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Bits, Bytes, and Bots

http://www.bbb-atlanta.com/uploads/4/7/7/9/4779477/1363229384.pngBB&B is proud to offer technology programs that give children elementary through high school age a creative environment where they can explore and invent! Courses include robotics, game creation, app game development, stop motion movie making, web design and so much more!

Come meet our robot friends, play some video games and enter to win a free Robot Birthday Party

http://www.bbb-atlanta.com

3D Printing Hackathon

Credit: James Coleman

Credit: James Coleman

On Saturday, February 9th, two local makerspaces, Freeside Atlanta and My Inventor Club, hosted their first ever 3D Printing Hackathon.  The free event, hosted in their adjacent spaces in West Atlanta, gave folks in the community an opportunity to witness 3D printing firsthand, while at the same time learning about related topics like 3D design and 3D scanning.  Well over 50 people attended, with some making the trip from as far away as Chattanooga.

Credit: James Coleman

Credit: James Coleman

The highlight of the event was its panel, drawing some well respected names from the 3D printing community.  As an illustration of how technology is removing some of the traditional barriers to bringing people together, many of the speakers were not present physically.  Organizers hosted a Google hangout and projected the discussion onto a huge screen for event attendees.

Here are some of the highlights:

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Welcome to Craig Lambert

Hey everyone – in the interest of keeping the Atlanta Mini Maker Faire spirit alive all throughout the year, we’ve had a kind individual sign on to be our first official writer. AMMF community, meet Craig; Craig, meet the AMMF community!

Here’s a bio about Craig so you can get to know him too:

Craig Lambert is an educator who has taught in public schools, Waldorf Schools, and a Free School. He currently runs an in-home preschool (thelambertschool.com) and a program for teens to do apprenticeships & internships in any field instead of attending high school. Craig writes a daily blog about hands-on, experiential education (pullnotpush.wordpress.com). His Maker contributions include Sci-Fi-Shakespeare comic books, knitting, and a rules-lite RPG system.

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Recap. Rethink. Remake.

So how was 2012 for Makers in Atlanta? What can 2013 be?

Here’s your chance to rehash AMMF 2012, talk about Atlanta’s Maker scene and shape the future of both!

MASS collective will host a walkthough of their exciting new space and share their vision for the future. We’ll then wander over to No Mas Cantina for a late lunch and brainstorming session. If you are, or want to be a part of the quickly booming Maker scene in Atlanta, this is the holiday gathering for you! On the fun side, we’ll have some cool swag if you know more than the next guy in our Maker Trivia game, and we’ll be clearing out the AMMF2012 tee inventory – it’s the perfect $5 stocking stuffer!

And if we get into the tequila, there might be a few rounds of Cards Against Humanity.

We’ll be doing this on Saturday, December 8th from 12:30pm to 3:00pm.

To organize this - and future - events, we’re using the Atlanta Makers group on Meetup.com. Please head to the event page on there and RSVP if you plan on coming so we have an accurate head count for the restaurant. And of course, if you have any questions, please free to shoot us an email at atlminimakerfaire@gmail.com!

Survey Says…

SUCCESS!

It’s almost been a month, but the Faire feels so long ago! We just recently got our survey results back from MAKE, and the results were that this year’s Faire was fantastic! Exceptional! Stupendous! We also received a good amount of feedback on how we can improve next year. Parking was the #1 issue, after that was directional signage, and following that was having a better way to advertise/announce when and where workshops and presentations started. And there were some complaints from Makers about the load-out. Oh, and you guys want some food trucks next year.

Duly noted!

One other comment was that people were uncomfortable with, or just downright don’t like, the term “Mini” as in “Atlanta Mini Maker Faire.” Well, let me tell you what this actually means. Any Faire you attend that has “Mini” in its title means that it was organized by local volunteers rather than MAKE Magazine itself. That’s right, everyone that put forth some effort this year whether it be the main organizers or the people handing out water to thirsty Makers did so on a volunteer basis – no one here is paid. And that means that while we might be spread a little thin at times, we love what we do.

