Finally, an online conference for Makers, and how it came to be.

The Maker Mind Meld Summit is the materialization of I dream that I first conceived in 2016, when I attended as a Speaker at a Mini Maker Fair.

It was an awesome experience. Preparing for my talk was an opportunity to think deeply about Technology and Maker Education. Delivering the talk, among the background noise of people experimenting with their gadgets, or talking in excitement about how they finally managed to fix a technical issue, was exhilarating.

I have been a University lecturer for 15 years, and delivered thousands of lectures, but none of that came close to talking about a topic that excites me to a diverse group of people who are also excited by the potential that they might learn something that can help them go on and create their own magic.

The problem: I had to travel for 15,000 kilometers, spend thousands of dollars, and needed many days away from work and home.

So, I thought to myself: there’s got to be a better way!

Online!

How about I try to organise an online event, like a Mini Maker Faire, in which Makers from all around the world talk about what excites them, and which other Makers, also from all around the world, can attend? No matter where they are, no matter who they are.

As long as they have a computer, and an Internet connection, they can listen and watch fellow Makers talking about their gadgets, their code, their systems, their’ thinking processes.

Makers talking about how and why they make magic.

This was exciting.

And I decided to do it.

In December 7, 2019, the first EVER Maker Mind Meld virtual summit will take place. During the summit, you will hear the how and why stories of Makers just like you.

My hope is that their knowledge and drive to create technology magic will inspire you to create your magic, so you can go on and inspire others to create their own magic.

And that is the best way to create a better world 🙂

I am writing this in December 2019, around six months after we begun the effort to produce and publish this summit.

It was an incredible six month, both in terms of sheer grant work that our team had to put into this project, but also because of the amazing speakers that I had the privilege of working with.

I am proud of what we have achieved in this time.

22 awesome presentations from 22 awesome Speakers, who prepared as if they were Speaking in a traditional brick-and-mortar event. Some of the speakers worked on their presentations for weeks, and put forward their best self for your benefit.

My team produced and amazing online video experience. Each presentation video required up to ten hours of editing so that the audio and video that you see in your screen is as good as it can possibly be. We also worked hard on the website pages and resources. Thank you, team!

I also want to thank our Platinum and Gold Sponsors, PCBWay (with Simon Gao) and Altair Engineering (with Jim Ryan and Richard Kolk). I am amazed by how supporting these companies are of us, Tech Explorations, but also the Maker Movement. In a way, we are all in this together creating our futures, and through collaborations like this, everyone wins.

You can find all the details about the content of the Summit in the Summit schedule, but here’s the core:

  • Mark Wilson, Flipping pixels is easier than flipping plastic.
  • Zafar Iqbal, Making a Turing Machine (is a really hard project).
  • João Alves, Creating a custom Arduino, and Why.
  • Jeffrey Benton, How a laser cutter can expand your mind (by building a working model crane).
  • Gil Poznanski, “Making” is more than a hobby; it’s re-shaping society.
  • Prof Jorge de Sousa Pires, Context is everything! A fireside chat about Technology, How and Why.
  • Jon Evans, Wondering how to contribute to an open source project?
  • John Teel, So you want to take your prototype to market?
  • Simon Gao, What happens to your Gerber files once you submit them to an online PCB manufacturer? Find out.
  • Dr Simon Monk, A close look at the BBC micro:bit.
  • Dr Karsten Schulz, Want to learn how to build a microprocessor?
  • Richard Kolk, Visual coding is not just for kids. Engineers use it to build high-stakes control systems.
  • Jason Long, Embedded design principles and guidelines.
  • Benoît Blanchon, Serialization and JSON through the eyes of a software craftsman.
  • Jordan Christman, Getting Started with FPGAs.
  • Kieran Nolan, Education is changing? For some people, it has already changed.
  • Prof Richard Park, Maker Education in the college.
  • Dal Gemmell, 20 billion devices need their own network. It’s here.
  • Alain Pannetrat, A wired IoT platform; ’cause wireless is not always best.
  • Marco Schwartz, How about an easier way to control your devices though the Internet?
  • Norman Pirollo, Making can be Low-Tech.
  • Vladimir Mariano, Draw your first printable 3D model in less than 60 minutes, in Fusion 360.

Isn’t this awesome!

If you haven’t’ already registered for your free ticket, go ahead and do it now (hurry, the Summit starts on December 7 and finishes on December 13).

As a registered attendee, you will also get a free 80-page Playbook PDF, with information about all the speakers and their presentations, plus resources and special offers from our partners.

Enjoy the Summit, and Happy Making!

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