Sector67 Launches Capital Campaign

Sector67 has raised $450,000 of their $600,000 capital campaign goal that will go towards building a new home in downtown Madison. But Sector67 still needs your help!

The non-profit organization, which recently celebrated their 6-year anniversary, is a community hackerspace where entrepreneurs are empowered to build, learn, and help each other innovate. Some of the many resources provided at Sector67 include a wood shop, 3D printers, laser cutters, metal fabrication tools, office space, and much more.

The funding campaign will ensure that Sector67 remains a staple in the Madison entrepreneurial community for years to come. Donors for the campaign include Madison Community Foundation, University Research Park, Madison Kipp, Stoughton Trailer, IEEE Entrepreneurs, Consultants Network, and many individual donors too.

Sector67 hopes to raise another $150,000 to complete the campaign and finish building their new 15,000 square foot space at 56 Corry Street. If you would like to contribute, you can do so here!

Build Madison Returns November 21-22

buildmadisonlogo_150Build Madison is back! Come join us for at the 6th annual hackathon event coordinated by Capital Entrepreneurs and Sector67. The event, which will be hosted at Sector67, gives entrepreneurs an awesome opportunity to get going on that project you have been putting off for too long.

The 24 hour community create-a-thon will start Saturday, November 21st, at 11:00 am and will go through the night and into the early ours of Sunday morning. Come ready with a short pitch (<1 minute) if you have an idea you want to start working on. If you do not have a specific project in mind, then you can come collaborate with others and spend the next 24 hours helping to make an idea come to reality. At the end of the event, we will come together for short project presentations as well as feedback sessions. This event is FREE and is open to anyone who wants to tap into their entrepreneurial ambitions. We encourage participation from students, software developers, artists, hackers, business minded people, engineers, and anyone else who wants to get involved!

Please register at the Build Madison Website if you want to attend, and we hope to see you there!

Sector 67 is located at 2100 Winnebago St. Madison, WI 53704

Madison Wayward Nation Episode Airs

WAYWARD_NIGHT-LOGO-16-9-0Last summer the Wayward Nation film crew traveled the country documenting the “New American Dream“. They stopped for a few days of adventure in Madison, where they spent time at Sector67 and PerBlue. You can check out the full season of episodes on Ora TV.

The full episode (#9 – “The New American Dream is Hacked”) is available here. An additional interview with Sector67 founder Chris Meyer is available here, and a video game pitch session is available here.

Build Madison returns November 8-9, 2014

buildmadisonlogoWe’re excited to announce the 5th annual Build Madison event coordinated by Capital Entrepreneurs and hosted at Sector67. Build Madison is a 24 hour hackathon that gives you the opportunity to set aside some time over the weekend to finally get to that project you’ve been thinking about for a long time!

The weekend starts out on Saturday, November 8th, at noon, when we’ll host short (<1 minute) pitches from anyone who has a project they're contemplating working on. This will allow people who don't have their own project to work on to collaborate with others; and also to get a general idea of the kinds of projects to expect for the next 24 hours. After that, you can spend the next 24 hours working with others or on your own project, and when noon on Sunday swings around we'll have short project presentations and/or sharing of lessons learned (aka: why my project didn't quite get done in time!). That's as simple as it is - take the 24 hour period as seriously or as inquisitively as you'd like. In the past, projects have varied from very sophisticated to very basic, software to hardware, art to engineering - so don't feel like your concept isn't going to fit in - it will. This is a FREE event. Please register at the Build Madison website to attend.

build-madison-2013-pitchesWho: Anyone interested
What: 24 hackathon
Where: Sector67 – 2100 Winnebago St, Madison, WI – short ride on your bicycle, hop on the bus, or take advantage of parking in front of the building for your car
When: November 8th at noon through the 9th, with project presentations starting at 11AM on the 9th
Why: A great excuse to focus on a project for a weekend and meet with other interesting folks too

Check out the prior project summaries here.

