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Invitation to Educators to visit the newly open Cape Town Science Centre

Cross-posted from here



Dates: 17 February (15:00 to 17:00) and Saturday 18 February (9:00 onwards).
RSVP: Please RSVP to Carmen on 083 276 9508 or by 16 February
Map: Location of the Cape Town Science Centre on Google Maps

The Cape Town Science Centre are delighted to extend an invitation to all educators to visit the Cape Town Science Centre (CTSC) in its new home in Observatory. They are set to become a hub of educational opportunities and look forward to introducing you to their new partners:

images: © Cape Town Science Centre

Should you not be able to visit on Saturday 18 February, please stop by for an informal visit and discussion with our partners on Friday 17 February between 15:00 and 17:00.

09:00 Arrival
10:00 Introduction to the Cape Town Science Centre – Julie Cleverdon, Director
10:15 Introduction to the CTSC partners each partner will briefly introduce their programmes and educators will have time to visit the partners in their venues after the formal proceedings
10:50 Address by Ms Penny Vinjevold, Head of the Western Cape Education Department
11:15 Tea & Coffee

Please note:
Educators are invited to spend as much time as they wish at the CTSC on Saturday 18 February. Each educator is welcome to bring along a maximum of two children to enjoy the day with them, at no charge. RSVP for accompanying children is essential.

Upcoming global hack events that need one or more teams in South Africa (and elsewhere)

Cross-posted from here.

Can we have a South African leg of the International Space Apps Challenge?

International Space Apps Challenge

The idea is to use open data and open technology to try to tackle global challenges. The event happens on April 21st and is a partnership with Open NASA and the Open Government Partnership (of which South Africa is a member).
I would love to organise the event myself, but by April 21st, the bump the hackers met at the Hack Day will have been born and I’ll be a bit busy… :) So if anyone is interested in taking the lead on organising a Space Apps Hack Event in the country, email us at or contact them directly through the website!

Click here for more info on the International Space Apps Challenge.

Hacking for Humanity

Random Hacks of Kindness

In the same thinking, the global RHoK community gets together twice a year (June and December) to create hacks ‘to make the world a better place’. Again, I’ll probably be out of action in June this year but I’m definitely up for organising a Cape Town leg in December. If you wish to take the lead on a June event, go ahead! Also, feel free to spread the word.

More info on RHoK here:

Science Hack Days take off all around the world!

The Science Hack Day Ambassadors from 10 countries (photo: Matt Biddulph)

Last year I was fortunate enough to be one of 10 Ambassadors for Science Hack Day, a programme run by Ariel Waldman. This took me to San Francisco for my second Science Hack Day, which was of course, awesome. I remember the first one in London in 2010, just before my move to South Africa and how I wanted to bring the concept to this country.

Science Hack Days are incredibly inspiring and fun and both exhausting and energizing :)

Finally, I took the time to organise the Cape Town Science Hack Day with Kevin Govender, Michael Wolf and Tom Bamford. The event had about 30 participants and many outcomes including 13 awesome hacks described here.

Other outcomes included:

Science Hack Day in Cape Town in full action

It was preceded by an Open Knowledge event in Cape Town, another growing community in the area.

Now Dublin is next, followed by Nairobi and many more cities around the world! I’m glad Cape Town features among the Science Hack Day pioneers. :)

Last week’s Open Knowledge meet-up

Last Wednesday, Siyavula were kind enough to host the second Open Knowledge meet-up at the Open Innovation Studio in Cape Town. The event was streamed and recorded. Here’s the video. 1h46 (- pizza break) of interesting discussions around open *:

Geeks rally for science, development and openness in Cape Town

Download the press release in PDF

Cape Town, 24th January 2012

Two events this week show the growing interest in making science more fun, enjoyable and accessible for everyone. The Cape Town Science Hack Day – first of its kind in Africa – and an Open Knowledge meet-up bring together scientists, technologists, designers and educators who wish for science and its benefits to be within the reach of the general population.

In many parts of the developed world, computer geeks and scientists get together and innovate science using technology. This can lead to so-called ‘citizen science’ projects for example, where members of the public can help real research and learn about science at the same time. This thinking is now catching on in Cape Town, where academics and technologists concerned by this issue are coming together.
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