South Africa's first Library MakerSpace opens at the University of Pretoria

Posted on April 13, 2015

The Department of Library Services at the University of Pretoria (UP) became the first library in South Africa to open a Library MakerSpace – a creative laboratory where people with ideas can get together with people who have the technical ability to make these ideas become a reality. A MakerSpace is often associated with fields such as engineering, computer science, graphic design and digital art, and although the physical space is important, it is the collaboration between individuals with various and distinct areas of knowledge that is fundamental to fostering this creative environment.

These creators are joining the Maker Movement, a trend to use 'do-it-yourself' and 'do-it-with-others' techniques and processes to develop unique products. The Maker Movement has grown at a rapid pace over the past few years and MakerSpace areas have become havens for technicians, artists and entrepreneurs. The Library MakerSpace, with its soldering benches, 3D printers and computers on which to design and render models, will enable makers to fulfil their creative potential by giving them access to specialised equipment and a collaborative space in which to work.

This facility, located on Level 3 of the Merensky 2 Library on  UP’s Hatfield Campus, is also conducting classes on Arduino electronics and programming, mobile gaming, leatherwork, bookmaking/artist bookmaking, drones, finch robotics, computer-aided design and application development. The classes will be taught by experts at entry level so that novices can learn new skills.

For more information about the Library MakerSpace, class schedules, or to make bookings, please email [email protected].

- Author DUR

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