Maker Faire (Part 1)

This weekend we're visiting the Maker Faire at the San Mateo Fairgrounds, the end-all be-all event for DIY hacks, homebrew gadgets, and other oddities and phenomena. Just think: a collection of creations including everything from knits to vegetable oil powered cars. You know you want to click on to check out the stuff we saw.

We spotted this ride cruising around the Faire. Moving the broom actually steers the bike.

ZAP! brought out lots of their three wheeled EVs, scooters, and portable energy (rechargeable battery packs) to keep your electronic toys powered.

Douglas Repetto showed off his giant wall painting machine. For style, it's painting on a clear plastic sheet. Think: mechanical pong that paints lines while bounces back and fourth.

Crabfu steamworks built some sweet R/C steam powered robots. This one is uses propane / butane to heat the boiler.

Squid Labs brought lots of their toys. This POV (Persistence of Vision) bike wheel uses four PCB sticks with, well a lot of LEDs.

Squid's 'IKEA' chair. What took 'em so long?

Hobby Engineering brought along some fun toys. That's a SMD chip being soldered down with a regular soldering iron. The long pads come pre-tinned; just place the chip, add some flux and slide the iron along the pad towards the chip.

Trevor Blackwell let us and lots of other guys test drive his balancing scooter, a DIY Segway. He also brought along his unicycle version.

Onomy Labs brought along this cool projector table. The user interface is very intuitive. Tilting the table pans the image, giving it a twist zooms in and out.

Who doesn't want their own rocket pack? Seriously. Andrew Filo is building his own; we're relatively sure the final version won't use PVC.

Talk to the hand... with the RFID chip embedded in it. This electronic door lock can be opened using a key, RFID chip, code or a combination of the three. Amal Graafstra wrote a RFID Toys about his RFID adventures.

We mentioned it before. Today we played with them, and they're really nice. The Monome is an eight by eight matrix of backlit buttons. It was actually designed without a specific purpose. The front aluminum plate is actually a quarter inch thick. Everything from the buttons to the USB interface was custom made just for the project.

Yup, it's an R/C Segway... we think it'd be cooler dressed up like R2D2.

We're still not sure what this is, but we're pretty sure you'll get pulled over if you drive it down the freeway.
Update: It's Satan's Calliope [Thanks Phil]
Stay tuned for more!