Texas makers are gearing up to celebrate their vibrant maker community this weekend at the fourth annual Houston Mini Maker Faire, presented by Innovation Spark, a nonprofit committed to the advancement of STEM education throughout the Greater Houston area. The Faire has been steadily growing and building momentum over the years, and this year’s installment, taking place November 12 and 13 at the George R. Brown Convention Center, promises to be bigger and better than ever before.
Here are some fun pictures from last year’s Faire:
And here’s a great recap video from 2015, made by Lerner Productions:
This year, the organizers have a robust lineup of makers, speakers, and workshops in store, including:
- HCC IDEAS Pitch Competition
- Power Up! Houston Hackathon
- Pitches and Highlights on the Maker Exhibit Stage
- Workshops in the Discovery Zone in the Maker Exhibit Hall
- Mega Meetups in Room 310B
- Power Up! Houston Networking Roundtables in Room 310C
- Speakers/Panel Sessions in Room 310A
- EdCamp HMMF for Teachers and Librarians
5 Health Makers at Houston Mini Maker Faire
The variety of makers is impressive. From robots to handmade crafts to urban agriculture and beyond, makers of all stripes are represented. An interesting subset are the health tech makers, who are using their skills to help improve the lives of others.
From the Houston Mini Maker Faire site:
Medicine and health are very big in Houston and essential to the local economy! With all this interest, focus, and capability, you’d expect to see innovation happening — and indeed it is, sometimes in surprising places. Visit this large new set of exhibits to see how maker technology and innovators are helping build a future of better health.
Here are five of the health makers that will be exhibiting at the Faire this weekend:
eNABLE Chapter at University of Houston
eNABLE is that amazing nonprofit foundation that is using 3D technology, open design, and a web-based infrastructure to deliver more affordable, quality, sustainable prosthetic rehabilitative care to underserved populations of individuals. Get up-close insight into how this work is done and the 3D-printed prosthetic hands are built at this exhibit. The Innovation Lab at the HCPL Freeman Branch Library exhibit has been helping this new eNABLE chapter get started and will have additional insights. And PolyPrinter (also an exhibitor) is loaning them a 3D printer so they can demonstrate project build activities. (Note for teachers: eNABLE projects are an excellent way to get students directly involved in how health tech innovation is happening today.)
The MakerHealth exhibit will include examples of health-based making from the MakerHealth network (hospitals and agencies across the country), which includes nurses, clinicians, patients, and caregivers. This exhibit is led by Jose Gomez-Marquez, who leads the Little Devices Lab at MIT and is recognized worldwide as an innovator in medical technologies. He will demonstrate the use of MakerHealth prototyping kits and will also discuss the MakerNurse curriculum. (Tip to teachers and students: This is a fantastic education opportunity!)
Neosensory , co-founded by Houston neuroscientist David Eagleman, is a wearable technology startup that is working on a product that allows deaf and hard-of-hearing people to perceive sound using their sense of touch through ocurhythm “sensory augmentation.”
MakerHealth Space at UTMB
MakerHealth Space at UTMB (Galveston) is the first makerspace in a hospital in the U.S.! A brilliant combination of capability and opportunity capture for primary-care givers, it represents real innovation in health tech and is part of the MakerHealth family of programs.
OcuRhythm has developed glasses that use light therapy to correct your circadian rhythm, which controls your sleep patterns!