The Commons Initiative at SF State

Image: Photos of SF State students

Verma Sameer's blog

National Day of Civic Hacking: Hackathon + Workshop at SF State University

We are thrilled to be hosting our third annual "National Day of Civic Hacking" at SF State. As an additional event this year, we are also hosting a "Workshop on Civic Technologies and Smart Cities". This is something new for us! We hope to build the momentum and sustain it through our students and curricula.

Join us to to collaboratively create, build, and invent new solutions using publicly-released data, code and technology to solve challenges relevant to our neighborhoods, our cities, our states and our country.

Humanitarian FOSS and the Earthquake in Nepal.

I was introduced to Free Software in 1996. It's been an interesting ride since then. We've seen several phases of re-oranizing, redefining, and leveraging the core concepts of Free Software and Open Source Software (yes, those are two different things. Similar, but different). Code is written to solve a specific problem, and then it gets used to solve a very different problem. That's the beauty of the remix that comes from FOSS. Humanitarian FOSS is an interesting nexus.

Commons Initiative: Introduction and Projects at University of Hyderabad, India

Over the Winter break, I had traveled to Hyderabad, India, where I met up with my friend and colleague Prof. Atul Negi at the School of Computer and Information Sciences, University of Hyderabad.

3D printing Open House sessions next week

We are going to run two sessions on Dec 9 and Dec 10 (Tue, Wed) 2014 to demo a 3D printer. Drop by over your lunch break and take a look at how a printer can print real objects!




The joy of Z axis

We recently got a 3D printer. What an amazing space this is! I'm told we do have some very impressive 3D printers on campus. Some of industrial strength (and an equally industrial price tag). This is different. We got a PrintrBot Jr. V2. In looking at different makes and models, this one sits in the space of not too pricey, and not too small. Additionally, PrintrBot is open source.


Continuing with the OpenStack project - Phase 2

A year ago, we had two students who worked on an OpenStack project to explore the concept of a private cloud. This experience was meant to serve as a learning experience for the students and for us to explore further work in this space. How can we introduce concepts of virtualization and cloud computing into our curriculum?

Open Source for Love, Money and Fame

Elizabeth Krumbach Joseph (@pleia2) talks about her own experiences with free and open source software, working on community and enterprise projects, the joys, the frustrations, and the difference in experiences across the board. She talks about how she got started, and what she does now. She was speaking to students in the "Managing Open Source" class at San Francisco State University (ISYS 573).

SudoMesh: An Open Source Effort to Build Community Wireless Networks

A presentation by Matt Senate and Jenny Ryan. Matt and Jenny spoke about SudoRoom, a hackerspace in Oakland, CA, where they are developing a city-wide mesh network for public use. The mesh utilizes B.A.T.M.A.N. Advanced on OpenWRT-flashed Access Points and provides a mesh protected by a VPN. More about SudoMesh at

Getting started with R

It was one of those corridor conversations a couple of months ago, that led to an introductory session on R, the statistical platform. I was chatting with Foo-nin Ho, professor in the Marketing department at SF State, when he said that some others would be interested as well.

The Fight for the Future: Talk by Prof. Ed Lee

We are thrilled to host IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law Professor Edward Lee. He will be discussing his latest book, The Fight for the Future at San Francisco State University's downtown campus on November 15. The talk is sponsored by Creative Commons and is free and open to the public.

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