A Kenyan Facebook user recently shared these images of a craftsman in Eldoret (Kenya) who repairs rims:
Kenya fixit? Eh!
(via Silas Salavi)
How to fix a bicycle tube… when a glued patch isn’t appropriate:
“To fix such a problem, we designed a new way of fixing. You can simply tie the place, no need of glue, no need of nothing.”
The reasoning for this unusual fix may be a bit strange (as a correctly applied patch will also work under the influence of heat), but the solution is smart and obviously works.
AfriGadget is graduating from the small screens of laptops and smart phones to the larger screens of broadcast television. The production company Made in Africa TV is taking AfriGadget to the East African airwaves to inspire millions of viewers to become active creators of new and ingenious products, themselves. Each episode of AfriGadget TV will consist of five thoughtful stories from around the region, highlighting remarkable and unexpected hardware innovations by East Africans. These stories are inspiring mini-documentaries, portraying young and old, men and women, as well as high and low-tech innovators and their products.
Made in Africa TV plans to produce AfriGadget as separate programs in each of the Kenyan, Tanzanian and Ugandan television markets. A local presenter will host the program and introduce the correspondents and their stories. Combined, these stories offer a unique opportunity to discover a wide range of innovations, new products and different approaches to the same goal. The program will be broadcast on a weekly basis.
Made in Africa TV is an East African social enterprise producing mass media with a social impact. We are in the process of setting up a network of video journalists from across Africa to produce the stories, which will be made available on the website as well. As an AfriGadget TV-correspondent you explore your local surroundings to find and capture the innovators and their AfriGadgets. If you are a videographer willing to become a correspondent for this program, or if you know of great AfriGadgets that should be considered for inclusion, please send an email to email@example.com.
Sulaiman Famro is a cheerful, 65 year old engineer, and a master of branding. He built the prototype “Farmking” three years ago and claims he can save the country $1 billion a year, just in savings on starch importation.
The Farmking is a one-stop processing plant for cluster and farm-site processing of root crops and grains. It has a diesel powered engine that allows for remote processing, with power out connections for lighting so that it can work all night, if needed.
On one end you have 3 devices, for chipping, grating and milling. In the middle is the power plant, and in the rear is a large steel drum that can hold 50kgs of milled cassava, that uses a spin filter to process up to 2.5 tons of milled cassava into starch.
It’s used for processing of cassava, soya beans, maize, sweet potatoes, yam and many other roots and grains. One of the more interesting uses for it is the capture of starch. Apparently there is a huge amount of waste when the processing of cassava happens in the country right now, instead of being captured it is left to seep into the ground. An incredibly wasteful, manual process currently, Sulaiman is lobbying governors of different Nigerian states to get the Farmking into their areas.
Sulaiman went to the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn for his undergrad, then on to the Polytechnic Institute of NYU for his masters, finishing in 1976. The Farmking is a project of his that he built on his nights and weekends, claiming that he likes best to work by himself when no one else is around to bother him. It cost approximately 2.5m Naira ($16,000) to buy one, and the prototype (seen here) was built using his own money.
With the first prototype being built 3 years ago, the Farmking has yet to sell one to any other customers. Herein lies the problem for not just Sulaiman, but for many engineering-based founders of organizations. They can be incredibly good at building systems and tools, but aren’t interested, nor do they have the know-how to sell and market their product. It’d be good to see Sulaiman partner with a business person, or company, to streamline the sales and marketing side of the business so that he can make this invention work.
Note: I’ve been blogging most of this on the Maker Faire Africa blog, so go there to find more posts on the stories from Lagos, Nigeria and the innovative and fun products made there.
As one of the founding organizers for Maker Faire Africa, I’ve had the privilege to be a part of this unfolding maker movement in Africa. To be honest, it’s been going on for a while, so I guess what we’re really doing is just aggregating it in a country, and shining a spotlight on some of the great practical innovation on the continent.
Just to get a feel for the projects and people at Maker Faire Africa in Lagos this year, I put together this video with pictures from my phone. I have some more images up on Flickr.
I’ve been blogging most of this on the Maker Faire Africa blog, so go there to find more posts on the stories from Lagos, Nigeria and the innovative and fun products made there.