by Rick Winterson
Likely you’ve heard of the so-called “Makers Movement”, and a movement it really is. The Makers first grew from clusters of curious and creative people in the Bay area around San Francisco/ San Jose in the 1990s. The exact, original location could be in San Mateo, midway between San Francisco and San Jose, where the 13th Annual “Maker Faire” took place recently. Other Maker Faires (40 of them this year) are taking place worldwide – New York, Tokyo, Berlin, Paris, Rome, and so on.
Certainly, Boston deserves to have a Maker Faire, and the Children’s Museum in South Boston’s Fort Point neighborhood obliged (Saturday/ Sunday, October 6-7). In fact, this was the Museum’s third annual Faire, only they’ve chosen to call it the “Boston Mini Maker Faire” because it is specifically for children. Some 100+ exhibitors, performers, and guides took part. Children’s Museum organized and hosted this event under license from Maker Media, Inc.
It is difficult to convey the 2018 Boston Mini Maker Faire in just one article, even with a few photographs. Each of the three floors in Children’s was packed with Maker displays. Four tents outside the building and a performance space were set up around the trademark Milk Bottle and along the Fort Point Channel. And of course there were kids as far as the eye could see. These kids were enthralled with everything – the Museum’s Maker Mini Faire was “show-and-tell” on a truly ginormous (!!!) scale.
In all of this, what do Makers, well, really make? This year, robotics was emphasized, ranging from a greeting robot at the doorway to the exhibit, through R2D2 and 3CPO, to a fully robotic tabletop bowling alley called “GECKO Bowling”. Robotic weavers vied for your attention with wheeled robots that followed visitors around, while nudging their feet. A high school senior named Curran Dillis demonstrated a robotic hand he designed that’s visibly better than the commercial version.
And it’s not only high-tech on display, or the usual craft work. Fine dresses from recycled matter like trash bags, striking track toys for endless hours of play, and exercising devices that are fun to use are just a few examples. Furthermore, Makers do everything, like cooking in the Museum kitchen, playing music (often improvised, as with JP Honk), and creating works of art. And it’s all playful. To get an idea of the Mini Maker Faire, just remember the word “STEAM” for: S – Science, T –Technology, E – Engineering, A – Art, M – Math (or Music). Paul J. Gannon PC General Practice of Law No Charge for Initial Consultation 82 West Broadway South Boston, MA (617)269-1993 firstname.lastname@example.org Criminal Defense Personal Injury Motor Vehicle Accidents Establishment of Corporations, LLCs Wills & Estate Planning Real Estate Litigation Probate The Law Office of