FAN2 Day 1 – Openlab Taipei Visit and Launch Party

Ni hao!

We are finally here in Taiwan, a beautiful country. Its wide road-side pavements make a nice change from Vietnam. The rainy season is in this month so most people need to carry their own umbrella. Taiwan has great public transportation system, especially Metro (MRT) and High Speed Rail. We mostly use MRT to travel around the city. People here are nice and many of them speak English so it’s not that difficult for foreigners who don’t speak Mandarin to ask for help. Taipei food is slightly different from Vietnam cuisine, you can easily find different snacks along the streets.

Today, FAN2 launch party was scheduled late in the evening so we spent the whole morning and afternoon to travel around the city and to visit new friends such as OpenLab Taipei.Read More »

Meet Xuan, the mastermind behind the renovation at Fablab Saigon

So here we are, we just started the renovation of our space! We have been working on this plan for months now, pushing it back since the Tet (february 2015). On this occasion, I want to share with you the story of the mastermind behind it, Xuan, and give you an update on our plans.

Xuan is a good friend of mine, and she’s one of the best hosts I know. At every party I attend at her place everything is taken care of in what seems to be an effortless smile. She has a great eye for details and for practical and beautiful things. So when we were looking for help in renovating the space, we immediately thought about her.

Xuan, can you tell us a bit about yourself?

I’m Vietnamese and I was lucky to go to France about 10 years ago. I went there initially to study but ended up staying there 10 years. I am passionate about interior design, fashion and gastronomy (French and Vietnamese).

Xuan and Nhan discussing the makerspace renovation
Xuan and Nhan discussing the ground floor makerspace renovation

Why did you agree to help with this project?

I want to help young Vietnamese. A community space like Fablab Saigon is a space to meet, share and discover. Young Vietnamese can experiment and maybe even find out their calling. Thanks to the technology it gives access to, the Fablab contributes to innovate and create startup and value in Vietnam.

So what is the plan?

The space is naturally divided in 3, which are roughly one floor each. The ground floor is for the Makers to work on prototyping projects (3d printing, workbench, soldering, etc.) with a display area to showcase work done at Fablab Saigon.

The first floor is the cafe, a pleasant space to chat and enjoy fresh dishes prepared from the kitchen.

The 2nd floor will be divied into co-working space to host visitors, partners and startups who would need a fully functional working desk.

For the decoration, we want to recycle as much as possible and use natural material. The roof top terrasse will as a matter of fact be dedicated to nature and gardening.

What do you look the most forward to with this project?

I really look forward to the intense discussions between young people and makers. I look forward to taking part in discovery workshops and to celebrating the success of the first startups which will emerge from Fablab Saigon.

Thank you again a lot Xuan with your help and hardwork on renovating the space. And let’s meet again when the renovation is over!

Engineering education and the Makers movement

Last week, I attended the Vietnam Engineering Education Conference (VEEC 2015) in Danang. As a co-founder of Fablab Saigon, I was invited to share my view on the Makers Movement and what it means for the next generation of engineers in Vietnam.

I was very excited, yet couldn’t help but feeling the impostor syndrom. As a makerspace, Fablab Saigon is not fully equipped yet, as a co-working space, what we have to offer isn’t much compared to what other co-working spaces in town may have. We are lucky that we could start it thanks to the family house that was left by my grandparents.Read More »

Visiting Makerspace Bangkok

This is the second part of the article on makers in Bangkok (see part 1 here). I was quite lucky that the 2 spaces I found were pretty close to my hotel in the east part of Bangkok. One that I missed but will try to meet next time I’m in Bangkok is fablab@school.

The previous article was about Maker Zoo. This article is about Makerspace Bangkok.

Makerspace Bangkok 

Makerspace Bangkok is an initiative from John, from the Netherlands, who has been living in Thailand for more than 10 years. He couldn’t find any place to make his own stuff, soRead More »