Maker Faire 2011

As Steve pointed out, we’re back from the Maker Faire. The Faire was another great success, with the centre for life estimating 3000 visitors to the event. Not to mention all the makers and crew that were manning the place the whole weekend without whom the show would be nothing. It was great to be able to meet up with other groups and makers and forge some better links between us and them.

Despite my best efforts there was still quite a lot of work left to do on the spider. Having the extra pairs of hands around on Friday meant that we managed to get it all assembled with a little time left over to head to the pub for the first of the nights out. The socialising was definitely one of the highlights. Evening chats were unashamedly geeky, with regular appearances of phones, laptops and electronics.

Meeting the public and explaining all of the projects was quite fun. The better conversations will always be with other makers who ask the more relevant questions but the whole point of being there is to explain stuff to all levels. The crafty aspects of the group seemed to be much more appealing than the technical aspects, probably because of the lower entry requirements. It’s fairly easy to understand how 30000 rings become a suit of chain, but electricity still confounds people.

This year because we were a hackerspace instead of individuals I think we were taken a little more seriously. I managed to blag the group a license for Cambam and a potential discount on a 3D printer from bodge it quick.

Steve and I discussed several ideas on the way back. I think it would be nice to see all the hacker spaces put together next year. Each group should still get their own space to demonstrate their projects, but they should all be next to each other. Also it would be a really good idea to get one stall up to explain to the public what Hacker spaces are and present a map showing where each of the exhibiting hacker spaces are located. If each group puts just 2 hours into manning this stall it shouldn’t be too much effort on any one group. Stay tuned as the the other ideas will be surfacing shortly.


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