Category: Meetings

Saturday, March 5th

1 P.M. – 3 P.M.

TVCOG Kitchen and Lounge

Over the past 20 years, the homebrew revolution has completely changed the course of beer
drinking in America. Where once a small number of nearly identical beers of very simple, light
character dominated, now drinkers have literally thousands of choices with a wide range of flavors,
textures and recipes.

Homebrewing is an exciting hobby that can range from simple and inexpensive
to wildly complex and capital intensive. Recipes can be bought pre-packaged, as raw materials, or
anywhere in between. Beer is now something *anyone* can hack, and members of the Tech Valley Center Of Gravity have expressed strong interest in joining the homebrew movement.

This Pod will be an informal gathering open to everyone from neophyte to brewmaster, where we can talk, learn, brew, and sample together. We need to inventory and clean our equipment, there will be a simple-recipe brew started, and we’ll start planning for future activities. It is a free event, but donations to the cause are always welcome!


We’re two weeks away from our first major Hackathon, and we already have 80 hackers registered! If you’re interested in learning more about it, and registering for the event, please check out the IoT Hackathon nexus at

We are going to start having daily updates to the event information page, and also tweets as the event draws near, so now is a good time to follow us on Twitter @TVCOG

There are several topics in the discourse forums that are soliciting feedback from the community, including posts on removing some clutter from the makerspace, forming groups in different zones of operations to manage and maintain equipment, and feedback on our web presence. Jump in! You can join Discourse at

Upcoming Events

A complete list of events is on our calendar, but I wanted to point out a few near-term highlights:

  • General Meeting – Tues, Jan 19th 7pm – 8pm: Robert Tait will share information from his trip to CES, and we’ll discuss Hackathon prep.
  • 3D Printing Syndicate – Thurs, Jan 21st – 6pm – 9pm: Hang out with the largest 3D printing meetup in the Capitol Region!
  • Intro To Laser Cutting & Engraving – Friday, Jan 22nd – 7pm – 10pm: Learn how to use Big Red for laser cutting & engraving. This class has sold out the last 3 times it was offered, so register now at

Just a quick reminder that we have our December General Meeting on Tuesday, Dec 15th starting at 7pm! Bring some holiday snacks to share and enjoy:

  • Discussion on the upcoming hackathons of 2016!
  • An overview of the hover bike project Will Crowder is working on
  • More exciting news on upcoming events!

In addition to the items above, we’ll also be talking about the revised volunteer training and get feedback on proposed changes to how volunteering works. Hope to see you there!


Ok, maybe that’s a good description for life in the second week of December as a general principle, but it is definitely true that we have a fantastic assortment of opportunities this week, from making & coding to 3D design and marketing… there is something for everyone here at the Tech Valley Center of Gravity! In addition to our usual Social Night (Tuesday, Dec 8th starting at 6:30pm), here is a quick summary of the awesome on-deck:

  • Homeschool littleBits Workshop – Wednesday, Dec 9th, 1:30 – 3:30pm: A great opportunity for homeschooled kids to learn how to create and design with littleBits, a small library of easy-to-use electronic building blocks that snap together with magnets. Registration is required through Eventbrite at and there are a limited number of seats (only two left as of this writing).
  • Tech Valley Solidworks Users Group – Wednesday, Dec 9th, 5:30pm – 8:30pm: Presentations and networking on Solidworks, a leading 3D CAD and Simulation tool. Hosted in the SEFCU Community Room at the TVCOG. Please RSVP to so they have enough food and prizes!
  • Tech Valley Game Space Social Night – Wednesday, Dec 9th, 6pm – 9pm: Fun time talking about games, development and cool projects. Hosted in the TVCOG main hall. 
  • Photoshop 1 – Out of the Gate – Wednesday, Dec 9th, 6:30pm – 8pm. Learn the basics of photoshop that will form the foundation for enthusiasts and pro-users going forward. Hosted in the Board Room at the TVCOG, requires registration through Eventbrite at
  • Entrepreneur REBOOT Session – BRAND – Friday, Dec 11th, 12pm – 2pm. Part of the monthly Entrepreneur REBOOT series offered by the Capital Region Chamber of Commerce. This session is on BRAND with a real group of power players in the industry…Kelly McMurray from 2Communique, Jake Dumesnil and Tom Nardacci from Gramercy, and Duncan Crary of Duncan Crary Communications. This workshop is free to boot camp graduates and members of TVCOG. Please RSVP by emailing Janet at
  • Tech Valley Game Space: Ludum Dare 34 – Friday, Dec 11th – 7:30pm – Monday, Dec 14th, 10:30pm: The largest online game jam where participants race against time to create a game in 72 hours or less! TVGS will be working through the weekend, offering team building exercises and motivation, camaraderie and inspiration for newcomers and experienced alike to participate. Check out the calendar listing for full details!
  • THINQubator: Kids Night Out – Saturday, Dec 12th 5:30pm – 9:30pm: This event is Holiday themed. Make decorations on the laser cutter, 3D printer, with LEDs, or wood. Registration is required, and you can register through:
  • Holiday Gift Workshop: Snowman! – Saturday, Dec 12th, 6pm – 10pm: How to make a 3D printed snowman ornament. This event requires registration at
  • Holiday Gift Workshop Series – Jewelry Making – Sunday, Dec 13th, 6pm -10pm: This event is taught by Irene Purificato and will feature making jewelry as a holiday gift. Registration is required for this event through

