Tags and Tickets

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In order to make it clear who things belong to, sort out mystery items, and generally know what all of the mess all of us are creating actually is, we've instituted a series of tags to identify projects, materials, and stuff in general. We have (5) types of tags, and they cover most situations where you want to leave something in the space and know it'll be safe, or you find something in the space and you're not sure what to do with it.

Instituted in August of 2011, and inspired by a similar system at the makerspace i3 in Detroit Michigan, members of Twin Cities Maker expanded upon that and we're pretty happy with this permutation of it, although it's still being tested. It has become an effective means to communicate between members about project and material status in the shared space. These tickets are seen as a useful adjunct and facilitator of communication as they include contact information for members involved to be able to communicate via online forums, this TC Maker wiki , the organization's Wednesday evening Open Hack events, and other electronic or face-to-face methods of communication.

Tag Types

Parking Permit

This green tag should be placed on any item, project or collection of supplies that constitutes or is intended for a personal or group project. This is a means of identifying the material tagged as yours and what you intend to do with it. The tag includes a brief description of the material covered, an optional space to include the intent for its use, the name and contact information of the individual responsible for the material, as well as the date the permit was issued. There also is set of check boxes at the bottom to indicate whether the material is fragile or in a critical phase of assembly, to suggest it should be moved only by the individual responsible. This tag can be issued by any member of TC Maker, but the individual responsible for the material should be notified immediately of the date of issue so they can honor the 30-day term of the permit. Permits may be renewed after 30 days, but this can be overruled in consultation with shop managers if the material takes up space needed for other projects.

Parking Ticket

This red tag should be placed on any item that needs to be removed from the space for a variety of reasons. This tag may be issued by any member of TC Maker if the material is obstructing a walkway or other public space, obstructing common work areas or work surfaces, or is otherwise stored in a manner that is dangerous to the material or individuals passing by. The tag includes space for a brief description of the material in question, a series of check boxes to indicate why the ticket was issued, the name of the individual issuing the ticket, and the date and time of issue. Material so ticketed may remain in the space for another two weeks, at which time the material will be disposed of responsibly if it is not claimed by another member of TC Maker. The issuer, and/or a shop manager, accepts the obligation to make a good-faith effort to contact the person responsible for the material (if known) to let them know their material should be retrieved or marked with a valid parking permit.

Borked or Broken

This orange tag should be placed on any material that does not fully function as intended by design. This tag should be issued by any member of TC Maker when a problem is identified. The tag includes space for a brief description of the material, and also for what appears to be wrong with it. Following that is space for the name of the finder of the problem, and the time and date is was discovered. The final items do not need to be filled out by the finder of the problem, unless they have a good idea as to what needs to be done to repair the property. There also are two check boxes; please fill these out with care. The first indicates that certain functions of the material are not working, but that others may be used with care. The second check box indicates that any use of this material could result in personal injury, or irreparable damage to the material in question. These tickets will be evaluated, with additional information added to them by shop managers, or any member of TC Maker with the knowledge and time to perform or arrange for the necessary repairs. If material is deemed irreparable, it should be tagged with a Parking Ticket.

Project Invitation

This yellow tag may be placed on material of any kind, or placed in a place of prominence in the space. The intent for this tag is to communicate your desire to get information, material or assistance with an ongoing project from other members of TC Maker. The tag includes a brief description of the intended or ongoing project, a place to include what is being sought, the project initiator's name and contact information, and a series of check boxes to indicate whether interested parties should contact the project initiator before taking any action on the project. This tag is intended to be an adjunct to the forums and Open Hack night to further facilitate communication and coordination between members.

Up For Grabs

This blue tag may be placed on any material that is being donated by a member. This should be used only on material that is genuinely useful and in fairly good shape. This tag is not intended as an invitation to bring in old junk from a member's garage, but rather a way to leave something cool or useful for anyone to adopt, improve, take apart, or otherwise utilize. There are “check all that apply” boxes to indicate if the donator has a preference as to whether the donated material is to be used for a group project, an individual project, or to improve the common space. This is intended as a suggestion only, as any material donated in this manner will be truly up for grabs. Depending on the material, including size, weight, and general utility, shop managers or other members may choose to responsibly discard a donated item after a reasonable period of time. If you wish to claim an “up for grabs” items, remove the blue tag, and replace it with a valid, green Parking Permit, take the material away from the space, or place it in a container identified as your personal storage.

Resources for Printing or Sharing

In the interests of sharing our work with others, we provide the following links so that they may be shared with makerspaces in other parts of the world. It is the hope that this will become an open-source project of sorts, and will continue to be refined.