Modern society has turned into a disposable culture over the last two decades. Before the 80s, people were more conscious about the gadgets and appliances they have in their homes. They take very good care of them and if they do malfunction, the first thing adults did was to bring it to a repair shop or troubleshoot it themselves. Very rarely do you see them shrug their shoulders, throw away the broken gadget, and then buy a new one.
London’s Restart Project is a conscientious response to disposable culture and teaches a return to the more conservative way people view gadgets. The movement was established by Janet Gunter and Ugo Vallauri, who have been discussing the very early ideas of this project during a meetup of ICT people who are focused on the development aspects of the profession. The two noticed that in the areas where they work, people were more in tune with the gadgets and the technology they used. They knew how to use it and would try everything to improve them. Everything was “hackable and fixable.” On the other hand, they noticed certain places where this kind of attitude has fallen by the wayside. The common view in these problem areas is that if it’s slow then it needs to be replaced. If it’s broken, then it needs to be thrown away.
Gunter and Vallauri decided to set up Restart Parties to better educate people about gadgets and technologies. These free community events encouraged participants to bring their broken gadgets and appliances where experts are on standby to teach them how to repair them, thus extending the serviceability of these gadgets – and ultimately reduce waste.
The Restart Parties are now becoming more and more popular. Currently, the group organizes two Restart Parties every month, which are usually held near north Camden and Brixton. The Restart Parties, and the philosophy behind it, has become so popular that these events are now being held in other countries.
The Restart Parties are turning into one of the other social responsible projects that can potentially have a tremendous impact on society.
About The Author
Derek Gallimore loves gadgets. He uses his iPad to manage the website to Boutique London Lets, a business he owns. He rents out luxury serviced apartments in London.