Four years ago, the first seed was planted that later blossomed into a Maker Faire in Istanbul, as well as a flourishing maker community that continually gains traction and new members, young and old. This weekend, October 27–29, Maker Faire Istanbul takes a whole new, robust shape as a large-scale featured Faire. With close to 400 maker projects and more than 100 diverse workshops on the lineup, there won’t be a dull moment. Plus, the Faire is free to attend and will be held in the historic Haydarpaşa train station that dates back to 1872!

A lot has happened in the past four years. As lead organizer Halil Aksu shared:

The number of makerspaces in Turkey rose from 0 to more than 60. Especially the K–12 school system loved the maker culture; combined with their STEM efforts, many schools embraced this new paradigm. But also universities, many co-working spaces, incubators, and even municipalities are opening up living labs and similar.

Maker Faire grew as well. The first year in 2014 we had about 150 projects and about 3,000 visitors. In 2015, we had more than 250 projects and at least 6,000 visitors. Maker Faire also spread beyond Istanbul. Ankara, Izmir, Eskisehir, Adana are other large cities of Turkey where maker communities established and celebrated their own existence.

Similar to previous years, Maker Faire Istanbul will feature five main categories: education, mechatronics, pro maker, outdoors (which includes drones, permaculture, ecological projects, etc.), and last but certainly not least, the arts. The organizing team intentionally decided to not have a special theme. As Aksu explains, “We are still at a rather early stage, so we would like to invite everybody and spread the word to the widest audience possible.”

There is a promoted hashtag for the event, though, and that’s #birlikteyap, which means “make together,” so there’s an emphasize on teamwork, collaboration, sharing, and exchanging — among the most celebrated and beautiful aspects of the Maker Movement. There will be plenty of opportunities to get hands-on. Workshops will include Arduino, Raspberry Pi, 3D modeling and printing, making your own bread yeast, growing your own arugula, upcycling, recycling, and tons more.

 

Make Together

Here are five of the many Maker Faire Istanbul projects that either encourage collaboration, were made collaboratively, or both!

zSpace

Using VR technology, the zSpace learning experience creates engagement through exploration and experiential learning in a student-centered environment. zSpace encourages students to inquire, take risks, solve problems, and apply their learning while building confidence and expanding interest.

MAKEY Blocks

MAKEY (“modüler ardışıl küçük elektornik yapboz” or roughly “small electronic modular sequence puzzle”) by Karinca Lab is an electronic building block platform that uses color coding and magnets to make electronics more accessible. Plus, they’re Lego-compliant and conducive to collaboration. 

ITU ROV Team

The Istanbul Technical University ROV team consists of students from an array of various disciplines and areas of expertise, including marine sciences, ship building, aeronautics, and electrical engineering.

BulutBoard

Tablets, computers, and smartphones are part of our daily lives, and children are encountering technology at a very young age. Why not invite them to be agents of technology instead of just consumers? BulutBoard by Mekatronic Lab is a coding and electronic educational kit with 10 different application modules built-in internally, including light, temperature, microphone, distance, graphic display, and Bluetooth. Young makers can learn to use the applications individually or integrated with each other.

 

FRC Integra Robotics Team 3646

The Bahcesehir High School for Science & Technology’s FRC  Robotics Team 3646 will be at the Faire with their award-winning bots. This group of intrepid young roboticists won the championship award at the robotic tournament FIRST Robotics Competition tournament in New York this past March.

For all the information you need to join the community at Maker Faire Istanbul this weekend, head to the website.