UPGRADEREQUIRED.ORG UpgradeRequired.org is a Science Fiction inspired social enterprise, dedicated to rendering the concept of disability obsolete through technology. We connect people, with and without disabilities, Makers, influencers, teachers, cosplayers, engineers and scientists, bringing them together to educate, collaborate, create and share custom disability-busting solutions. UPGRADE ACADEMY Upgrade Academy uses the same Upgrade Required disability-busting focus to inspire and educate young Makers in Science Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics (STEAM), and helps to equip educators with the confidence and competence to use assistive technology to inspire new generations of Makers who want to make a difference.
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Upgrade Required – The Show
Science Fiction becomes Science Fact as Stargate’s David Hewlett embarks on a quest to render disabilities obsolete through technology…one fanciful futuristic feat of engineering at a time!
Upgrade Required is a funny, fast-paced, feel-good and informative, mix of Science Fiction fandom and DIY Maker madness. In the spirit of the wildly popular Mythbusters, Upgrade Required revels in the joy of invention, collaboration, exploration and the DIY spirit. Each episode, Hewlett and his team, create whimsical technology solutions for fans with disability related issues, while making, fan-turned-friend, Q’s dream of overcoming his own Spinal Muscular Atrophy and becoming a cyborg… a robotic reality!
Upgrade Required is a thrilling, inspirational half hour of fun and innovation, and a testament to human’s insatiable desire to harness technology to conquer the world around them.
Want to join or rally the community? Check out some of our Upgrade Projects:
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The Cyborg Circus
The Cyborg Circus Live!
Upgrade Required is more than just a television series, it is a rallying cry to audiences. Showing off disability deleting robotic revolution is one thing. Face-to-face, hands-on collaboration is a whole other level of engagment. Part of the series will focus on our creation of the “Cyborg Circus” a live, festival-like, convention, promoting disability tech and innovation.
The convention circuit is a wildly popular and vibrant part of the SciFi fandom and we want to harness that excitement for Upgrade Required. The benefit of a live venue is in bringing together people from all ages and walks of life, inspiring them with the possibilities of assistive technologies in a live, fun, community-building atmosphere.
The Cyborg Circus is a live, hands-on, robotic festival, Maker Faire and educational adventure. We will create an inspiring, entertaining showcase for presenting assistive technology, and its potential, to a wider audience. The show combines a series of dynamic presentations, mind-blowing feats of robotics and engineering ingenuity, Hackathons and demonstrations. Upgrades’ Cyborg Circus presents Q (live in suit or via telepresence robot), Hewlett and a host of SciFi celebrities together with robotic and biomechanical engineers, sharing the latest technologies and resources designed to further our merging of man and machine.
The Cyborg Circus is a fantastic opportunity to inspire local schools, communities, celebrities, corporations, governments and organizations to take action and get involved. Creating an Upgrade Required community out of entrepreneurs, engineers, citizen scientists and people with disabilities; sharing ideas, insights and excitement about what is needed to move technology, and with it, humankind, forward. The Cyborg Circus will invite local artists, experts, builders and tech companies to share their expertise, inventions and experiences, creating newsworthy buzz and exposure to the cyborg cause!
UpgradeRequired.org will serve as an online community where people with disabilities, makers, engineers, scientists, artists, programmers and Sci Fi fans can plot, scheme and collaborate with each other. The site will host assistive and robotic tech news and articles, as well as how-to instructions, CAD and 3D printable files and sample code, everything needed to make these technologies a reality. It will also inspire SciFi fans to band together and make things happen; inspired by, or even in partnership with, the source of their favourite fandom. The goal is to get people talking and working together towards a better technology and a better world.