And speaking of money, all of our expenses – absolutely everything – were paid for by our sponsors and anyone that was kind enough to give a donation. You guys are our lifeblood, and there’s absolutely no way we could have done it without you.

So what’s next? Well, first we need to plan a date for AMMF 2013. The plan is to have it on Georgia Tech’s campus again, and that means we have to find a weekend when they are away. And the only only way game we can find on their 2013 schedule is on 10/12 of next year. So we can make this the most tentative of tentative dates. And there’s talk of trying to turn this into a 2 day event. And adding a whole mess of other speakers and workshops! So spread the word, talk up some hype, and keep an eye on our blog!

We plan on starting the planning process on January 1st of next year, so if you’d like to get involved, please email us using the “Contact” link on the right sidebar.

Thanks again to all of the Makers, Volunteers, and Attendees. With about 5,000 in attendance, this year was the most incredible AMMF yet. Let’s continue building the quality and quantity!

How Many Different Workshops? NINE! Count ‘em!

And how many total sessions? TWENTY! Oh my goodness you’re gonna make SO MANY THINGS!!!

Here’s our workshop list- if you head to the PARTICIPATE page, you’ll find the rest of the specifics (starting times, durations, etc) as well as links to sign up for these workshops.

Workshop Tent #1
Squishy Circuits
Explore circuitry basics with homemade dough, LEDs, switches, and batteries. Visitors will get to make their own squishy circuits and will get a kit so that they can continue making more electronic experiments at home.

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2012 AMMF Speakers and Presenters

We’ve got it! We’ve got the schedule of speakers! And what a great variety they are! Here we go, in very particular order, the 2012 Atlanta Mini Maker Faire Speakers:

10:00am
Chad Ramey :: Making Nuclear Reactors at 17
Chad, from Newnan, GA, will be talking about his experiences designing and building his own inertial electrostatic confinement fusion reactor before he even graduated high school.

11:00am
David Greelish :: History of Computing and Retro Computing Kits
David Greelish, Founder of the Atlanta Historical Computing Society, will give a presentation on the history of computers, and especially show how the modern Make movement parallels the early “homebrew” computing hobbyists. Plus, a look at retrocomputing electronic kits and accessories.

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Scherenschnitte

Can you imagine drawing with a sharp knife? That’s what Amanda Mattison does in her original artwork housed in her shop Sharing Snips Scherenschnitte. She uses a finger mounted blade (that makes her sound like a superhero!) as other artists would use a pen. She might have some pieces of inspiration around her, but when she puts the knife to the paper, there is no design or pattern there – she just carves what she thinks looks best.

And not only will she be at the Faire, she’ll be bringing supplies so you can make your own cut paper artwork!

Timmy O’Brien and the Movies

Timmy O’Brien of Whatever Unique, another one of our speakers, will be talking about making and the movies. Want to know a bit about him?

With an early start as a magician, and a degree in Technical Theatre and Design, Timmy O’Brien has developed a career out of hacking and making to build props, scenery, and special effects. Finding new materials, tools, and processes, as well as how to use all of those for unintended purposes has been both work and hobby. Timmy has worked on feature film and television projects for over a decade including Zombieland, The Vampire Diaries, and Gangster Squad.

And what ever will he talk about, you ask? Well we can answer that question too:

“Why you should let your kids play with tools and other ‘dangerous’ things, and how hacking and making from a young age has lead to a career in the television and film industry building props, scenery and special effects. “

His presentation is going to round out our day, starting at 4:00, so be sure to come check him out!

What Do You Know About Nuclear Physics?

Credit: Chad Ramey

Well, when Chad Ramey was 17 years old, he knew enough to build an inertial electrostatic confinement fusion reactor. A Georgia Tech student now, he’s made the world’s smallest IEC fusion reactor. He’ll be the inaugural speaker on Saturday, starting about 10:00 in the auditorium of the CULC Building, so be sure to get to the Faire first thing!