As the sculptures that adorn the sprawling grounds of Maker Faire Bay Area begin to take shape, now is a good time for attendees to plan their day or weekend experience.
The two-day family-friendly festival celebrating DIY culture in areas of science and technology, engineering, food, arts and crafts will be held at the San Mateo Event Center May 18-19.
This year’s event boasts over 900 maker exhibits; 12 stages throughout the fairgrounds with over 300 presentations (not including musical performances.) There’s a handy Maker Faire app (for iPhone and Android) with complete program schedules (including special events), maker and exhibit info, search feature and more.
Returning favorites include the Coke Zero and Mentos Fountains as geysers of soda shoot over 20 feet into the air in a spectacular mint-powered version of the Bellagio Fountains; Mythbusters star Adam Savage; ArcAttack (creators of the original singing tesla coils), and the fantastically hand crafted, 16 piece, 50,000 pound, life-size Mousetrap. This giant Rube Goldberg style contraption comes complete with a Vaudevillian-style show, original musical score by the one woman band Esmerelda Strange, sexy mice can-can dancers, clown workers, acrobatic hi-jinks, and other spectacular scenes dedicated to the pursuit of spectacle-laden fun.
A sample of interactive exhibits and presentations include the following:
Aurora Light Graffiti: This interactive system provides a simple but highly effective and entertaining method for attendees to create unique and colorful pictures in mid-air. It combines a child-like sense of play with an adult appreciation of the possibilities of new technology. Once their art is created, attendees can capture the image as a PNG file and keep it forever.
The Repair Cafe: The Repair Café’s motto is: If it’s broken, don’t replace it – repair it. Premiering the Bay Area’s first Repair Café at Maker Faire, the Repair Café will teach attendees to view their possessions in a new light by repairing broken items, once again appreciating their value. This mindset is essential to kindling people’s enthusiasm for a sustainable society. Whether it’s a broken piece of pottery, a torn clothing item, or a toaster on the fritz, the Repair Café can help.
Nautilus Submarine Art Car: The Nautilus project is a 25-foot long, land-based submarine weighing in at 11,000 pounds with a top speed of 13 miles per hour. Complete with air conditioning, water cannon, library, hydraulic drive controls and much more, this spectacular example of artistry and collaboration will sure to delight attendees of all ages.
Hand of Man: The Hand of Man is artist Christian Ristow’s masterpiece. Operated by a glove-style controller, this enormous, hydrolic-powered, car-crushing right arm will grab the attention of all Faire-goers. Attendees will get a chance to don the glove and control the hand.
Roy the Robot: Roy the Robot is an animatronic character made entirely from laser cut plywood and hobby servos. Roy received an Editor’s Choice award at Maker Faire Bay Area 2012 and is back to show the crowds his new moves! Attendees will see for themselves some of Roy’s newly found freedoms.
Cacophony on Demand: Making Your Own Culture featuring Cacophonists John Law Carrie Galbraith and Kevin Evans – Q&A by David Pescovitz of Boing Boing
The Cacophony Society had a direct hand in the genesis of much that we know of as alternative culture. Come and see why and how. Written and edited by Cacophonists Carrie Galbraith, Kevin Evans and John Law, “Tales of the San Francisco Cacophony Society” is the missing link of alternative culture, the prankster bridge between the cut and paste Kinkos anarchy of the 80’s and the instantaneous flash mob, social media cultural assaults on tedium and conformity of the new millennium.
Present and Future of Raspberry Pi featuring Eben Upton – Q&A by MAKE’s Matt Richardson
Eben Upton will share the story of Raspberry Pi (the tiny and inexpensive programmable computer) that has caught the maker world by storm. Get the inside scoop from Eben on where the Raspberry Pi foundation is after the first year of launch, and some thoughts on future direction.
Single day and weekend passes are available and can be purchased in advance on the Maker Faire website or onsite. Tickets range in price from $15-$35 for a full day pass.
Maker Faire hours are Saturday, May 18 from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday, May 19 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.