Aalto Fablab launch party on 15th of June


We are proud to announce the launch of the first Fablab in Finland!

The opening party will be held 15th of June from 15:00-19:30 in Aalto Fablab, which is located in the spaces of Aalto Media Factory (See how to get here). Snacks, drinks and fabbing included!

Please RSVP before 8.6.2012 using this form!

To get a sneak preview to what a Fablab actually is, check this blog post!

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Open Knowledge Festival call for proposals now open!

We have now launched the Call for proposals for the Open Knowledge Festival that will be hosted in Aalto Media Factory and Aalto ARTS in September 17-22 2012!
Proposals can be submitted in two categories:
1) Topic Streams
2) Individual Presentations/ Events

There are two submission deadlines this Spring based on our venue capacity: April 20th and June 1st. We suggest applying as soon as possible in order to ensure adequate venue space, support and funding for your proposals.


Defining Open Design

Massimo Menichinelli

by Massimo Menichinelli
Producer in Fablab activities
Aalto University Media Factory

On November 30th 2011, the Aalto University School of Economics hosted the first Open Knowledge Foundation meetup in Helsinki (you can read a report of that day here and watch see some videos here).

During that event we proposed to focus on Open Design, since it’s an emerging field that is finally booming and that needs a lot of reflection. We proposed to have another meetup in order to build the local presence of the Open Knowledge Foundation (the ultimate goal is to build the local chapter of the Open Knowledge Foundation in Finland) and to focus it this time only on Open Design. This second meetup took place in at Aalto Media Factory on January 28th 2012 in the morning, while in the afternoon we hosted a meetup of Alternative World Design Capital 2012 (for a report of that meetup, you can read this review).

You can have a look at all the pictures of the event here and here on Flickr. I also wrote a blog post about it on the Finnish Institute in London blog here.

For the meetup, I prepared a presentation that gave an overview of the history of Open Design, its current status and the situation regarding a formal definition of Open Design at the moment. Briefly speaking, there is no real Open Design definition, the Open Hardware definition is quite new and design itself is quite a tricky concept to define (since it can refer to a process, a representation of a project, the realization of a project). You can see more about this in the presentation below. Continue reading

Alternative Design Capital and Open Knowledge Finland gathering 28th Jan

Welcome to the first Alternative Design Capital Gathering and the third Open Knowledge Finland Meetup!

On January 28th, the Aalto Media Factory will host a very special day about Open Knowledge, Open Design and the Alternative Design Capital projects.

The Open Knowledge Foundation (OKFN) is a not-for-profit organization founded in 2004 which is dedicated to promoting open knowledge in all its forms. The OKFN builds tools, projects and communities with a network of international leaders in this field. It’s activities are organized around individual working groups, regional communities and projects, each focused on a different aspect of open knowledge. OK Finland (http://fi.okfn.org/) is the latest regional community that brings together individuals and organizations from across the open knowledge spectrum in Finland. Our first meetup was in 30 November 2011 in Helsinki and the second on 16 January 2012 in Tampere.

This meetup will focus on one emerging field of the Open Knowledge movement, Open Design: we will start discussing how openness and sharing of knowledge can have an impact in the world of Design. We will discuss
the current status of Open Design and propose projects to be developed during the year in Helsinki in order to grow the Open Design community in Helsinki and Finland. Furthermore, we will start a collaborative and
open process of defining Open Design.

The Alternative Design Capital (ADC) (http://adc2012.org/) is a celebration of design and urban culture during year 2012 and a platform for design projects which are realised during year 2012 in Helsinki or elsewhere in Finland. ADC is an open and evolving process, where anyone can register a project to the online forum.

ADC Gatherings are forums where ADC projects and events are presented by their initiators. They are opportunities for networking and having discussions related to ADC themes. The Gatherings are open for everyone! The plan is to organise four Gatherings during year 2012 in 3 month intervals.

The language used in both events in English. Please help us in organizing the event by registering to it here:

If you have any questions, please send an email to mediafactory (at) aalto.fi or info (at) adc2012.org.


OK Finland Open Design meetup (10:00 – 14:00)

10:00 – 10:30 Welcome to the Aalto FabLab
10:30 – 11:00 Open Design and its status
11:00 – 12:00 Open Design: let´s develop a definition
12:00 – 13:00 Lunch and talk about ideas for projects to be developed during 2012
13:00 – 13:30 Project presentation and wrap-up
13:30 – 14:00 Let´s start discussing the next meet-up

ADC Gathering #1 (14:00 – 18:00)

14:00 – 14:30 Introduction + ‘speed-dating’
14:30 – 16:00 ADC project/event presentations
16:00 – 16:30 Break
16:30 – 18:00 Further discussions about ADC projects/events in smaller groups (we split to 3-4 groups)


Instructions for finding Aalto Media Factory (address Hämeentie 135 A) are here: http://mediafactory.aalto.fi/?page_id=693. More information about the Aalto Arabia Campus and how to reach it by public transport
here: http://www.aalto.fi/en/about/campuses/artdesign/map/.

The event is also on Facebook here:

Aalto Fablab – the first Finnish Fablab

Fab Lab (fabrication laboratory) is a small-scale workshop for digital fabrication, started by MIT. Fablabs typically have a few digitally controlled manufacturing machines: larger CNC router for furniture and house-sized objects, smaller precision CNC milling machine for making cast molds, engraving different materials or printed circuit boards, laser cutter for cutting and engraving wood, plastic, fabric and other materials, vinyl cutter for making signs, stickers and flexible circuits, video conferencing system to be in continuous touch with other Fablabs, and in many cases also a 3D printer and scanner. This basic set of manufacturing machines enables you to ‘make just about anything’ – this may be a prototype of a product, work of art, and can even contain electronics.

There are now about 50 Fablabs all around the world, with plans for many more on the way. Fablab blueprint dictates the commonalities between labs: standard inventory of machines, work processes, communication pathways and access policies, but each lab can and has interpreted the blueprints to suit the needs of their local community. As peer to peer learning in the way of mutual support in learning to work at the space is at the core of Fablab philosophy, community needs can really shape how an individual lab turns out.

We are currently putting all the pieces together to start the first Finnish Fablab here at Aalto Media Factory: finding local suppliers for the machines and raw materials, designing the space to fit our needs, building the website, educating ourselves about Fablab practices and mingling with other maker-minded groups in Helsinki region (there’s quite a bit going on now that the World Design Capital year is almost at hand). Most of the machines should have arrived by early January, and the grand opening is planned to take place around the beginning of February 2012. Continue reading

Ali Neissi Shooshtari will start as the master of our electronic studio

In connection with the Fab Lab we will open a small electronic studio facility. It will be build up with the help of the Design Factory. Ali Neissi Shooshtari will start as the master of the studio at the beginning of September to help and guide in the problems concerning electronics. Teemu Ronkka from Design Factory will be backing up him in his work.