While leaves are falling, people rise to fight for repair

iFixit Events in October

Even the hottest summer fades, and aided by a refreshing breeze announcing the arrival of autumn, we came together in October to show our (repair) colors before retreating into our fixer’s dens for the cold months. Many events, many stories, lots and lots of repaired gadgets—and memories to get us through more than one winter. 

FixFest 2022 in Brussels (Sept. 30-Oct. 2)

At this year’s FixFest, more than 150 people from over 20 different countries came together. It was great to experience first-hand how universal our movement really is! Fixers from the EU, UK, US, India, Uganda, and Latin America were able to get to know each other, share ideas and knowledge, and encourage each other in their projects.

There was a wide variety of workshops to choose from, on topics such as micro soldering, planned obsolescence, and strategy development for repair initiatives. In several panel discussions, political, economic, and right to repair experts exchanged views and information on current developments on the Right to Repair in different European initiatives. After protesting for Right to Repair legislation in front of the Apple Store in Brussels, FixFest ended by bringing repair to the people who needed it: with a mobile Repair Café, we helped visitors repair their broken devices. 

Maker Faire Rome (Oct. 7)

Maker Faire Rome took place for the 10th time this year. Counting around 45,000 visitors, the event is one of the largest on DIY, repair and sustainability in the world. Common consensus: Apart from technological innovations, the Right to Repair is essential to moving forward into a sustainable future. Of course, iFixit was there—Matthias Mayer, managing director of iFixit Europe, spoke about our mission, our goals and our community of fixers.

Public Repair Café at the iFixit-headquarters in San Luis Obispo (Oct. 23)

One Sunday towards the end of the month, we turned our headquarters in San Luis Obispo, California, into a Repair Café. Our special guest was Peter Mui of Fixit Clinic, who, in turn, connected with 60 repair heroes around the globe, via Zoom. Amber Taus and Kelsea Weber gave a tour of our offices and answered the visitors’ questions. And naturally, lots of things were brought back to life: Bikes and sewing machines were fixed, knives and scissors sharpened, and many a broken display swapped for a new one.

Maker Faire in Lille (Oct. 15)

Once a famous train station, turned into a cultural and leisure space in 2009, the Gare Saint-Sauveur was the location of the Maker Faire Lille on October 14-16 this year. More than 600 makers came to this event, which featured a gigantic Repair Café stall equipped by iFixit. On International Repair Day, Sandra Auboy, our communications expert for France, was on site, meeting interested DIY enthusiasts to talk about iFixit’s contributions to the introduction of a repairability index in France. Among the other exhibitors was Emmaüs Connect, an NGO we are proud to support in their work on digital inclusion. Although it’s difficult to quantify the lasting impact of the Maker Faire, some effects were measurable immediately: 51 objects were repaired by the volunteers of Repair Café Hauts-de-France, preventing 330 kg of waste!

Repair Day Contest Milan (Oct. 23)

October 15 was International Repair Day. To celebrate the occasion, the members of the Restart Project in Milan announced a Repair Contest a week later, possibly a world’s first. Six teams of repair enthusiasts with different levels of experience competed, trying to fix as many devices as possible in 150 minutes. Re-defining competition, the teams were encouraged to help each other out and share tools and repair tips. Prizes were awarded for number and quality of repairs, but also for creativity, improvisation, elegance, and persistence, even if a repair wasn’t successful. The repair teams were faced with a variety of objects in need of repair, including singing fish, old computers, printers, and vacuum cleaners. iFixit was happy to provide the prizes, and Alberto Balestra, one of our Italian translators, held a presentation about iFixit and our different ways of supporting Repair Cafés. 

re:pair Festival Vienna (Oct. 27)

Vienna celebrated repair for an entire month with the re:pair festival in the Austrian Museum of Folk Life and Folk Art. An exhibition featured the history of repair and a fantastic collection of everyday objects fixed by people living in Vienna themselves. In various workshops, visitors could learn about Visible Mending and darning socks, there were live restorations to watch and presentations on repair, one of them held by Fabian Neidhardt, one of our German translators.

There are many advantages to meeting online—our community and our Answers Forum are always available, no matter where you are. People from around the world can share guides and help each other, and that’s brilliant. But meeting fellow fixers in real life, sharing ideas and experiences and looking at devices on a table instead of on your screen—let’s face it, you can’t beat it!

To make sure you don’t miss any of our live (and online!) events, sign up for our newsletter and follow us on Instagram, Facebook,  and Twitter. We look forward to meeting you!

This article was translated by Maria Parker.