Meet Singapore’s next makers

Meet Singapore’s next makers

What happens when you invite kids to tinker and dabble with 3D pens, 3D printers and lots of colorful electrical components? They go on to make some pretty amazing things!

Welcome to the Maker Space
Step inside our Maker Space at Google’s Singapore office! Our creative technologists have created an indoor playground for Googlers and collaborators to pursue ideas and build quick prototypes to explore and bring their ideas to life.

We recently opened our Maker Space to a group of kids that are part of Code in the Community—a program that encourages a wider diversity of Singaporean kids to get excited about coding and technology. We wanted them to experience Google’s maker culture and learn the basics of creative and design-thinking. The idea was to combine their coding skills with their imaginations to build prototypes that might actually help solve everyday problems.

Dheena Leonara

15-year-old Dheena Leonara built a 3D structure of the human heart using styrofoam and soft materials to encase a Micro:bit, which  lights up to point to different parts of the heart. Code in the Community has opened Dheena’s eyes to how useful coding can be, and how it powers a lot of the world’s most important technologies. So these were her first steps toward her dream of becoming a biomedical engineer, applying code to make and program artificial organs.

Muhammad Taqiuddin Bin Mohd Firdaus

10-year-old Muhammad Taqiuddin Bin Mohd Firdaus wants to build a time-travel machine one day. For now, he made a light-up teddy bear using a 3D pen, some cardboard, LED lamps, batteries and a Micro:bit. If he had more time, he would have added an alarm clock to it. His big idea was to make waking up in the morning a lot more fun.

“Making” isn’t just for kids. Our engineers here at Google are also encouraged to spend time in these Maker Spaces, being hands-on and trying out different ideas. Prototyping is an important part of working on products that billions of people around the world use.

It’s been nearly a year since Code in the Community started, and we’re really excited to have had 500 kids take part in these weekend coding classes in community centers across the island. It’s humbling to see how far kids like Dheena and Muhammad have come, and we can’t wait to see what Singapore’s next generation of makers build next!

  • Code in the Community in the Maker Space
  • Maker Space demo
    The kids learned how to sketch a robot using an IOIO board and to control it via an Android app
  • 3D printer
    They were also fascinated to see their designs made on a computer come to life with an Ultimaker 3D printer.
  • Tic tac toe
    Gracie built an interactive tic-tac-toe game board using conductive ink, LED lights, a battery and some craft materials.

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Whether you’re cycling to work or juggling a cup of coffee, it’s often difficult to pull out your phone, unlock it and answer an incoming call, read a text or skip a music track.

To help you to control your digital life while navigating your real one, Google ATAP (Google’s Advanced Technology and Projects group) developed Jacquard—a connected apparel platform that allows fashion designers and apparel manufacturers to integrate connectivity and interactivity into clothes. And the first product that incorporates Jacquard—the Levi’s® Commuter™ Trucker Jacket—will go on sale Wednesday.

The first thing to know about the Levi’s® Commuter™ Trucker Jacket with Jacquard is just that: it’s a jacket. Like any regular denim jacket, you can wash it (just remove the snap tag), it’s durable, designed to be comfortable for cycling and it’ll keep you warm on and off the bike. With Jacquard technology, you can perform common digital tasks—like starting or stopping music, getting directions or reading incoming text messages—by simply swiping or tapping the jacket sleeve.

Jacquard1
Levi’s® Commuter™ Trucker Jacket with Jacquard™ by Google

The technology that makes this possible is embedded in the jacket. Gesture-sensing Jacquard Threads are woven into the cuff and wirelessly connected to your mobile phone using tiny electronics embedded inside the sleeve and a flexible snap tag. The snap tag also notifies you about incoming phone calls or text messages¹ with light and haptic feedback. The gestures on the jacket cuff are fully re-configurable: using the Jacquard app you can assign gestures to invoke different digital “abilities” that were designed specifically for an on-the-go lifestyle:

  • Play or pause your music, skip to the next track, or ask what song is playing².

  • Get your next direction, ETA, or the current time.

  • Receive updates on incoming call or texts with a subtle LED light and a vibration on your sleeve, and have the text message read to you.

Jacquard2
Configure the gesture by tapping it, select an ability from the carousel, and assign the ability to a gesture by dragging and dropping.

The Levi’s® Commuter™ Trucker Jacket with Jacquard™ by Google is available for purchase Wednesday in select shops. Next week, it will be available in the US online at www.levi.com and at select Levi’s stores.

We’re excited for Jacquard to be out in the world, and look forward to seeing how connectivity and interactivity can dress up the rest of your closet.


1. For Android, you need a supported phone running Android 6.0.1 or newer. To check if your Android phone is supported go to jacquard.com/levi/specs. For iOS, you need an iPhone 6 or newer running iOS 10 or newer. Features vary between iOS and Android. Requires a Google account, an internet connection, and a cellular plan for calls and texts. Fees may apply.

2.  Not compatible with some music services. Go to g.co/jacquard/music for info. Subscriptions and fees may apply.