WHEW! As usual, to learn more about the above events and ones further in the future, please consult our calendar at

Please note that our next General Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Dec 15th from 6pm – 8pm!

This past week we had our SPECTRVM Services launch event, and we are pleased to announce the following organizations (in alphabetical order) are Charter Members of SPECTRVM:

  • All Over Albany – Content Creation, Online Advertising, Media Sponsorships & Strategies
  • Amala Consulting – Grant Writing
  • Capital Region Chamber – Entrepreneurship boot camps, networking and government relations and advocacy
  • Dalle Accounting and Cash Management – Financial services and reporting, including taxes, payroll and regulatory filings. 
  • Duncan Crary – Publicity, Communications and Event Consultant
  • Koppett – Leadership and Team development, Executive and Presentation Coaching, Meeting facilitation
  • One Hudson – Engages entrepreneurs and organizations exploit and develop disruptive technologies
  • Pinnacle Human Resources – Hiring, Recruiting and Developing Human Resources 
  • Saratoga National – Business Banking and Finance
  • Schwartz Heslin Group – Mergers, acquisitions, capital raising, business valuation, and other strategic and corporate finance matters
  • Tech Valley Innovation Research – Technology prototyping and consulting

If you missed the event and you want to register as an entrepreneur or company interested support from SPECTRVM Services, please send an e-mail to Tom Tongue ( and we will get you set up!

One of the best things from being a part of the Tech Valley Center of Gravity is seeing all of the creative and entrepreneurial endeavors that are going on in the Capital Region. This week is a great example, with two great events you’re going to want to come down for:

  • Pitch Night – Tuesday, Nov 17th from 6pm – 9pm: Five minute pitches by teams or companies looking to get feedback on their product or idea, especially with regard to selling to global markets. This event is held with Autonomy Distributors, and is a repeat of last years successful event.
  • AlgoRave 0x00 – Friday, Nov 20th from 8pm – 11pm: Our first music event! Join us for an evening of live audio-visual performance mixing electro-acoustic improvisation with live-coded sound and image.

Please see our web site calendar for complete descriptions at:

In addition to the two events above, theres plenty of other exciting events and meetings this week at the TVCOG:

  • Tech Valley Game Space – Lesson Night: How to make games with RPG Maker VX Ace – Thursday, Nov 19th 6pm – 9pm in SEFCU Community Room: Drawing upon the love of the classic 16-bit RPGs of yesteryear, Enterbrain’s RPG Maker allows anyone to easily create the type of colorful tile-based RPGs made popular by games such as Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest. Whether you’re a gamer, hobbyist or professional, RPG Maker is simple enough for a novice and powerful enough for an expert developer.
  • 3D Printing Syndicate of Albany – Thursday, Nov 19th 6pm – 9pm in the Main Hall: Monthly meetup of 3D Printing Enthusiasts – come meet, share tech and experience and find out about new projects and software.
  • MakerFront i3PRO Build Event – Saturday, Nov 21st from 10:00 am – 8:00 pm: Come build your i3PRO with it’s engineer! If you recently purchased an i3PRO from MakerFront, but you haven’t built it yet, this is a great opportunity to build it with others and get some pro help.

Start-ups and small businesses share a common conundrum: how to find professional resources address all the organizational functions needed to succeed! We have developed SPECTRVM Services, a curated selection of service providers that understand the unique challenges that start-ups and small businesses face, and can scale their service offerings to meet those needs. We have selected providers for accounting, payroll, legal counsel (intellectual property and corporate), human resource, marketing, distribution, management, and investment. More information on SPECTRVM is available at

On Thursday, Nov 12th, from 5pm – 7pm we are hosting a launch event to introduce SPECTRVM to the Capital Region entrepreneurial community. We’ll have an overview of the SPECTRVM service and upcoming entrepreneurship events, and an opportunity to meet with providers and learn more about the services they provide.

