Notes on building a Maker Space in Pakistan

Originally posted on Max’s tumblr blog.

[…] IDDS came and went. There were about 30 old friends and 30 new ones and generally a month full of happiness. Several people have written about it, and I recommend checking out their posts. I have written down some of my thoughts too, but never published, so maybe I will do so in the next few days. Here you find Hermes’ thoughts, here Simon’s, here Shehzil’s and here Catherine’s.

I have become very very comfortable in Lahore, I guess for several reasons. Without a car or motorbike but with a good dose of fear for Pakistani traffic I was not very mobile in the beginning. That changed when I figured out how to use Rikshas, so I can roam all over town and beyond now. IDDS also changed things quite a lot for me. The organising team came over a week before the event started and exploring the city with a crew of fearless friends feels very different than doing so often alone. New friendships I have made here also deepened during IDDS. And my relationship to Lahore changed as a response. I found out I really love this city.

Makeistan has also picked up speed. We have received a small grant from IDIN, which allows us to buy equipment and furniture for the space. We have purchased quite a lot of Arduinos and other electrical components and tools, allowing us to guve trainings on Arduino, develop prototypes based on that and generally invite people to our space. We hold regular events now, such as Arduino Night, a kind of free-flowing workshop that happens every Friday. This new speed also has a lot to do with different friends who we made during IDDS. They come and bring more friends, offer opportunities for collaboration and cool projects. I love it!

We figured out that teaching will probably be one of our core activities, and are currently hiring a person to take care of this, developing and delivering curriculum related to well… making and designing things. We are also hiring my replacement. (Know someone in Pakistan who would be a great candidate? Please send me an email..)

Expect more updates soon. Weekly, hopefully. And in the mean time catch me on instagram,which sees more action than any other channel.



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