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Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo
Materials for a debate on grass-roots & corporate collaborative design practices and settings in digitally mediated settings | Materiales para un debate sobre prácticas y situaciones colaborativas (de base o corporativas) en el diseño en contextos digitalmente mediados
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Repair, Maintenance and Urban Assemblage | Ignaz Strebl

Repair, Maintenance and Urban Assemblage | Ignaz Strebl | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it

This project highlights repair and maintenance as qualities of infrastructures and the built environment. Whilst current efforts to increase density of cities raise hope for the next urban revolution, repair and maintenance become key features of 21st century urban development. The people involved in this project are architects, engineers but first and foremost craftspeople, from plumbers to builders, gardeners, electricians – and not least the innumerable technicians, concierges, care takers and cleaning crews. Using the concept of "urban assemblages" (Farìas/Bender 2010) as a starting point, this project develops a relational theory of the built environment.

 

Aim: What does repair work do to societies and cities? Is it just about repairing or replacing defective parts? Or do repair and maintenance have creative potential, and could thereby lead to sustainable urban development, because what is already built keeps us working on it? The project seeks to answer these and other questions.

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Espai públic amb dret d’admissió

Espai públic amb dret d’admissió | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it

Hi ha un biaix de gènere en la planificació de l’espai urbà que no té en compte la diversitat de realitats de les persones que habiten les ciutats

 

 

El Col·lectiu Punt 6 es defineix com un grup de dones, provinents de diferents àrees de coneixement i d’experiències, unides sota la voluntat d’introduir la perspectiva de gènere en l’urbanisme. Proposen espais públics adaptats per a tothom, que incloguin les necessitats productives, reproductives i de lleure sense menystenir unes en pro de les altres. Defensen que la configuració urbana dels municipis prioritza uns usos enfront d’uns altres, de manera que la ciutat retroalimenta les desigualtats existents.

 

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Cómo dejar de ser utópicos

Cómo dejar de ser utópicos | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it
No se puede «crear» una comunidad, no tiene sentido empujar a nadie. El verdadero igualitarismo se basa en aceptar al otro como un igual en responsabilidades.
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Icaria o los desastres del «bien común»

Icaria o los desastres del «bien común» | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it

El asentamiento icariano en América fue seguramente la experiencia comunitaria más larga, profunda y exitosa del siglo XIX. Su práctica descubrió las instituciones básicas del comunitarismo igualitario y consiguió asentar economías prósperas y diversificadas de distinta escala en lugares que, en principio, eran los menos propicios para ello. Su principal legado es recordarnos que la base de toda comunidad real no es el «bien común», padre de todos los totalitarismos, sino el gusto por aprender juntos.

 

 

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La revolución de lo posible | Marina Garcés

Últimamente se están imponiendo intelectuales “cierra puertas” que solo nos hablan de lo que no puede ser
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Punks and Makers

Punks and Makers | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it
The punk rock revolution democratized the tools of production in a way that is now echoed in everything from desktop manufacturing to crowdfunding.
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Urbanismo participativo

Urbanismo participativo | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it

El estudio de mercado realizado en 2011 no aportaba buenos augurios. “Trabajar para la Administración Pública española en el sector urbanístico no era el mejor contexto”, dice Iñaki Romero. Les sirvió, sin embargo, para detectar el nicho que dejaba una corriente en auge: la defensa de un urbanismo más colaborativo que restituyera a los ciudadanos el concepto de plaza pública.

Y es en esa metodología participativa donde radica uno de los puntos fuertes de esta sociedad laboral que comparten a partes iguales cinco jóvenes arquitectos: Guillermo Acero, Jon Aguirre, Jorge Arévalo, Pilar Díaz e Iñaki Romero.

La experiencia previa acumulada por cada uno en estudios y oficinas al uso les alertó de otra carencia: el inmovilismo del sector. “Había que reciclarse, cambiar de proveedores y tener un enfoque más transversal y de bajo coste”. Pero también tenían que darse a conocer. Para ello apostaron por el marketing y la difusión de sus ideas antes incluso de constituir la empresa. Lo consiguieron a través de un blog con contenidos de calidad asociado a un trabajo en redes bastante potente.

