Thanks to all who came! Our first meeting was a success, a relaxed environment to talk over some ideas and get to know each other, an impetus to get the ball rolling.
Here are some meeting notes:
Brin - EE degree, interested in hardware and hardware-level languages, software algorithms and best practices, might like to get into Java for the job market, interested in shared/collaborative work environment, open source hardware.
Tony - Been programming for much of his life, began on mainframes, now interested in e-commerce and web design.
Bruce - Would like to opensource the project he's working on for his job with the state of Minnesota re: concrete structural design.
Chris - Teaches HTML class with EXCO, currently web application developer. Interested in hardware, OpenGL, working on cool hardware implementations like Johnny Lee's talk here, expressed interest in iPhone apps.
Ryan - Loves python, excellent web designer / web standards guru, co-organizes this group. Interested in hardware, as well as algorithms and code optimization.
Matt - Interested in web design, already has a background in graphic design.
Evan - AI student, interested in design, photography, linux, technology, might enjoy getting into programming.
Seth - Organizer, Perl programmer at Digital River, teaches classes for excotc.org at flossclass.com, interested in learning Objective-C and iPhone apps, lower-level hardware, and better ways to facilitate and nurture collaborative and individual creativity and productivity.
(a) Open, collaborative, shared, creative workspace
We talked about an open, collaborative workspace, as a milestone to shoot for as this group progresses. This could either be backed by a co-working initiative (http://en.wikipedia.o...) or a non-profit that would provide the needed funding.
(b) Collaborative and Individual Projects:
Talked about an open source collaborative hardware project, as well as several individual projects.
I will create an account for this group at Lighthouseapp.com, a ticketing and project management web app that will allow us to start prioritizing goals, sharing info, accomplishing concrete incremental tasks, and helping each other out.
(c) Talked about Minneapolis Photo Center as a possible meeting spot once in a while, until a shared collaborative space (other than coffee shops) could emerge.
I will schedule another meetup soon, probably in the next two weeks, once I talk things through with Ryan, get projects set up on Lighthouse, and do a bit more research on possible meeting places.
Thanks again, tell your friends about us, and please stay excited about the possibilities of this group!