Author Archives: megadolen

How do you sell the things you made? – A sharing by Seah Ying Cong

Laughter (small)Seah Ying Cong, 21-year-old Co-founder and Operations Director of Glints, will be sharing his sales tips to makers at this year’s Singapore Mini Maker Faire, and how to adopt a customer-centric approach to produce development.

In our interview with Ying Cong, he shared his previous experience in entrepreneurship and why he wanted to get involved in the Singapore Mini Maker Faire.

Read on to find out more.

About Ying Cong

Ying Cong shared his interest in entrepreneurship and how he learnt through business plan competitions. He started a social enterprise but it did not work out. His success came about when he started Glints, an internship portal that recommends candidates for internships based on skills and personality, which he described to have obtained a pretty sustainable growth path.

Getting involved in Singapore Mini Maker Faire

Last year, Ying Cong got involved in the Singapore Mini Maker Faire through his friend Qin En when they came together with another friend to co-deliver a presentation and a workshop on product sales to our makers. Ying Cong shared that when he first heard about the event, he was excited because he likes to build his own things in his free time and he felt that 3D printing will have an impact on how we consume and buy goods in the next decade.

The trio received a good turn-out for their workshop and they also took time to explore the maker booths, when Ying Cong was awed by the Ironman suit. At the same time, he also observed that there was a saturation of makers doing 3D printing. While that was of interest to him, he expressed that he hope to see more diversity in the type of maker booths.

While he declared that he is not actively plugged into the maker movement, he is aware that it is gaining currency and traction, especially with the increasing popularity of Arduino amongst certain local enthusiast groups. When asked on his expected take-away from his participation this year, he felt that there is value that they can bring to the makers from a business point of view, and he looks forward to meeting interesting people and checking out cool gadgets that other participants made.

Don’t miss the chance to speak with Ying Cong personally at his workshop though! More details will be out on the Singapore Mini Maker Faire website www.makerfairesingapore.com.

 

Introducing the next maker – Gabriel Perumal

The next maker we would like to introduce is Gabriel Perumal.

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Gabriel Perumal (Extreme Right)

“It is an honour and a calling to be a maker.”  This was Gabriel’s ending line to my email interview with him. It is telling of his pride to be known as a maker.

Despite that, Gabriel described himself as an average youth. He graduated with a Diploma in Clean Energy and he is currently a full-time National Serviceman.

Gabriel loves electronics. His passion for electronics and his belief to educate electronics to young children has driven him to be actively involved in the Maker Movement since his first involvement last year. Gabriel first learnt about the Singapore Mini Maker Faire through William Hooi, a fervent activist in the local (and sometimes regional) maker scene. He had since regarded William as a mentor who had guided him in his maker journey. Gabriel  shared with us how he began his maker journey at the Sustainable Living Lab (SL2) booth area at the Singapore Mini Maker Faire 2013. He made a Musical Plant using piezo sensors and Arduino, and it played music upon the touch of a leaf! To Gabriel, it was an awesome experience meeting makers with similar passion and devotion.

This year, Gabriel will be setting up his own Maker booth. At his booth, he would like to conduct two mini workshops, the first being an electronics workshop where children will use Tiny Lights Kit, an electronics kits that he came up with. Tiny Lights Kit is an electronic kit with tiny colourful LEDs, and children will learn to fix a basic LED (Light Emitting Diode) Switch Circuit on a tiny breadboard. The inspiration of this Kit came from a LittleBits, a cool electronics kit designed for kids age for 7 and up. Gabriel was inspired to design a similarly fun yet more affordable kit. He also duly credited his friends Zhen Hao and Arshad for contributing to the plan and the design of the kit, at an affordable cost of just SGD10. The second mini workshop is on introductory Arduino programming as it would be complementary to the hardware workshop. The target audience is similarly children. Gabriel highlighted that he would like to see parents accompany the children at these workshops and take the chance to bond with them. Honestly, I was surprised to hear this from a 21-year-old, but what a nice thought, isn’t it?

Although the actual Singapore Mini Maker Faire is taking place only in the month of July, many of our active Makers were already actively involved in the lead-up workshops. Gabriel is one of them. On 5 April, Gabriel took part in one of the lead-up family workshop, and ran some electronics activities for the participating families. When asked on his takeaways, Gabriel shared on his sense of mission to help bring out the potential in children in the field of electronics and technology. He believes that such engagement will leave an impact in the lives of the children later on. He also wished that more technological companies can come forth to sponsor the events or provide their technological expertise to inspire and educate the next generation. We also hope to see that happen!

When asked about future plans, Gabriel shared his dream for electronics education to be made compulsory in schools and for his electronic kits to be used widely in Singapore in future. For now, he would start off with a “Startup” Electronics Made Easy (EME). We wish Gabriel all the best in materialising his dream. For a preview of what you will see at Gabriel’s booth, check out this youtube video which he put together.

