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The Foundry Will Soon be a Makerspace in Bellingham, Washington (Video)

Roblimo posted about 8 months ago | from the maybe-one-day-we'll-have-4-D-printing-from-recycled-quantum-plastic dept.

Education 35

The Foundry has people, tools, machines, and a place to operate. The only thing it lacks is insurance, and insurance is a problem because Chief Creative person Mary Keane's vision for The Foundry includes children instead of limiting membership and machine use to people over 18. Other makerspaces have managed to allow children, so it's likely that Mary will find appropriate insurance before long and get the doors open. Besides being a creative space for children, not just adults, Mary is excited about having The Foundry use recycled plastics in its 3-D printers, which hardly any makerspaces do right now, although many are surely interested in this way to lessen their impact on the Earth. (Alternate Video Link)

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Only because of children? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#46993743)

No, insurance is a problem for any US-based organization. Because we sue.

FUD (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#46993803)

Sorry there are too many words in this article for your feeble mind, but you are wrong [priceonomics.com] . You only come off as a jackass.

Re:FUD (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#46994065)

You only come off as a jackass.

Bring the biting rebuttal to AC! Bring it! You are so awesome.

Thanks for taking time away from your soylentnews posts to come over here and enlighten us.

Re:FUD (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#46999049)

Thank you for your contribution as well. By staying here and not at the other site, you are able to raise the average IQ at both places.

Re:FUD (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#46994485)

Did you do that on purpose? Because I'll admit it is kinda funny, berating the guy for his poor reading skills and telling him he's wrong about how sue-happy the US is, then linking to an article written by a lawyer that's almost entirely about how sue-happy the US is and bemoaning the fact that it's not as bad as it used to be, and that the ridiculously high judgements we're always hearing about are unfortunately relatively rare.

If you want to know who the feeble-minded jackass is you might want to start at the mirror.

Re:FUD (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#46998937)

Clearly your reading skills are just as deficient. If you are able to get past all those big three-syllable words in the article (again, I apologize the words to picture ratio is so small) the whole article is about how the whole US is sue-happy is an urban legend encapsulated well in the McDonald's coffee myths. If you include more than just the one and two syllable words, you'll see that the whole notion of suing for an easy payout is simply not true. Thanks for reinforcing your status of COMPLETE dumbshit.

Re:Only because of children? (1)

Rob Riggs (6418) | about 8 months ago | (#46994267)

No, insurance is a problem for any US-based organization. Because we sue.

Exactly. And it is not generally the people or their children that we allow into our makerspaces that we have to be worried about. It is their insurance company that pays for any medical services needed that we worry about.

Re:Only because of children? (1)

flyneye (84093) | about 8 months ago | (#46997719)

Hmmmm, I know of a sort of similar situation, a darker one, in the U.S. No insurance I have ever heard about is involved. Where the public is concerned, it is an at your own risk sort of relationship. It is very dangerous. The owner has had part of his hand blown off and a toe grafted on to it, so he can operate controls.
View this over at http:/// [http] www.srl.org
Now that is a workspace I WOULD LOVE TO WORK IN! Even at my own risk.

Why no under 18's? (2)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 8 months ago | (#46993783)

Can't they have their legal guardians sign the liability waivers?

Re:Why no under 18's? (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 8 months ago | (#46994123)

Because anyone under 18 will immediately use the maker space to try to create a weapon or something that explodes.

It's a known fact. And, I'll bet just about everyone here can confirm it from their own youth.

Re:Why no under 18's? (2)

westlake (615356) | about 8 months ago | (#46994243)

Can't they have their legal guardians sign the liability waivers?

The waiver won't silence the news of a child being severely injured by a laser, milling machine, etc.

I don't know how you frame a waiver that will stand up in court if a child under your supervision loses control of an inherently dangerous machine he was clearly too young and inexperienced to handle.

Re:Why no under 18's? (1)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 8 months ago | (#46995869)

Why would the child not be under the supervision of their legal guardian?

Re:Why no under 18's? (3, Interesting)

dbc (135354) | about 8 months ago | (#46994311)

It is driven by the insurance companies. TechShop has had various policies over the years I've been a member, all driven by the insurance provider. The day the insurance got turned on for TechShop #1, my daughter, (then 7 or 8 or so) and I went in to help demo drywall and so forth to start the shop build out. Later, the minimum age became machine-by-machine, and always with a parent/guardian present. Laser cutters and sewing/surging machines had a minimum age of 12 at one point, and at the same time the Bridgeports had a minimum age of 16. Not sure about other machines. Not sure what it is now -- it tends to change as the insurance carrier thinking evolves -- and insurance is, as you would imagine, a big line item on the expense side of the P&L.

So, remember, we are talking insurance company thinking here, so normal common-sense thinking does not apply. The thinking is driven by statistical tables, recent legal settlement amounts, and the personal gut-check of the lead underwriter's visceral fears. Given all that, I think TechShop has had a reasonable experience with insurance, despite my daughter not being able to get at many of the machines for age reasons.

Unfortuantely, there is no "brain check" that can work -- I used to each one of the safety-and-basic-usage classes (SBU's) for one of the machines. It is designed to make you safe to use the machine, and in my experience age has little to do with how safe a person is. There was one 50 year old mechanical engineer who had obviously been a paper-pushing engineer for 25 years, because during one incident the main thought going through my mind was: "Good God, man, can't you *hear* that is a *very* unhappy machine???", while other people with much less background were safer to be around.

Re:Why no under 18's? (1)

mattack2 (1165421) | about 8 months ago | (#46994681)

The FAQ for TechShop is:

Q Can my kids work on projects and take classes with me at TechShop?
A See here for our complete family policies.