 

 

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Leyes digitales sobre copyright podrían afectar a mecánicos - Bólido

Leyes digitales sobre copyright podrían afectar a mecánicos - Bólido | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it
¿Podría peligrar la idea de propiedad sobre un vehículo? A continuación te contamos.
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Ni el copyright ni el copyleft te va a dar de comer

Ni el copyright ni el copyleft te va a dar de comer | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it
Algunas notas para Podemos Cultura sobre asociacionismo en el campo de la cultura.El debate sobre licencias libres o propietarias no puede bloquear el debate sobre los derechos comunes.
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¿Es posible una economía feminista de la cultura? – Nativa

¿Es posible una economía feminista de la cultura? – Nativa | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it
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Editorial note: We now have the means of production, but where is my revolution? » Journal of Peer Production

Editorial note: We now have the means of production, but where is my revolution? » Journal of Peer Production | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it

The last years saw an incredible proliferation of shared machine shops in a confusing number of genres: hackerspaces, makerspaces, Fab Labs and their more commercial counterparts like TechShops, co-working spaces, accelerators and incubators. Without being comprehensive, the articles collected here address Fab Labs, hackerspaces and hacklabs, but the questions raised reach beyond the walls of each. Shared machine shops figure as the occupied factories of peer production theory – worker owned production units which often look like the perfect illustration of the revolutionary theory on first sight, yet on closer look exhibit all its contradictions. Of the phenomena customarily examined under the rubric of peer production, they are probably as close as we got to an image of a peer produced social fabric – a society of peers.

Despite the marketing clangour of the “maker movement”, shared machine shops are currently “fringe phenomena” since they play a minor role in the production of wealth, knowledge, political consensus and the social organisation of life. Interestingly, however, they also prominently share the core transformations experienced in contemporary capitalism. That is, for the individual: the convergence of work, labour and other aspects of life. Moreover, on a systemic level: the rapid development of algorithmically driven technical systems and their intensifying role in social organisation. Finally, as a corollary: the practical and legitimation crisis of modern institutions, echoed by renewed attempts at self-organisation.

Arguably, hackers occupied such an ambiguous position since the beginning of hackerdom, but shared machine shops represent a new configuration. They appear as embodied communities organised in research and production units of physical and logical goods; they even appear to escape the subcultural ghetto as they expand their collaborations to educational institutions, museums, and libraries. They are eminent laboratories in both their practices and products: as experimental forms of social institutions, and as the developers of technological prototypes projecting new visions of the future. Industry actors, state authorities and policy makers have recognised such milieus as prolific grounds for recruitment and new organisational models, which in itself warrants critical attention.

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Visible mending

Visible mending | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it
Visible mending Everyday repairs in the South West ............................................... Steven Bond, Caitlin DeSilvey & James R. Ryan In September 2010 a team of three researchers—two cultural geographers and a photographer—set out to find and visit workplaces in the South West where people repair broken things. Notebooks and cameras were the project tools, and these tools produced an extensive archive of texts and images, a selection of which are printed in this book, the culmination of eighteen months of fieldwork. The project was inspired by an attraction to the aesthetics of these workplaces, but also by an interest in what the practices of fixing, mending, repair and renewal could reveal about the way people value things, and each other. In the words of Elizabeth Spelman: “…though we do not repair everything we value, we would not repair things unless they were in some sense valuable to us, and how they matter to us shows up in the form of repair we undertake”. Bath Typewriter Service, Bath, Somerset; Cane Corner, East Budleigh, Devon; Honiton Clock Clinic, Honiton, Devon; The Cycle Centre, Barnstaple, Devon; Michael Fook Small Engine and Bicycle Repair, South Molton, Devon; Mount’s Bay Electrical, Penzance, Cornwall; Helen Warren Porcelain Repair, Budleigh Salterton, Devon; Sew-Quick, Falmouth, Cornwall; Star Shoe Repairs, Redruth, Cornwall; The Tool Box, Colyton, Devon; Thompson Brothers, Bridgwater, Somerset; New Life Upholstery, Barnstaple, Devon; F. W. Speller Boot & Shoe Repairer, Carharrack, Cornwall; The Menders, Crewkerne, Somerset; Castle Forge, Sherborne, Dorset; R. Paveley, Tailor, Fortuneswell, Dorset; Jessica Rance Woodwind Instrument Repairs, Thornmoor Cross, Devon; Biggleston’s Hardware, Hayle, Cornwall; The Abrams Bindery, Wellington, Somerset; Stick of Lostwithiel, Lostwithiel, Cornwall. Introduction by Sarah Pink, Foreword by Nick Hand. 212 illustrations in colour, 9 in black and white.
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Estamos en coma | ColaBoraBora