This year’s Singapore Mini Maker Faire will be even more meaningful to Gabriel as he will be turning 21 years old on the first day of the Faire. What an awesome way to celebrate! If you see Gabriel on 26 July, do not forget to wish him “Happy Birthday!”

Curation begins!

thank you

We are excited to see all the applications coming in for the Singapore Mini Maker Faire 2014. Thank you for your interest!

To all makers who had submitted your applications, the curation is in progress and we will be in touch with you very shortly!

Hands-on activities for the month of June!

Like the idea of family bonding over hands-on fun with clay, electronics, paper circuits or other activities to “wow” your children?

Leading up to the Singapore Mini Maker Faire on 26 & 27 July at Senja-Cashew CC, Science Centre Singapore has organised a series of hands-on activities since the beginning of the year. Bring your child to join us on 7 June (Saturday), 10am – 1pm, and immerse into a morning of creativity.

Interested? Sign up at https://www.regonline.sg/makerworkshop2

June SMMF

About DIY Biohacker Malthe Borch and Labitat

A group of about 15 Science Centre Singapore staff came together for a sharing session by a DIY biohacker Malthe Borch from Copenhagen on 30 April 2014.

Malthen Borch

It was interesting to learn why Malthe had chosen to be an independent biohacker to conduct his own biology experiments using materials which could be bought from supermarkets, about the DIY hackerspace, Labitat that he co-founded and works in at Copenhagen.

We were shown plenty of photographs in the sharing session, giving us some ideas of the kind of DIY laboratory equipments that were used and how they incorporated technology such as Arduinos in their biohacking, and the ethics and humanity issue his group faces when they carry out their biology experiments.

Besides sharing about the biohacking scene in Copenhagen, Malthe also talked about his experience working at the Hackterialab at Yogyakarta, Indonesia.

During the Q&A session, there were further discussion on the practical issues of running a biohackerspace, funding etc, and Malthe also offered some suggestions on the kind of biohacking projects that we can consider here in Singapore.

It was an interesting hour of sharing and discussion, and it certainly gave us some insights for biohackers-wannabes here! If you are interested to find out more about the Malthe and Labitat, check out their website here at https://labitat.dk/

Introducing our Makers – Singapore Mini Maker Faire 2014

Just earlier this month, we held a family workshop as a lead up to the Singapore Mini Maker Faire 2014 that will take place at Senja-Cashew Community Club on 26 & 27 July. We would like to showcase some of the makers from that workshop who have contributed their time, effort and other resources to share their making knowledge with members of public, and who will be joining us at the Singapore Mini Maker Faire 2014 itself.

The first maker that we would like to introduce is Mr Ng Pan Yew.

Activity booth at 5 April family workshop

DSC_0010If you were with us during the family workshop, you will likely remember Mr Ng Pan Yew’s busy activity booth where you can solder your own wireframe models. Mr Ng expressed his initial concern about the participants’ interest in his station activity, but his worry was soon allayed when the young participants and their parents slowly streamed to his station. In fact, he observed that some parents were even more excited than their children!

This was when Mr Ng realised that activities which allow participants to be involved will tend to draw the crowd. He commented that this would guide him for future workshops.

Yes, Mr Ng had intended to return for another round of workshop leading up to the Singapore Mini Maker Faire 2014. Do look out for it!

Here is a showcase of the wireframe models.

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About Mr Ng Pan Yew

Mr Ng Pan Yew, a 52-year-old research assistant, is new to the Singapore Mini Maker Faire, and had only heard about it at the beginning of this year through his ex-colleague. With background in communications and electronics, Mr Ng enjoys hands-on activities and experiments. He described himself as hardworking but not smart, and as someone who will persevere to complete a project. Mr Ng should probably also add on “humour” to his self-description, as he described how indulging in these electronic hobbies had made him feel like 25 years old instead.

The SMMF14 showcase

Mr Ng shared his fascination with the vibrancy and attractiveness of Marina Bay’s cityscape, and his view that the iconic buildings and landmarks had overtaken Sentosa as Singapore’s main place of interest. Hence, that inspired him to make a mini Marina Bay acrylic model (the Merlion, Singapore Flyer and Esplanade, etc) to be placed at home. To inject life to the acrylic model, he added LED lighting and programme them to operate in sync with your choice of music.

When asked about the project, Mr Ng shared that although he had tried to look for people to build the model together, he couldn’t find any. He opined that it was hard to find like-minded people who likes hands-on hobbies. Well, I am guessing Mr Ng might probably be surprised when he meet these like-minded people at the upcoming Singapore Mini Maker Faire! If you are one, do remember to look out for him!

The interview with Mr Ng reminded me that there might be many more makers and hobbyists who have not heard of the Singapore Mini Maker Faire and the opportunities that exist to showcase what they can do. We hope that the Singapore Mini Maker Faire can continue to be that platform and allow more like-minded hobbyists and makers to get to know each other, work together and come up with more marvellous projects.

Want to see a preview of Mr Ng’s mini-LED light display of Marina Bay area? Check out this video that he has done up, together with his daughter who aided in the sub-titles.

