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Hawaii's First Coworking Space


Indianapolis, Day 1
By Britney T-M

Indianapolis, IN
TRIPPIN’ is a summer blog series featuring coworking spaces, as BoxJelly intern Britney T-M travels to attend George Mason University’s Social Innovation Program. Follow the trip on Google Maps.

When I first landed in Indianapolis, IN, it was a grey and cold. It seemed so unusual, I almost forgot it was June. I packed with the anticipation of it being 90 and 100% humidity, but instead it was 65 and windy. There was no time to be self-conscious about my wardrobe though. As soon as I landed, it was off to the first space with my friend Scottie, who lives in Indianapolis and graciously took time off to shuttle me around/hangout/explore the city for $10/hour!

Service Center for Contemporary Culture & Community


Arriving to the Service Center for Contemporary Culture and Community was like coming upon a peaceful oasis in a midwestern wasteland of forgotten suburban shopping malls and streets void of sidewalks. I missed the opportunity to meet anyone from the Center, but found that the space spoke for itself.

‘Served’ by Andy Miller, during Lily Day of Service 2011.

The mural was the first thing we noticed – I mean, how could you not, it’s a huge wall mural. It was one of the murals commissioned as a part of 46 for XLVI, and was what told us we were in the right place. And by “right place” I mean the correct address, but also a positive state of being. In May 2011, Big Car converted this old tire shop in an abandoned mall lot into a community center that includes a library, computer lab, event exhibition space, and a coworking space. Big Car is a non-profit organization, run by a collective of artists, musicians, writers, and active citizens who couple art projects with economic development in order to uplift communities. The Service Center hosts events and offers a wide range of tools and services by and for the community to fulfill director Jim Walker’s intentions to include the community artistically.

Front driveway.

The space is very organic in that sense of development. This wasn’t simply made for a community, but a place that was to be made by the community. Vegetables grew in huge planter boxes atop the large asphalt parking lot, chickens clucked in the pens, and you could see the progression of the the ceiling mural of clouds and blue skies.

The Service Center chicken coop. I peered into the building from the glass of the garage doors into a space that may have been empty of people, but was certainly brimming with life.  There looked to be projects in every corner of the garage space with various tools and materials about. There were flyers up for Big Car and Service Center events, as well as events in other places around Indianapolis.

‘Unite for Culture and Community’, Clayton Hamilton, 2011.

My focus is in social innovation and placemaking, so this sort of space is like a realized dream. Staring from the outside in, it sort of felt like I was missing a really great party. In a way, it was a gentle reminder that community uplift and improvement are far beyond plans or instantaneity; it’s a cultivation and long-term investment, the benefits of which are collective among those in the present, and may not even be realized until the future.

Veggie garden

This made me think of all the development going on in Honolulu. Whether they are for community or commercial purposes, how sustainable will the projects be? Will they implement action by the community or be impositions upon the community? The midwest is often perceived as a dismissable region that’s only good for corn, but it’s organizations like Big Car and The Service Center that earn the title for the Heartland of America.

The Speak Easy

From the outside parking lot.

From the outside parking lot.

For the next space, I gave Scottie a couple hours off so I could use Uber to get to The Speak Easy. When I was looking at The Speak Easy’s twitter, I stumbled upon a retweet from Chris Nakutis about “$20 off your first Uber ride”. Uber is an on-demand request tool for private drivers. The app pinpoints your location, notifies a driver of your request, gives you an estimated time of arrival, and can even give you a fare estimate. Payments are charged through your app service account, so the experience was very seamless. I had the pleasure of riding with Moses. We chatted about Nigeria (where he is from), Hawaii, and his dreams of traveling to the Aloha state. He also asked if I was meeting Thomas, who has been working out of The Speak Easy helping Uber Indianapolis establish itself. “Oh, no, I am not,” I said, but I serendipitously ended up meeting him anyways while I was there.

Top: general work area; Bottom: view of general work area from loft.

It was also serrendipitous that I ran into a member outside who was able to grant my entry into the place. There are key cards for the door scanners, so its no wonder that the feeling inside is one of trust and security. Opened in January 2012, The Speak Easy is adjacent to DeveloperTown, a venture development firm and tech accelerator, who owns the building which houses the two, along with TinderBox and another organization I neglected to get the name of.

