Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Maker Faire NY Re-cap

It’s been a week since Justin, Mike Rith and I drove down to New York for Maker Faire. Mike and Justin had both tried to explain the nature of the beast that is Maker Faire, but it was clearly something that I had to experience for myself. Note to self: driving to New York City and getting there just as Friday night rush-hour traffic is beginning is a special breed of torture I wouldn't wish upon anyone.

My first glimpse of the New York Hall of Science where Maker Faire was held, was one filled with the bright blue, red and white Maker Faire signs, lines of excited Makers and visitors alike. On my way in, I chatted with a Maker about her most recent knitting project--a 7 foot by 3 foot shawl for her daughter's upcoming wedding that was going to be held practically right next door!

We brought down a variety of demos including a TouchShield Slide with the Paint Program installed, an Android DIY Starter Kit, a Dual-core Android 4 Dev Kit, and a couple of Ambers. Miguel from Long Island dropped by and brought an impressive project where he created a Mancala app using a TouchShield Slide, Lithium Backpack and an Arduino.

After a quick set up, I found myself ready for action. By 10:15, The Arduino Pavilion was teeming with people. It was great to get a chance to interact with such a wide range of people--from those who'd never heard of Arduinos to 11-year olds grilling me on the merits and processing capabilities of one microcontroller over the other. Finding a way to communicate the same concepts to a range of people with different levels understanding was both challenging and rewarding.

Mike chatted with Will from tested.com about the Amber
I had a lot of interesting, thought-provoking conversations with people from all over. I got the chance to speak with a few of developers from Germany, a couple from Washington looking to deaf-proof their house with Arduinos and TouchShields, and a whole host of people with a wide variety of interests.
Those same kids went nuts once they found out that we had installed the Angry Birds APK to one of the units
It was also great to see so many kids at our booth asking questions about our products, and technology in general. For the most part, they interacted with it fearlessly--with a comfort and familiarity that makes me excited for future technological innovations.

Rith, Mike and Justin had things under control, so I snapped a couple of pictures, and snuck away to check out some neat projects
2012-09-29 13.12.26
Katy Perry, The Unicorn was the first project I saw as we came in to setup, so I had to go back and get a quick shot of it. Missed out on the glitter sneezes though!

I imagine this project looked really cool by the end of the day on Sunday.
After about 17 hours of non-stop Maker Faire activity, I was ready to pack it up, and head back to Boston. I tip my hat to the Maker Faire crew for such a well-organized and special event. While my feet are still recovering, I can't wait for May 2013 to get a chance to get to do it all over again in California!

1 comment:

Sarah Hart said...

That looks like a lot of fun. Maybe I can make it to the one in California in May!
I just discovered your company. Check out this educator reformer's blog: http://sugatam.blogspot.ie - maybe inspiration for your next project. I look forward to following your blog.