Kids and young adults (12 to 17 years of age) can work on projects at TechShop under the direct supervision of a parent or legal guardian if they are included in your membership (call and ask about our Family Membership offers).

Many classes at TechShop are open to kids and young adults (12 to 17 years of age) when they are taken with their parent or legal guardian. However, based on the inherent risk to the operator there are some tools and machines at TechShop that kids are not permitted to operate at any time. These include the milling machines and lathes.

Children under 12 years of age are not permitted to enter the workshop areas at TechShop except for during staff guided tours, age-appropriate classes and certain special events.

Re:Why no under 18's? (1)

dbc (135354) | about 8 months ago | (#46994791)

Good find. Like I said, the policy is periodically updated, driven by insurance.

Re:Why no under 18's? (1)

Skynyrd (25155) | about 8 months ago | (#46994613)

You can sign anything, but you cannot sign away the rights of youth. If a kid gets hurt after a parent signs a waiver, it's meaningless. Even for adults a waiver isn't really a valid document, and at best it shows a jury that the adult knew the risks.

This certainly isn't the only maker space that allows kids. This article is so unrelated to slashdot, I can only assume that the person who approved it has a vested interest in this particular space.

Re:Why no under 18's? (1)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 8 months ago | (#46995887)

So if I let my kid light some fireworks and they exploded and blew off his hand, I can sue the fireworks company despite me supervising and directing the youth to perform the task?

Re:Why no under 18's? (1)

Skynyrd (25155) | about 8 months ago | (#47000353)

You can sue anybody you like. For any reason. You may not win, and you may even have a hard time finding an attorney to take the case, but you can sue.

Did your kid sign a waiver to light the fireworks?

Re:Why no under 18's? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#46995821)

Liability waivers aren't worth the paper they're printed on in Washington State, you can't sign away your rights to someone else injuring you or doing something stupid that hurts you. When ever I get asked to sign one of those forms I just chuckle.

What? (5, Insightful)

Vokbain (657712) | about 8 months ago | (#46993949)

Wtf is The Foundry? Wtf is Makerspace? Who cares about this? Why is this news? Usually postings at least have some sort of point to them, but in this case I can't figure out what that may be!

Re:What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#46994045)

The Foundry is a software company in charge of NUKE [wikipedia.org] .

Re:What? (1)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about 8 months ago | (#46994625)

Are they related in any way to the Society for More Coal Energy, the Society of Petroleum Industry Leaders or the Key Atomic Benefits Office of Mankind?

Re:What? (1, Informative)

GMFTatsujin (239569) | about 8 months ago | (#46994051)

Makerspaces are places where people--either the general public or a group of paying members--can gather together and make things. Makerspaces usually have an abundance of tools, materials, and places to work on hands-on projects. They typically celebrate open source, notions of hacking technology, and playful misuse of technology to do interesting things.

Think: informal, engaging, creative spaces where you can collaborate with people to make things.

Here's a blog I wrote with good pics: Quelab - a Community of Practice [blogspot.com] . Full disclosure: I'm on the board of directors at Quelab [quelab.net] in Albuquerque. Drop by if you're in the area code.

Re:What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#46994059)

Experian, Equifax, it's all the same.

Re:What? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#46994117)

"Makerspace" translates from Douche to English as "public or members-only workshop for DIY enthusiasts".

Footfall (1)

rossdee (243626) | about 8 months ago | (#46994303)

The only thing I know about Bellingham, WA is that was where they built the Michael , the ship that defeated the Fithp

Re:What? (1)

DanielRavenNest (107550) | about 8 months ago | (#46998699)

Wtf is Makerspace? Who cares about this? Why is this news?

A Makerspace is a community workshop, usually with digitally controlled fabrication machines, plus more conventional tools. It's a place where you can go to make stuff. Shared tools are less expensive than buying all of them yourself.

The relevance to Slashdot is you use computers and software to design items, and then drive the 3D Printers, CNC Mills, etc. The relevance to humanity in general is when the machines start making parts for each other and become networked. It will be a new way to organize production - a distributed network rather than centralized factories.

Re:What? (1)

Hillgiant (916436) | about 8 months ago | (#46999205)

You missed the key element. The title includes the text "(Video)". I.e. there is no content here, but somebody managed to find a way to stretch this lack of content out from a 5-6 sentence PR piece into a 20-25 minute video. Just skip the whole thing.

Is this an auto-loading Flash thing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#46994007)

I get a browser error that says that Flash has crashed whenever I load this page. I really don't care about that, but I have to wait a minute or two for the browser to give up on trying before it will let me do anything else. Is this happening because the page is auto-running the video (which I despise greatly), or is it just because there is a video link present in the page? Any web page that auto-runs video when you visit them should die as horrible and painful a death that can possibly happen to a web page.

Its Bellingham (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#46994131)

So expect roughly half of the products made to be pipes.

This is why we can't have nice things (1)

Obscene_CNN (3652201) | about 8 months ago | (#46994149)

This is why we can't have nice things in this country. Litigation sucks!!!

Insurance? Try a building. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#46994155)

Makerspace Founder chiming in;

Insurance is the easy part. Finding an affordable, accessible location is hard.

Almost impossible without some amount of money flowing in, which comes from members, which come from having a decent space, which comes from money, which comes from members.....

Ask (1)

hurfy (735314) | about 8 months ago | (#46994353)

No idea who Mary is but she should ask the guys in Spokane where they got insurance that includes minors. Sorry, that is about all I know about ours but I did see that much on an update once.

Re:Ask (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#46995771)

There are far more sue happy people in Seattle than there is in Spokane. not going to happen

Recycled plastic (1)

Zouden (232738) | about 8 months ago | (#47000077)

What exactly is the benefit in using recycled plastic in 3D printers? It's such a tiny fraction of our total plastic usage. I'd prefer to print with high quality plastic.

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