Library has more than books, creates a Fab Lab with 3D printer, podcast studio, green screen

What exactly is a fab lab?

“These spaces, known as Fabrication Labs (fab labs), Hackerspaces, and Tech Shops, share common goals: collaboration and ‘making.’ They exist to give their specific communities the ability to ‘make’ through sharing knowledge and skills. They provide the technology necessary to make almost anything.

However, these spaces often provide services to a specific or targeted group and are not easily accessible to ‘outsiders’ – traditional Fab Labs are tied to MIT and are generally found in underserved communities, Hackerspaces have membership fees, and Tech-Shops, on average, cost around $1.5 million to start. Imagine – what if the Fayetteville Free Library had similar tools as MIT at its fingertips (at an affordable cost), with the knowledge necessary to use them?”

***

The Fayetteville Free Library is excited to announce the addition of a new public service—the FFL Fab Lab.

“Community members will have the opportunity to use this digital media lab to create and edit videos, podcasts and use design software that might otherwise be out of reach. The Lab will also offer: Mac desktop, Podcasting station, 2 MakerBot 3D Printer Stations, Adobe Suite, Mac Creative Suite, a Green Screen Wall, Camcorders and digital cameras available for check out. Patrons can use the lab for two hour blocks of time when they present a valid library card.

The Fayetteville Free Library is the first library in the United States to offer a free, public access Fab Lab.

 

More informationFayetteville Free Library launched 3D printing Fab Lab

Continue reading Library has more than books, creates a Fab Lab with 3D printer, podcast studio, green screen

Click and Clack to retire – NPR’s Car Talk – final show this Fall

They were a couple of auto mechanics with a pronounced Boston brogue and, improbably, degrees from MIT. They hadn’t a clue how to perform on radio, much less public radio.

So Tom and Ray Magliozzi just decided to have a good time. The result was “Car Talk,” which shattered the perception that public radio is inaccessible to the masses and became National Public Radio’s top-rated weekend show.

After 35 years on the air, the brothers announced Friday that the run was ending. No longer would they be dishing on cars so old that their odometers switched to scientific notation or delivering gift advice to VW Bus lovers. The show informally known as “Click and Clack the Tappet Brothers” will tape its final original show this fall.

Declaring that “even one hour a week is too much” work, the comedian-mechanics said it was time to “stop and smell the cappuccino” instead of inhaling exhaust. The call-in show is syndicated on 660 radio stations and is heard by 3.3 million listeners weekly.

more on this storyHosts put the brakes on NPR’s ‘Car Talk’

Continue reading Click and Clack to retire – NPR’s Car Talk – final show this Fall

Bill Gates invests in the future of electricity storage – Liquid Metal Batteries

Liquid Metal Battery Corporation, an MIT spin out that’s developing new technologies for electricity storage, has raised $15 million in funding from Khosla Ventures, Total and Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates. The technology behind the company was developed by Dr. Donald Sadoway (his famous TED Talk), a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who was recently named one of Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World.

“Large-scale electricity storage will be a critical part of reinventing the global electric grid infrastructure, and LMBC has developed the most innovative chemically-based solution that we’ve seen,” said Andrew Chung of Khosla Ventures.

via GeekWire

 

***

Bill believes that creating large-scale batteries to store energy is a critical problem to solve if solar and wind energy are to become mainstream. In this video, Bill and MIT Professor Donald Sadoway discuss the importance of new battery storage technology and Sadoway’s focus on the development of a “liquid metal” battery.

via Gates Notes

 

 

To get more technical, the liquid in the all-liquid battery is molten salt and liquid metal, which:

“…avoids cycle-to-cycle capacity fade because the liquid electrodes are reconstituted with each charge – similar systems have operated in a lab environment for more than 17 months with daily cycling and no reduction in performance. The molten salt electrolyte combines high conductivity with abuse tolerance at low cost. Self-segregation due to three immiscible liquid phases of different densities (e.g. oil and water separation) allows for robust operation and ease of manufacture. Together, these attributes will enable the liquid metal battery to exceed 70% round-trip AC efficiency for over a decade without degradation.”

Learn more on the2-page information sheet from LMBC (pdf)

Continue reading Bill Gates invests in the future of electricity storage – Liquid Metal Batteries