And so, the road to Maker Faire begins! Here’s a closer look at what you can expect from Atmel all week.
Maker Faire season is officially underway and we’re just days out from the 10th annual flagship event here in the Bay Area. In 2014, we saw more than 1,100 Makers and 130,000 attendees pack the San Mateo Event Center for two days of innovation, with countless visitors flocking our booth and congregating around other Atmel-driven projects. And rightfully so, as we continue to remain at the heart of the Maker community, powering everything from highly-popular Arduino boards to 3D printers to open-source robots.
Testament to that, we have plenty of demos, discussions and more planned for the days leading up to and during Maker Faire Bay Area. Here’s a rundown of who and what you can expect to see in the coming week!
MakerCon, Tuesday May 12-13th, Palace of Fine Arts
MakerCon is a conference by and for the leaders of the Maker Movement. This event examines the impact of DIY culture on local and global manufacturing, design, workforce development and education, as well as provides valuable, practical insights around its role in the science, business and technology fields.
With the emergence of easy-to-use boards like Arduino, a growing number of Makers are producing systems faster than ever before, dramatically reducing costs and headaches often associated with starting a product. However, once a DIYer is ready to promote their projects for funding or potential commercialization, how can they generate the awareness and attention required for success? In response to that common conundrum, Sander Arts will explore how to take a project from a mere idea to mass market as part of the conference’s Marketplace breakout session on Wednesday, May 13th at 3:30pm PT. In his presentation, Atmel’s VP of Marketing will address how entrepreneurs can go from ‘Makerspace to Marketplace,’ turning their Maker-board prototype into a viable business through digital marketing platforms.
AVR Freaks Meetup, Thursday, May 14, San Mateo Marriott
What do Arduino, MakerBot, 3D Robotics, Sphero and other major names throughout the Maker Movement all have in common? They began with on an AVR microcontroller. After all, it’s no wonder everyone from hobbyists to aspiring entrepreneurs have turned to the versatile family of 8- and 32-bit MCUs to bring their creations to life. Paying homage to its legacy within the DIY community, Atmel is bringing together these likeminded tinkerers, Makers, and most importantly, AVR fans for an inaugural pre-Maker Faire AVR Freak Meetup. Participants will have the opportunity to hop aboard the Tech on Tour big rig and get their hands on the latest and greatest projects from avid AVR users, enthusiasts and loyalists, in addition to mingle with Atmel’s own esteemed panel of experts, snap a selfie with AVR Man and pick up some swag. Oh, and in case that wasn’t enough, AVR Freak at heart Massimo Banzi will be in attendance, too.
Beyond that, attendees will also have the opportunity to sign up for a Lunch n’ Learn training session, which will guide participants into becoming an “Atmel MCU Designer in One Hour” at 11am PT. Seats are limited, and yes, registration is required!
FRIDAY@MakerFaire, Friday, May 15, San Mateo Event Center
New to the program this year is exclusive, early access to show (and tell) from 1pm to 7pm PT. FRIDAY@MakerFaire is designed specifically for supporters and advocates of the Maker Movement to get focused time with Makers ahead of the DIY craziness that is Maker Faire Saturday and Sunday. This is a ticketed event for attendees interested in taking advantage of the preview opportunity.
Maker Faire, Saturday and Sunday, May 16-17, San Mateo Event Center
Maker Faire is a gathering of fascinating, curious people who enjoy learning and sharing what they can do. It’s a venue for Makers to exhibit examples of their work and interact with others about it, while in a dynamic setting. Now in its 10th year, this flagship event will be home to thousands of projects, a number of which driven by an Atmel MCU. During the two-day show, visitors will be able to get a firsthand look at some of the Makers who’ve successfully taken their idea from the ‘Makerspace to Marketplace’ inside the Atmel booth (#2223), including:
Probably doesn’t warrant much of an introduction. It’s Arduino, come on! This open-source electronics platform is smack dab in the middle of the Maker Movement.
The question is, what can’t this 14-year-old innovator do? Aside from changing the world one board at a time, CEO Quin Etnyre has already taught classes at MIT, received multitudinous awards, partook in White House Maker Faire, and recently launched a successful Kickstarter campaign for the Qduino Mini.
The Internet of Things represents a compelling opportunity across a staggering array of applications, and as more devices become connected, development time will play an increasingly integral role. Fortunately, Zymbit provides a unique, pre-packaged hardware and software IoT solution that not only allows Makers to customize, add and modify their projects, but bring those gizmos and gadgets to market in days, not months.
Ever catch yourself drumming on your pant leg? Your table? Your desk? Your steering wheel? Well good news, starting a one-man band is now as simple as wearing DrumPants. Dubbed by its creators Tyler Freeman and Lei Yu as “the world’s industrial quality wearable musical instrument,” the kit magically transforms your outfit into a full ensemble with over 100 high-quality sounds and 300 music apps.
Like the LEGO and Tinkertoys of the tech-savvy generation, littleBits is open-source library of electronic modules that snap together with magnets, enabling Makers to learn electronics via prototypes. The library currently has over 60 modules, ranging from Arduino to MP3 to cloud bits. The best part? Each interchangeable board works with one another to spark up millions of possible combinations.
1Sheeld is a configurable shield for Arduino boards that lets users replace their other shields by using smartphone features, such as its display, gyroscope, accelerometer, magnetometer, GSM, Wi-Fi and GPS. The system is comprised of two parts: a shield that physically connects to an Arduino and acts as a wireless middleman, transmitting data between the board and any Android smartphone via Bluetooth, and an Android app that manages the communication between the shield and the mobile device.
Zippy Robotics enables users to construct circuit boards, arts and crafts, mechanical parts and other working prototypes righ from their desk through a computer-controlled carving machine called Prometheus.
Wait… There’s More!
On Saturday at 3pm PT, Atmel’s resident Wi-Fi expert Pierre Roux will join representatives from ARM, littleBits and MAKE to delve deeper into the “Connectivity, Creativity and Challenges” of the Internet of Things. Shortly after, the one and only Wizard of Make Bob Martin will conduct an on-stage demonstration on how to debug an Arduino board. This training session will take place Saturday at 6:30pm PT.
Be sure to follow along with us on Twitter as we bring you all of the latest happenings from throughout the week. For those attending and looking to have their project featured on the Atmel social channels, tweet us to set up an interview! Unable to attend? No need to worry, we’ll also be live-streaming via Periscope — or something that we like to call #Fairescope!