Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Maker Faire 2015

Well, this year turned out better than last year's dog-eye-cancer-extravaganza, and I actually got to go to Maker Faire Bay Area.  I am a shitty photographer, so none of my exhibit pics make any sense to anyone but me, but there are good pics of the event on their website.

Here's the pics I can describe.

WHY ARE YOU PUTTING CLOTHING IN A BAG, BIPED?  So I can go to Maker Faire, Zip.  AM I COMING WITH YOU?  Umm, you're going to stay with Oma.   IS THE DOG GOING WITH YOU?  No, the dog will be with you at Oma's house.  I WILL COME WITH YOU IN YOUR BAG.  Dude, no.  I promise, you don't want to ride in the overhead compartment.
JWA with my father, who was my partner in crime for this little adventure.  Taking off out of JWA is like being shot into space.  I don't know what my face is doing in this pic.  I look like my dad, though.  Hi Dad, you're on the interwubz.
The motel Dad originally booked was a little.... creepy.  It was also not very close to the venue, so Dad decided to search for someplace a little less... itchy looking.  Seriously, this pic does not capture the true "dead hooker in the box springs" vibe this place was giving off.  It had 1.5 stars on TripAdvisor.  Yeah.
The only place within a few miles that had a room for less than $1k a night was also sized for Hobbits, and had an immediate drapery malfunction.  They managed to move us to the only other available room with two beds, which was the handicapped-accessible room.  Hard flooring and an enormous bathroom.  I had zero allergy issues all weekend, once again confirming my theory that carpets are 90% of my problem.
Day One was completely overwhelming.  We had to park 1.5 miles from the venue on some side street, and walked in.  Whatever, no biggie.  The place was an absolute sea of humans, and it was tough to take it all in.  Seriously.  Wall-to-wall people.  The things that stick in my mind from Day One:  Pancake printerbot.  Playa art cars.  Drone fighting.  LifeGlider mobility assistance devices.  Canjos.   Pedal-powered stages.  A present bought for a friend.  Steampunk gears that actually DO something.  Giant sculptures that belch fire.  Folding kayaks.  The sunburn on my nose. 
Day Two we had an agenda- get there early to score parking, and speaker-hop through as many presentations as we could.  We got there before 10am, and waited with the rest of the throng of nerds for them to drop the barriers and release us all into Nerd Wonderland.  We hit presentations on simple robots, Flotilla electronics education systems, wearable electronics, papercrafting/mechatronics, and the Eepybird mentos-coke grand finale.  There was a guy on a stage playing an electric shovel and giant robot giraffe.  
There was much Maker Faire swag to be had- bags and buttons and LED-blinky pins (if you went to the Learn-to-Solder tent).  I scored this patch by telling the guy at the booth a terrible joke.  Thanks, Booth Guy.  I like patches.
Some people buy shoes, some people buy toys... I buy information.  "Making Simple Robots," "The Maker Manual," "Tinkering," "Making Makers," and "Zero to Maker."  I also bought a red Maker robot bandana (I collect bandanas), and scored a tote, five buttons, a tin that says "If you can't open it, you don't own it" and a patch.  The yellow ribbon thing was my wristband for the weekend.  Dad bought a mini drone.  It was a bitch to pack everything into the carryons.  I had forgotten about that part of traveling.

All in all, I am extremely glad I went.  I have a lot of reading to do about electronics to expand my ever-growing toolbox of knowledge.  I have many ideas sloshing around in my brain.  I haven't felt that spark of interest in a while.  I am a learning junkie, and I just found a giant community of people who are absolutely willing to enable me.

World Maker Faire is in New York at the end of September.

13 comments:

  1. Sounds really good except for all the croweds! But cool that your dad was there with you! Yay for fun parents! And for not getting murdered in the first motel!

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    1. Dad and I have to learn about electronics now, so that we can build robots.

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  2. I adore that hair! It sounds like you had a good time. :)

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    1. Why, fang you. My hair is my favorite science project.

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  3. How cool that your Dad wanted to go with you! And you do look like him a bit. Same smile, I think.

    It sounds wonderful. I wish I could go to the one in New York. I bet that'll be amazing too. :)

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    1. My eyes and nose are Mom's. Everything else is Dad. Well, except the chin.... that's artificial. And the teeth, but Dad did the dental work, so technically....

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  4. huzzah!! so many things I like about this. HI DAD!! all the feels

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    1. I feel SO MUCH BETTER after having gone. I seriously needed it, and not just the vacation part.

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  5. I'm so sorry about Boris, though it sounds like he had a great long rat life.

    Yes, carpeting can very well be 90% of your problem. It's frankly insane that USA still does wall-to-wall carpeting like it's the 70's. Sweden is all about wooden floors and my man is all the better for it.

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    1. Carpeting is SO FOUL. I do not understand why people think it's a good idea. Aside from sound dampening, it's just disgusting. I bought a Honda Element specifically because there is no carpeting.

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  6. in the end this looked like you had some fun time with your dad!

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    1. It was a good choice to go there. I feel differently about life now.

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  7. That first hotel reminds me of some of those rooms they talked about from the Sochi Olympics. I was enamored with the electric shovel and with the cool stage truck. Every woman in Sonoma has a crush on the truck owner sword swallower.
    Is the drone still droning? I love the patch.

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