and they supply the individual groups with hardware like Intel Edison's, Arduino's, Amazon Echo's, etc. with the goal of members taking the hardware home, building something with it, then passing the hardware along to others in the group.
The website is similar to Instructables, but with a cleaner UI and easier way of progressing through the project tutorials in my opinion. Projects posted to the site list all steps on the same page, which is much easier to navigate through than having to jump pages on Instructables' site. It's also really easy to favorite projects and follow other makers.
The items I got to take home this month are the Freedom Development Board and the Arduino MKR1000. Really stoked on the MKR1000 as it has built-in Wifi connectivity and a Li-Po charging circuit, so the thing charges itself when plugged into power. No plans as of yet for what I'll be doing with the boards, but I'll be making a post with whatever I do come up with.
There's an upcoming Amazon Alexa skills competition that I'll be competing in as well and will be posting on the results.