Critics dismiss #OccupyWallStreet as a bunch of dirty, whining hippies and trustafarians. But many of the protesters at Zucotti Plaza are actually hacker-minded geeks bringing an engineering mentality to bear on politics and several high and low-tech problems.
The #OWS encampment runs on generators that power a media center packed with laptops, Wi-Fi and video equipment. Live updates and operational messages propagate over Twitter as well as over closed alternative networks resistant to sniffing by unwanted observers. Digital donations are funneled through Kickstarter, and material donations arriving from around the country supply a kitchen and a medical station -- which treats minor protest hazards such as pepper spray and cuts.
The DIY nature of the movement evokes the spirit of the Maker Faire and Hackathon events, with participants contributing their skills and creativity to support a larger, loosely defined movement or goal.
Here are our favorite scenes and hacks from the protest so far.
Michael Mozart, 45, live-broadasts at the #OccupyWallStreet protest in Zuccotti Plaza. Mozart is a beta-tester for YouTube Live (JeepersMedia channel), a live-streaming feature of the popular video site, which also integrates directly into his Facebook and Google + pages.
Although Mozart is neither "supporting or not supporting" the ideals of Occupy Wall Street, he still feels compelled to use his status as a beta-tester to show what was actually happening after hearing a TV news report of "only a few dozen protesters" at the plaza where he was certain there were hundreds.
Bottom photo: An outlet for phone chargers is plugged into a generator at the media center.
Photos: Bryan Derballa/Wired.com