The First Maker Space and Tech Community For Markham, Richmond Hill, Thornhill, & Vaughan.

Open house is cancelled this week  – Wednesday April 13 – due to our members-only laser cutter class taking over the space. Ylab paid-up members are allowed to come in for whatever activity they normally do.
Ylab's laser cutter at work. What else would we cut?

Ylab’s laser cutter at work. What else would we cut?

Our last corporate event at Lenovo was such a success that we’re doing it again – and this time, Qualcomm Canada is hosting us.

Breakfast with the CEOs: Innovation and Technology in the Cloud

Come out and hear how three York Region companies have innovated to use cloud computing to create new  lines of business.These companies are building and running successful ventures on an international scale that would not be possible without the resources and technology of the cloud.Our speakers are not just users – they’ve been leaders in addressing the regulatory, security and data locationon issues with government and some of the biggest cloud suppliers.Find out how they’ve handled business, scaling, security and other issues – and join in the Q&A to get your own questions answered.ylab-event-poster-north41-with-CEOs-v4 Larry Keating – President and CEO, NPC ( )– invented and brought to market his industry’s first secure managed endpoint computing solution, changing how laptop computers are managed for business. NPC uses the cloud to secure, manage, monitor and back up laptops in a way that’s superior and cheaper than companies can manage themselves. As president and CEO of Keating Technologies he founded in 1987, Larry has brought more than $1.5 billion in technology and services to Canadians, and is a 3-time national winner of Canada’s 50 Best Managed Companies award.Anthony R. Pearlman – President and COO, Intertainment Media ( ). When some of the biggest names in entertainment hold their special events, Intertainment Media is there. Through their divisions and various company investments, they manage the dynamic web presence and ensure it can scale to meet the demand. They syndicate live content to millions of users globally. They’re enabling cloud-based ventures like Yappn for real-time e-commerce translation services. Anthony has over 25 years of hands-on technology experience from co-founding and running   early stage late 90’s e-commerce start-ups all the way to the C-suite in large public enterprises. RJ Juneau – CEO and Founder, Maxxian( Maxxian provides world-leading technology for managing and securing millions of video set-tops and Internet access devices for cable operators from Alaska to the coast of South America. They use the same virtualisation and system management technology used by cloud providers to manage systems at their customer sites to reduce their costs, speed deployments and increase reliability and flexibility. RJ’s been at the leading/bleeding edge of technology for over 30 years in banking and trading systems, supercomputing, MPEG video and other fun things.  IT’S IN MARKHAM, SO THERE’S LOTS OF FREE PARKING!Full details here on Eventbrite.Get your registrations in now – the Qualcomm space is smaller than Lenovo’s, so seating is limited.
All great announcements should be in latin.(*) On Monday night we took delivery of our brand spanking new laser cutter – a monstrous 90W unit with a 24″ x 36″cutting surface.
OK, it's a big giant laser. Now what do we do with it?

OK, it’s a big giant laser. Now what do we do with it?

At least he didn't take a selfie with it.

You can feel the excitement. At least he didn’t take a selfie with it.

Now comes the hard part – figuring how to use the infernal contraption. We’ll be working out all the rules and procedures and safety issues, and setting up a formal class.
Ylab scientists trying to figure out how to make it work.

Ylab scientists (not evil… yet…) deciphering complex instructions

Last night we worked feverishly to get our first design cut.
What will we cut out first? Duh!

What will we cut out first? Duh!

Just made it by closing time!
Ylab - a proud part of the community since 2015.

Ylab – a proud part of the community since 2015.

(*) If you actually speak latin… yeah, Habemus lux gladius is not the greatest translation. But it fits nicely in a headline. If you really want to get picky about it, Habemus cultellum excitata per lucem is a better description. Habemus lux gladius could also be used to describe a light sabre. Remember: Google translate is your friend.
Update Jan 30 2016: a photo album has just been posted on facebook, and snapd Markham posted about us here.Our Technology Enablers night was a huge success with almost 80 people in attendance. We went all corporate, and there were enough suits and well-dressed people to make it… well, kinda weird for a ylab event.  
Yes, we really did take over Lenovo's space.

Yes, we really did take over Lenovo’s space.

