Next time that ‘useless’ bottle is thrown into the trash bin, think again. And when you leisurely walk in your garden, tread softly, someone would have spread their ‘ideas’ under your feet. You get a better understanding from these people, who, despite having big degrees and high-flying jobs, found happiness in the mundane and pass it on to others. They are connected by two things in common — they are techies and soldiers of a sustainable tomorrow. Joemon Godson and friends wanted somehow to get rid of those empty glass bottles of wine they binge on. A big headache that it would have become, now gives him a decent earning. Featured on the techies’ e-mart, tpbazaar.com, is his innovative idea in the form of coconut shell glasses, bamboo pen stand and curio pieces.
“We too encountered the problem many face, lack of space to dispose of trash. That was all it took me to turn beverage bottles into something good and useful. The fascination for making curios from simple things has been my hobby since childhood. I never went through online videos or Google to make these,” says Joemon. Pictures of this hobby were first shared on Facebook and then circulated on WhatsApp among friends. It caught the attention of one of them in no time and that led him to explore the biz angle in the e-mart.
“All necessary raw materials are from home, be it the coconut shell or husk. Bamboo grown on our premises was taken for making the acoustic amplifier, table lamp and lantern. These products can definitely serve a purpose than being sheer showpieces,” says Joemon, a techie for 10 years, who works for Alliance in Technopark. His colleagues are avid customers. Meet Santhosh Kumar S., who would teach you what the Japanese art of ‘Kokedama’ means. Part techie and part artist, to his favourite vocations of painting, crafting and photography had this recent addition come in. Kokedama starts with the soil in your courtyard and ends as beautiful pots to hang ornamental plants at home. Gardening also being his favourite, this new job was started only four months back.
“Soil is made into balls in Kokedama, upon which tiny plants and ferns are planted. The regular soil in my courtyard forms the base, but it needs to be sticky too. A small proportion of sticky mud was mixed in order to keep it hung. YouTube videos came for my reference, based on which I developed on,” says Santhosh. A few balls he created this way are decoratively displayed at his home at Kariavattom in Thiruvananthapuram. Santhosh says there is a good gifting option in Kokedama. Currently working as a manager in user experience and design with Reliance Jio, he has 13 years in Technopark. Painting and paper quilting and other out-of-the-box creative techniques are his forte.
Just a few months ago a team of young and vibrant techies developed a way to do away with plastic. Techies and alumni of different engineering colleges in Kochi discovered that road tiles could be made from discarded plastic materials. Team member Kevin Jacob, now a fellow with Kerala Startup Mission, explains: “There is actually no wow factor in this idea since you can find every other civil engineering grad trying out this technique. Adding a few other chemicals, bricks can be made from plastics. Thermoplastics that can be re-melted are chosen. Solution lies in building decentralised plants to process these plastics since their transportation entails huge cost. It is in a designing and developmental stage. We look forward for interested parties to invest,” says Kevin. Why wait? Start now.