Liberated Tech is a nonprofit technology education and recycling cooperative opening in July at Freeside Atlanta. We train volunteers how to refurbish donated computer equipment. Our volunteers gain hands-on software and hardware skills and also earn a computer through community service. The extra computers built by our volunteers are distributed back to the community through grants to nonprofits, schools and other groups. We also sell very affordable computer systems to the public at very low cost.
We believe this model solves two separate and distinct tech problems. First, computers are integral to daily life yet many people lack basic computing skills. Second, computers that are discarded (e-waste) usually end up in landfills and pollute our air and water with some particularly nasty toxins.
Liberated Tech also supports and promotes freely licensed open source software. We will provide free or very low cost tech training and tech support once we have a permanent space.
We are beginning our PC building programs at our temporary home, Freeside Atlanta, starting on July 27th, 2013.
We are all volunteer and an active, working board. Georgia Tech and Morehouse College are engaged with our activities and we are looking forward to working with them to bring tech resources and opportunity to people and organizations, while reducing e-waste in Metro Atlanta.
Our exhibit will demonstrate the various components of a PC, how to test components and what they do. We will have PCs and equipment on hand for participants to break down, test and rebuild. We will teach participants how to load Ubuntu and other free open source software on the rebuilt machines. People will also be invited to take our rebuilt PCs for a test drive so they can see that these machines are not junk, and work quite well for typical day to day computing.
We will also demonstrate some creative projects to turn old motherboards and electronic bits and pieces into works of art. Participants can make their own e-waste art at our exhibit. We hope participants are inspired to pursue clever and creative re-use of electronics and any other type of material that might otherwise end up in landfills.