Monday night I arranged a very special Meetup with Prof. Peter Troxler of the FabLab in Luzern and 7 other creative minds. We gathered at the big table in my office in Citizen Space in Zurich to discuss one thing:
How can we best combine forces to create the #1 innovation hotspot in Zurich ?
Peter is known for being one of the FabLab gurus in Europe. I was introduced to him by Neil Gershenfeld, who founded the Fablab concept at the MIT (yes, that’s thé Massachusetts Institute of Technology). Fablabs are now being rolled out in many places worldwide. Besides Peter and myself, we added 7 more ingredients to make this evening weird, exciting and effective altogether:
- 1 ex-ETH university professor without a lab
- 2 Industrial Design Managers (of which one used to be a Punk)
- 1 3D architect with origins in Zimbabwe
- 1 well-known Adventurer in global Open Source movement
- 1 German who studied the physics of the earth.
It was a surprisingly effective first meeting, especially because every individual at the table had a different motivation to realise this project. Wolfgang wants a lab to capture the world into 3D, Yves wants to showcase his expertise and products to the world, Philip wants a place for education, Peter wants the Fablab concept to thrive further in Europe, while Beat, Marc, and Christoph want a space to create their “art”. Jason and I were interested because we wanted to connect our NomadWorking concept to a great (good ≠ great!) team of innovators to boost the innovation-level in the city of Zurich. And what works better than letting our “Digital Nomads” in our NomadWorking.net space in Zurich work physically next to “Analogue Creators” ?!
We spoke about everything, from how we should design the available 1400m2 to create the best environment for everyone; to let all our visitors taste, feel, and observe what innovation is about while still being able to get things done work-wise. Wolfgang couldn’t have drawn a better visual image of how our space should look like.
Imagine 2 floors in an old industrial building very centrally located in Zurich city. One floor covers the FabLab with a cafe area to chill, where the entire interior has been fabricated by the FabLab itself! Then think of an “open kitchen” in trendy restaurants where you can see what the chefs are preparing. This is where the FabLab people actually create their things. Then – one floor up – there’s the NomadWorking space with 55 Digital Nomads. Digital Nomads are a growing breed of young independent entrepreneurs who travel the globe with just a laptop in their bag, enabling them to work and live from anywhere. We’ll have live webcams on all floors 24 hours per day to be viewed online, interactive websites, and social media for full transparency, but we’ll also host cool Meetups, school visits, parties, community initiatives, exchange programs with corporate
slaves employees, etc.
Stay tuned! Get in touch if you or your firm wants to participate, or you just have an idea.