The following post was contributed by Derek Jacoby from Makerspace Victoria, CA
Over the decades science has become increasingly restricted to academic and industrial labs, but recently there has been a counter movement by the public to access basic equipment and to become involved in developing tools and solutions to research problems. This movement calls itself the Open Science movement and is part of a bigger movement in a variety of research sectors to provide open source technologies and spaces where interested parties can do research. This interest manifested itself in the creation of Hackerspaces and Makerspaces back in 2007, which function as centres for peer learning and knowledge sharing, in the form of workshops, presentations, and lectures. There are currently around 1,000 active makerspaces around the world. Hackerspaces.org maintains a list of active spaces near you.