Thought cafe

Curiosity Gym's founder, Girish Nair, on kasrat for the mind

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South Bombay’s latest makerspace, Curiosity Gym, is a place open for people of all ages to tinker, make, do, listen or discuss things. You can visit to ideate and create products, irrespective of your age or field of interest, says founder Girish. We spoke to him about igniting his inner child and giant minions.

Excerpts from an interview;

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How did you start? Tell us the story.

The idea of Curiosity Gym emerged by observing that people, of all ages, were missing a place where they can experience applied learning. Be it students in schools or colleges who had somehow stopped working with their hands, young adults working desk-jobs in offices, or even older citizens who had many skills. None of them had an outlet or place where they could learn something new and relive their childlike joy of learning.

So, while there were places to enhance your health, discover your spirituality or socialise at a cafe or a club, there were very few places where you could participate in applied learning, at your own pace. In order to address this fundamental gap, Curiosity Gym was born.

Tell us about your team?

Girish has worked for over 25 years at various companies, start-ups, medium sized companies and very large companies. He is comfortable working in chaos and structured environments. He would like to bring structure within chaos and chaos within structure, in a fun learning environment.

Jehangir is an industry veteran in technology, embedded systems and the Internet of Things. He has been involved in R&D and a senior consultant at several organisations. Jehangir’s passion is figuring out How Things Work.

Rupin has several years of experience with MNCs. He is an engineer by training and a true maker at heart. Rupin loves making new things and sharing his knowledge with others.

Ruella is the rock behind Curiosity Gym. She keeps our Gym and the Hub in school, running like clockwork. In the midst of any chaotic event, Ruella, with her unflappable smile, fishes out an easy answer to resolve things quickly and without a fuss.

Rituparna is the most boisterous guy in the group. He thinks every day at Curiosity Gym is Halloween. One can never know what costume he wears next. He loves wearables, flashy LEDs, logic puzzles and making alliances.

Mithilesh is an avid gamer and maker. He loves making stuff with arduino and other IoT gizmos. He also likes debating. He know his stuff and likes to defend his design decisions.

Tell us about one interesting thing that was made at the space.

Minions costume: This Halloween we wanted to build a fun costume. You can check out the video on our Facebook page.

We also built a model of a consumer, home smart-box, triggering events in a global supply chain system.

 

What’s the most popular machine/tool?

3D printers, to print complex designs and 3D doodlers, to handcraft aesthetic designs – both of these are very, very popular. That said, Curiosity Gym has recently acquired several woodworking tools and is looking to share using these with enthusiastic visitors.

 

What do you guys do for fun?

We pick a new project, every festive season, to share with others. For instance, this Diwali, we had a 3D printing contest to make Diwali lamps and the minions costume for Halloween.

 

Future plans.

Curiosity Gym wants to help spread the maker culture among students and adults of all ages. It seeks to do this by not only providing a place for making and workshops for skilling, but also individual mentoring.

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