Maker Faire won a “American Magazine Vanguard Award”! The first annual American Magazine Vanguard Awards (AMVAs) were announced last night during a ceremony for Ad Ageâ€™s annual â€œA-list.â€ The AMVAs recognize magazines â€œthat are innovating smartly beyond print.â€
Make is for nerds and dorks — nerds and dorks who are proudly nerdy and dorky. The editorial mission is to “celebrate your right to tweak, hack and bend any technology to your own will.” Published quarterly since 2005 by O’Reilly Media, it’s tapped into the powerful DIY movement that has millions of consumers rewiring their own realities by making their own media (with tools ranging from iMovie to YouTube to GarageBand to Blogger to Facebook) — only Make’s not afraid of throwing a soldering iron or a little duct tape into the mix. It’s about tangible creations — and good old-fashioned American ingenuity.
Make earns an AMVA because of its remarkable Maker Faire, a cult event that has been growing almost mainstream. The first fair, held in 2006 in San Mateo, drew 22,000 attendees — people interested in everything from growing their own food to building hybrid vehicles. In 2007, 45,000 showed up; this spring, 65,000. A second edition of the event started up in Austin, Texas, drawing 20,000 attendees; the second two-day Maker Faire Austin kicks off this month on the 18th. (Watch for Make to expand its fair to other cities in 2009.) Considering that some of the greatest leaps forward in American technological history have been scrappy homebrews (Apple Computer was a literal garage start-up), it’s really kind of exciting to think that, given its explosive growth, the Maker Faire might well help along an invention or two that’s truly important.
Maker Faire is labor of love for everyone involved from the staff at MAKE to all the Makers who make it one of the most inspiring weekends you can imagine. In just 2 weeks we have Maker Faire Austin (Oct. 18th and 19th) if you didn’t get tickets yet, what are you waiting for??