When I attended the Mozilla Festival last November, I saw an unusual workshop: you had to "hack" a space to make it the ideal place to work, create, innovate, in short, change the world. Initially, you had a plan of an empty space and add parts, equipment, furniture, arrange it to fit your needs. It was then possible to create the office of our dreams with modeling clay. The final step was to share plans, to create a debate around what should be a workspace. The project was called "Hack-A-Space".http://www.mozilla.org/en/about/mozilla-spaces/
Recently, Mozilla launched a web page named Mozilla Spaces:
Mozilla Spaces are open working environments where Mozillians can hack, code, design, research, create, engage and contribute to building a brighter future for the Web. Keep reading to learn more or check out the map above for info on specific locations.
And I don't know why, but this project remind me about the Mozilla Festival's workshop. As this workshop suggested, I share my version of Mozilla Space "hacked", in Paris' sauce, of course
- In downtown, close from a metro station: it must be conveniently accessible.
- Unlimited Internet, high availability, unfiltered, uncensored: it sounds trivial, but nothing more irritating than a cut Internet during a meeting or when you're researching for a project. Similarly, nothing more boring than blocked ports when we want access to Jabber to contact people, for example.
- Comfortable desks, in relatively large quantities, in a calm environment: it sounds trivial again, but nothing more annoying than a creaky chair or an unsteady desk. Small offices isolated must be added, where it may be possible to isolate themselves to think or to phone.
- A conference room: to make events more or less public, conferences, demos, lessons, playing geeks in short.
- A kitchen and a relaxation area: we all know the coffee machine's phenomenon that solves bugs, or at least is useful to disconnect and socialize 5 min.
- Accessibility to all: triviality again, but nobody thinks about it. In the same way that web integrators often forget the integration of accessibility, we often forget that a work place must be accessible for a wheelchair.
- An on-line forum, dedicated to the Space: to keep in touch afterwards, there is no better way than the Web. For keeping exchanges about past events, announcing next ones, requesting emergency assistance, etc. A instant channel and a recording one is the perfect combo (for example, IRC + wiki).
- A community manager: to organize life in this kind of place, an office manager is not enough. It needs someone close to communities, capable of directing newcomers, organizing events (geek or not geek), speaking for Mozilla, linking projects to the Space.
Imagine that this co-working space dedicated to the Web is available in Paris! Just a quick scenario. I am bringing a project. It may be an association project, an software's idea, even a project to create a business, why not? I'm home alone, and do not necessarily like to work at my place. Also, I did not necessarily have all the skills for my project. I seek a place where I'm pretty sure of finding people to help me, or even to take part in the project, if it tells them. I see this kind of spaces, where meetings are organized about documentation, code, open web, standards, [add your topic here] are organized. A beautiful dream of geek, isn't it?