Ryerson Behind the Scenes: New Media Labs

So, this is the Fab Lab. It’s a fabrications space that allows students
to execute their goals for 3D printing, for inject moulding, for laser cutting. It really helps the New Media students execute
some of their projects in terms of interactive design. So they come up with a plan for their assignment,
they come up with the 3D model, or laser cutting file and then they’re able to come to this
space to actually cut that design into wood or acrylic with the laser cutter or build
their 3D model with plastics with the 3D printers. So, the projects for New Media really vary
quite broadly. We have students who have used this space
to help build robotic heads. We’ve had students make kinetic art, so sculptures
that move and change depending on the audience in the gallery. We’ve had people make props for video projects before. Lots of different kinds of executions take
place in this space. So, this is the workshop. So you can see it’s a very large space and
its intention is to allow students to build large style structures. So the New Media program shares this space
with the Media Production and Sport Media programs. So, you’ll see along this wall all the flats
that they have access to, but for us, we’re really interested in the floor space so we
are able to build like eight foot tall structures and lots of kinetic art. We’re able to do projection mapping in this room. A lot of people have made huge modular CNC
and 3D printed structures, and the ambition is basically to prototype and test and present
work that has to take up a lot of space. We have a lot of really cool tools in this
room as well. So, there are dozens of hand tools from drill
presses to sanders and hand tools like the drill. We’ve got CNC machines, which is basically,
if you’ve ever seen a 3D printer, it’s the same idea but with a drill bit instead of
a plastic extruder. So that’s a really fun tool that’s industry-appropriate
to New Media that we get to play with in here. And the fabrication is really collaborative
in the program so big large groups can work on their structures together because of all
the space that we have for this room. So the New Media program is also really lucky
to have a Makerspace. So there are Makerspaces all over the city
that are flourishing and allowing people to explore DIY self-learning oriented work and
we have a space just like that in our program. It is malleable so there no real rules as
to what you’re supposed to do in there. It’s really adaptable so whatever a person
is working on, whether it’s electronics or Arduino or circuitry or soldering, that space
is available for those students to build their ideas out. The tools that we have in the Makerspace include
3D printers and tons of circuitry-oriented materials for students to be able to work
on their electronics together. That’s also our community hub. So our social events like SIM Night take place
there, which is basically like a big party showcase of all the projects that the students
have made in the past few months. We have New Media Day in there, we have all
sorts of different kinds of community-oriented events that allow people to share ideas and
collaborate and get to know each other for the purpose of hopefully embarking on a project
together in the future.

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