The waterfront city of Trondheim, Norway is a regional epicenter for research and technology, home to institutions like the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) and the Foundation for Scientific and Industrial Research (SINTEF). Naturally, it’s a perfect fit for Maker Faire Trondheim, now in its fourth year. Last year, 10,000 people came out to see the 47 maker exhibits on display at Solsiden, an old industrial dock.
This year, there are about 40 exhibits, and the organizers put emphasis on including more artists and crafters. From the organizing team, Technoport‘s Marianne Olsen shares, “There are a lot of people out there who live by the creed of the Maker Movement but who have no knowledge of the Maker Movement. How do we reach those people and get them into the fold? If we manage that, we will have a stronger, more diverse community.”
Their recap video from last year captures the variety of projects and the sheer joy of discovery:
It’s always inspiring to see the ethos of Maker Faire reverberate across the globe. Frode Halvorsen, Faire organizer, NTNU project manager, and former CEO of Trondheim Makers, offers a great perspective on the Maker Movement and insight into the Trondheim community:
Humans are curious and creative by nature. It’s what got us out of the caves in the first place. So what happened to our abilities to fix things? Back in the olden days, the so-called 90s, it was still possible to fix a car with a screwdriver and a medium-sized wrench. That same screwdriver could even repair the VCR. Now we are lucky if we are even able to open the hood on our car without violating some warranty. No surprise it had to end in a revolt, and it’s probably the most fun revolution in modern history.
About 10 years ago, in San Francisco, some people had had enough and wanted to celebrate the joy of making, and also repairing things. The result was Maker Faire, a festival celebrating creativity and the joy of making stuff and probably the most important aspect: showing and telling it to other people so they also can start making things. Sharing your experience and knowledge is an important thing, not only in the Maker Movement, but in life in general. If cavemen didn’t teach each other to light a fire and not eat that poisonous toad, we wouldn’t have to wait for the next iPhone right now — we would still be eating raw elk and having a bad day tomorrow because of that toad dessert we shouldn’t have had.
Trondheim had its first Maker Faire back in 2014 and quickly got attention from global makers for our exotic location and the small, but tightly knit, welcoming community of local makers. Maker Faire is for all kinds of people. The fact that it has attracted participants all the way from Japan and that Melhus Municipality annually books 12 buses to bring excited kids to visit the festival since 2014 confirms the diversity of people.
It doesn’t matter if you are building flying robots out of 3D-printed material with high tech, low-energy-consumption microcontrollers, or if you are forging knives over red hot coals, or knitting the most beautiful scarves. What matters is that you are making it yourself and that you’re improving your skills, and hopefully sharing your skills and ideas with others.
Well said, Frode! Now here’s a sampler of seven of the projects and communities that will be at this year’s Maker Faire Trondheim.
Learn how to solder and make your own custom buttons at the Vitensenteret booth!
The dedicated and innovative geeks of Hackheim Makerspace intend to fill their space at the Faire with clever member-made projects.
Høyskolen Kristiania (Kristiania College)
Illustration students from Høyskolen Kristiania will draw Maker Faire Trondheim from inside a transparent gallery! Attendees can stand outside the gallery to be drawn or come inside for a closer look at the drawings.
Revolve NTNU is a student organization that builds a new electric race car every year to participate in the world’s largest race for students. This year’s project was fueled by 60 NTNU students from 13 different fields. Did someone say student-built 4WD electric race car? Amazing.
Ballovarre Handmade Leather
Kim-André Ballovarre (from Melhus) is a classic leather artisan who hand-makes beautiful things like the bike wine bottle holder shown above and the bowl below, as well as does restoration work.
Livid Jeans is the only producer of jeans based in Scandinavia. Do you need to repair your jeans? Livid will be bringing their sewing machines to Maker Faire to share tips on sewing denim.
HuMI Smart Glove
Arveng Technologies believes the time has come to make it easier, more intuitive, and more natural to control drones, and to that end, they’ve developed the HuMI (human-machine interaction) smart glove. The glove is fitted with sensors on each finger to capture the motion of the hand. The data is then used to construct a 3D model of the hand, which in turn recognizes the gestures the user wants to use to control their machine.
For all the information you need to attend Maker Faire Trondheim, check out the website.