Madison Sewing Studio Opens

Madison-Sewing-StudioThe Madison Sewing Studio held it’s grand opening, as well as an all day ‘Swatch-a-thon’ last weekend to great success. The events kicked off Friday night with an open house, featuring sewing demonstrations, music, and more. Saturday’s event, the Swatch-a-thon, was a sewing/creating marathon where participants used swatches donated by area stores to create a design over the course of the day.

The Madison Sewing Studio, located inside Sector67, is a community workspace that allows users access to a variety of sewing equipment, including industrial-grade machines. It’s also a great space for people interested in the textile arts to network with others in the field. In addition, the space will offer classes on several different types of sewing and sewing projects.

Co-organizers Melissa Behrens and and Maggie Welsh have been hard at work setting up the space and getting it ready for use since November. With the space now open, we are looking forward to a variety exciting sewing classes and events.

BlueTipz Featured in Journal Sentinel

bluetipz-logoThe ice fishing angler’s new best friend BlueTipz was recently featured in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. BlueTipz is a wireless transmitter that sends an alert to your smartphone when you have a fish on your ice fishing tip-up. Invented by Bob Baddeley and Brad Zdroik, BlueTipz brings high tech to an industry that has changed little in decades. The devices are assembled at Sector67.

For more, read the full Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article here.

Build Madison Recap

buildmadisonlogobuild-madison-2013-pitchesSector67 hosted the 4th annual Build Madison on November 23-24th, 2013. This event is an excuse to spend 24 hours straight working on a project of any type, and we saw a ton of interesting ideas this year.

Things kick off with quick (<1 minute) pitches on projects and ideas that people might be interested in working on. We heard from a variety of project ideas, everything from making soap, to flying quadcopters, to instrumenting baseball bats, and getting started on Raspberry Pi projects and Arduino ideas. Overall it was a great event, with a ton of people sticking around overnight to push hard on their projects and make some significant progress. Thanks everyone for coming, we look forward to next year! Check out more pictures and project details here.

Build Madison Returns November 23rd!

buildmadisonlogoThe 2013 Build Madison will be held Saturday, November 23 at Sector67. This will be the 4th iteration of the Build Madison “Community Create-a-thon” event since it started in 2011.

Come together to show off and build the talent of Madison’s community while taking real products from concept to completion in just 24 hours. Meet great people, learn new skills, and have a great time. Check out the Live Blog from the 2012 event here.

The event format will be similar to the previous events: idea pitches start at 2 PM Saturday, followed by team formation and open build time throughout the day and night. Then project presentations start Sunday at noon (public welcome for the presentations).

If you have an idea you’ve been wanting to make into reality- pitch it! A number of teams in the past have gone on to successful launch; take advantage of the experienced and talented crowd to get the team and support you need. Projects are expected to span from arts and crafts to software, hardware, electronics, and more.

For more information, past Build Madison recaps, and to register (it’s free!) go here.


Madison Magazine M List Honorees Announced

Nov-M-ListLogoMadison’s burgeoning tech and startup scene is prominently featured on this month’s cover story of Madison Magazine. The M List recognizes fifty-three entrepreneurs and technologists who’ve launched or grown their businesses this year in an emerging and exciting high-technology sector. The inaugural M List recognizes many of the people in the startup ecosystem, nearly all of whom are involved in the Capital Entrepreneurs community.

madison-magazine-NovCover_WebTopping off the list were People of the Year Chris Meyer of Sector67 and Heather Wentler of Fractal. The article also highlights some of the projects in the works to create twenty-first-century lifestyles through technology, workspaces and community gathering spots.

The M List announcement coincided with a series of events on October 24, which included a breakfast reception, Startup Crawl, and evening keynote featuring South by Southwest Interactive Director Hugh Forrest. Read more and see the full M List here.