Be a Maker: Lets make a carnival game

Experimentation, collaboration, and play are the cornerstones of Karkhana, a Nepal maker group. They believe in breaking new grounds and nurturing a new generation of makers.

There is now an opportunity for children aged 6 – 12 years old to attend a workshop on 3 May (Saturday), 10am – 12pm at Science Centre Singapore to make a carnival game. Through this workshop, the participants will learn about the Design Cycle TMPI (Think, Make Play, Improve).

Interested? Sign up at http://makerworkshop1.peatix.com/

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From traditional printing press to blinky circuits

Were you here with us at the Marquee, Science Centre Singapore for our first lead-up family workshop for the Singapore Mini Maker Faire last Saturday? It was an amazing array of activities and we hope you had managed to cover everything if you were here.

Check out some of the station activities that were arranged!
LED activities/ Using DIY remote buttons for Scratch software
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Learn about simple circuits by making a blingtastic circuit

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Sciencey games: Kendama
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Amaker3D: Open source 3D printing
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3D modelling and design with Henry Wong and Darren See
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Quilling and paper crafting with Priyanka Datta
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Solder your own wireframe models by Pan Yew
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Colour Me – by artist Richard Kearns
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Communicate your Science: a “Be a writer” talent hunt and children’s talk show, by Sindu Sreebhavan of Kids Parade Magazine
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If you had missed this workshop, no worries, there will be other opportunities. Do watch this space or follow us on our Singapore Mini Maker Faire Facebook Page! Remember to block your calendar for our actual Singapore Mini Maker Faire 2014 which will happen on 26 & 27 July 2014 at Senja-Cashew Community Club.

“Colour me” and Discovery @ L’Observatoire

It is always interesting to check out tinkerspaces of our makers.

On Wednesday, part of the Singapore Mini Maker Faire team made a trip to “L’Observatorie in Singapore”, an art and science space set up by Isabelle Desjeux for learning and sharing.

Isabelle is not new to the team as she took part in the first Singapore Mini Maker Faire two years ago and conducted a portable handphone microscope workshop. Her tinkerspace is tucked in a quaint corner at Turf Club Road and is located within a kindergarten building (The Blue House International School). A perfect setting to inspire tinkerers and makers.

Print made by an etch press

Print made by an etch press

What awaited us was a painting session as part of “Colour Me”, an investigative and participative project by Richard Kearns, L’Observatoire’s Artist-in-Residence from January till March.

Richard showed us a huge etch press which is used for printmaking. He also explained how the prints were solar etched onto photopolymer plates and demonstrated how the printing was done.

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Isabelle’s Etch Press @ L’Observatoire

It was fun to try our hands on the painting which was limited by the 4 colours available for each print, and it was exciting to see a traditional etch press at work. It has certainly inspired me to start exploring printmaking using a press!

L’Observatoire has a lot of interesting gadgets, such as pinhole cameras, DIY weaving loom and its own darkroom! Check out some of these photos!

Camera and the inverted image from the beautiful skyscape outside the studio

Camera and the inverted image from the beautiful skyscape outside the studio

Inspired to make something like that for yourself?

Inspired to make something like that for yourself?

Reminded me of my own exact letter stamp set!

Reminded me of my own exact letter stamp set!

If you are interested in the “Colour Me” project by Richard Kearns, check out the event details at the “Colour Me” Facebook Page. The sessions he is conducting at L’Observatoire will end this Sunday (30 Mar). Look out for future projects that Isabelle and Richard would be embarking soon for the Singapore Mini Maker Faire 2014!

 

Biotinkering? What’s that?

Taking apart the webcam

Taking apart the webcam

It started with just a handful of students who readily took up the hands-on challenge to build their own microscope by hacking a webcam.

In a short while, the two tables that were full of gadgets gradually drew attention, until a point that we can hardly view what was happening at Marc Dusseiller’s pop-up biotinkering space.

Wondered what else were done at the pop-up makerspace held at Science Centre Singapore on 13 Mar 2014?

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Using the glue gun to fix the camera to the base

Within the short 2 hours, the impromptu participants tried their hands at taking things apart, and putting them together again, and experimented with different items that they could view using their DIY microscope, including a live spider and a cotton stainer!

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Lots of spontaneous efforts were also put in into ensure the live insects are viewable on the DIY microscope, amusing the crowd watching the demonstration.

Cotton Stainer

Cotton Stainer

Marc also brought along plenty of interesting gadgets which captured our attention.

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Check out the two suitcases he brought his stuffs in! One of them is a “Lab in a suitcase” while the other contains stuffs that he made. Inspiring, isn’t it? Seems like some people will start packing their own maker suitcase/bag soon!

Marc's lab in a suitcase!

Marc’s lab in a suitcase!

Maker tools in a suitcase!

Maker tools in a suitcase!

If you are looking forward to some tinkering and making, check out the next pop-up event on 22 March at Tampines Central Community Club.