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Dorkbot is a group of affiliated organizations worldwide that sponsor grassroots meetings of artists, engineers, designers, scientists, inventors, and anyone else working under the very broad umbrella of electronic art. The dorkbot motto is "people doing strange things with electricity".
Started by Douglas Repetto at the Columbia University Computer Music Center in 2000, dorkbot has spread around the world, with over 100 chapters either planning or actively holding meetings as of 2010. In addition to the original New York City-based dorkbot ("dorkbot-nyc"), current and planned groups exist in London, Bristol, Ghent, San Francisco, Linz, Melbourne, Sydney, Mumbai, Seattle, Rotterdam, Lisbon, Sofia, Chicago, Southern California, Barcelona, Switzerland, Orlando, Madrid, Oxford, Detroit, Newcastle, Mexico City, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Portland, Oregon, Austin, Dallas, Baltimore, Washington, DC, Atlanta, Georgia (at Georgia Tech), Bahia, Beijing, Eindhoven, Toronto, Tokyo, Vienna, Copenhagen, Montevideo, Milan and Alba (Scotland) (the current list, and map, can be seen at dorkbot.org).
The purpose of dorkbot meetings is to nurture a local electronic arts community and to encourage emerging, and established, artists to present new works for informal peer review. While many of the dorkbot groups hold their meetings at universities and students are encouraged to attend, dorkbot meetings are not restricted in any way to the academic community. Dorkbot groups encourage the free exchange of ideas on the electronic arts, and regular attendees of one dorkbot will often visit another when they are travelling, serving as informal ambassadors between groups.