Day 154 – TedxKids@Brussels, part 3

After lunch, the presentations continued;

First up were Evan Raskob, Bethany Koby and Daniel Hirschmann, from Technology will save us.

This is what these guys do;

Technology Will Save Us exists to educate and enable people to make and experiment creatively with technology.

Devices, gadgets and computers are a fundamental part of our everyday lives. Yet most people know so little about what these things are made of; let alone how to fix them or create new ways to use them. However, an exciting shift is emerging in society, a shift where people are finding new and inventive ways to re-skill.

Whether it be learning how to sew, garden, build furniture or bake bread – the desire to produce, invent, make and fix things is re-emerging in London. There are also skills we have never actually learnt about, which are key to understanding many of the modern technologies we take for granted.

We see an opportunity to ‘pre–skill’ people around these modern technologies and see what new services and products we can create together.

Basically they bring creativity and technology together by linking artists and engineers.  We currently have a huge dust pile of technology, when the next machine comes out, we ditch the old and buy the next.  It is such a huge amount of waste that we create.  TWSU are trying to reskill and re-invent craft in the UK.  They use workshops in local communities and offer courses on wiring a plug and soldering.  They also explore the reuse of recycled materials.

Obviously for Jules and I, as part of REcircle creative recycling centre in Brussels, this was a highly interesting presentation, and both of us loved the idea of using redundant retail space for pop up shops -> Perfect!


Next up was Walter Bender, from SugarLabs

He presented about his sugar learning platform, which encourages critical thinking, the heart from his viewpoint, of a quality education. Designed from the ground up especially for children, Sugar offers an alternative to traditional “office-desktop” software.  It is free software, that is also used in over 25 languages, on the ‘one laptop pre child’ program.  The kids in the workshops had a great time with it, and I’m currently looking into downloading it onto our Mac.

He really made you stop and think about programming as such.  We all live in a world now where we just switch it on and get on with it, instead of building computer programs ourselves, to create and build things specific to our needs.  We need to bring back ‘the need to fix it’.  It’s a real skill bonus for a child, and one that I am definitely going to look further into. Free software, in the sense of free to change, allows you to develop those skills, and really should be encouraged strongly in the computer lessons at school.

The quote for me, that hit this need home, was ‘I really worry about the attitude…..there’s an app for that!’


After that, Joris Peels presented from i.materialise

This is the early technology surrounding 3D printing, where the idea is that you can print in resin (or similar flexible materials), your design.  Used currently for models and small objects for cost reasons, it can be applied to the world of concept cars and sofa’s, and is predicted as a major technology for the future.  It will enable us to move away from mass production, where everything is made for a million people, dumbed down and driven by cost structures.  To the possibility to create our own unique experiences.  Already designed include a titanium ring, 3D bowls printed inside and out, and a Tom Tom holder for a bike.  It can be used to create one offs, that if successful, can go on to further production.  It’s restrictions at the moment, are also due to the man-power needed after creating an object, as a lot of supporting parts need to be removed or filed down.  However and interesting one to watch for the future.  And it very much excited the kids in the workshops.

One favourite piece I found of 3D printing, was this light ‘the fall of the damned’ by Luc Merx

moss gallery – Fall of the Damned Suspension Light Luc Merx .MGX by Materialise.

Phew, another tea break, and I’ll be back tomorrow with the final run…….

2 Responses to “Day 154 – TedxKids@Brussels, part 3”
  1. Henny says:

    I watched the Recircle blog, love the materials. We have something similar in the Netherlands: and
    (and our attic and back-kitchen, but that’s a different story…)

    Love, Henny

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  1. […] Day 154 – TedxKids@Brussels, part 3 « Life with Lizzi. – the motivation to keep us going @TedXKids in Brussels […]

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