Last year, I awoke on Saturday morning to a storm of tweets about a maker faire, this is not too uncommon, I follow a lot of people that are into making things, and so the various maker faires around the US hit my timeline. I normally feel a pang of jealousy with these as I live in the UK, and have no real chance of attending. But this time had been different, this was a maker fair in Brighton, not more than a couple of hours drive away! but by the time I found out about it, I had plans, it was too late and I didn't go. But what I did do was put a reminder in my calendar for the 2012 date. Last week that reminder went off, I had completely forgotten about it, but now I was reminded with a week to go. And so I made my plans and today I am here!
Pretty much the first thing I came across was the remote control dalek! and things did not go down hill from there. There are people showing off all sorts of awesome projects, crazy inventive things, ambitious projects and simple ones. There are at least a dozen 3d printers all whirring away printing pieces of an Alan Turing statue (which was scanned with a kinnect and split into printable parts)
There seemed to be lots of kid friendly activities, making felt, little mosaics, felting, and my favourite the soldering lessons. You could buy a simple kit and sit down at a solder station and make it. This was mostly kids trying out soldering for the first time, but there were at least a few adults getting involved as well.
There is so much going on that its hard to write about it all, Quadcopters, mini-robot wars, a scaletrics powered by a bike and a cross trainer, under water rovers, conductive paint, ambient displays, and arduino controlled things everywhere you look. And everyone is keen to talk about their project, what challenges they faced and how they overcame them. many people are from various hackspace groups, sadly none that close to me. I guess the london hackspace is the closest, but the last thing I want to do with my free time is go back into London. But being here does make me think I should find and join such a group, it makes me miss my woodturning group a little.
It continues for another 4 hours (at time of writing) so if you're near by brighton come check it out!, as I am still here, on the scene and resting my feet. but now its time to go in search ofa quick lesson in welding...
Update: here are some random photos of the day: