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Maker Conference Tokyo

It’s Saturday morning in Tokyo. Shortly, I’ll be giving the keynote address at the first Maker Conference at Miraikan. The conference is organized by O’Reilly Japan and jp.makezine.com.

Maker Conference Tokyo, June 2012

MAKE’s first Japanese edition in Tokyo in 2006, edited by Hideo Tamura. The first Maker Meeting, a small Maker Faire was held in 2008. It attraced 300 people. Last fall, the Maker Meeting event was held last November at Tokyo Institute of Technology and 12,000 people attended. Today brings together makers from across Japan to share ideas and experiences. Making seems to be established in a number of universities and there are a growing number of makerspaces of all sorts. Notably, there’s Fab Cafe — think lattes and laser cutters under one roof. I haven’t visited yet but the pictures I’ve seen are amazing. “Fab Life” is a new book from Professor Tanaka about living in a house that doubles as a fab lab. Fab Life was just published in Japanese by O’Reilly Japan. Makers are talking about what this means for manufacturing, innovation, and education.

The Maker Conference Tokyo is a sign of the growing worldwide participation in the maker movement. I’m glad to be here to experience it firsthand.

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DALE DOUGHERTY is the leading advocate of the Maker Movement. He founded Make: Magazine 2005, which first used the term “makers” to describe people who enjoyed “hands-on” work and play. He started Maker Faire in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2006, and this event has spread to nearly 200 locations in 40 countries, with over 1.5M attendees annually. He is President of Make:Community, which produces Make: and Maker Faire.

In 2011 Dougherty was honored at the White House as a “Champion of Change” through an initiative that honors Americans who are “doing extraordinary things in their communities to out-innovate, out-educate and out-build the rest of the world.” At the 2014 White House Maker Faire he was introduced by President Obama as an American innovator making significant contributions to the fields of education and business. He believes that the Maker Movement has the potential to transform the educational experience of students and introduce them to the practice of innovation through play and tinkering.

Dougherty is the author of “Free to Make: How the Maker Movement Is Changing our Jobs, Schools and Minds” with Adriane Conrad. He is co-author of "Maker City: A Practical Guide for Reinventing American Cities" with Peter Hirshberg and Marcia Kadanoff.

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