3D Printing

3D Printing's Most Innovative Makers Head to World Maker Faire

In just over two weeks, some of the most innovative and creative minds in the world will take over Flushing, New York for the sixth annual World Maker Faire New York. Billed as “part science fair, part country fair and part something entirely new,” the Maker Faire is an amalgamation of science, technology, art and performance. It’s an event where the passion for innovation is palpable and it’s worth attending, if you have even a passing interest in technology.

For those who have never attended, the Maker Faire was initially launched in 2006 by Dale Dougherty, founder of Make Magazine. The first Maker Faire was first held in San Francisco and has been held there every year since. Now, there are Maker Faires all around the world, including one the first ever White House Maker Faire hosted by President Obama in 2014. Since its inception, the Maker Faire has served as a way to showcase new forms of technology. Makers are part of a larger DIY (do-it-yourself) community that consists of professional engineers, hobbyists and tech enthusiasts. The driving force behind this community has been innovation and collaboration.

InMoov 3D printed robot at Maker Faire San Francisco
Photo via Make.

3D printing has always had a large presence at the Maker Faire and is only growing by the year. The decreasing cost of 3D printers, as well as the growth of hacker spaces is creating a lower barrier to entry for people, like myself, who just a few years ago wouldn’t have been able to afford the hefty price tag. The prevalence of 3D printing has been a major catalyst and a driver of innovation at the Maker Faire. Last years Maker Faire saw an appearance by the life-sized, open source and 3D printable InMoov robot. We also saw the RoVa 3D printer, a printer with 5 extruders that has been getting rave reviews.

This year we can expect even more 3D printing-related exhibitions. Among the entries is a 1:13 scale replica of Coney Island’s Luna Park from one hundred years ago. There will be a fully 3D printed fashion collection on display. Attendees will have the opportunity to learn about the O Watch, a smart watch designed to teach kids about 3D printing, as well as software design. There will even be a booth dedicated to 3D printing on Mars. And my favorite event has been, and may continue to be, the Moat Boat Paddle Battle, in which competitors must design a rubber-band powered, 3D printable paddle boat.  This year’s event will also be populated by big names in tech and 3D printing, like Microsoft, HP, LulzBot, and Ultimaker. Additionally, there will be over 200 presentations and talks, two of which I’m especially excited about from Max Lobovsky, of Formlabs, and Jon Schull, of e-NABLE, two of the most important organizations in 3D printing today.

maker faire week for 3D printing industry

And, this year, the Maker Faire is expanded to a complete Maker Faire Week that includes a STEM Night, related to Making and STEM education; an official MakerCon; and the Make: Education Forum, all leading up to the official World Maker Faire New York on September 26th and 27th. I couldn’t be more excited about the upcoming Maker Faire. Last year saw a record 215,000 people between the New York and San Francisco shows, and this year is looking like it will break that record. Even better for me is the it will be held at the New York Hall of Science, which is right in my backyard in Flushing, Queens. I hope to see you there! For more information, check out their website, www.makerfaire.com and register for tickets here.