Toulouse: SnootLab & Artilect

Toulouse is the first european tour’s stop.
Here Frederic welcomes us, a brilliant entrepreneur that transform his life passion in a successful society: Snootlab
Snootlab is the first French retailer on line of shields for Arduino and OpenHardware components.
A pure bet.
Fred and Marc were the first who believed in it. they know each other since 40 years, their whole life: Marc is an engineer, Fred an economist.

The first enjoied his adolescence building rockets, the second in imagine an alternative life outside the Stocks Market to nourish his karma. 3 years ago they decided to found the company.
The crisis didn’t scared them, and after a fist moment of down,Snootlab starts to work, growing up in an exponential way. Fred firmly believes in open source ethic, in the cooperation, in the ability of someone to create succesfull enterprise. The “Do it Yourself” is often in their speech, as a philosophy, and a solution to unemployement, but not the only one.

However Fred and Marc created jobs, Believing years ago in a futuristic and risky project, challenging the Murphy’s Law and the more inflexible French laws that close doors to people that fails.
Continue reading and check the video…

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First step: Toulouse

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Tunnel dù Fregius. In the night you can see only the white Alpes’ peaks under the moonlight.
And after few miles it happens that you’ll loose the signal, you’ll speak in French or in gestures and you’ll be welcome in our “cousins” land.
Meanwhile The Barcamper becomes in few hours your only and precious new home.
And a life dream becomes real: never pass unobserved!
We left Italy in the dark, we’ll see it again next month.
From now we’ll cross the Europe, the first cross is about 850 km.
Direction: Toulouse, Snootlab.
Frederic is waiting for us in their headquarters.
The Snootlab is a shop/blog of hardware’s components. On their site you can read:

“Nous imaginons, concevons, fabriquons de nouveaux shields pour Arduino et nous les distribuons partout dans le monde. C’est notre façon de contribuer au développement de l’Open Hardware.”

We’ll tell you the Snootlab soon. Meanwhile the Barcamper travels, and if you see it, let’s give a tweet!


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5 DIY ideas from the Wi-Fi amplifier to toys

Hands up if you’ve always underestimated the usefulness of cans. Well, think again. A few weeks ago, we put forward five ideas (some crazier than others) to test out your skills as a maker. There, we saw how you can turn a can into a survival camp stove. This time, we aim higher, but there is also room for new ideas.

Wi-Fi Amplifier – Wireless Internet is amazing, but sometimes the signal isn’t great. To improve it, you just need a basic can and a utility knife. Thoroughly clean out the can and slice off the base by cutting a horizontal line around the bottom of the can. Do the same thing to the top, but this time, leave 1 inch attached to the drinking hole: this will serve as the base. Now cut down the back of the can, spread it out and thread your router’s antenna through the hole of the can. How is the signal now?

Continue reading…


Someone’s printing 3D houses to live on the moon

Jumping from sand castles on the beaches of Tuscany to the cold deserts on the Moon is easier than you think. It sounds incredible, but in fact it’s the true story of Enrico Dini, the engineer from Pontedera who invented a 3D printer capable of printing on a surface of 36 square meters. Instead of plastic, his D-Shape uses sand and a special ink that transforms clusters of granules into cement.

Making buildings using local resources is a clever solution, especially if you have to take a rocket to get to the building site. It may take a while before you see the D-shape in space, but things are starting to move. Dini’s technology is part of a  project by the Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna in Pisa and the European Space Agency, which plans to design new housing modules to be printed directly on the Moon.

Maybe it will take several years before we can see 3D printers build some installations in space, but at least now we know that it’s no longer just fiction. Dini’s dream – ever closer to reality – has already captivated the world, so much so that his story appeared in the documentary “ The Man Who Prints Houses “.

Continue reading…