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FABxLive: July 27-31 2020

Each year the Fab Lab community around the world gather in a selected city for an annual conference. Past events have been held in the USA, Egypt, Spain and China. Due to the global pandemic this years conference is going virtual so now everyone around the globe can participate!

FABXLive, this year’s global Fab Lab Network conference, is an online, distributed, FREE conference that gives us an opportunity to stay connected, reflect and engage deeply around Fab Labs and other community responses to COVID-19, the current state of the world and our vision for the future. 

With more than 2000 Fab Labs in 126 countries worldwide, we will bring together members of the international Fab Lab Network, government representatives, the manufacturing industry, artists, teachers, academic researchers and experts in the field of digital fabrication, to present, envision, innovate, create community, disseminate best practices in digital fabrication and discuss solutions to our world’s challenges during this unprecedented time in history.

Why You Should Tune In

Our new FABxLive member platform will allow us to share, contribute, promote and interact with each other leading up to and during the conference. We encourage you to register TODAY, update your profile and expertise in order to connect with others, live chat, participate, and more.

Is This Event Free?

Yes! Registration is free, and the only expense you may experience is purchasing a few materials locally for a hands on workshop you sign up for, but most materials will be things found around your house or at a grocery store!

Student Enterprise 2020

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Just before the Covid19 pandemic closed all schools for the remainder of the academic year we were fortunate enough to bring our Pop Up Fab Lab to the Leitrim, Cavan and Roscommon Student Enterprise Regional Finals. We educated and entertained the fledging student mini-companies with demonstrations of 3D Printing and Laser Cutting and made Laser Cut Acrylic Name Tags for the students.

The Leitrim event was held in the Bush Hotel, Carrick on Shannon on the 3rd of March and featured entries from all of the Secondary schools in the county. Some notable business ideas featured hand crafted products and one in particular benefitted from some enhancement with digital fabrication. The team of Craft Son from Carrigallen Vocational School took offcuts of timber and made beautiful wooden chopping boards. On seeing our Laser Cutter in action they were immediately taken with the idea of laser engraving their brand name onto the chopping boards. This lead to a mini production line to brand their wares for the Enterprise Award judges. Although the team didn’t win this time around they did manage to get their first order from the owner of the Bush Hotel who purchased 3 boards and had the Bush Hotel Logo laser engraved onto them.

Photos of all the Leitrim Award Winners here

The Cavan finals were held in the Slieve Russell Hotel on the 4th of March and like the plush surroundings was an immaculately produced event. Eight schools from Cavan county took part in this years Student Enterprise Awards. One company that caught our eye early on and ended up winning top prize in the senior category was Jungle Craft from St Mogues College. They produced some really well crafted and innovative storage units for toys. The units were made using a CNC machine and hand tools, then hand painted in bright jungle themed colours and patterns. The design incorporated strung elastic bungee cords to keep the contents secure but allow for easy access by small children.

The Roscommon finals were held in the Abbey Hotel, Roscommon Town on the 12th of March. As it turned out the event was destined to be the last day of the school year for all the students there as the schools closed countrywide on the 13th of March. The news of the shutdown came early on in the day and so the event had a party atmosphere about it aided by the Magic Mirror selfie photo station in the foyer. The mini companies were all doing their best to impress the judges and we helped one company to brand their gift mini hurley sticks with some laser engraving.

The National Finals were due to be held in Croke Park on the 1st of May but the lockdown has meant that they will now take place online with the final awards ceremony being held live on the Student Enterprise Facebook and YouTube pages at 3pm on the 27th of May. More Details including the lists of all the National Finalists HERE.

Design Skills & Digital Fabrication QQI5 Course

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The course aims to provide students with a broad overview of design and digital fabrication. Using a mix of classroom sessions, hands-on lab work and self directed project work, this course will facilitate the learner to engage in a creative design process, appreciate design principles as a problem solving activity and gain an understanding of the role of digital fabrication in a design skillset.

  • The History Of Design.
  • Understanding And Interpreting Design Briefs.
  • The Concepts Of Design Practice.
  • Material And Manufacturing Processes.
  • The Tools Of Visualisation And Presentation.
  • 2D drawing & 3D Computer Aided Design.
  • Digital Fabrication Tools And Fab Labs.

This course would suit those who are thinking of returning to education or considering changing their career path. The qualification achieved can also be used to assist “mature” college applicants in creating a portfolio of work that can aid them in obtaining further third-level study or for those seeking to start or expand their design CV.

  • Gain a recognised QQI Level 5 Design qualification.
  • Understand and appreciate Design principles.
  • Learn how to use Design as a problem solving activity.
  • Gain hands-on experience with Digital Fabrication technologies such as Laser Cutting and 3D Printing.
  • Build a portfolio of Design work.
  • Complete a real world project from Design Brief through to Manufacture.
  • Develop academic and vocational language, literacy and IT skills related to Design.
  • Learn how to work effectively both individually and with others in a Design team.

USEFE Fab Lab Maker Hub Launch

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USEFE Fab Lab Maker Hub launch in The Hive, Carrick On Shannon – February 28th 2020. Attendees included Joe Lowe – Head of Leitrim Local Enterprise Office, Colm Keane – Manager of The Hive, Sarah Duffy – USEFE Project Co-ordinator and Joseph Gilhooly – Director of Economic Services Leitrim CoCo.

Stuart Lawn and Leo Scarff from Fab Lab Maker Hub demonstrated the range of equipment and training services that the new mobile Fab Lab would provide to the USEFE region of Leitrim, Cavan, Longford and Roscommon.

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