This is part 3 in a three-part series about my trip to San Francisco to visit Maker Faire Bay Area. I also write about our visit to Lick Wilmerding High School and to the Exploratorium in separate posts.

Maker Faire on Saturday

Attend Maker Faire Bay Area. We arrived half an hour before the gates opened to find hundreds already in line. (Pro tip: get there about an hour before opening time — that first hour we were there was much less crowded than later in the day.)

Highlights included:

  • tintype photography with Bruce Morton
  • Arduino projects that use force, range finding, and other sensors
  • make-and-launch air powered rockets
  • all the light-based exhibits in the dark room
  • a sidewalk chalking spirograph
  • make your own comic book button (a stack of comic books, scissors, and a few button making machines)

My three takeaways were:

  • That chalk spirograph looks like it’d be fun to build. Maybe we could work on this in the design or fabrication modules for the robotics team. Or maybe our forthcoming makers club might want to build one.
  • The build-a-rocket booth engaged a ton of kids while also allowing independent build because they posted good instructions all over the place. This kind of interactivity makes Maker Faire fun for the younger set.
  • I have a lot more learning to do surrounding Arduinos and sensors. My geocache has been in the workshop for about six months and it’s time to finish that off. Next project? Maybe a garden irrigation management system at school.