During the last 8 years I have been deeply involved with the Globally Distributed Fablab Network where I have been sharing peer-to-peer values and open design approach, as well as research and digital literacy. I got inspired by this network and I inspired this network along with many other mentors. The COVID19 Pandemy just proved how efficient design for digital fabrication and distributed digital fabrication tools (Laser-cutting, 3D printing...) can be to protect peoples exposed to the virus. But we can go further.
What it does
Creates a cross-universities/distributed physical platform (with humans, machines, and softwares) that work on setting up an active distributed network on research related to crisis-responses and ressources-scarcity.
How I built it
All along the last month while optimizing fabrication-processes to produce as many tools as possible for hospitals, and before that.
Challenges I ran into
-the efficient distribution/dispatching of the protective materials -the lack of knowledge on medics expectations and preferences -the preparing of a fablab for a semi-massive fabrication operation -the lack of timelime: at the begining, we didn't know until when we would have to keep fabricating -the optimization of the fabrication-time per machine per hour. -the end of stocks of primary materials -the absence of clear and official communication on non-medicaly-graded 3D printed-tools certification -the uncertainty of fabricating objects that could be spreading the virus instead of fighting it -the lack of human ressources due to a legitimate limited access to our campus -the complexity of applying social distancing with a +4 group of peoples -the complexity of regrouping and coordinating several local initiative -the evaluation and modification of the available designs to test better and faster ways to fabricate efficiently -the slowness of materials deliveries (when possible) -the absence of protocols related to interactions between peoples fabricating -the absence of protocols to gather machines and materials available on the campus when it is closed -the constraints related to authorizing someone to access the campus to work on fabrication (legal responsability) -the very pro-active and organic initiatives of individuals fabricating for medics complex to manage -the challenge of using novel technics to fabricate while trying to fabricate as many parts as possible in the minimum amount of time without wasting materials -We learnt how painful fabricating in tense-flux can be
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
-we were two people with x6 3D-printers and we managed to fabricate +2000 parts in 15 days. -we have learnt how to temporarily transform a fablab into a semi-industrial space (it can't last for long) -we have strengthened the relationships between labs on the campus -We allowed us to identy new peers involved into fabrication and research related to protective equipments and more -We finally managed to set up a more direct relationship with medics to get feedback on designs -We sealed agreements for post-covid19 collaborations with medics -We
What I learned
-A lot. I am still in that process of learning regarding the COVID
What's next for EUGLOH-COVID19-Digital Fabrication Distributed Network
Elevator Pitch: Creating cross-universities physical platforms (with humans, machines, softwares) that work on setting up an active distributed network on research related to crisis-responses and ressources-scarcity.
The crisis related to the COVID19 should be taken as an opportunity to redefine the way we manage ressources by creating cross-universities physical platforms (with humans and machines and softwares) that work on setting up an active distributed network on research related to crisis responses and ressources scarcity. I foresee something that is on the edge of Design, between technical/scientific experimentation and societal and political research.
I would like to investigate on protocol-designs for scarcity contexts, protective equipment designs, custom-design for machinery, to explore circular fabrication potentials, and to develop strategies to deploy self-sustainability of universities (open-hardware equipments, on-site food-production, upcycling, etc)