GIG@35C3. Hacking Diversity at a Hacker Congress.

In December 2018, we managed to gig up rp:Accra and just a week later also 35C3. It has been an intense time – but totally worth it!

What is 35C3?

The Chaos Communication Congress is an annual conference organized by the Chaos Computer Club, Europe’s largest association of hackers. The congress features a variety of lectures and workshops on technical and political issues related to security, cryptography, privacy and online freedom of speech. The event takes place regularly at the end of the year since 1984, hence the 2018 edition is the 35th one – 35C3. With now 16,000 participants, Congress is considered one of the largest events of this kind, and it is completely self-organized.

GIG@35C5

Similar to re:publica and due to the bottom-up nature of the events, Congress is quite focused on Europe and Northern America, which is reflected in the speakers, participants and topics. We want to make sure international perspectives beyond these are represented at CCC. . Hence, GIG has been participating at CCC events the last years and trying to work with its members and CCC to support greater international representation. This year, GIG went to 35C3 with the Labmobile and Saad’s IoT project Jean Cloud. The recipe for 35C3 was: glitterstorm for #35c3 on Twitter, and rainbow lights for #weareGIG. GIG was also part of the Open Infrastructure Orbit, which was mainly built up and organized by our friends from Cadus.

Several GIGers gave talks or hosted sessions!

Lecture: The Critical Making Movement. How using critical thinking in technological practice can make a difference
Regina Sipos, Saad Chinoy and Ricardo Ruiz

Critical Thinking + Making = Critical Making. Around the world, academics and grassroots communities alike are engaging in critical making. With roots in critical design and critical engineering, etc., the point is to re-politicise making, help people understand that it needs to be more than printing cheap plastic knickknacks and can be used for activism and social innovation to improve peoples’ lives.

 

Lightning Talk: We need to tell a story better than cyberpunk
Pawel ‘alxd’ Ngei

Not every baker and schoolteacher needs to understand HTTP or assembly language, but they all should know why net neutrality is important.

 

Panel: Feminist Perspectives. Inclusive and Diverse Spaces and Communities
Moderation by Geraldine de Bastion

A variety of initiatives aims at encouraging female engagement in the hacker and maker scene. We present there some promising approaches and key learnings in a joint panel discussion.

Screenshot https://twitter.com/jasowies_o/status/1078726382501457920

 

Talk: Careables. Open Source Hardware in Health+Care
Sandra
Through Careables, maker and designer collaborate with patients and healthcare professionals to create personalized solutions and open source knowledge that will improve the lives of many patients and professionals. Accessible, comprehensive and easy to use open source hardware are being documented, collected and shared through the platform Careables.org

Meetup: Careables. Open Source Hardware in Health+Care
Sandra, Johanna, Vicy
Calling all hackers, designers, makers, carers, and healthcare professionals!
We want to discuss: What are challenges you face every day using standard tools for health and wellbeing? Do you have an idea that makes everyday life easier? How could you use your existing hackerspace to foster exchange and collaboration in health and care?
Check the notes at https://board.net/p/careables@35C3

Workshop: Nerds go Humanitarian Aid
Sebastian
A workshop to show possibilities, how and where fields of activity arise for nerds, geeks and specialists in the humanitarian field… Become operational instead of just donating money.
This Workshop showed that there is quite some interest from (Germany/Europe-based) hackers and makers to get involved in supporting not just humanitarian aid and crisis response activities, but also get more connected to the work of GIG member spaces and support them with expertise, both remotely and on site.

Talk: »Wem ist noch zu helfen« (German)
Sebastian
Global NGO Players vs. (left) grassroots groups – who decides who receives help when and how…and where does humanitarian practice degenerate into a political playing field?

Self-organized Meetup: Hacking Open Science
Johanna, Saad, Vicy
As a self-organized meetup, there is no event page. GIG relevant aspects included: decolonizing research, biohacking, open science hardware, Reviving Research & Innovation. Check the notes at board.net/p/35C3_OpenScience

 

What’s Next?

Aside from Congress, there is the Chaos Communication Camp, an “international, five-day open-air event for hackers and associated life-forms”. It takes place every 4 years, and the next one is going to happen in 2019 – probably in mid-August, the exact dates are to be announced. At the last camp in 2015, GIG collaborated with CCC to invite ten members to participate in the camp and be part of the BER Village. GIG also brought a mobile maker space in form of a tiny house trailer and contributed to several programme points, including different meetups, collaborating with Tactical Technology Collective for an Internet Security Workshop and actively participating in the BER Camp activities. In addition, Mitch Altman gave a talk on Hackerspace Design Patterns 2.0 and GIG engaged in discussion with Mitch on the question on revamping hackerspaces.org We hope to recreate this experience in 2019 and encourage you to check out camp and how to get involved! Since CCC events are non-commercial, getting sponsorship and other forms of funding is complicated, so we look forward to your creative ideas on how to fund your own and other GIGers’ travels!

 

Recommended Watchlist

Recommended further talks to watch – and speaking of watching, the movie All Creatures Welcome “a utopian documentary about the digital age” was released at Congress and can now be watched online for free.

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