United States Fab Lab Network (USFLN) Annoual Symposium in Kansas City, Wednesday Jan 26, 2011, Post 2

Mary K Watson writes:

The first presentation at the United States Fab Lab Network (USFLN) Annoual Symposium in Kansas City was done by the Rapid Tech.org which has the Bright Minds Mentoring program with teacher training workshop for educators They have four days of hands on experience to learn the secondary processes for using the machines and then how to use it in the classroom as well as industry seminars for companies. They have opened a fab lab and Fox Valley works with them on prototyping development.

These are some of the other presenters:

Capstone Design trains individuals with a disciplinary approach to content deployment.

Cleveland STEM www.mc2stemhs.com tries to make a connection by using the deconstruction method and then they put it back together using different reiterations within the construction process to develop spatial reasoning which is absent in normal schools. In addition they try to use this to help students fast forward to see what it is like to be in a profession.

Times Center Technology Center has NSF funding. They have NSF funding to do real life projects to gain experience in day to day operations, networking abilities They use a market approach to innovation with their users. These include college students, people from business and industry, artists, and entrepreneurs

The Kansas City Make movement goes around the city and does monthly show and tell sessions about the fab lab as well as bi-weekly sessions at MCC next to their fab lab. They are joining up with Make Magazine to have the first Midwest Maker Fair here in Kansas City in June according to Stephen Dowell (Metropolitan Community College, Kansas City, Business and Technology, Instructor and Tool and Die Maker.

Montgomery Community College in Flint Michigan has just opened a new fab lab.

LMC Bertrand Crossing Fab Lab has been open since 2008 wants its students to persist in their learning beyond the classroom experience and volunteer in the community. Users have cards to swipe when using the machines in their lab.

Jeffry Cruise from North Carolina Fab Lab has USDA Piedmont Conservation Council funding. for PC community oriented projects in Piedmont, NC that they use to support their lab.

Hawaii is planning to build a fab lab with state government help. They sent a PowerPoint presentation which included photos of their beaches.

Fox Valley has a NSF grant to develop curriculum. They want the USFLN to pool projects and curriculum.

At 5:20 pm Neil came online from hotel room in Washington. He has been in Saudi Arabia with Sheri and Kenny opening a new Fab Lab. He discussed transitions from outreach to research to making it possible for anyone to teach people to make anything from a key chain to a solar house (although it took more people and sites as well as time for that). This is accessible to all labs No one lab has a critical mass to do this on their own, it only works if done as a group research program.The power comes from the network that shares not individual labs .