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That's right, we've been booming lately and are happy to see such interest in the lab, but we need more help to keep up with the demand. We will give preference to existing, active volunteers, so don't be afraid to get involved. Here's the description:

Overview

The Champaign-Urbana Community Fab Lab is seeking lab attendants to assist with daily operations and extend our open hours. The Fab Lab works with patrons of all ages to develop ideas for projects, convert these ideas to digital files and finally produce physical objects and prototypes out of these ideas, with machines like electronic cutters and 3D printers. Our patrons include students, researchers, entrepreneurs and also community members who participate in workshops.

CUDO Plays and the CU Community Fab Lab

CUDO, the Champaign Urbana Design Organization, hosted a board game creation competition called CUDO Plays. The competition started back in Sept. of 2013 and just ended on Feburary 16th 2014. Several teams joined, and over the course of the six month span there were a number of events held with the intent of encouraging constant progress on the creation of new games from the Champaign Urbana community. 

Of course the Community Fab Lab opened our doors to be as useful as possible to the competitors. Here's a few examples of what they made...

Dragon Raiders

Minecraft Tutorials!

A giant tutorial for using Minecraft to teach all kinds of fab lab concepts and digital literacies (3D modeling and printing, digital storytelling, circuit logic) is now available online:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1JHT4KPdZPx-0M3qbJUJf25-HJYgcW-dGiAh9ydqKdu0/edit?usp=sharing

This will be the basis for the Minecraft training workshop on Sunday the 23rd. Feel free to edit it or make suggestions!

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Operations Meeting 02.23.2014

Just a reminder that we're having an operations meeting this upcoming Sunday at 2:00p in the break room at the main Fab Lab. General volunteers are welcome to attend to learn about what's going on with the lab and get more involved. The agenda is available online, please let Jeff Ginger (ginger@illinois.edu) know if you have any items to add (and are not on the approved editor list already):

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1bbU0KG-XebTezPA5G8eJUhiz6EgRiq7e2NCyggd1E8U/edit?usp=sharing

Minecraft Training!

We've had a lot of folks excited about teaching kids how to do 3D rendering and printing with Minecraft - but many of our staff and volunteers don't yet know how to do this.

This next Sunday at 4:00p (after the operations meeting) Jeff Ginger will hold an open (free) Minecraft workshop in the computer lab area at the Fab Lab. This will include:
  1. What is Minecraft, basics of play, why it's neato
  2. Using the Fab Lab Minecraft server, how to access files
  3. Showing a variety of tools for 3D rendering and modeling
  4. A little bit on using redstone to learn computer circuits
  5. Digital storytelling with adventure mode

Fab Lab staff I expect you to come to this. Kids who are old enough and focused enough to teach other kids (and adults!) are welcome to join.

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Makerspace Urbana: Come learn to solder!

Mitch Altman is giving the "Variety of Cool Kits" workshop, Saturday 15-Feb, 2pm at the Urbana Makerspace.

What: Learn to Solder, with a variety of cool kits!
You can easily learn all of the skills you need in a short time.
Make a project, and take it home with you!

When: Saturday, February 15th, 2pm-5pm
Most projects take about 1.5 to 2 hours

Where: Makerspace Urbana <https://makerspaceurbana.org/>
202 S. Broadway Ave in Urbana
at the Urbana-Champaign Independent Media Center (IMC).

Who: You! All ages, all skill levels -- It is fun to make things in the

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ArtFab3D - CONTEST for DIGITALLY MANUFACTURED ARTWORKS

The K-Droz association organizes ArtFab3D, an international contest for artistic works made by digital machinery. It will distinguish the works and artists showing the potential of CNC machines in artistic production at its best. The works, which should be submitted as photos, must be manufactured using CNC techniques, such as 3D printing, CNC machining, laser engraving, vinyl etching, water jet cutting, plasma cutting, etc... The contest theme is free and participation is open to all.
K-Droz will award a prize of € 250 to the winner and up to 5 designers will receive media coverage in several countries.

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Paper Toys Site, Possibly of Interest

Possibly of interest to some, a lovingly constructed little web site with a lot of "paper toys": The Toymaker.

These simple projects are pretty cool, and meant to be cut out with scissors.  But there are a lot of ideas that could easily be adapted to laser or paper cutting machines.  (E.g., The Heart Butterfly).

Annoncing the CUC Fab Lab Pressfit Boxmaker!

Bob McGrath is pleased to bring us a new tool for rapid prototyping! The ‘boxmaker’ creates a six-sided box with tabs for press fitting.  The output is a PDF file which can be edited with Inkscape or sent directly to the Epilog laser. The output can later be edited to add decorations or adjust the layout or features. The program has a command line interface, with 12 arguments, some of which will not need to be set by users. Find a shortcut for the new boxmaker on the desktop of any PC in our lab and give it a try (for free). Check out pictures attached to this post to get an idea of what the process, program and product looks like. You can also find a nifty new tutorial here, too: http://cucfablab.org/book/beginner-cuc-fab-lab-pressfit-boxmaker

Special thanks to Rahul Bhargava for getting us started with some initial code. Find additional release notes attached below.

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Possibly of interest: Knight Foundation Prototype Fund

Anyone ready to prototype a new product or service?

The Knight Foundation is particularly interested in funding ideas in open govenment, media, and similar topics.  Information on recently funded initiatives here.

More info at:

http://www.knightfoundation.org/funding-initiatives/knight-prototype-fund/

3D Printing Food--In the Fab Lab Soon?

A story on NPR and other media about 3D printing with food.  It sounds like there are a bunch of low cost systems coming available, so this is getting into a state where the CUCFL might get one.

We'll have to change the instructions.  For one of these printers, don't put anything except food in it. :-)

Fab Lab Makers 2014

Since we are starting a new year, the Fab Lab Makers have decided to try a new time for open labs. Beginning on January 11th, the open lab for youths will be every Saturday from 2pm until 4pm. We will still have projects and ideas available to anyone who comes in just to explore the lab, as well as volunteers to help you with the equipment if you have your own project ideas.

Snowed In! Fab Lab closed Sunday January 5th

The Fab Lab will be closed this upcoming Sunday (January 5th 2014) due to excessive snow and limited staff/volunteers, sorry!

We'll plan on being back in action starting Tuesday, January 7th.

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