Object magazine 62 — BikeTank
Thursday April 19 2012
u.lab is a cross-faculty grouping of staff from the University of Technology, Sydney, identifying itself as a ‘framework for people, and in particular you.’ Since forming off the back of a trip to the revolutionary d.school run out of Stanford University in California, the u.lab has activated three programs.
The first, Creative Minds, was a two week thinking and doing course for undergraduate students. Second was the Entrepreneurship Lab, a postgraduate subject bridging the Business School and the Faculty of Design, Architecture and Cuilding, where students were placed in multidisciplinary teams to deep dive into design thinking and use it to come up with innovative and entrepreneurial business initiatives.
Third was BikeTank, a public-facing think tank held every Tuesday morning through the second tertiary semester of 2011. An hour long event, each BikeTank began with a guest speaker before the attendees broke off into at least two groups of around ten people each, employing a very fast, five-step design thinking process aiming for rapid ideation between the city and the university.
u.lab at UTS
Friday November 18 2011
Earlier this week I went to BikeTank, a think tank you cycle to run out of the University of Technology, Sydney (and you can read about that here.) BikeTank is actually a creative project run out of u.lab, an ‘emerging interdisciplinary framework for innovation projects at UTS.’
The seed for u.lab was planted last year and solidified in January, and from there three ‘projects’ developed this year: Creative Minds, BikeTank and the Entrepreneurship Lab. This morning, at the u.lab ‘headquarters’ in an old warehouse space in Chippendale the Entrepreneurship Lab students presented Launch Pad, effectively delivering their final projects.
Basically, the students have spent the semester working alongside BikeTank to develop four projects in interdisciplinary teams made up of postgraduate students from the schools of architecture and business. The teams had to develop these projects from an idea to a fully-fledged pitch, and then present these pitches to an audience today.
Tuesday November 15 2011
BikeTank has been running for a few months now, put on by the u.lab at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS.) It’s a ‘bike-powered think tank’, held in a warehouse space in Chippendale on the CBD fringe. The idea is that, by riding up on your bicycle you’re pumping your blood full of oxygen, and when combined with the coffee (caffeine) and pastries (sugar) that are provided, you’re set to solve all of the world’s problems in an hour.
Well, almost. Each Tuesday morning a new topic is defined and ideated by smaller breakout groups from the larger massive in attendance. Today, which was sadly the last BikeTank of the year, the groups were tasked with coming up with prototypes for various other ‘tanks’, around four themes provided to us.
To get you in the spirit, the BikeTanks have guest speakers leading off the morning, with Alex Cheek from Second Road starting today. He spoke about efficient, influential and meaningful design, with corporate examples of each. It was all about engaging the end user or consumer and what they want from your product. If you apply these three principles, you’re on your way to the best solution.