A team of us just got back from MakerFaire, and damn was it impressive. Inspirational. It was nice to be in such a large group of like-minded eccentricity - very affirming, like we really aren’t the only crazy ones.
The thing that struck me the strongest was the overwhelming desire to share ideas, technologies, techniques, everything. Everyone was very open. When I think of a “community” this is what I think of. We talk a lot about “creating communities” around companies or products when what really needs to bring people together is a passion for those companies or products. The means of connection already exist for the community to prosper.
We spent a lot of time the first day talking to the folks at Google, picking their brains. I thought I was going to have to clean up after Jason. He’s such a fanboy, and a good example of that passion. I’m sure his Facebook page shows his excitement and I’m sure his friends are along there with him.
We all got to speak directly to Makers who shared our passion. The face-to-face connections are so much stronger than anything we can put together in a digital medium.
The events at the faire were excellent too. Listening to Sebastian Thrun talk about his self-driving cars and watching 1 million volts of Tesla driven lightning among other things were too awesome. It’s definitely an event I’ll go to again and recommend for anyone interested in creating technology based things, electronic or not.
I was only dissapointed that they wouldn't let me drive a muffin.
Oh well. There's always next year.