Sector67 Takes Top Spot at NYC Maker Faire

sector67_1-300x225Sector67 traveled to NYC for the 2013 Maker Faire to participate in the final Powerwheel Racing Series race of the season. Though they are called the world series, the participants were a motley crew of hackerspaces from mostly the midwest and east coast. Taking place over two days, the event had 3 sprint races the first day of 25 laps each, and the second day was a 75 minute endurance race, where teams must change drivers every 15 minutes and the goal is to keep the car running as long as possible.

Sector67's Fauxrarri and Lamebourghini
Sector67’s Fauxrarri and Lamebourghini Powerwheel cars in action.
Sector67 brought two cars; the Fauxrarri, which has won every race it’s been in, and a new entrant, the Lamebourghini, which was built the night before and checked onto a plane to make it to NYC. Getting Lamebourghini running was a challenge, and involved scavenging parts from bicycles and friendly other teams, but ultimately it was able to run two races. Fauxrarri, driven primarily by Karen Corbeill, won every race handily.

In the end, good fun was had by all.

Thanks to Sector67’s Bob Baddeley for recapping the event.

StartingBlock Madison Announced

startingblock-madison-buildingA startup hub in downtown Madison that will be anchored by Sector67 and gener8tor has just been announced. StartingBlock Madison’s goal is to create a centralized location for the Madison region’s entrepreneurial activities. The facility will provide Madison-based startups with affordable, flexible office and co-working space, accelerator support, peer and mentoring resources, education and training, and community building activities that will make the entrepreneurial community more accessible.

Leaders from the Capital Entrepreneurs community have been closely involved in shaping the project, and have also been working with leaders from the civic and broader business community. The project will create up to 90,000 sqft of space in the Capitol East District dedicated to early stage and growth companies. StartingBlock Madison’s facility will provide:

  • A permanent home for Sector67, Madison’s successful hackerspace/prototyping center for next-generation manufacturing technologies;
  • A location for gener8tor, a startup accelerator that provides expertise, mentorship, and capital through a 12-week intensive curriculum;
  • Subsidized office space with short-term leases and flexibility for young startups;
  • Quality at-market office space for high growth companies;
  • A healthcare IT incubator to support the growing number of healthcare IT startups;
  • Space for other entrepreneurial resources, such as funders, investors, law firms, and other professional service providers; and
  • Community and auditorium space for Capital Entrepreneurs and other entrepreneurial activities and events.

Based on a survey of Capital Entrepreneurs companies, Madison startups want to be co-located near other startups in the downtown area. They also value having an abundance of “third spaces” and people nearby beyond the walls of their office. The vibrant urban neighborhood around the StartingBlock site with its many restaurants, coffee shops, bars, and diverse housing options made it a great fit for this project. The surrounding area also holds a lot of growth potential to develop into a strong startup, tech, and creative district.

This project builds on the success of other business incubators already in the neighborhood, and took inspiration from other successful projects from around the country such as Chicago’s 1871. Check out articles on StartingBlock Madison in the Wisconsin State Journal, Isthmus, NBC15, and on Nibletz.

Madison Coworking Featured in Wisconsin State Journal

100state-logohorizon-logo2The growing coworking movement in Madison was featured in the Wisconsin State Journal. Coworking in Madison has continued to gain steam, with existing coworking spaces expanding and new ones forming. The article focuses extensively on the role coworking plays in the startup community, why the spaces are so valuable, and also highlights some of the companies currently working out of spaces.

Read the full article here.

Sector67 Featured on Wisconsin Public Radio

sector67_1-300x225The Wisconsin hackerspace movement was recently featured on the 45 North with Anne Strainchamps radio show on Wisconsin Public Radio. The segment included Chris Meyer of Madison’s Sector67 and James Carlson of Milwaukee’s Bucketworks. The hackerspace movement, as well as the background and some of the ongoing projects at the local spaces, were highlighted. There are now at least 300 functioning hackerspaces nationally, up from only around a dozen just 5 years ago.

To listen to the full segment, go here.