Nevertheless, it went off without a hitch – if you don’t consider way more registrations than expected and scrambling for more chairs and food a” hitch”. Why so many attendess? #FREEPARKING seemed to be our meme for the night. Our panelists – Mehdi Sharifi from Lumicision, Brett Hagman from Arduino and Rogue Robotics, John Frangella  from Proto3000 and Peter Koster from Qualcomm were phenomenal. We’ve got to know some of them because they’re good friends of ylab, and it was even better to hear their stories and thoughts on so many topics. It was all expertly handled by our panel moderator Karen Mortfield from the DDO. Her experience in crisis communications clearly qualifies her for hosting a ylab event.
Panelists Mehdi, Brett, John and Peter, and moderator Karen

Panelists Mehdi, Brett, John and Peter, and moderator Karen

Big thanks to
  • Lenovo Canada for hosting the event and  letting ylab run amock in their amazing new space. Nothing was too much trouble for  Stefan, Kathleen, Kevin and David.
  • The growing cast of ylab members – Brooke on sound, Pek as announcer, Richard, Lucian, Ross and so many others for setup/teardown, Ruby for the food; and other volunteers like Murray and Andrea for registration duties.
  • Startup York, Coffee and Code and others for helping get the word out.
  • Our good friends at North of 41 for inspiring us and helping us in so many ways to get it organised.
And, most of all, we appreciate everyone who attended. We’re overwhelmed by  the community support.
North of 41's Jeff, some guy who keeps showing up in our pictures, Karen, and Lenovo's Stefan Bockhop.

North of 41’s Jeff Musson, some guy who keeps showing up in our pictures, Karen, and Lenovo’s Stefan Bockhop.

Second Update Jan 30 2016:Thank you attendees for all the positive feedback. The less-technically inclined business people who attended said it was a lot of fun, but some stuff was over their head. So it was perfect! Pictures above in the original post from ylab’s Pek. Pictures below from the facebook album courtesy of photographer Ara Mahda.IMG_4369 (1024x635) IMG_4365 (1024x642)
BATTLEBOTS! Ylab’s monthly Robotycs evening is back with a vengeance on Wednesday January 27. This month’s Robot Talk features battlebot veteran Ramy Gattas. Ramy hosted our first Robotycs events at Logics Academy last year. It’s a privilege to have join us at the DDO for the evening.YLab Robotics LogoRamy will be sharing his adventures in building and participating on the University of Toronto Team entry in the Robogames competitions in great places like San Mateo, California.
Not a robot. But he broke some.

Not a robot. Breaks other people’s robots.

You can check out some of the mayhem his team wreaked on their opponents here and here. As always, bring your own robotic creation for Show and Tell time, continue work on your toy hack, get some help and help some others. Ross has been advancing his own creations with a Raspberry Pi board and Python code, and is eager to share what he’s learned.
We kicked off 2016 with our first member-only nights, and the place has been buzzing.  If yesterday evening (Monday Jan 18) is any indication of things to come, it’s going to be an amazing year. The activities going on in all corners of the space were like a microcosm of the events we ran last year. What were we up to?
  •  DDO’s Mike helped sort out some hand-held ham radio configuration
  • Lucian helped reload a home router with open source Gargoyle software to torture kids with parental controls, get free DNS, and and set up remote VPN acces.
  • 3D design course materials being developed by Richard and were tested on human guinea pig and new member Brooke… with a focus on the new light sabre design.
  • Ross worked and demo’d his latest remote-control robot software… now featuring Python code.
  •  Pek and Jay worked the  second 3D printer and its controller PC to augment the persnickety rep-rap printer.
So busy, in fact, that nobody got around to taking pictures. For those who have not been there for a while… the place keeps getting better. Fridge… hand tools… soldering equipment… storage… big workbench you can hammer on… and we’ve ordered a laser cutter!Stay tuned for more details… and come out and join the fun.
Monday January 4 was our first member-only night of 2016. We formally welcomed as new members ylab regulars Brooke and Jay . That’s a polite way of saying that they each gave us a cheque. We need to work out some kind of formal ceremony. Maybe something with a light sabre. Any volunteers to dress up as Princess Leia with the cinnamon bun hair-do? We took delivery of a big workbench, some cabinets, and a refreshment fridge. Jay made great progress with the Rep-Rap 3D printer, and light-saber engineering continued. It was all made easier and more pleasant by the work some volunteers did over the holidays. More  clean-up. The second metal press has been removed. And a computer rack has appeared. More tools and equipment are trickling in. Soldering irons ordered and arriving Any Day Now. Internet connection is running reliably. The technical crew has been reviewing laser cutter specs and haggling with suppliers. We’re down to the final candidates. Everything was slowed down by the vendors being AWOL over the holidays.Mondays member-only nights and Wednesday Open House nights are now scheduled on the ylab site, and be sure to check out the  great new banner picture from Avery. We’ll be adding the Open House nights to EventBrite. We’re working on how to get the meetup calendar up on the ylab web page. Lots more in the works. Stay tuned…