Tag Archives: makerfaire

Eggbot, iPad and Raspberry Pi

After seeing the Eggbot at Maker Faire, and seeing that it could be used with a Raspberry Pi, John Biehler got one. He hooked it up to his Raspberry Pi, went on to control his Raspberry Pi with his iPad, and took it to Maker Faire. Full circle! He has lovingly documented the process on his site.

The 2013 Bay Area Maker Faire in Pictures

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The 2013 Bay Area Maker Faire is a wrap— and it was amazing.  And we took pictures. We’ve uploaded 362 photos from maker faire right here for your browsing pleasure.   But first, a little preview.


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Kids play with giant cardboard robot arms at the Giant Cardboard Robots booth. As they say, “The revolution will be corrugated.”

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Glo-Puter Zero, by Alan Yates, with its phosphor-based memory. Truly a highlight of the show.


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Lenore shares a nerdy moment with Akiba from Freaklabs.

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An unusual LED badge, from the Bay Lights project.

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The Western Pyrotechnics Association is a club for people that make their own fireworks.  It’s incredible to see the complexity and artistry of the fireworks and the tooling that makes them.

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A beautiful hovercraft, designed to look like a flying DeLorean; you can see video of it on the project site.

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Back at our booth, the WaterColorBot was a constant hit.  Above, Sylvia shows visitors how to sketch with it in real time.

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An unexpected application: Our friend Bilal Ghalib stopped by and enlisted the WaterColorBot to help him make a birthday card for another friend.


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And one of our favorite moments of Maker Faire: a young visitor, tickled pink as she tries out the WaterColorBot, watching it paint a drawing that she had just sketched.


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A bicycle-powered cardboard walking rhino, by Kinetic Creatures, makers of walking cardboard robot kits, with Theo Jansen inspired walking mechanisms.


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Some of the creations are simpler, like this sidewalk-chalk wielding vibrobot, spinning on a tabletop chalkboard at the Exploratorium booth.


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Some of the creations are more technical, like the OpenPNP project to create open source pick and place machines for electronics assembly.  We’re excited by where this is headed, along with a few related projects.


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And of course, there’s no shortage of LED goodness.

Please click right here for the rest of our 2013 Bay Area Maker Faire photo album.


Bay Area Maker Events this Week

This is a fantastically busy week in the bay area for makers and hardware folk.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, the Hardware Innovation Workshop will be held at San Mateo College. Windell will be speaking on Wednesday afternoon; check out the agenda to see the full lineup of presenters.

On Thursday, we’ll be participating in Maker Faire Education Day with Super Awesome Sylvia and the WaterColorBot. If you’re a bay area teacher, you and your class should be there! If you’re a bay area student, make sure your teacher knows about this!

On Saturday and Sunday, the Bay Area Maker Faire is in full swing at the San Mateo County Event Center. We’ll be there with Super Awesome Sylvia and the WaterColorBot. Windell and I also mentor FIRST Robotics team 3501 from Fremont High School in Sunnyvale, and they will be there with their robot, Oddjob. I will be participating in the Parenting Young Makers panel on the Make: Education Stage at 2:00 pm on Sunday as well. The full Maker Faire schedule has been posted, and advance tickets are still available. If you’re planning on driving, check out the list of free parking lots with shuttles or in walking distance. 110,000 attendees were there last year— not a small party!

To spread the celebration a little further, we’re holding a DIY Fever sale in our shop now through Monday.

Help Bring PancakeBot to Bay Area Maker Faire


Miguel, the great guy behind PancakeBot, a CNC pancake printer made out of Lego, is running an Indiegogo campaign to help bring the whole family all the way from Norway to the Bay Area Maker Faire. We met Miguel at the New York Maker Faire last year, and got a chance to see PancakeBot in action.

Even if you can’t support the campaign, you should check out the video to see the machine in action, cheered on by enthusiastic young pancake aficionados. And come to Maker Faire in May, where we’ll hope to see Miguel and family with the awesome PancakeBot.

Highlights of Maker Faire New York

Mayoral Proclamation of Maker Week

Maker Faire has grown to an overwhelming event, where it just isn’t possible to experience everything, but we’ve pulled together a few highlights of the 2012 “World” Maker Faire in New York.

Maker Faire started out on Friday night with a Mayoral Proclamation declaring Maker Week in New York.  Mayor Bloomberg’s words— about his own tinkering background —were surprisingly personal and resounded with many of us.