Estamos en coma | ColaBoraBora | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it

Coincidiendo con que el Guggenheim celebra la renovación por otros veinte años de su contrato con esta ciudad para terminar de desarrollar su exitoso modelo de transformación socioeconómica basado en el Capitalismo Cognitivo; ahora cuando desde lo instituido se habla (chacharea) más que nunca de creación, creatividad, innovación y emprendimiento social; nosotras en ColaBoraBora parece que nos vemos abocadas a desaparecer.

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No cerréis los centros de experimentación cultural

No cerréis los centros de experimentación cultural | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it
La Casa Invisible de Málaga y el Patio Maravillas de Madrid son entornos necesarios donde se construyen posicionamientos críticos, se articulan preguntas incómodas y se elaboran los prototipos políticos que nos hacen falta en un entorno institucional decepcionante.Hay dos manifestaciones convocadas para impedir sus desahucios: lunes 5 a las 19h en la plaza de Dos de Mayo de Madrid y el sábado 10 a las 11:30am frente a La Casa Invisible.
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Brevísima historia del significado de «comunidad»

Brevísima historia del significado de «comunidad» | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it

«Comunidad» es hoy una de esas palabras que suscitan consenso emocional. Emocional y positivo. Aunque uno debería preguntarse, cuando dos personas la usan en la misma conversación, si realmente quieren decir la misma cosa.

 

 

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El nacimiento del kibbutz

El nacimiento del kibbutz | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it

El kibbutz es mucho más que un experimento y su importancia excede con mucho los límites históricos y geográficos del estado de Israel. Los kibutznik no eran en principio comunitaristas pero acabaron descubriendo que esa era la vida que querían para sí y para sus hijos. Su evolución y sus debates conforman el corazón de la experiencia comunitaria del siglo XX.

 

 

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La Experiencia Comunitaria | El Correo de las Indias

La Experiencia Comunitaria | El Correo de las Indias | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it

«Comunidad» es uno de esos términos que parecen agradar a todo el mundo y que por lo mismo pierde un poco más de significado cada vez que se usa. En esta serie viajaremos a las fuentes para reencontrarnos con una historia paralela a la de las efemérides históricas, una historia de pioneros, utopistas y activistas comprometidos con sus ideas y decididos a demostrar la posibilidad de formas igualitarias de vida, producción y ahorro. Pero también nos encontraremos con soldados, artesanos, filósofos y colonos cuya vida quedó marcada por la experiencia comunitaria. Veremos nacer el cooperativismo, los kibutz y las mutualidades, sufriremos stress de combate y compartiremos el nacimiento de comunidades en la adversidad, pero sobre todo descubriremos, a través de su historia, qué es, cómo nacen y qué necesitan aprender las comunidades que perduran.

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Technopolis: The ideology of "innovation" -- interview with Langdon Winner

Here's an interview that Nick Ishmael-Perkins did with me last summer.  Nick edited the piece for its first publication in SciDevNet, the fine web site he runs on "Bringing together science and development through original news and analysis."  

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The smartest cities rely on citizen cunning and unglamorous technology

The smartest cities rely on citizen cunning and unglamorous technology | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it
Ignore the futuristic visions of governments and developers, it’s humble urban communities who lead the way in showing how networked technologies can strengthen a city’s social fabric
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Collaborative Economy Companies Need To Start Sharing More Value With The People Who Make Them Valuable

Collaborative Economy Companies Need To Start Sharing More Value With The People Who Make Them Valuable | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it
It's time for the drivers, hosts, and community members to get a piece of the companies that couldn't exist without them.
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Postpolitical Infrastructures

Postpolitical Infrastructures | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it

As a kid I was always fascinated by my father’s work as an architect. He used to take me to building sites and explain what was going on. But I was particularly interested in how he made the plans. These he drew by hand on a huge drafting table, with a range of geometric tools. Even more amazing was the blue-print machine, which turned he drawings into inky copies, for the client, the builder and the town clerk’s office.

