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Funding pledge ignites interest in Maker Lab at Armidale War Memorial Library

Maker Lab provisions in the Armidale War Memorial Library will receive a boost with Council now able to accept funding pledges and external support measures for future purchases of equipment.

At the Council Meeting held on January 27 in Armidale, Council endorsed a number of recommendations contained in a Mayoral Minute to confirm Council’s endorsement of the provision for a Maker Lab, convey appreciation to Prof Sorensen for his $5000 pledge to commence fundraising and noted the pledge of $2000 from the Mayor.

The purchase of further equipment for the Maker Lab will be funded over time from non- Council sources. Representations will be made to Member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall for State Government support and Council will explore crowd funding options for contributions to the space.

A Maker Lab space was incorporated into the new design of the library building in 2017. Maker labs or sometimes referred to as hacker spaces, fab spaces or even tech sheds are spaces that house a range of devices or equipment accessible by members of the public for little or no cost. People can use the space and equipment to experiment under supervision and acquire the necessary skills to apply them at work or at home.

Mayor Tiley said the financial pledge from Prof Sorensen and the subsequent fundraising initiatives will enhance the library’s current program of new and emerging technology experiences.

“Prof Sorensen’s pledge of $5000 and my pledge of $2000 will commence a pool of funding to equip the maker lab over time,” said Cr Tiley

“I do hope that we can appoint an advisory panel of interested parties including futurists and technophiles to provide ideas for the lab’s ongoing operation. Technology is transforming rapidly these days and it is so complex that multilateral ideas and advice should be welcomed.”

A report will be provided to Council on how the Maker Lab will operate, integrate with other library services and how it will be managed.

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