[vcf-midatlantic] Supercomputer is all set!

Ethan O'Toole telmnstr at 757.org
Thu Nov 8 10:40:17 EST 2018

> The former MARCH group spawned into creation around the second half of 2004
> and joined InfoAge in 2005. IA gave us a single 12x10 room because that's
> all it had available.
> Then in 200(6?) we moved into the next building where we had two rooms. In 2008
> we got the next two rooms in that hallway, making four total.
> It wasn't until 2015 that we moved buildings again to where we are now,
> which is more than 2-3x as big as the old four rooms.

Very cool.

> The bigger the space, the more time/money it takes to make it legal and
> habitable.

Ah so the spaces needed a bunch of prep work and investment.

> What may happen is our current warehouse will become half storage, half
> display. We wouldn't need as much storage because more things would be on
> display.
> Estimates are about $200K to make the warehouse space into a legal
> habitable building.

Whew! Does VCF go for grants?

> My personal opinion is that VCF will probably have to raise the funds
> itself, because IA isn't good at it.

Makes senss. The passion for the subject is from those that participate in 
the subject.

> The military vehicles group also raised their own funds to get a
> certificate of occupancy on their building, but they needed much less
> (about $40K) because they skipped HVAC, insulation, interior walls, and a
> floor! They also have bare-bones electrical infrastructure. That's all fine
> for Jeeps and tanks. Not so fine for computers. :)

Concrete floor wouldn't be that bad I don't think, insulation and hvac 
would be a must though. Electrical -- maybe you all could do it then have 
electrician check off before inspection? Also running large circuits then 
using surplus data center PDUs might keep it cheaper. Surplus parts can 
save a ton.

> VCF is in the extremely early stages of making a development plan for such
> things, which would also involve renegotiating our lease to be much more
> VCF-friendly. It would be dumb of us to put $$ into a building if we didn't
> get much greater guarantees about the space.

Definitely. Don't want to get screwed on that. That happened to the DC 
pinball museum guy. Invested a ton of money on a space and the landlord 
bumped him out.

> So: is it our goal? Yes. It is possible? Probably. Is it easy? No.
> But consider how we started and where we are now. We've been succeeding at
> hard things for a long time.

Makes sense! Thanks for sharing.

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