P2P ProjectFest: Five interesting initiatives (1)

* Project 1: Community CarShare, a local non-profit carsharing co-operative

“Community CarShare operates a fleet of 37 vehicles, available to members on a self-serve, pay-per-use basis. Benefits include: saving money on transportation, reducing your carbon footprint, and helping to build a sustainable community. The co-op currently serves Kitchener-Waterloo, Hamilton, Elmira, Guelph, and St. Catharines, with service pending for London and Burlington in 2014.”

* Project: The Zelazo space in Istanbul

“Zelazo is a creative space situated in the Anatolian side of Istanbul, more exactly in the laid back moda neighbourhood. Started in April 2012 and being run by Nazl? and Mehmet (both DIY and design passionates), Zelazo is both a shop where you can buy handmade clothes and carefully crafted products, and also a local where knowledge is being shared through regularly organised workshops (Bike manufacturing, DIY furniture, notebooks, accessories… ). Basically, your will to do creative stuff will be exponentially increased if you happen to pass by and join their activities.” (http://www.open-steps.org/zelazo-istanbul-turkey/)

* Project 3: KIKA, ” the only hackerspace in the macedonian capital”.

Open-Steps writes: “Created 5 years ago, KIKA provides their around 30 members with an electronic lab, a programming room, a 3D printer, lots of tools and a lounge with sofas and kitchen to host movie screenings. Besides its regular meetings, its members are used to participate in events in the Balkans region. Relevant for us was to experience about the NSND Initiative, a regular unconference organised in cooperation with other hackerspaces on the topic of Open Source Software & open cultures and which gathers enthusiasts in all the balkan countries.”

* Project 4: FLOSSK, an open tech nonprofit in Kosovo

“FLOSSK created 5 years ago by a very young group of Hacktivists. We were impressed to know that, although most of them haven’t been to college yet, they have already realised so many projects supporting Open Knowledge and specially promoting open source technologies. They organise each year in Pristina the biggest balkan conference about Free Software, gathering experts from the area and other countries (including well know figures from the open source world as Richard Stallmann) and about 300 participants, mostly Kosovan students. The fifth edition takes place in September 2013 and FLOSSK is currently working hard on it.
Besides this annual event, the non-proft organises also regularly workshops and other events to divulge open source technologies and teach their benefits for a developing country like Kosovo. FLOSSK has already developed projects related to open data as well and we were really interested in their experience while setting up Prishtina Buses, an info platform about public and private bus lines and stations in Pristina, gathering and releasing data from their own. And also ku me votu?, a civil tool to know the location of your polling station, created for the elections 2010 in cooperation with the municipalities.” (http://www.open-steps.org/flossk-pristina-kosovo/)

* Project 5: ECOnnect, a digitally fabricated emergency housing shelter for Haiti

Liz Stinson: “What if you could create a structure that combines the efficiency of a tent with the comfort and stability of a four-walled structure? That’s what Dutch architect Pieter Stoutjesdijk of ECOnnect was thinking when he created the concept for an emergency housing shelter for Haiti. Stoutjesdijk’s shelter is a digitally fabricated structure whose interlocking pieces can be assembled into an actual home in less than five hours. The construction process is similar to playing with a puzzle: Each piece has a specific joint, which allows it to lock into its neighboring piece. Builders simply have to place the appropriate pieces next to each other, and they’ll be secured in three directions, creating a strong bond. It starts with the foundation, then you the beams, walls and roof. (One problem that still needs work: All of this can only be disassembled from the inside.)
Aside from some installations and a screw pile foundation, the building is made entirely from the CNC-milled panels, which are created from agricultural residues and made waterproof with a nano-coating. The parabolically-shaped roof is the star of the structure, with its value being threefold: The double layer allows for maximum ventilation in the house, while the roof’s shape itself acts as a mirror in the concentrated solar power system, creating a low-tech, low-cost electricity generator. It also helps to collect rainwater and purify it through the passive solar system before being stored in a water bag below the ground floor. Stoutjesdijk estimates that the whole concept would cost less than $10,000 total to manufacture in developing countries, and would cost twice as much in a developed country like the United States.” (http://www.wired.com/design/2013/11/a-disaster-relief-shelter-built-by-the-new-industrial-revolution/)

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