It was an era when an architect still gave form to the world. Buildings were made of standard parts, but were not themselves quite standard. As Rem Koolhaas shows in his magnificent book Delirious New York, you can date buildings in a city once you know how the building codes change through time, as the codes are kind of invisible envelope that the actual structures strain up against. They are almost always as tall and big as the codes would let them be, but each has its own form, shoe-horned into the grid.

That era is over. The architect today is no ‘fountainhead.’ It is rather sad to watch today’s ‘starchitects’, designing their weird-looking signature buildings. These seem now always to be either museums or condos for billionaires. The brand-name architect just build useless luxury housing for the 1% and their trinkets. The actual design of the world is now in the hands of other people.

Perhaps the decline of architecture can be mapped onto the design of politics. Or rather its redesign. The architect made buildings which carved out private space against the boundary of a public one that was in the shape of some kind of polis. It was not always a democratic one, but it was a polis that formed the platform for modes of political calculation, consensus and ‘dissensus.’ But does that polis still exist, or do we live only with its spectacle, its simulacrum?

Of particular interest here is a new book by Keller Easterling, called Extrastatecraft: The Power of Infrastructure Space. Following Armand Mattelart’s call for a critical history of global infrastructure, Easterling offers three case studies in new forms of built-out power, and some remarkably productive language for thinking about the kinds of built space that might be replacing those of both architecture and politics.

 

 

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The Internet Of Someone Else’s Things

The Internet Of Someone Else’s Things | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it

The Internet Of Things is coming. Rejoice! …Mostly. It will open our collective eyes to petabytes of real-time data, which we will turn into new insights and efficiencies. It will doubtless save lives. Oh, yes: and it will subtly redefine ownership as we know it. You will no longer own many of the most expensive and sophisticated items you possess. You may think you own them. But you’ll be wrong.

They say “possession is nine-tenths of the law,” but even if you physically and legally own a Smart Thing, you won’t actually control it. Ownership will become a three-legged stool: who physically owns a thing; who legally owns it; …and who has the ultimate power to command it. Who, in short, has root.

This is not a hypothetical situation. Your phone probably has three separate computers in it (processor, baseband processor, and SIM card) and you almost certainly don’t have root on any of them, which is why some people refer to phones as “tracking devices which make phone calls.” The New York Times recently ran a story about cars being prevented from starting because payments were days late. (And as CityLab points out: “Losing transportation could mean losing everything.”) Consider also the recent discovery that Belkin routers apparently had to connect to Belkin’s servers before they would connect to the rest of the Internet.

 

 

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Shared Machine Shops as Real-life Laboratories » Journal of Peer Production

Shared Machine Shops as Real-life Laboratories » Journal of Peer Production | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it

From its very beginnings modernity could be described as a social formation which values innovation. It embraces the production of new ideas, practices and technologies. The task of innovation, however, was usually carried out by specialized experts (inventors, researchers, and developers) in specialized areas (laboratories of universities, research centers, and R&D departments).

As long as only a small sector of society engages in innovation it might be an exaggeration to speak of modernity as an innovation society, but in the light of recent developments the diagnosis of an innovation society is gaining new plausibility. Innovation has become heterogeneously distributed, ubiquitous, and reflexive: Innovation is increasingly produced by decentralized networks which involve actors from divergent social fields. Innovation therefore leaves the traditional sphere of the restricted laboratory and is transformed into an ubiquitous practice which is also adopted by non-professional as well as non-commercial actors like sports enthusiasts (Baldwin, Hienerth & von Hippel, 2006), private tinkerers (Baldwin & von Hippel, 2011), or „innovation communities” in general (von Hippel, 2006: 96). Hence, the growing knowledge about innovation also leads to a reflexivity of innovation itself (Hutter et al., 2011: 2), extends the scope of innovative practices, and transforms the very processes and structures of innovation: findings from the fields of open source software (Raymond, 2001; Kogut & Metiu, 2001), crowdsourcing (Brabham, 2008; Howe, 2010), or the modes of open-/user-based innovation mentioned above show evidence for these broader transformations.

