Black Lodge Research, founded in 2007, is a hackerspace located in Redmond, Washington that serves the greater Seattle Hacker community. BLR is unique in that it is the only space in greater Seattle area focusing on the topics of Information Security and Privacy. The Lodge offers educational workshops, presentations and demonstrations; as well as a shop area with electronics and power tools for members to use.
The Lodge is 100% funded through gracious donations by the community. It is also entirely operated through volunteers. The Lodge currently does not have any formal membership structure; whether you're interested in attending a single event or every last one of them, you are more than welcomed to participate.
Black Lodge Research began life as simply The Black Lodge. The name was inspired by a fictional, paranormal place in the television show Twin Peaks, which was filmed largely in this area of the Pacific Northwest. The inspiration came as the Black Lodge (in the show) was a place where transformation to a higher state of intelligence and awareness could be obtained, but only through being challenged and challenging one's self.
The original Black Lodge sat on a small piece of land in Kirkland, Washington. A creepy, old, little shack from before the depression era, sitting within a quiet stand of trees with train tracks running behind the property; it reminded me of some place you would find in Twin Peaks. The shack was where Lunaslide, one of the original Lodge founders, lived for awhile after moving up to the Pacific Northwest. It cost about $500 a month to rent. A couple of years later, the lodge moved to a residential house.
In September of 2008, the Black Lodge founders had the idea of continuing to rent the shack and starting a hacker space there. It was big enough for some tools, a server rack and a small area for meeting, and the price was definitely right. Several other founders joined us and we announced our presence to the community.
We began immediately by hosting the DC206 meeting, which had been struggling to find a solid meeting place for years. The Black Lodge also began to host other educational events and projects, like various presentations, Protocol Study Nights, LAN parties, and more.
In late 2009, the meeting space became overcrowded by regular attendees and a new location was found in Redmond, Washington. At this point the Lodge was renamed to “Black Lodge Research”. Since moving to Redmond, we have continue to grow even more and have had the pleasure of many talented people joining us, who in turn, who have contributed back to the community and made us stronger.
The Black Lodge Research symbol also came from Twin Peaks and was the logo for The Bookhouse Boys, a secret society fighting against the darkness and evil surround the town.