#Asia Jurong Regional Library is home of third IDA Labs facility


It wants to cultivate a “mindset of continuous experimentation” with technology among the youth

Minister Yaacob Ibrahim does a bit of tinkering with students, Andrea Seng from Paya Lebar Methodist Girls School and Wayne Yeo, from Victoria School, at the opening of the IDA Labs@NLB in Jurong Regional Library.

Minister Yaacob Ibrahim does a bit of tinkering with students Andrea Seng from Paya Lebar Methodist Girls’ School and Wayne Yeo from Victoria School at the opening of the IDA Labs@NLB in Jurong Regional Library.

The Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) has announced today that it has opened up its third IDA Labs facility right smack in the middle of the Singapore heartlands — in the Jurong Regional Library to be precise.

This collaboration with the National Library Board (NLB) marks the creation of the first library space in Singapore dedicated to the pursuit of experimentation with technology among the youth.

Named IDA Labs@NLB, the facility was opened up by the Singapore Minister for Communications and Information, Dr Yaacob Ibrahim, this afternoon.

It will allow kids to tinker around with maker kits like the open-source electronic prototyping platform Arduino to create and programme robotic modules. In addition, the IDA Labs@NLB will be able to foster and grow a network of like-minded individuals to share and gather ideas.

Also Read: The journey to a Smart Nation is most important: Aaron Maniam

Located at the library’s 135-sqm second floor, the IDA Labs@NLB will house equipment such as 3D printers as well as curated technology kits for limited public use.

The Labs will open from Wednesdays to Sundays, 12 PM to 8:30 PM. IDA and partners will also run talks and workshops to reach out to students, families and young adults to familiarise them with the technology available at IDA Labs@NLB.

Being situated in a library also has other advantages, i.e. kids will be able to easily source for guides and resources on computing and programming.

IDA first launched its IDA Labs programme in March 2014, opening the first two Labs at its Mapletree Business City headquarters and the National Design Centre. Its goal is to to provide physical lab spaces for individuals, companies and government agencies to collaborate and innovate, as part of Singapore’s Smart Nation initiative.

To date, IDA Labs has supported more than 250 workshops with over 9,000 participants from the government, the community, as well as different industries and school.

Also Read: Governments in Southeast Asia are upping their push to Smart Nation status

“The heartlands location of the third IDA Labs makes it easier for the community – from kids to working adults to seniors – to come together to explore and tinker with tech. In our Smart Nation journey, we want to encourage everyone in the community to adopt and cultivate a mindset of continuous experimentation. We will absolutely love it if families can visit IDA Labs@NLB and bond over tech, and, in the process, work together to come up with their own prototypes and innovations,” said Khoong Hock Yun, Assistant Chief Executive, IDA.

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