A coworking space for  entrepreneurs and startups, The Speak Easy has a large private classroom with chalkboard walls, four smaller meeting rooms, a reception area, book nook, large common area, kitchen and bar, as well as a lofted work area.

Meeting rooms with revolving doors for privacy.

Meeting rooms with revolving doors for privacy.

Unfortunately, Denver (exec. director) and I were unable to meet, but she graciously invited me to tour the space and use it for a webinar I had to attend for George Mason. The Speak Easy member Lily Smith and her coworking coworker who let me into the building, were also gracious enough to help me get acquainted with the space.

Classroom, with chalkboard walls.

Classroom, with chalkboard walls.

As I was attending the webinar, I picked up on words like “cities” “drivers” and “Uber” from the guy next to me. At this point, The Speak Easy can claim they are, in fact, fosters of serendipity. “The guy next to me” turned out to be Chris himself, the same guy that tweeted the Uber promo, and Uber Indianapolis’s AGM.

CYMERA_20130609_204539Once I was finished with the webinar, it was time to explore. At first I felt a little awkward in the space; in any coworking environment, being the ‘new guy’ is inevitable because you are walking into an apparently functioning community that has a culture and set of rules you are still being introduced to. It reminds me of when you are first introducing ideas as an entrepreneur, but instead of presenting business models, you’re presenting yourself. You’ve just got to jump in the water; even if you don’t know how to swim, you’ll never learn without getting in. The awkwardness quickly subsided as I talked to members willing to share their Speak Easy stories.

Member of The Speak Easy since May 2013.

Stephanie Timmons. Member of The Speak Easy, employee at 3rd St. Attention Agency.

Stephanie works for the 3rd Street Attention Agency (“basically an ad agency that’s more engaged with clients”). She likes sharing in the energy of the space and the relaxed atmosphere. Her company gathers at The Speak Easy when they don’t want to be virtual, and has offered to pay for her membership. As a 22 year old professional, it will be exciting for her to grow her career in an environment with such a network of developers, programmers, and entrepreneurs.

Members of the Speak Easy, and founders of App Press.

Grant Glas and Kevin Smith. Members of the Speak Easy, and founders of App Press.

Founders of App Press, Smith and Glass have been members from the very beginning. They said working at The Speak Easy  “…has made it easier. There’s opportunity to run problems [among other members].” They’re open to listening to others, and appreciate the proactive spirit for problem solving that’s ubiquitous among members. Chris also commented on this, even after spending just 16 days in the space.

Members of the Speak Easy, employees at Formstack.

Bryan Graham and Brandon Peters. Members of the Speak Easy, employees at Formstack.

Both Peters and Graham work for Formstack, which likes its employees to acquaint themselves with and become part of the community. “There are different distractions at Formstack,” mentions Peters,  “that are not here at the Speak Easy.” The dynamic spaces can lend a more social experience if they sit downtstairs, or a more concentrated environment if they work up in the loft or private meeting room. Formstack is a sponsor of the Speak Easy, so their memberships are paid for as well.

Pay It Forward board

Community board where members can post about capabilities/skills/resources they can offer, or ones they are looking for. There was even a post about starting a Speak Easy soccer team.

Talking to members, the ecosystem of industry in Indianapolis started to unfold itself into something bigger than I had fully comprehended. It’s location in relation to the rest of the country is strategic for companies that have a national or global spread; as a crossroads point of the mainland, its history of production and affordability lends much potential (and capability) for investment; there’s a high number of skilled workers (IU, Purdue, Butler, and a number of large universities are in the neighboring areas). with such a large population, workers as well as organizations have an immediate need to be innovative, and thus, have much more of a support system to be so. It seems like the coworking industry will develop similarly to the tech park industry in Indiana. It made me think of Hawaii’s ecosystem; what are our advantages? Where are our barriers? What are we doing that is inhibiting us? Within the past 2 years, Indianapolis already has five coworking spaces, while Honolulu only has one that is open. Scale is obviously part of this issue, but maybe we are not as progressive back home as we think we are.

