Innovation Sprouts At Fab Lab Nepal: “Human Support Keypad”

5 September 2022 - kathmandu

We at FabLab Nepal envision providing Nepali innovators and makers with the space, resources, knowledge, and tools allowing them to play, create, and innovate to solve problems. Due to the lack of access to things like 3D printers and digital fabrication equipment, local manufacturing is uncommon in Nepal. The benefits of local manufacturing include decreasing reliance on imported goods and allowing for more innovation and new skillset to flourish. In order to bridge this gap, we at FabLab Nepal organize regular skill-based hands-on workshops for curious learners. Recently, FabLab Nepal in collaboration with Dassault Foundation completed a 6-week digital fabrication and design workshop named “Skill Enhancement in Design And Fabrication in FabLab Nepal” on design, digital fabrication, and manufacturing, project-based learning where we had 25 students. They were able to book sessions to use the machinery and equipment and apply their skill. Additionally, we invited guest professors, experts and to give them further knowledge on the procedural practices of design. The students were split into 6 teams to each create their own project regarding humanitarian assistance and manufacturing where we had the most amazing creations from students!

One of the finished projects is called the “Human Support Keypad” or “H.U.S.K.Y” created by Ashish Bhattarai, Denjing Tamang, Sharuk Singh, and Suraj Thapa. It is an external mini keypad interface that gives you additional and accessible controls to your computer. It works by simply plugging it into a USB cable. This device has shortcut features that make your computer more user-friendly. Some of these features include volume control, touch buttons, and customizable macros. Using 3D models, CAD tools, and help from the amazing fab lab team, these talented students were able to design H.U.S.K.Y. They completed their project within the duration of our 6-week digital fabrication workshop held at Impact Hub Kathmandu. These are some of the glimpses of their endeavor! 

“Human Support Keypad or H.U.S.K.Y is an external mini keypad interface that connects to your Mac or PC and gives you added controls. It is useful for professionals that need custom control of their software and also for people that have difficulties interfacing with their computer. So, to help with that issue, we offer a tool that allows users to easily interface with their computer.” – Team H.U.S.K.Y

Digital Fabrication and manufacturing is a really promising way to help development in Nepal. It creates jobs, and new skills, and is a cost-friendly alternative to importing. On other hand, it enables the turning of creative ideas into real problem solving through prototyping. Digital manufacturing can look like many different things. It can help with climate change, people with disabilities, and educating the community on social issues. It is amazing to witness Nepal’s young makers flourishing with newer technology and to see how resources and collaboration can bring brilliant outcomes!

“The workshop conducted by FABLAB Nepal helped me understand more in detail about digital fabrication. It was a very fun and fruitful experience when I got the chance to perform digital fabrication such as 3D printing, CNC machining, and laser cutting by myself with the guidance of the trainer. I hope that FABLAB Nepal would also conduct many project-based learning workshops in upcoming days from which many curious mind students would be benefited.” – Denjing Tamang