Jeri Ellsworth

Shortly after the reading of the proclamation, Jeri Ellsworth was crowned Maker Hero at the Makey Awards while decked out in LEDs from eyelashes to skirt hem. Congratulations, Jeri!

Once Maker Faire got into full swing, we only were able to catch a few heats of Nerdy Derby, but it was a huge hit.

 We also enjoyed the wooden automata by Dug North.

We had the pleasure of speaking with Alden Hart about TinyG and grblShield, two motor controller boards designed for low-cost CNC machines.

DIWire is an open source CNC wire bender from Pensa.

Another CNC project we were excited to see in person was Pancake Bot, a pancake batter dispenser made from Lego.


While the sheer number of 3D printers was somewhat overwhelming, a couple of newcomers stood out from the crowd: the B9Creator and the Form 1, both resin-based printers.

Felt touch sensor arms

The Touched installation by artist Rebecca Strauss would quickly retract when touched, and then gradually relax again.

arms without their felt cover

It was made with conductive felt sensors mounted over wooden armatures.


The flipbookit mechanical animation kit is on kickstarter right now. It looks much better in person than on the internet.

OLED boards

These tiny OLED oscilloscopes by Gabotronics made us go “squee”!

lasercut textures

Our good friend Jenine Bressner created rich textures from laser cut fabric.


And forming a bridge with the makers of the past, there was a beautiful collection of patent models from The Rothschild Petersen Patent Model Museum.

Photo of Jeri Ellsworth by Becky Stern.

Open Hardware Summit and Maker Faire New York

Open Hardware Summit Logo

We’re very excited to be heading to New York for the sold-out Open Hardware Summit next week. There is another fantastic lineup of speakers this year, and it will be good to have the opportunity to catch up with the community after an eventful year for open source hardware.

See me at Maker Faire!After that, we’ll be going to Maker Faire New York, where you can find us demoing our kits in the Maker Shed.

We’ll be on the Make Demo Stage with the Egg-Bot on Saturday at 2:30 and Sunday at 3:00.

We hope to see you there!

Nerdy Derby at New York Maker Faire

Our friends over at ITP are putting on a brand new event at Maker Faire NY called Nerdy Derby. It’s like Pinewood Derby racing, but without any pesky rules*. They’ve listed track specs on their site, so check ’em out and bring your own car to race, or build one on-site at their workshop. They’ll be giving out prizes in several categories, including “The Underdog,” “The Tricked Out,” “The Delicious” (for edible entries), “The Not-So-Pretty” and “The King of the Hill.” Watch their introductory video embedded above or click over to see it on Vimeo. We’re looking forward to checking out these races! We might even have to enter a car of our own…

*The Nerdy Derby site states: “While there are technically no rules for the competition, we ask that participants exercise common sense when it comes to safety.” Gotta love a common sense approach!

New Bumper stickers!

Just in time for Maker Faire, we’ve got brand new vinyl stickers, reflecting the new design of our site.

Specifications: 10.5″ x 2.0″ (266 x 51 mm), UV coated and weather resistant on tough vinyl, with an easy-peel backing. Shown above with Diavolino for scale.

(Sorry, no datasheet yet.)

If you’d like to show your support for our little project blog, let us humbly suggest that these new stickers just might considerably enhance the appearance of your car, laptop, lab notebook, bike, sumo robot, name tag, home-brew 3D printer, tesla coil, K’nex gun, interositor, oscilloscope, fission reactor, hovercraft, or electronic art projects.

Come find us at Maker Faire— we’ll have a stack of these to give away —or pick them up at our store, where they’re part of our site-wide pre-Maker Faire “DIY Fever” sale this week.

Maker Faire is (almost) here!

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The 2012 Bay Area Maker Faire will take place May 19 and 20— just 9 days away — in San Mateo, California.
This is the big Maker Faire, and the best. If you’ve never been to Maker Faire, or if you’ve only been to one of the little ones, it’s an experience not to be missed.

Today (Wednesday, May 9) is the last day to buy advance discount tickets for Maker Faire. If you don’t have your tickets yet, this is a great time to get them.

This year we will again be bringing the Giant Digi-Comp II— our supersized binary digital mechanical computer —to Maker Faire. You can read all about the Giant Digi-Comp II here and see a video demonstration of it here. We will also be doing an Egg-Bot demonstration in the Maker Shed.

Finally, we’ll also be participating in Maker Faire Education Day (Thursday, May 17, for K-12 students).

We hope to see you there!