The Maker Movement – What’s it all about?

The Maker Movement is a type of culture based on DIY projects featuring both traditional crafting methods and technological innovations. “Makers” (artists, inventors, entrepreneurs, etc.) of all ages participate in the Movement all over the world.  Projects range from woodworking and metaling to electronics, robotics and the use of 3-D printers.

Maker Faire, a show-and-tell family-friendly festival and celebration of the Maker Movement, was launched in San Francisco Bay Area in 2006 by Maker Media, which also publishes MAKE magazine. Maker Faire provides makers environments where they can bring their unique ideas to life while spectators also experience the process. More cities are becoming involved by holding local Maker Faires or mini Maker Faires. In addition to Wilmington, many cities like Seattle, San Diego and Baltimore have implemented “makerspaces” where makers are provided tools, resources, mentors and networking opportunities.

day-of-making

The White House hosted its first-ever Maker Faire on Wednesday, June 18, which has also been proclaimed a national “Day of Making.” The event featured over 100 makers from more than 25 states with over 30 exhibits. A selection of administration officials and appointees, Congress members, innovation leaders and communicators, and local officials also attended. Projects included a 17-foot 2,200-lb robotic giraffe, 3-D printed pancakes, a biodiesel-fueled sports car that runs on 100 miles per gallon and a mobile Fab (fabrication) lab.

President Barack Obama delivered remarks to the audience during the Maker Faire and highlighted how new tools and technologies are influencing the speed and ease of making. He encouraged makers to use current resources to boost manufacturing, improve STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education and create new businesses. The day before the Maker Faire, more than 90 mayors and community leaders agreed to boost access to manufacturing technologies and STEM education.

All makers nationwide were invited to celebrate the Day of Making. On June 18, Wilmington’s maker group, Barrel of Makers, crafted together in the Brandywine Creek State Park Jasper Crane Rose Garden. Some participants made jewelry while others sketched drawings. The organization aims to spark the Maker Movement in Delaware through sharing makerspace as well as knowledge.

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