“Providing access to the tools, knowledge and financial means to educate, innovate and invent using technology and digital fabrication to allow anyone to make (almost) anything, and thereby creating opportunities to improve lives and livelihoods around the world.” –Fab Foundation
Background of Fab Lab
Fab Lab began in “The Center for Bits and Atoms” at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), by Professor Neil Gershenfeld, as an outreach project for technical prototyping for innovation and invention.
Since then, it has turned into a collaborative global network, over 30 countries, spanning 24 time zones, with now over 1205 Fab Labs worldwide (as of December 2017).
Fab Labs enable invention by providing widespread access to tools and modern means for digital fabrication and invention.
What Actually is it?
Professor Neil Gershenfeld idea for Fab Labs was a simple one: ‘to provide the environment, skills, advanced materials and technology to make things cheaply and quickly anywhere in the world, and to make this available on a local basis to entrepreneurs, students, artists, small businesses and in fact, anyone who wants to create something new or bespoke.’
Fab Labs share common tools and processes as a way of building a global network, connecting a community of learners, educators, technologists, researchers, makers and innovators. Enabling users to learn by designing and creating objects of personal interest or importance, empowering them through the experience of making something themselves.
A Fab Lab is a place to play, create, learn, mentor and invent as well as providing stimulus for local entrepreneurship.
All Fab Labs share common tools and processes, which in turn helps to aid the global network of skills and knowledge sharing, feeding inspiration to individuals to turn their ideas into new products and prototypes using a range of advanced digital manufacturing technologies.
Here at Fab Lab Coventry, we are a creative community resource, focusing on the use of technology in making. Offering both open access for individuals as well as scheduled access for workshops and programs, we also provide specialist courses to people to develop new skills in Digital Fabrication, using free, open-source software, as well as supporting local SME businesses to help further their creative potential.
To see all the Fab Lab locations: http://fabfoundation.org/fab-labs/
Fab Lab Equipment
FabLabs encourage sharing information and ideas in an open-ended, open-source and sustainable way.
Flexible manufacturing equipment in our FabLab includes:
- Computer aided design (CAD) modelling
- Laser cutter
- Vinyl Cutter
- 3-axis CNC milling machines
- 3D printers
- Microprocessor and digital electronics design, assembly, and test stations