I finally ended the day and got to Mark’s house, where I couch surf every time I’m in Indy. I met Mark at Hanover, and while his admission stopped after sophomore year, our friendship continued. As a graduate student of IU’s philanthropic studies program, his insight on funds and endowments in the area started to make sense for the resources that are available to non-profits and businesses. Granted, Indiana as a state tends to be urban-centric, neglecting problems in rural areas; but, the initiatives and actions of those in the Hoosier state are nonetheless amazing, and something the rest of the country would be smart to look twice at.


Revenant Young Architects Exhibit

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Revenant Young Architects Exhibit @ BoxJelly

Date: June 3-July 10, 2013.

XMANIFOLD A.D.R.L.(Applied Design Research Laboratory), presents REVENANT: The Undeath of Ideas In Architecture. This exhibition features ambitious, architectural concepts from young architects around the world. With awe inspiring visuals and bold new concepts, these paradigm shifting visions of architectural innovation invoke both emotion and inspiration. The exhibition’s goal is to critically examine and protest the trend toward the lost and marginalization of bold, vanguard, and utopian proposals in contemporary architectural discourse, particularly in architectural practice and architectural education. Spotlighted in an article by Honolulu Weekly, this exhibit shows a rare glimpse into local architect Dimitri Kim ‘s vision of what contemporary buildings could be. Take advantage of this viewing opportunity at BoxJelly, Hawaii’s first and largest co-working space.

For More information on XMANIFOLD A.D.R.L.(Applied Design Research Laboratory), visit XMANIFOLD.COM 

More of the Gallery:

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Eidolon- Chao-Wei Su

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Eiodolon- Chao-Wei Su

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Back: Quantum Polis- Herman Lee, Front: Excavating Utopia- Matthew Hung

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Allegory of Tank- Dimitri Daniel Kim

Read more about the article

Honolulu Weekly



Makkuro Makkuro Pop-up Shop at BoxJelly

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Makkuro Makkuro pop-up shop @ BoxJelly

Date: Sunday, June 2nd / 10am – 6pm

Back by popular demand, Makkuro Makkuro will soon be poping up once again, this time at BoxJelly. Makkuro Makkuro is a quarterly pop up shop specializing in new and second-hand garments, accessories, and miscellaneous goods. Exclusive merchandise by local Hawaii designers and artisans will be showcased and available for purchase. Featured in Flux Hawaii magazine, Makkuro Makkuro has gained notoriety through its one of a kind pieces that have drawn significant attention and followers as they continue to walk the thin line between art and fashion. Come on down to BoxJelly for this exciting event!

About Makkuro Makkuro

Makkuro Makkuro is inspired by japanese anime film maker Hay Miyazaki’s makkuro kurosuke, tiny soot creatures that inhabit dark, desolate spaces. Much like the creatures that inspired it Makkuro Makkuro pop-ups are only open for a limited amount of time before retreating back into the darkness.

For more information, follow Makkuro Makkuro on Facebook and Twitter


The Jelly Report (5/27-6/2)

The Jelly Report: Your weekly source for what’s happening this week at The BoxJelly. 

Aloha Jellys!

Here goes another installment of “The Jelly Report”, a weekly resource for what’s happening at The BoxJelly and within our member community. Please take the time to read through and find out what’s going down at The BoxJelly this week. Have a great week!

“BTW, for your convenience, this Jelly Report will always be posted on our bulletin board outside of the restroom.”

BoxJelly Staff


** Meet the BoxJelly Interns
We are grateful to have some awesome interns working interns with us this summer to help us build a better BoxJelly community. Let’s meet them!



Aloha everyone, my name is Britney Taamu-Miyashiro. After graduating from Hanover College in 2012 I recently returned home to Honolulu, looking to make Hawaii a better place to work and live. My major is in sociology, and is complimented with a business concentration, lending to my primary interests in social innovation and place-making. This summer, I will be at George Mason University’s Social Innovation Program, attending their 5-week social entrepreneurship intensive. During June and July, you’ll be able to follow my summer journey on our site’s blog! The segment will feature other coworking spaces as I Jelly my way across the Midwest and East Coast. It has already been an inspirational and enriching experience working amongst you all. Keep up all the great (co)work! 