Sector67 Offers ‘Summer Makerships”

sector67_1-300x225Sector67 is offering a small number of youth ‘Makerships’ this Summer. A ‘Makership’ gives students a 3 month opportunity to use Sector67 to complete a project of their choosing. It includes free membership, $100 for project materials, as well as a mentor to help them complete their project.

Any project is eligible, as long as it involves making something (software, crafts, electronics, mechanics, etc). Sector67 is accepting applications until June 1, and this program is only available to students under 18 years of age. For more information and to apply, go here.

Madison Coworking Movement Highlighted

horizon-logo2The coworking movement in Madison is alive and well, and has seen much activity recently. The Isthmus covered much of what is going on in a recent article on how new coworking space bolsters Madison’s tech scene.

Much of this momentum started with the Horizon Coworking pilot (hosted by Murfie), which began less than 2 years ago. A handful of other coworking spaces have emerged, and there are even bolder plans in the works. Also featured were coworking spaces hosted by Bendyworks and Sector67. Each coworking space offers a different environment and vibe, but ultimately facilitates interaction and community building among its members. Checkout the full article here.

Sector67 Goes to (near) Space

Apollo67, a group from the Sector67 hackerspace, had their third near-space launch this weekend. This project is the result of a contest among other hackerspaces called Hackerspaces In Space, whose purpose is to create a set of instructions and an example for schools to use as a model to do their own near-space experimentation. The goal is clear instruction, simple design, and low cost.

The successful launch began near Platteville, landed east of Madison near Waterloo, and lasted 2.5 hours. The craft carried a handful of electronics, including cameras and a GPS. Checkout the flight video from the onboard camera here (it’s awesome), and read their full launch recap post here.

Innovation Video Features CE Companies

The UW-Madison College of Engineering just released their 2012 Annual Report video. The video highlights innovators with ties to UW – including Capital Entrepreneurs members Justin Beck of PerBlue and Chris Meyer of Sector67. UW-Madison is recognizing 2012-13 as the Year of Innovation, offering a chance to reflect on what this concept means to the university and to society. With $136 million in research and more than 100 patent disclosures annually, the College of Engineering Has worked to cultivate innovation as a standard operating procedure in our classrooms and labs.

Sector67 Hosts 3D Printing Camp

Sector67 is hosting the Wisconsin 3D Printing Camp on Saturday (July 21). The free “unconference” will focus on the emerging technology of 3D printing and bring together 3D printing enthusiasts from across the US. Participants who own 3D printers, or who have created cool products using them, are encouraged to bring them. And the unconference welcomes anyone else to join. Come for the whole day, or just part. More information is available here.

Capital Entrepreneurs Members Featured at EDC Meeting

The Madison Economic Development Committee got a glimpse into the burgeoning Madison startup scene and heard the “State of the Startup” last night. The Madison EDC meeting was devoted entirely to a discussion on “Building Madison’s Tech Startup Community” and featured a panel of Capital Entrepreneurs members Chris Meyer (Sector67), Brad Grzesiak (Bendyworks), Preston Austin (Murfie), Forrest Woolworth (PerBlue), and Bryan Chan (SupraNet).

The panel highlighted many of the great things already happening in the Madison startup community, and outlined roles the city could play to make it even better. Read more about the meeting here.

CE Outreach @ Platteville

The UW-Platteville Entrepreneurship Program is hosting Capital Entrepreneurs members Justin Beck and Forrest Woolworth of PerBlue, Chris Meyer of Sector67, and Mike Fenchel of 7Cees this week for “Meet ‘n Eat with an Entrepreneur.” The event brings together young entrepreneurs to speak about their journeys as business owners and what it takes to put ideas in motion.

We’ll be participating one-on-one with students to discuss the success and challenges we face every day as entrepreneurs. After dinner, students team up to brainstorm new business ideas, and then give 2 minute pitches to Justin and Chris.

The event is Wednesday, October 19th from 5 until 8PM. Dinner is free for UW-Platteville students, and will be held at Ullsvik Hall in the Nohr Gallery. Registration is open for students, but space is limited.