Sunday, May 20, 2007

maker faire

I went to maker faire this weekend on both saturday and sunday. Laughing Squid has a great bunch of photos on flickr and they even caught Forrest and me talking over the Atom electric car. I wasn't able to make it last year and I was upset about it. A friend that went last year told me that maker faire wasn't very impressive and it was full of a bunch of 80's style nerds. After going this year I have to differ with him on that. I thought the people and the atmosphere was incredible. There was a large burning man style contingent which I identify with combined with straight up science geeks (again I felt very at home). Maybe my friend is afraid of being seen as a nerd or a geek, but the people I met at maker faire were all very cool. You can count me in that group any time. Besides the booths and the people the live music was also a hit. All in all maker faire had a bit of a carnie feel, but I think that is why I liked it so much!

Some highlights (in no order):

  • 3D printer using sugar -- this is hands down of the of the coolest, most inventive thing I saw. They gals and guys built a 3D print out of an old HP plotter, a heat gun, and a bunch of sugar. They are able to get 10 DPI by fusing layers of sugar together with a simple heat gun! Amazing and ingenious!

  • SRL -- always one of my favorites! They have some new things (switchblade robotic arm) and they put on a great show at the end. It sounds like they may have gotten into trouble and had some of their machines impounded. I talk to Mark for a little while on saturday about some new projects that I might be able to get involved with. We'll see. I sounds like fun.

  • Cyclecide -- this group of bicycle freaks / clowns with the human powered carnival rides were great. The rides being human powered is brilliant and the clown show they put on is funny as hell.

  • techshop -- this is a fully-equipped open-access workshop with some very nice equipment in Menlo Park. You can get a membership for as little as $100/month. I have been look for something like this closer than The Crucible in Oakland. I will have to go by and check it out.

  • 3D maze -- there was this great 3D spherical maze toy, where one had to rotate this maze, which was mounted in a gyro so it had a full 3 degrees of freedom, to get a rubber ball to follow the maze. This thing was cool and huge. I wish I could describe it better.

More to come as I think more about what I saw...

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

<< Home