Find all your DIY electronics in the MakerShed. 3D Printing, Kits, Arduino, Raspberry Pi, Books & more!

Imagine a child’s first white Christmas: the excitement of snow, the mystique of Santa, and the oh-so-important presents. Now multiply that feeling threefold, and add in some fire, a few hundred robots, and enough paper rockets to make NASA nervous. Overwhelmed? So was I!

Because I work at MAKE, I know this may come as a surprise, but this was my first (gasp!) Maker Faire! On the drive to San Mateo, I didn’t know what to expect. What would the crowd be like? Would I get any free time to check out the booths? Did the compressed air rocket booth have a maximum age? One of these questions loomed above all; I’ll leave you to figure it out!

The answer to each question surprised me. First, I thought that a large crowd, in a hot, enclosed area, would be an irritable bunch to deal with. I was completely wrong! During my shifts at our MAKE Booth in the Expo Hall, I held interesting conversations with new readers and veteran makers alike, on topics ranging from featured projects to favorite booths at the fair. I chatted with many visitors about their maker beliefs, and we swapped stories of projects gone horribly wrong-all in good humor! I did not encounter a single person who was irritated, difficult, or rude; everyone respected the mutual interests of those around them. When a man called the cellphone he had lost at our booth from another phone, he and I chatted about the newest Arduino before confirming a rendezvous point!

I was cleverly given split shifts at the booth, so that I could wander and explore in the middle of the day before returning for the breakdown. I quickly learned that one does not simply “wander” through Maker Faire; I’m pretty sure I was the only person over the age of 10 who did every booth’s activity as I passed it! The amazing variety of subjects that all fall under the umbrella of “DIY tech” never ceases to amaze me. I learned to make fire with a bow-drill, then hustled over for a turn in a motorized cupcake!

Maker Faire exceeded my expectations in every way. The entire MAKE Crew, along with the fantastic volunteer Maker Corps, gave me the quintessential First Maker Faire: a smooth setup, a wonderful event experience, and an easy breakdown. Because I was staff, I didn’t have the time to get to all of the booths. Next year! I immensely enjoyed chatting with everyone, and because of their sociability, I’ll end with this: if you ever want to make a couple thousand friends in one afternoon, head to your nearest Maker Faire!

blog comments powered by Disqus

Featured Products from the MakerShed


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 25,883 other followers