View Source

Gearing up for Shenzhen
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Can we make a responsible Internet of Things… in Shenzhen?

Shenzhen (China) is known for being the area where over 90% of electronics like smartphones are manufactured and assembled. It boasts a vibrant maker scene and an informal open innovation culture. Combined with readily available resources, capital and manufacturing capacity, Shenzhen seems to be the perfect place for makers to turn their ideas into reality. And would that also work for responsible connected products?

In 'View Source: Gearing up for Shenzhen’ we follow a team of designers in their quest for a smart bike lock for their start-up. They learn that Shenzhen revolves first and foremost around doing business, but also boasts unique collaborative environment where principles around privacy, security and inclusiveness resonate, albeit in a different dialect.

This documentary is a creative investigation of the different layers of the Shenzhen maker and manufacturing ecosystem and how they can help makers that want to create a responsible IoT, move forward with their project. Numerous experts share their input with the team and viewers to provide a unique perspective on how to understand and navigate the capital of hardware to make responsible IoT happen.

This documentary is accompanied by a series of publications by Peter Bihr (the Waving Cat, ThingsCon) that goes into more detail about the opportunities for independent creators of Internet of Things in the Shenzhen ecosystem. We aimed to demystify Shenzhen and give a first hand perspective on the opportunities and peculiarities of this intriguing city.


Peter Bihr of the Waving Cat and ThingsCon, is one of the initiators of the View Source project. He carefully documented the learnings and experiences in Shenzhen in a series of blogposts and articles. Find his writings on Medium or download the full publication as PDF here.

Read more about responsible IoT


The documentary is released under a creative commons licence and you are free to screen the documentary (we would love to hear from you). In case you are interested in a talk about, or workshop based upon our experiences, feel free to reach out to either Marcel or Peter

Past screenings

  • 12 July 2017 - Thingscon Salon
  • 8 July 2017 - Thingscon Salon Cologne
  • 5 July 2017 - Thingscon Salon Amsterdam


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