Sunday, May 31, 2009

I spent most of Saturday and a good part of Sunday at the Maker Faire in San Mateo.

This is my third Maker Faire (I missed the first one). Seemed to be a slightly smaller crowd this year, though still well attended and very crowded feeling at times. This year had fewer of the huge metal sculptures that seemed to everywhere last year, more sponsors and people selling things and fewer logistical problems than in the past. For example, all the speeches I saw were pretty much on time and free of issues with laptops, presentation software, video or audio that were prevelent at the previous two. Most of the major things seemed to be the same - the Crucible was there, the huge mousetrap, the dangerous rides, the incredibly expensive food. No sign of Robot Wars this year (or whatever they called it) but they did give a lot of space to Playing At Learning's displays on the First Lego League and First Tech Challenge. The music seemed to be a little de-emphasised this year, with a smaller stage and less shaded seating but still some good acts (like Culann's Hounds). This year also had less emphasis on steampunk, though there was a strong steampunk contingent, both costumers and makers, there representing.

Adam Savage's speech, although very different from last years, was a highlight again. Some of the other interesting speeches I saw were on DIY electronics prototyping, needs for better robotic manufacturing, a history of Silicon Valley before Hewlett-Packard.

Overall, very fun, but also getting very expensive and the crowds are still an issue for me.

(some photos here).

I wrote about the last two Maker Faires here and here.

1 comment:

Playing At Learning said...

Thanks for the shout-out! jillw at