Please RSVP through Eventbrite at and join us at the Tech Valley Center of Gravity, located at 30 3rd Street in Troy!

This weekend is the Mini Maker Faire being held at Barnes & Noble in Colonie Center, and we have a big role in providing content for the event. Attached is a schedule of the events going on all weekend long at the Mini Maker Faire, please check it out and come have some fun! In addition, if you happen to be buying books in the next few days, please consider using the attached voucher to have a portion of the proceeds go to supporting the Tech Valley Center of Gravity! The voucher is good through Wednesday, November 11th, and you can show it to them from your phone if you want to skip printing it out.

If you want to help staff the booth at the Mini Maker Faire, please contact Erica Iannotti ( or Tom Tongue ( Hope to see you there!

Voucher: 11214709_10208123406473057_3348239685102962585_n

Barnes Noble Mini Maker Faire Schedule of Events

Coming this Tuesday (Oct 27th) is our monthly General Meeting, starting at 7pm. We’re holding the election for the fifth seat on the Board of Directors, if you know someone who wants to run for the board, please consult the wiki for our bylaws regarding qualifications and make sure they send the President a letter of intent before the meeting. We’ll also have a presentation from Robert Hirsch on the vehicle he built with other COG members for the Enchanted City event this past month. We’ll also have several important announcements, and a surprise presentation at the end. 

COME FOR THE MEETING, STAY TO CARVE PUMPKINS! Jayme and Jameel are bringing their pumpkin carving tools, so you can Bring Your Own Pumpkin, Carve it, and most importantly, TAKE YOUR PUMPKIN HOME AGAIN. 🙂 Lots of fun, see you Tuesday!!

Just a quick reminder that we have a General Meeting on Tuesday, Sept 29th starting at 6:30pm! We will have a recap of all the cool stuff going on at Maker Faire this past weekend, and we will elect a new board member. We’ll also talk about the upcoming Queen Mab Enchanted City event (Oct 3rd) and the Barnes & Noble Mini Maker Faire coming up in November! Hope to see you there!

Our next General meeting will be on TUESDAY, September 29th from 6:30pm – 8pm in the SEFCU Community room at the new TVCOG! This is going to be a fun and important meeting, so please plan to attend! It will be fun because we’ll have highlights from Maker Faire NYC. It will be important because we’re holding a Board of Directors Special Election to fill a board seat vacancy. This means we need QUORUM, but thanks to the recent meeting, we only need 20% of the voting members. Still, if you can make it, please do, and if you can’t, please arrange for a proxy.

LAST CHANCE – The Introduction to TIG Welding class by Bob Bownes is tomorrow (Saturday, Sept 19th) from 10am – 2pm. This is a members-only class and is limited to 6 students, please register in advance through

ZERO TO MAKER: Sunday, Sept 20th – 10am – 2pm. This our big event to get training to new members! Please spread the word about this event, and if you’re a new member, this is where you’ll get the safety training, and learn how to work with the 3D printers, laser cutter and more! Details at: 

WORK PARTY – We continue to peck away at adding capabilities to the new space at the Q and moving old stuff out of the old TVCOG. Tomorrow (Saturday, Sept 19th) from 1pm – 5pm we will have a work party to (hopefully) accomplish the following tasks:

  • Setup tools on individual woodworking stations
  • Move vinyl curtains from old COG to cover the entrance to the wood shop as a dust barrier
  • Install the board room table in the board room on its table legs and move the board room chairs into place
  • Hang whiteboard in the board room / conference room.
  • Bring cubicle walls from the Super-Sekrit Storage facility to establish a temporary COG office 
  • Set up the card printer and COG admin computer so we can make RFID cards at Zero to Maker on Sunday
  • Move the projector from the old space to the SEFCU Community Room
  • Setup QR Code station to provide members with the lock-box code to open the doors while we wait for the RFID readers to be installed
  • Setup user storage areas (involves picking up the shelving from HD, setting them up, etc).
  • Anything else we see as an area of high need!
  • If you can’t make it for the work party, but can come earlier, let Tom Tongue ( know and he can provide suggestions for single person activities that will be a great help!

Just a reminder, if you have not already checked out our new discussion system (Discourse), you’ve missed our deliberations on the new laser cutter, CNC Router and 3D printer. Please check it out at:

To sign in, you can use your Google ID, so there is no separate sign-in process! SUPER EASY. Please join us and give comments on how we can use this tool to share information and facilitate a continuous discussion about the life and growth of our community.