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Making Our World

The Hacker and Maker Movements in Context

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Edited By Jeremy Hunsinger and Andrew Schrock

Making Our World: The Hacker and Maker Movements in Context describes and situates the political, historical, national, and organizational elements of hacking and making. Hackers and makers are often mythologized, leading to people misunderstanding them as folk heroes for the modern age. In response, this book describes and critiques these movements from a variety of interdisciplinary perspectives to help readers appreciate their worldwide scope and highly localized interpretations. Making Our World is essential reading for students and scholars of technology and society, particularly those interested in social movements and DIY cultures.

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16. Our Community Hacks: Exploring Hive Toronto’s Open Infrastructures (Karen Louise Smith)

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16. Our Community Hacks: Exploring Hive Toronto’s Open Infrastructures

KAREN LOUISE SMITH

Brock University

Introduction

In Toronto, Canada, the Hive Toronto community is made up of educators from over 60 youth serving organizations. Hive Toronto members have joined this Mozilla stewarded network, because they seek to create educational opportunities for young people related to digital literacy. Key features of the Hive Toronto network include monthly professional development meetups for educators and catalytic funding for collaborative community projects. The Hive Toronto community also leverages and contributes to Mozilla’s open educational resources (OERs) including practices, curriculum and software.1 Within the Hive Toronto network, hacking and making are terms which circulate amongst the members—Hack Jams, Maker Parties, webmaking, toy hacking, and eduhacking stand out as some examples of ongoing community engagement with hacker/maker culture.

The presence of hacker/maker culture in the Hive Toronto community is explained in part, by Mozilla’s role as the steward of the network. Mozilla is known globally as an advocate for the open web and for the development of open source software products, such as the Firefox browser. Scholars have described the importance of open source software projects as a domain where hackers can safely view the code base, and tinker with it (Coleman, 2004; Kogut & Metiu, 2001). As part of its mandate as an organization committed to the open web, Mozilla actively supports webmaking as a form of constructivist...

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