Fabian Fabian

Aloha. My name is Fabian Lewis, and I am an intern at BoxJelly. I am a veteran of the United States Army and recently was employed as a X-ray technologist at Tripler Army Medical Center. I am currently pursuing my Masters in Business Administration at Chaminade University, and I am a member of my school’s Hogan Entrepreneurial Program. I have lived in Hawaii for 6 years, as well as various places in Europe and the mainland. My hobbies include writing, training at UFC gym, and playing on my Xbox. I am here to help and learn all that I can, so please feel free to speak to me if you need anything.



Aloha fellow BoxJelly fanatics, I’m Bernardo Equila, but you may call me Sonny instead! I’m currently a senior at Chaminade University, pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting. I’m also a part of my school’s Hogan Entrepreneurial program. With my background, I hope to become a well-rounded Certified Public Accountant (CPA). Besides my career aspirations, I enjoy trying new cuisines, doodling, listening to live music, planning events, hiking, and body boarding. I am passionate about anything creative, social, or active. The BoxJelly has granted me the opportunity to meet people with similar passions, allowing me to thrive among brilliant minds.

** Box Jelly Member Profiles

Just another friendly reminder that this week our BoxJelly interns will be coming around to ask you a few quick questions about you and what you do, as well as take a photograph of you.
As part of a bigger initiative to update and redesign the BoxJelly website, we will be including profiles of our community members. This is not mandatory, if you do not wish to have your profile published on the BoxJelly website.

Thanks in advance for your participation.

** Take a Beer, Leave a Dollar

As you all have probably noticed, there is keg of cold and delicious locally brewed beer from Hawaiian Islands Brewing Company in the kitchen. It’s there for all members of the BoxJelly community to enjoy. HOWEVER, The BoxJelly does pay for the kegs and we do ask that you please donate $1.00 each time you dispense a glass of this frothy libation, so that we can keep the beer here.

Mahalo for your cooperation


Hi capacity Industry Practices on UI x UX

Date: Wednesday, May 29
Location: Classroom
Event Description: This talk is to inform others of the necessary steps in creating a website and the importance of UI (user interface) design.

Opent to Box Jelly Members?: Yes
Open to Public?: Yes
Price: Free

#StartupParadise Demo Day Afterparty

Date: Friday, May 30
Time: 8:00pm – 11:00pm
Location: BoxJelly, Main Room
Event Description: Afterparty for #StartupParadise Demo Day with Blue Startups teams. Beer and light pupus.
Open To Box Jelly Members?: Yes
Open To Public?: Yes
Price: Free

Makurro Makurro Pop-up Shop @ BoxJelly

Date: Sunday, June 2
Location: BoxJelly
Event Description: Makkuro Makkuro is a quarterly pop-up shop specializing in new and second-hand garments, accessories, and miscellaneous goods. Exclusive merchandise by local Hawaii designers and artisans will be showcased and available for purchase. Makkuro Makkuro pop-ups are only open for a limited amount of time before retreating back into darkness.
Open to Box Jelly Members?: Yes
Open to Public?: Yes
Price: Free


“Every great accomplishment in the world happend because someone decided not to give up. Every inspiring story starts with someone who decided to do something and kept going.”

Copyright © *|2013|* *|BoxJelly|*, All rights reserved.


The Jelly Report (5/20-5/26)

The Jelly Report: Your source for what’s happening this week at The BoxJelly. 

Aloha Jellys!

We are happy to bring you the first installment of “The Jelly Report”, a weekly resource for what’s happening at BoxJelly and within our member community. Please take the time to read through and find out what’s going down at BoxJelly this week. Have a great week!