Tomás Sánchez Criado's insight:

 

"[…] Following recent discussions on real-life experiments in science and technology studies, we will argue that experimentation is an important feature of innovation practices. Just like innovation, experimentation has also become a ubiquitous, heterogeneously distributed and reflexive practice. Especially in the recently emerged community- and peer-based forms of production, the freedom to experiment plays a major role. In contrast to the limitations of experiments embedded in hierarchies and the imperatives of formal organizations, peer communities provide settings where actors are primarily intrinsically motivated and free to join and leave these communities and this is likely to cause an increased freedom to experiment. We suggest that experimental practices are not something that happens in addition to other things going on in peer production contexts, but that peer production itself is a real-life-experiment in societal transformation."

 

"[…] Shared machines shops (SMS) are a perfect example of these new laboratory spaces. They embody the values of ubiquitous, heterogeneously distributed and reflexive experimentation. They provide new laboratory infrastructures outside of hierarchical organizations while being embedded in the digital and fluid networks of a new experimental culture. However, like social studies on laboratory life have shown, the boundaries between the laboratory and the rest of society are not absolute (Latour, 1983). We use two examples of innovations in shared machined shops (low-cost-prosthesis and open hardware 3D printers) to demonstrate that peer production as a new form of innovation is still in a fragile niche phase. It is surrounded by an innovation regime that implicates commercial logics and patterns of market regulation and thus reveals tensions with the particular practices of experimental exploration which are constitutive for the open and community-based approach of SMS."

 

"[…] Shared machine shops […] are framed as nuclei of collaborative grass-roots fabrication that could revolutionize and democratize manufacturing or may even replace capitalist patterns of production and consumption (Smith et al., 2013: 4). But are shared machine shops actually the constitutive elements of a new industrial revolution (Anderson, 2012), or will they remain idiosyncratic niches? We think that it is still too early to answer a question like this. Maybe the question itself is wrongly phrased. In this paper we will offer a different perspective on shared machine shops. These workshops can be taken as experimental settings where new visions, practices, and technologies are developed, tested, and refined. SMS are laboratories of a new kind. These laboratories are neither detached from society, nor are they only accessible for professionals. Instead, shared machine shops are real-life laboratories"

 

"[…] It might be wrong, however, to identify experiments with pure […] science in the first place. In his analysis of the relation between experiments and modernity, Krohn (2007) has shown that the semantics of experimentation can be found in heterogeneous contexts of modern life such as experimental literature, wars (as contexts for the experimental use of new weapons) and experimental forms of urban development. In all these contexts the term “experiment” is used to designate systematic learning practices by means of specific technical or social installations. Learning is not used as a normative term here, but as an analytical concept. Learning occurs if individuals or social systems break with established routines and create something new"

 

"[…] In experiments, social, technical and/or natural conditions are ordered and arranged in a specific way to encourage this kind of learning from irritations, and hence the establishment of new routines.

It is this systematic approach to learning by means of remodeling (material or immaterial) conditions that distinguishes experiments from those practices of trial and error that occur in everyday life on a regular basis, and sometimes even unintentionally. Experiments allow it to try something new and risky, and to accept the occurrence of failure. Furthermore, experimental settings make it possible to learn from those mistakes in a systematic manner. Experiments, therefore, combine an amount of freedom and control not usually found outside experimental settings."

 

"[…] In innovation societies the need for experimental learning has widely increased. In cases like genetic field experiments, prototyping in research and development, or beta releases of software products, experiments become real-life experiments (Krohn, 2007; Groß et al., 2003): Real-life experiments take place outside scientific laboratories. They don’t follow the logic of isolation and purification of laboratory experiments and typically include actors outside professional scientific contexts. Their objective is not the generalization of natural laws but the exploration of specific cases (Krohn, 2007: 349-354). Groß even suggests that nowadays controlled laboratory experiments have become the exception, while real-life experiments have become the norm (Groß, 2013: 196)"

 

"[…] Laboratories are not only closed rooms detached from the rest of society, they can be all kinds of (more or less protected) spaces in which the arrangements necessary for experimentation can be installed. Hence, laboratories are not only places in which facts are produced and reproduced but also – and maybe foremost – places that facilitate installations and constellations which enable irritation and learning (which again may or may not form the basis of new facts)."

 

"[…] In environmental science the concept of real-life laboratories (Schneidewind & Scheck, 2013) was recently developed to describe semi-protected spaces that are established for experiments between knowledge generation and knowledge application; where new kinds of socio-technical practices are developed and tested. A real-life laboratory is neither a closed room, designed to control all relevant experimental boundary conditions, nor a borderless space like “society”, “the market” or the “internet”. Real-life laboratories instead create a semi-open spatial and social microcosm, where failures are allowed, irritations are welcome, and learning is encouraged.

