Fab Lab: shifting e-learning from bits to atoms

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Fab Lab: shifting e-learning from bits to atoms; International Fab Lab Association; Pieter van der Hijden (The Netherlands); Lindi Mophuti (South Africa); Presented at "eLearning Africa 2012"; Cotonou, Bénin, 23-25 May 2012.

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Fab Lab: shifting e-learning from bits to atoms

  1. 1. FAB LAB: SHIFTING E-LEARNING FROM BITS TO ATOMS International Fab Lab Association Pieter van der Hijden (The Netherlands) Lindi Mophuti (South Africa) 2012 –Pieter van der Hijden (pvdh@sofos.nl) and Lindi Mophuti (lmophuti@csir.co.za) - Thiswork is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution- Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License. 1
  2. 2. AGENDA Introduction What is a Fab Lab? Our eco-system Fab Lab Africa Conclusion 2
  3. 3. INTRODUCTION Movie “Full Printed” by GrafixTV 3
  4. 4. INTRODUCTION How it started  Prof. Neil Gershenfeld  Center for Bits and Atoms  Massachusetts Institute of Technology  Course: How to make (almost) anything Outreach activity  Set-up some simple and cheap (50k USD) Fab Labs Autonomous initiatives  Now 140 Fab Labs worldwide  All continents 4
  5. 5. WHAT IS A FAB LAB Who are visiting us What do we offer What will they find What will they do How about costs 5
  6. 6. WHAT IS A FAB LAB: WHO ARE VISITING US People looking for practical training Individuals, tinkerers, inventors, crafters Children and youth, both school classes and neighbourhood groups Community groups, adults, women SME’s Innovation teams, researchers, students “Tourists” Etc. 6
  7. 7. WHAT IS A FAB LAB: WHAT DO WE OFFER Empowerment Education Problem solving Invention Job creation Job Creation Invention Problem Solving Education Empowerment 7
  8. 8. WHAT IS A FAB LAB: WHAT WILL THEY FIND Free/open access Fab charter Tools and processes  Laser cutter (and engraver)  Milling machine  Vinyl cutter  Additive machine , e.g. 3D printer  Video conferencing  Computers  Software  documentation Skilled staff and volunteers Cooperation with other Fab Labs 8
  9. 9. WHAT IS A FAB LAB: WHAT WILL THEY DO Solve local problems with our means for developing technological solutions Conceptualize, design, develop, fabricate and test almost anything  Prototypes  Unique products  Small batches 9
  10. 10. WHAT IS A FAB LAB: HOW ABOUT COSTS? Access at some times is free; materials used maybe not Other services might have a price Financial; sustainability is a challenge Set-up costs about 50k USD (machines only) 10
  11. 11. WHAT IS A FAB LAB: NEW: THE MINI FAB LAB Mini Fab Lab for personal fabrication Set-up costs 5k USD Examples:  A3 Vinyl cutter usd 300  Simple laser cutter usd 1500  3d printer DIY usd 800 11
  12. 12. OUR ECOSYSTEM Local level:  autonomous (or embedded) Fab Labs Regional level:  non-profit organizations to support Fab Labs Global level:  MIT/CBA  Fab X annual conference  Fab Academy  International Fab Lab Association (natural persons) 12
  13. 13. FAB LAB AFRICA Current situation Swot analysis Perspective 13
  14. 14. FAB LAB AFRICA: CURRENT SITUATION Benin: Porto Novo: Songhai Burkina Fasso: Ouagadougou Ghana: Accra Kenya: Kisumu, Nairobi Mali: Bamako Namibia: Windhoek South Afrika: Bloemfontein, Cape Town, Pretoria, Kimberly, Potchefstroom, Sedibeng, Soshanguve, Limpopo, Thokoza 14
  15. 15. FAB LAB AFRICA: SWOT ANALYSIS Strengths  Range of high-tech tools and hand tools  Fixed and Mobile Fab Labs as a platform Weaknesses  Geographical positioning  Sustainable funding model  Too many visions Opportunities  Alignment with National Priorities  Integration of school curricula into Fab Lab model  Linkages with other similar initiatives Threats  Support staff turnaround (retention of capable staff)  Lack of support from identified partners 15
  16. 16. FAB LAB AFRICA: PERSPECTIVE Coming soon Fab Lab Africa Network Alliance (FAN) 16
  17. 17. CONCLUSION From bits to atoms, welcome next step in exploring, learning and training eLearning extended to learning to design, learning to make (worldwide) Where to start? 17
  18. 18. CONCLUSION Movie “A Fab Lab in three words” by Susanna Tesconi, Fab Lab Barcelona 18
  19. 19. REFERENCES Business model generation; a handbook for visionaries, game changers, and challengers; Alexander Osterwalder et al.; John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken NJ, USA, 2010. CBA - The Center for Bits and Atoms; web site; http://cba.mit.edu/ Design Thinking for Educators; Design Team Riverdale Country School and IDEO; 2011. Fab Central; website; http://fab.cba.mit.edu/ Fab Lab Locations; FabWiki; website; http://wiki.fablab.is/wiki/Portal:Labs Fab; the coming revolution on your desktop; from personal computers to personal fabrication; Neil Gershenfeld; Basic Books, New York, USA, 2005. FabLab Business Models; presentation to the first Artilect FabLab Conférence; Peter Troxler; Toulouse, 20-23 October 2011. FabYearBook 2011; another year of growth; Ton Zijlstra (ed.); 2011. International Fab Lab Association; web site; http://www.fablabinternational.org Open design now; why design cannot remain exclusive; Bas van Abel et al.; Bis Publishers, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 2010. Special report: Manufacturing and Innovation; The Economist; print edition 21 April 2012. Survey of ICT and Education in Africa: A Summary Report, Based on 53 Country Surveys; Glen Farrell & Shafika Isaacs (eds.); infoDev / World Bank, Washington DC, USA, 2007. The butterfly paper no.1; Sophie Koers; Butterfly Works; 2008. The futures of technology in Africa; Jasper Grosskurth; STT, The Hague, The Netherlands, 2010. Transformation-Ready: The strategic application of information and communication technologies in Africa; Education Sector Study; Lishan Adam et al.; African Development Bank, the World Bank and the African Union; 2011. 19
  20. 20. THANK YOU! International Fab Lab Association www.fablabinternational.org Pieter van der Hijden Sofos Consultancy, The Netherlands – pvdh@sofos.nl Lindi Mophuti CSIR, South Africa – lmophuti@csir.co.za 20

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