Looking back at Maker Faire, two perspectives

Looking back at Maker Faire, two perspectives

Faire photo taken by Matt Mets

Karen Dybis has been doing some nice installments of her “Unfiltered” column on Time.com’s Detroit Blog. She concludes her series with “Jules Pieri on Looking Back — at the Faire and Detroit:”

I spoke to11-year-old Jillian who said, “I’ve always been good at art, and when I started reading MAKE magazine, I realized I could make science into art.” Jillian’s 16-year-old sister Alyssa told me about the family’s latest hacker project. Avid karate practitioners, the girls and their dad Rich are using an accelerometer and various electronic components to build a device that measures the relative force of karate punches. They will share it with other karate students to help everyone improve their skills. Alyssa said, “I like working with electronic components because it’s more physical than just programming and it’s more than just math.”

As a child of the Motor City, being around people who make things has shaped me. I studied at the University of Michigan and became the first industrial designer to graduate from Harvard Business School. I know my way around a blueprint, a CNC machine, and a production plant. I have learned that people who make things are a rare and special breed. Andrew Grove of Intel has been writing impassioned articles describing how true innovation usually originates somewhere on the shop floor, not on a computer screen. I tend to agree with him.


Over on Quilted Turtle, mother and school teacher Liz, paints a little picture of the fair from a parents/kids perspective:

My daughter loved the Arduino powered target shooting game, while my son preferred the Arduino skeeball game.

We spent a lot of time at the table where the kids could build vehicles from reused materials. The car that traveled the farthest won a prize. Sadly, we weren’t contenders…

Then, who could resist making their own non-Newtonian fluid to take home. Here’s the recipe if you want to try. It’s cheap, easy, and oh so slimy. Just keep it off the carpet – trust me.

Jules Pieri on Looking Back — at the Faire and Detroit

Maker Faire Detroit 2010 – Quilted Turtle

Making Detroit series
All of our Maker Faire coverage

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Gareth Branwyn is a freelance writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of over a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture. He is currently a contributor to Boing Boing, Wink Books, and Wink Fun. His free weekly-ish maker tips newsletter can be found at garstipsandtools.com.

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