Maker Faire 2012 epilogue: Holy sh*t!!

Maker Faire was more than amazing this year. Thank you for stopping to say hi, demoing your project, listening to our presentation, and being in our video. A huge thanks to Skot for showing the awesome Digit_Grid and talking to so many people about our projects. Thank you Instructables, Macetech, and Jeri Ellsworth for organizing great parties. A huge thank you to everyone who turned up on our taco crawl, especially Josh who took us off the beaten path.

The small-but-growing open source hardware business community is pretty tight. We exchange a lot of emails, but Maker Faire is the rare chance to meet face to face. It was great to catch up with Jeff from MightyOhm, Windell and Lenore from Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories, Parker, Jaren “who is everywhere”, and Eric and Christy from Instructables. This year we also met up with a bunch of people for the first time:¬†Garrett from Macetech, Chris from The Amp Hour, THE Kenneth Finnegan of free PCB fame, and of course Lady Ada and Phillip Torrone.

We also want to recognize friends like Mitch Altman, hackerspace advocate and creator of the TV B Gone, who were unable to attend this year due to reasons of conscience. We commend him for putting his values first, and respect his strong stance. Maker Faire is not the same without him.

One year ago we made our first foray out of mom’s basement to join Seeed Studio at the Bay Area Maker Fair 2011. In last year’s epilogue we wrote about our biggest take home lesson: “be visible”. We committed to attend Maker Faires, to visit hackerspaces, to meet other hackers.

A lot has happened since then. We started a weekly workshop update video, which evolved from an awkwardly-angled desk-side chat into a full fledged workshop studio. We went to Maker Faire New York and led a discussion at the Open Hardware Summit. In Japan we went to the Maker Meeting with Tokyo Hackerspace and kicked off the Global Geek Tour. From Hacker Space Seoul in Cheonggyecheon, to China’s first Maker Faire and Hua Qaing Bei market, we met the most amazing hackers along the way.

In that time Dangerous Prototypes has grown from a couple part-time contributors to a full-time team of three kicking out new tutorials, open source hardware, and firmware updates every week. Being visible and participating in the open hardware community has made this possible. If we learned one lesson from the past year, it’s how important it is to visit your nearest hackerspace or get involved with local DIY groups.

Thank you. Thank you for reading the blog, using our projects, and making this all possible.

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  1. Good for Mitch to take a stand….. but I can think of a lot of worse things that DARPA could do with my tax dollars than to put into STEM education. From what I have seen the MENTOR program is a pretty good one

  2. I didn’t read about that DARPA connection before now, and from my point of view this is another thumb up for Mitch, I would do the same. Dolabra is right, they can do lot of worse things with their money, but military organizations are not something with I would like to reach any compromise.. I don’t want them in my life ;)

  3. We had significant editorial discussion as to whether Holy sh*t was best followed by one, two or three !s. One seemed to fall a little flat, like an ordinary swear. Three seemed a bit redundant, bordering on angry. Two seemed just right.

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