BoxJelly Staff


A “Peace Out” Message From Bryan Butteling

bryan010As most of you know my time spent as being the BoxJelly General Manager has come to an end (don’t worry – Jim’s taking over my roll and thats a full upgrade!). While I won’t be on property every day to talk story, I will still be very involved with the growth of BoxJelly and the startup scene in Hawaii. I will be starting a new journey in the startup world as I will be joining the team of Nella Media Group as their Account Executive of business development. I’m stoked for this new opportunity to work with one of Hawaii’s fastest growing startups.So thank you to all of you who have supported the BoxJelly’s efforts and those of both Rechung and Tony. Please continue to be a positive disruption to Hawaii’s economy and if anyone wants to grab a beer sometime, don’t hesitate to contact.Don’t Suck, Get Shit Done…..I’m out! Bryan Butteling

Jim DiCarlo Joins BoxJelly Team

We are stoked to welcome aboard Jim DiCarlo as General Manager of BoxJelly. Jim will be overseeing operations here at the BoxJelly, while helping to continue building a better BoxJelly community that serves our members.

Jim has been a proud member of BoxJelly since October 2012, and is founder of Each One Teach One (E1T1) Farms, a sustainable agriculture education and products company. E1T1 Farms is the creator of The Bokashi Bucket, a very user-friendly home composting kit.Jim has been in Hawaiʻi for seven years, and hails from the East Coast (NJ / NY). He has a professional background in advertising and marketing, having worked for various agencies in NYC.He is passionate about sustainability, entrepreneurship, branding and ideas. Go say “whattup” to Jim. He can also be reached via email for now at:

Box Jelly Member Profiles

Just a quick heads up that this week our interns Britney and Fabian will be coming around to ask you a few quick questions about you and what you do, as well as take a photograph of you.As part of a bigger initiative to update and redesign the BoxJelly website, we will be including profiles of our community members.

Thanks in advance for your participation.


IDGA – Showcase Night

Date: Tuesday, May 21

Time: 6:00pm – 8:00pm
Location: Classroom
Event Description: Game developers showing off their creations.
Open To Box Jelly Members?: Yes

Open To Public?: Yes

Price: FREE



Coming Up: Shark Love Inc. (2/15/2012 and 2/17/2012)

Shark Love Inc. is a non-profit art exhibition featuring the artworks of over 40 world-renowned contemporary artists including original works by Dave Kinsey, Greg “Craola” Simkins, Tatiana Suarez and many more. Over 70 million sharks are killed each year for shark fin soup – join us for this special event to celebrate the seas and help spread the love for one of the world’s most important and misunderstood animals.

Opening reception: Friday, February 15th 6pm – 10pm
Reception: Saturday, February 16th and Sunday, February 17th 11am – 3pm

*Suggested $5 to $10 donation at the door includes one drink and pupus.

PangeaSeed is an international organization who collaborates with members of the art, science, and environmental activist communities. PangeaSeed is dedicated to raising public awareness and education surrounding the conservation and preservation of sharks and other marine species in peril.

PangeaSeed’s mission is to contribute to the protection of sharks, our oceans and marine life by undertaking actions that encourage environmental activism and sustainable consumption choices. PangeaSeed was the first organization in Japan to raise public awareness regarding shark conservation and preservation. The organization is based in the United States. We rely on the kind generosity of our international network of supporters.

Through volunteer activism, research and the various mediums of art, music film and photography, PangeaSeed aims to create a sea change within the global community and develop an understanding of the need to preserve and protect the world’s oceans.

Pow Wow is a gathering of contemporary artists that engages with the broader community in the process and creation of art. From February 6 to 16, 2013, Honolulu will host over 50 international and local artists. A slew of satellite events and educational initiatives will be held around Kaka’ako and at the University of Hawai’i. During Pow Wow, the community is encouraged to interact with visiting artists in a creative environment.


Coming Up: Jelly Week (January 14-18)

What is Jelly Week?

Jelly Week is part of Global Jelly Week, which is being held at 150 different locations in 33 countries across the world. The idea is to educate the general public about the term “Jelly” and how it relates to coworking.

What is Jelly?

Jelly is a casual event where people within a community come together to exchange ideas. Most Jelly events happen within coworking spaces but they can also happen through networking events or online communities. The idea is to get people together and bounce around ideas—to work on new business ideas, demonstrate products and pitch possible business partnerships.

What is coworking?

Coworking is a style of work environment that promotes open, shared workspaces. The isolation that comes from working in cubicles inhibits community-building and works against the Jelly philosophy. The ideas behind Jelly are why most coworking spaces are built on the foundation of openness and a strong community.