An important feature of real-life laboratories is their transdisciplinarity and openness. Not only certified experts can gain access to these places. They are rather spaces that encourage the interaction of experts and so-called “lay persons”, who might indeed be (uncertified) “experts” as well and who can contribute to ongoing real-life experiments. In the closed space of traditional laboratories in universities and R&D departments of firms, the presence of these non-certified experts would usually not be allowed (at most as “subjects” of an experiment or “visitors” to the laboratory) and their knowledge would be excluded from the processes of innovation, experimentation and collaborative learning (Collins & Evans, 2002)."

 

"[…] In their study of research “in the wild”, Callon and Rabeharisoa (2003) have shown that there is no intrinsic difference between expert knowledge and lay knowledge. “It would, for example, be wrong to say that the former are explicit and codified while the latter are tacit, or that the former are formalized while the latter are informal. Everything depends on the equipment used on both sides and, more broadly, the conditions “in which the expertise is produced” (ibid.: 196). Real-life laboratories can be conceived as laboratories “in the wild” in which the boundaries between expert and lay knowledge can get blurred even more, because real-life laboratories might provide the equipment and conditions for knowledge production typically associated with the world of scientific expertise."

 

"[…] Shared machine shops constitute a new environment for exploration in various fields of technology- and design-related topics […] typically organized around community-based principles  […] participation depends rather on common interests, shared values, and intrinsic motivation than on disciplinary boundaries and professions. Following this approach, shared machine shops offer new opportunities for collaboration and co-operation among heterogeneous actors that contribute their particular expertise and visions to any given context of shared interest. This often causes creative friction, which may either lead to small-scale inventions that serve the personal needs of its inventors, but in some cases also fosters solutions that could gain innovative momentum outside the shared machine shop, and beyond the initial motivations of the actors involved".

 

"[…] Compared to visions that take SMS as forerunners of a new industrial revolution (Anderson, 2012), our interpretation of SMS as real-life laboratories offers a different framing. Innovations in shared machine shops are a step closer to the laboratory “world on probation” (Krohn, 2007: 348, translated by the authors) than to the sphere of production. To expect them to overthrow centralized forms of industrial production might therefore demand too much of these still fragile niches which have to handle the ambivalence between experimental freedom and socio-economic pressures."

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Tomás Sánchez Criado's curator insight, November 2, 2014 6:28 AM

"[…] 3.1 The case of low-cost-prosthesis

 

The first case we want to introduce as an evidence for the conceptual aim of this paper is the one of “low-cost prosthesis”. Building on a collaboration between Amsterdam’s FabLab, the Indonesia-based House of Natural Fiber (HONF), which is a media and art laboratory in Yogyakarta as well as its associated FabLab (the “HONFablab Yogyakarta”), this project incorporates the principles of the FabLab Charta quite perfectly as it really draws on networking among different Fab-Labs, open knowledge sharing, and free access to community resources (http://fab.cba.mit.edu/about/charter/). The general aim of the low-cost prosthesis project is to explore how a developing country like Indonesia can become self-reliant in building prostheses for the cost of about $50. The need for this endeavor is obvious (see: http://www.lowcostprosthesis.org): First, due to the increasing rate of amputations, there is an ever-growing demand for prosthetic limbs especially in developing countries where insufficient supplies of public health services often leads to diabetes, gangrene, and infection. Second, there are significant problems in providing prosthetics to people in need due to the high cost for readily available prosthetic limbs, and the lack of expertise, which is mandatory for proper constructing, fitting, aligning, and adjusting of prosthetics.

To offer a solution for this pressing problem, the low-cost prosthesis project started to develop a lower knee prosthesis by approaching an inclusive open innovation process, where end users, designers, researchers and manufacturers can contribute in a joint effort (Waag 2009). The current state of the project is reflected by a prototype of the “$50 leg prosthesis” (see fig. 1) which was developed in 2012 after several workshops with experts from various related fields (e.g. rehabilitation, biomechatronics, biomedical engineering, orthopedic technology, design etc.).

