Last year, Timbuk2 used scraps and words of inspiration to produce a bag for 2008 Pop!Tech annual conference that explored scarcity and abundance. The bags were then up-cycled to the non-profit Peace Games. Our work with Pop!Tech and Peace Games inspired us to pay more attention to scarcity and abundance in San Francisco and a few months later, we created Timbuk2′s Bag Recycling Program. Since our recycling program launched in April, we’ve recycled 106 bags. Learn more about how you can recycle your Timbuk2 bag here.
Back to Pop!Tech . . . This year, we’re producing an enlightening bag for the 2009 Pop!Tech conference in October. We’re working with the folks at Pop!Tech and The Portable Light Project to create a solar powered LED light that’s disguised as a messenger bag. The project is called Flexible Light and Power (FLAP).
Why are we doing this? Because portable light is a HUGE issue in much of the developing world and we think we have a partial solution.
We’ve stipulated that the FLAP product must be modular, durable, affordable, and highly highly effective. As a result, FLAP is pushing us to re-think how we make all our bags.
Should the flap really be sewn to the bag or should you be able to remove it? For project FLAP, you can rip the flap on and off to your heart’s content. The flap is attached by velcro and contains all the business; the solar panel, the LED light, and a mini USB port for charging popular gadgets like cellphones. So people can use the portable light and USB port with our without the bag. No judgments. Meet the FLAP designers in the video below.
Will this bag work where people really need portable light? We shall see . . . This week our friend Erik Hersman, the amazing man behind AfriGadget, is testing FLAP prototypes in Ghana at Maker Faire. Follow Erik’s trip to Ghana on Twitter.com/WhiteAfrican and see more photos of the FLAP project here.
T2 team assembling the FLAP kits for Erik’s trip to Ghana.
This is just the beginning. More prototypes are being sent around the world and we’ll post feedback, photos, and inspiration as it rolls in. Pop!Tech is blogging about FLAP too. Stay tuned!