Building LipSyncs with Neil Squire Solutions

In late January, the Neil Squire Solutions team worked with us to build some LipSyncs. Many of them were soldering for the first time, but they successfully built seven devices together. Check out some photos here.

If you’re new to making, you may shy away from taking on a project like the LipSync. To prove that it shouldn’t be intimidating at all, we put together this time-lapse of one of the Solutions team members building a device. Click the image below to open the video in a new window:

Two hands working on LipSync parts

On February 3rd, Piriya and Gemma from the Solutions team were at the ATIA Maker Day in Orlando. They saw several interesting projects and learned a lot:

3D-printed tilt-compensating wheelchair cup holder

Above: A 3D-printed tilt-compensating wheelchair cup holder

Piriya learning to build an inexpensive phone stand made of corrugated plastic

Above: Piriya learning to build an inexpensive phone stand made of corrugated plastic

For more coverage, check out this article from ATMakers.org, the hosts of the ATIA Maker Day.

85 Students Attended the Acadia University LipSync Buildathon

We had a wonderful time at the Acadia University LipSync Buildathon on February 1st. It was a day of teamwork and learning as scores of students came together to build 36 LipSyncs.

Around 60 engineering students participated in building the LipSyncs. Of them, over 30 volunteered their time to help others build, including mentoring 25 Wolfville School students from Grades 7 and 8.

Group photo of the attendees of the Acadia University LipSync Buildathon

Above: What an amazing turnout!

Acadia University’s engineering department incorporated the LipSync Buildathon into their classes, using the device to teach students about soldering, 3D-printing, electrical components, and accessibility.

Students working on LipSync parts

Above: A team of students working on LipSync parts

Dwayne, who has quadriplegia, works at the Kings Regional Rehabilitation Centre as IT support. He spoke to the students about the importance of assistive technology. Dwayne is looking forward to using the LipSync and providing the device to residents who may find it useful.

A student focusing on soldering

Above: A student focusing on soldering

For more in-depth coverage of the Buildathon, check out this article from the Annapolis County Spectator.

Kudos to these brilliant students who did such a great job grasping the technology and helping people who need it!

ATIA Maker Day

The ATIA conference has been on for nearly 20 years, but this is the first time it includes an ATIA Maker Day. It’s a great opportunity for both newcomers and seasoned makers to dive into the maker community.

The ATIA Maker Day is powered by ATMakers.org, which is run by Bill Binko. Bill is a phenomenal maker – we’ve even 3D-printed some of his designs in our lab.

Click on the image below to watch a video introducing the ATIA Maker Day:

A screen capture of the ATIA Maker Day video featuring Bill Binko

Drop by if you are able and learn about soldering, 3D-printing, switches, and a lot more (it’s free)!

When: February 3rd, 9:00am to noon

Where: Caribe Royale Hotel and Convention Center, Orlando, Florida

Acadia University LipSync Buildathon

On February 1st, we will be in Wolfville, Nova Scotia for the Acadia University LipSync Buildathon. This the first-ever LipSync Buildathon in Atlantic Canada, so we’re quite excited.

A student working on a LipSync

A West Island College student working on a LipSync during our buildathon with STEM Learning Lab in Calgary in December

Around 20 Acadia University students will build LipSyncs for people with disabilities as part of Accessibility Week at the university. Learn more and register on the Eventbrite page.

When: Thursday, February 1st, 9am - 4pm

Where: Acadia University, Sheldon L. Fountain Learning Commons, 26 Crowell Road, Wolfville, Nova Scotia B4P 2R6

The Year in Review

What a fantastic year it has been. We started off with the Access Makeathon, a 48-hour challenge where Makers worked together to create innovative assistive technologies for people with disabilities. And then we spent the entire year hopping around North America to meet dedicated Makers and build devices.

10-year-old Timothy

Above: Timothy, a 10-year-old with an anoxic brain injury, tests out an accessible Wii controller that a team built for him at the Access Makeathon

We hosted or co-hosted 17 events, of which five were in the United States. With the help of many bright Makers, students, engineers, and tinkerers, we built 320 LipSyncs this year!

Jim tests out a LipSync

Above: Jim, who has a spinal cord injury, tests out a LipSync that students made for him at a Burnaby School District Makeathon

Google and Neil Squire Society staff pose in front of the Android statue at Google HQ

Above: Google and Neil Squire Society staff at Google headquarters for a buildathon during Accessibility Week

Thank you to everyone for their skills, enthusiasm, and dedication towards making this happen. If you want to help in other ways, please consider making a donation this holiday season to support people with disabilities. Happy holidays and a wonderful new year!