What is BoxJelly?

The BoxJelly is Hawaii’s first and largest coworking space.

Jelly Week @ BoxJelly

For Jelly Week 2013, the BoxJelly will be offering non-members free coworking for the entire week—drop in any time you want. We will also be hosting nightly events pertaining to different aspects of Jelly. Each event starts at 6PM, and should run until approximately 8PM.

Monday: HI Capacity Show and Tell

Members of Hawaii’s first maker space show off their latest projects, from 3D printing to microcomputers to drone quadrocopters and more! Snacks will be provided.

Tuesday: Startup Speed Dating

Looking to network with member of the Honolulu startup scene? Want to find new business partners? Stop by for Startup Speed Dating—a fast-paced mixer.

Wednesday: Shabu Shabu Night with the Founder of BoxJelly

Have questions for the founders? Enjoy some free shabu shabu and discuss the history and future of BoxJelly with founders Rechung Fujihara and Anthony Stanford.

Thursday: New Tech Meetup

Join us as we kick off a series of monthly New Tech Meetups. Network, listen to talks and share ideas with other members of the Hawaii business and technology community.

Friday: End of the Week Jelly Party

Jelly Week 2013 will take place from January 14 – 18 at the BoxJelly. For more information please visit our website or call us at 808.769.6921. You can also keep track of the event by “Liking” us on Facebook (theboxjelly) or following us on Twitter (@theboxjelly).



2012 – A Year of Growth, Endurance and “GSD”

Thinking back on the past year at The Box Jelly (now BoxJelly), all we can say is that it has been an amazing ride. Building the new BoxJelly was much harder than we anticipated it would be—we really want to thank you, our community, for having the patience to stick with us through months and months of drilling, sawing, hammering, and dust (hopefully there won’t be any long term health effects).

Thanks to the entire Hawaii Startup Community for embracing BoxJelly and looking at us now as a peer; we are expecting big things from you all. When we started BoxJelly we had no idea what we were getting ourselves into. We wanted to create a place and environment where people could take their visions and create new businesses, just like we personally needed to do. So far the experiment is working beyond what we expected. I’m very proud of all the Jellys who came walking through our doors. We had some success stories, but most importantly we had people take risk, fail, but come back with other ideas and concepts. To see that commitment, hustle and drive for success has made us very proud of where the Honolulu Startup Community is going as a whole.

A big Mahalo to the BoxJelly Ohana, you make work fun and worthwhile. So thank you to our team past and present: Bryan, Matt, Sam, Hasan, Brandon, Jenn, Dayne, Lux, Amy, Ben, Devin and the HI Cap crew. We also want to recognize our mentors who we have chosen to remain secret (you know who you are). These ninjas of the startup community keep us on our toes and let us know when we’ve screwed up. Also thank you to our girlfriends & ex-girlfriends who stay patient with us—we truly appreciate the support. Lastly we want to thank our families for their support and swift kicks in the butt when we need to get sh*t done.

In the coming year we are renewing our commitment to do everything we can to make Hawaii the best possible place to work and live. In 2013 we will be focusing on developing new programs, including the Honolulu Tech Meetup & Startup Weekend NEXT in partnership with other community members, Jelly Works (Workshops/Art Shows) and other initiatives.

We are also happy to announce that with the addition of our new classroom we will be starting JumpSchool, an education program focused on teaching our local youth entrepreneurship and 21st century skills. Our continued support of young Jellys in our local universities will remain strong, through our partnership with Blue Startups and hopefully a diverse range of incubators and accelerators. We are working to get teams formed, ideas developed, companies started and funded. There are some exciting partnerships with non-profits in the works as well, which we are really looking forward to.

Looking forward to the New Year, Biggie said it best:

While we out here, say the “Hustlers Prayer.”If the game shakes me or breaks me, I hope it makes me a better man.Take a better stand, put money in my mom’s hand. Get my daughter this college plan so she don’t need no man. Stay far from timid, only make moves when your heart’s in itAnd live the phrase “sky’s the limit…”

Work the way you live.

Rechung Fujihira and Anthony Stanford

Honolulu, December 31, 2012.