Thanks to everybody who attended our first Restart Party repair event in north London on Saturday – you made it a real success.
We had an excellent turnout – more than 30 people came by, from many generations, and the space was buzzing the full four hours. We had 4 humble repair heroes offering their skills in computer and electronics repair – sometimes this meant we could not help everybody immediately, but people were quite happy to meet each other, have a brownie and a coffee and talk about their electronics, green and local issues.
We had happy participants write to us
Thank you for fixing my printer! What a brilliant event
thank u lovely restart team for breathing new life nto my laptop speakers …I have music once more ..yayyy
It is a great idea and hope it will spread around the city!
- printers (quite a few – including one really old HP Deskjet)
- laptops including netbook
- a clock
- an Android tablet (see above)
- DVD players
We noticed a couple of things. The most common – and sometimes fixable – problems are software related. Sometimes drivers get corrupted, systems need updating, hard drives need defragmenting. And then some software wreaks havoc on the unsuspecting user. These are things we can often – but not always – help with. And they can take quite a lot of time to get sorted.
We repaired printers, laptops, a mobile and a rather stylish digital clock. We made progress with a number of devices that will need follow-up by their owners. And we introduced quite a few laptop owners to different flavours of Linux to regain access to their documents or give a new lease of life to computers slowed down by proprietary software.
Smashed screens are a big issue, but there is little we can do unless people can bring replacement parts. DVD players often suffer from terminal problems like laser failure or harder to fix electrical issues.
The owners of the stuff we could not fix allowed us to do some educational teardowns – many of us had never seen inside a Kindle or a DVD player before.
We also started mapping repair places in the north London area – and we have a wealth of shoe, clothes, bike repair places, but actually surprisingly few electronics repair store fronts. (People seemed to think rents were high and they could not survive.)
We feel confident that we can make this kind of event even better in future – we are feeling like fixing can be addictive!
Thanks to London Freecycle, Transition Belsize and the London ICT4D Meetup, all of which were crucial in promoting the event. And of course a special thanks to Nigel, Adrian, Ugo and Matthew, our repairers.
If you are itching to get repairing, come to our event this Thursday afternoon with Technology Will Save Us at KK Outlet in Hoxton.