Since the development of the low-cost prosthesis is still in its experimental phase, this solution is shielded in the niche of the FabLabs, which are engaged in this project. Nevertheless, the potentials to spread the orthopedic as well as construction-related knowledge and to empower the locals by creating new jobs at the same time are already obvious. Besides that, it also captures the very specifics of the experimental learning processes which we consider to be constitutive for the concept of real-life laboratories. Especially the documentation of workshops that were conducted during the project reveals this evidence. As mentioned above, these workshops were attended by experts from various professional disciplines as well as people who got engaged because of their FabLab background. This constellation apparently provided a fruitful setting for e.g. “an exchange of experiences by users on the techniques and the use of materials” or “the search for local materials, a number of design aspects, and an inexpensive and efficient production of quality parts that could raise the comfort of use” (Waag, 2009). This process of co-creation in connection with a social approach to design and manufacturing probably needs the niche of the FabLab, where failures are allowed, and visions are welcome. Since the project also builds on low barrier technologies (like digital fabrication), local materials, and DIY kits, the particular characteristics of decentralized and hands-on innovation development processes that are typical for shared machine shops also facilitated the work and progress of the low-cost prosthesis project"

 

"[…] the low-cost prosthesis project apparently aims to “stretch and transform” the existing regime for prosthesis supply in developing countries. We have to admit that this notion is rather speculative as the project still remains in its protective nurturing phase. Nevertheless, there are already a couple of hints that this transformative path can be expected. First, there is the constitutive aspect of cost: as stated on the project’s homepage “A typical limb made in a developing country costs approximately $125 to $1,875 USD. Our project aims at cutting the costs to as little as $41 USD (well below the $5,000-$15,000 USD average cost for a prosthesis in the western world)” (http://www.lowcostprosthesis.org/the-need). It becomes obvious that the main motivation for the low-cost prosthesis cannot be measured in terms of business criteria like e. g. monetary revenues or margins, but rather refers to ethical and social values which probably don’t reflect the common references in established fields of medicine technology and its distribution. Second, there is the strong ambition to spread orthopedic knowledge and enable locals to become skilled actors when it comes to the fabrication and adjustment of the prosthesis. This approach to knowledge transfer is important for the empowerment and self-reliance of the prospective users and blurs established boarders between experts and laypeople (Middel, 2011: 218-219). Third, there is also a claim to sustainability which shall be realized by using local materials like e. g. bamboo instead of aluminum. These aspects show that the overall approach of the project is strongly aligned with the needs of local communities. In terms of conventional research and development, this way of creating a novel prosthesis appears very unique. It is very likely that the diffusion of the prosthesis will extend this path which may also stretch the regime for medical health supply in a more general way."

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El Arte, utilidad y pedagogía del saber "inútil", en el Reina Sofía | RTVE

El Arte, utilidad y pedagogía del saber "inútil", en el Reina Sofía | RTVE | Participatory & collaborative design | Diseño participativo y colaborativo | Scoop.it

Acumular conocimientos puede ser la clave de la libertad o una forma sofisticada de privación de la misma, si el aprendizaje es impuesto para aprovecharse como fuerza de trabajo. Algo así debió ocurrir a principios del siglo XIX, cuando la Revolución Industrial introdujo la necesidad de afinar y pulir las habilidades de los obreros que operaban las máquinas, así como de especializar la formación de aquellos que las diseñaban y las mantenían en orden de funcionamiento.

La financiación de este aprendizaje, si es interesada, podría ser contemplada como una inversión de la que obtener un rendimiento económico. Entre 1820 y 1840, algunas organizaciones obreras del Reino Unido identificaron de esta manera una sutil modalidad de explotación. Hicieron seguidamente una distinción entre los "saberes útiles", la ingeniería, la física, o la química, y "otra clase de filosofía, otras pedagogías orientadas a saber dónde estamos y que otro tipo de relaciones son posibles".

Así lo ha explicado a RTVE.es Manuel Borja-Villel, director del Museo Reina Sofía donde este martes se ha presentado la exposición Un saber realmente útil. La muestra puede visitarse entre entre los días 28 de octubre y 9 de febrero y propone la experiencia artística, la creación de arte y su consumo, como dinámica de aprendizaje en tanto que se trata de un fenómeno transformador de la persona y generador de ideología "empoderando a quienes están privados del habla", ha añadido el director.

 

 

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