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SoutHACKton Survey 2012 Results

We ran a survey between 7th and 21st September 2012 to ascertain the level of interest in a Southampton based hackerspace. More information about the survey can be found here.


96 people responded in total, many had never heard of SoutHACKton before.


These graphs (except the last one) are taken directly from Google's summary of the survey. If anyone fancies making a better data visualisation then just get in touch! :)

How many SoutHACKton meetups have you attended?

How may meetings have you attended?

How interested are you in having a Southampton-based hackerspace/makerspace?

How interested are you in having a Southampton-based hackerspace/makerspace?

How much would you be willing to pay per month to be a member?

How much would you be willing to pay per month to be a member?

Excluding the "less than £15" and "other" entries, if everyone paid what they said they'd be willing to pay then we'd have a total of £1065. The mean was £23.15, median £20, mode £15.

Factoring in the "less than £15" at £10 and the "other" at £5 (assuming baseline subscription and PAYG fees), the total is: £1435.

Reasons for "I wouldn't"/"less than £15"/"other"

A lot of these entries don't have reasoning. Of those that do, a lot are because of the desire for a PAYG model of payment (which I think is a fair guess for the others).

Cases that aren't requesting PAYG and have reasons given are summarised below:

  • Already have sufficient space/tools elsewhere: 3 people
  • Confusion over the purpose of the survey: 3 people
  • Wouldn't be able to use it frequently enough: 1 person
  • Too far away: 1 person
  • Pensioner: 1 person
  • Student: 1 person

What activities do you think you might like to partake in at the hackerspace?

What activities do you think you might like to partake in at the hackerspace?

Rate the importance of the following for you:

Personal Storage

Personal Storage

Good ventilation (for soldering etc.)

Good ventilation (for soldering etc.)

Welding/drilling/sanding facilities

Welding/drilling/sanding facilities



Full kitchen (not just a kettle/microwave)

Full kitchen (not just a kettle/microwave)

Meeting rooms

Meeting rooms

How did you hear about SoutHACKton?

I loosely grouped these responses, and summarised them below - there was 70 people who entered how they heard about SoutHACKton/this survey.

How did you hear about us?

And because this chart is so terrible (sorry about that) here's the headline figures:

  • Google 12
  • Friend 10
  • HantsLUG 10
  • Interest 9
  • Twitter 8

Interesting Feedback

There was a vast amount of feedback on the survey, all of which I have read and much of which I will be passing on to others involved with organising SoutHACKton over the coming weeks (if you wish to be one of these others, get in touch!).

Below is snippets from survey responses which struck me as particularly relevant. Attribution has been removed to protect the innocent - if you recognise your quote below and want it attributed then just send a pull request :)

Emphasis mine.

"Access to materials (or an organised supplier of materials) such as metal, timber, electronic components etc would be REALLY useful"; "once you get a decent hackspace sorted out I think you'll actually have to turn people away." -- J

"[PAYG] system more useful as I very rarely need to do physical hacking, but when I do, I don't always have the space or tools." -- D

"24/7 access to all, ground level, wheelchair friendly, attached to local youth groups, educational, local government/council too :)" -- T

"I am a researcher at the university and may be able to help with contacts." -- J

"To my horror however the nearest hackerspaces were London, Exeter and Bristol" -- a

"I would like to know more about making stage costumes of animals, robots, anything unsual" -- T

"I think the most important thing is space and surfaces to work on that are durable and safe enough for a variety of processes" -- S

"Might be worth contacting local model railway or model engineering societies who might be interested as there's some overlap (soldering, drilling, cnc, circuit board etching, 3D printing)" -- J

"I would be keen to use it as a place to work from during the week instead of my office" -- C

R is an engineer with many tools available to him, but he'd be interested in a hackerspace if 1) it gave him more space than he has elsewhere, 2) had machine tools, 3) late night access for noisy projects/work, 4) meeting space for other groups, such as Student Robotics, 5) parking. "I'm a little concerned though that if you were to venture into more expensive tools, that they would regularly be in a broken state due to inexperienced members using them" -- R

"Southampton is a bit far from my house so I would be an occasional visitor if there were an interesting demonstration, talk, project, etc." -- T

"I am more keen on helping to bootstrap, if the space can also double as a co-working space :)" -- D

"Inspired by emfcamp and seeing the bigger Hackspaces there. Would be great for Southampton to get something together." -- g

"I think the important thing is to provide access to machinery that the typical user would not otherwise have access to: lathes, mills, vacuum-forming, band-saws, etc. In fact, now I think of it, my perfect hackerspace would be my old college design & technology workshop." -- C

"I probably wouldn't use the space that much. As I have good resources at Uni[...]. I could see myself coming down (if it's within walking distance, ~2mi radius from Portswood) once or twice a month for a few hours, just to hang around and work in a different location." -- D

"If a hackerspace were present, I'm sure members from SUSUtv and Surge would be very active members."; "Important for myself would be regular training sessions, as well as access to the space almost 24/7 for personal projects." -- D


Thanks so much for filling out the survey!