Interesting article about what’s happening in 2011 of DIY and the Maker Movement … a great intro to this years World Maker Faire:
About a year ago, I wrote a weekly post at Wired’s Gadget Lab called “DIY Friday.” The first story was about MintyBoost, a USB charger made from AA batteries and an Altoids tin, devised by Adafruit’s Limor Fried. That was what DIY/maker hardware news mostly looked like in the last week of August 2010.
Now, let’s look at the first week of August in 2011:
- Design software giant , creators of, , a popular online community for DIYers to share and discuss their projects, and help others build their own. AutodeskAutoCAD, Maya, Sketchbook and 123Dpurchased Instructables
- MakerFaire Detroit, sponsored by Ford, Pepsi and Microsoft as well as Etsy, Boing Boing and O’Reilly, gently wound down after officially closing July 31, featuring everything from giant Halloween displays to sewing tutorials to tiny children on crazy leaf-blower go-karts. I wish I’d been there.
- Microsoft presented a handful of proof-of-concept projects for its .NET Gadgeteer, a competitor to Arduino that likewise promises easy-to-build open-source hardware gadgets using Microsoft’s .NET framework and Visual Studio/Visual C# Express. (Thisminiature arcade cabinet looks awesome.)
- GE launched a Facebook campaign targeting DIY makers to share designs for model aircraft and an airport, using 3D printers from the revered independent MakerBot.
- MakerBot got some more competition in the field of inexpensive, easy-to-build-and-use home 3D printers: Ponoko featured the UP! printer on their blog (which comes helpfully pre-assembled), whileMAKE featured Ultimaker, which touts its speed. “This is what happens when you do something that’s successful,” MakerBot’s Bre Pettis said. “Other people figure it out, too, and start businesses. More 3D printers are good.”