Hack Labs and Makerspaces aren't new, just needed
By Wayne MacPhail
We all need spaces to be creative, and the planet needs more of use to reuse and repurpose our gadgets, appliances and machinery. That's why makerspaces matter. There are thousands of makerspaces worldwide. Inside their walls members will find bandsaws, routers, welding equipment, 3D printers and even DNA sequencing equipment. Because who wouldn't want to be an amateur microbioengineer?
We recently visited two makerspaces in Toronto - hacklab.to and the Site 3 CoLaboratory. We discovered that makerspaces, now well established in science centres and libraries, haven't abandoned their DIY grassroots. And, those roots go back to 1968 and the first editions of The Whole Earth Catalogue. That publication provided "good tools, for good people" and encouraged self-sufficiency and the cultivation of the skills to make your own, fix your broken and never toss what that which you can open and tinker with.
Makerspaces have reimagined that ethos and now include courses and tools that can teach members everything from woodworking, welding, sewing and robotics. Make of that, what you will.