SparkFun Sponsors, TinkerMill Hosts Fri Night Maker Happy Hour

Are you making at this weekend’s Boulder Mini Maker Faire? If so, join us after load-in on Friday evening for a Maker Meet and Greet (and Hopefully Dance Party) at TinkerMill, Colorado’s biggest makerspace, courtesy of main sponsor, SparkFun, catering by Spice of Life, and two (2! Yay!) kegs provided by Fiction Beer.

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Need Advice From a CTO? Talk to Daniel at 9-1-1 Labs

We at Maker Boulder would love to send a huge shout-out to Daniel Zacek at 9-1-1 Labs for his astounding help with the Boulder Mini Maker Faire! From tech to design to making and printing “passports” that mini makers can get stamped at the Faire, Daniel and 9-1-1 have been essential to making the magic happen.

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Get Your Boulder Mini Maker Faire Program Here!

OMG, OMG, it’s really happening! Click the link to download your printable program for the Boulder Mini Maker Faire, 2015, or scroll and squint to discover all the goodies the Faire has to offer!

Boulder Mini MakerFaire PROGRAM

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Lowe’s Innovation Labs: Holoroom, Retail Robots and More!


You know about the great research labs of Bell, IBM and Hewlett Packard. At all these places, basic research led to world-changing innovations: radio astronomy came from Bell’s attempts to pull static from short-wave communications; the floppy disc came from IBM’s work with one-transistor memory cells. Now the home improvement giant, Lowe’s, is getting into the research game with Lowe’s Innovation Labs (including a Boulder office!). What’s the purpose of tech at a home improvement store? Well, check out the Holoroom, above.

The concept is straight out of science fiction. Literally. Lowes put together a think tank of sci-fi writers and heaped upon their visages all sorts of market research and trends data from whence the sci-fi writers, “imagined new solutions to common consumer problems,” Lowe’s writes. They call it “sci-fi prototyping.” What’s even cooler is that they’re building the best ideas.

One of them is the Holoroom, basically a rectangular room that houses a virtual reality world. Here is your kitchen as it now exists. And with some presto-changeo, here is how your remodeled kitchen could look. Nah, that’s not quite right. Let’s ditch the island, put in some more cabinets, and now here is how the kitchen could look. Lowe’s says that the Holoroom is “designed to help consumers overcome the challenges of visualizing and articulating their vision for a home improvement project.”

We think it sounds cool.

Science Fiction Prototyping also thought that customer service robots would be cool. Enter OSHbot, which premiered at a San Jose hardware store this past holiday season. It speaks many languages, knows exactly where everything is in the store, knows what’s on sale, and even knows if the store is temporarily out of an item you’re looking for. If you have a question OSHbot can’t answer, it can video-link you to an expert employee at another store who can tell you how to frame a doghouse or plumb a garbage disposal. Watch for OSHbot rolling out in greater numbers in 2015.

In the meantime, let’s all put our hands in the air and wave ’em like we just don’t care to thank Lowe’s Innovation Labs for helping us make the Boulder Mini Maker Faire happen!

Google Brings Goodies to Boulder Maker Faire!

How many times have you driven past the Google offices on Pearl Street and wondered what goes on in there? A candy river made of pure milk chocolate? Experimental blueberry chewing gum? Now’s your chance to find out.

Actually, the Google booth at this weekend’s Boulder Mini Maker Faire will be less about what’s going on in the office than about what people who happen to be in the office think is cool. It ain’t about the Google products being built at Pearl and 26th, but all the maker-ish open source side projects that Google staffers want to share with the world.

One of these is called Interactive Spaces, which are physical spaces with interactivity, mixing the virtual world with the physical world. Check out what Liquid Gallery is doing with Interactive Spaces. It’s open source, so you can play too. Google says, “With this platform you can build immersive physical spaces, home automation, physical-based computer gaming, and museum and interactive art installations.” It looks like fun, fun, fun and this is you chance to get your hands on it and see for yourself.

Google is also bringing Google Cardboard, literally a cardboard viewer into which you mount your smartphone. Download a Cardboard-compatible app and you can experience your own Occulus-like virtual reality, for about $3.95. Or if you’re inclined, download the open-source Cardboard code and make your own apps.

In addition to open source goodies, we can’t wait to see what the local Googlers have been building. For example, we know that Steve Dieter, a developer on Wallet, builds an annual Halloween robot that, equipped with a motion sensor, waits for trick-or-treaters and then tells bad jokes in the voice of his daughter, Annika. What other wonders will Googlers bring? You’ll have to stop by the Faire to find out!

Maker Info: IMPORTANTE!

Hello Makers! Show time is coming up fast!  We have some logistics items that we need to share with you, sooo…. attached is the glorious, gorgeous Maker Manual which contains specifics about the faire.  Please take 10 minutes to read through the manual (or shorter, if you read fast and comprehend quickly, which I’m sure you do!) so you can get familiar with the operations of the faire.  Here are important highlights!

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Maker Mania #10: Mosaic Architects, Boxwood Pinball, Colorado MESA, Innovation Center

The Faire is upon us, dear Boulderites, Boulderinos and various surrounding Boulderphillics! Or at least it will be upon us come Jan 31 – Feb 1 at the Boulder County Fairgrounds. And that means MAKERS galore! Join us here in the next few weeks as we preview the awesomeness that will be at the core of the Faire.

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Maker Mania #9: Kodo Kids, Computers to Youth, JAKE’s Toy Box, Tunisian Crochet, Silicognition, Hey Chicken!

The Faire is upon us, dear Boulderites, Boulderinos and various surrounding Boulderphillics! Or at least it will be upon us come Jan 31 – Feb 1 at the Boulder County Fairgrounds. And that means MAKERS galore! Join us here in the next few weeks as we preview the awesomeness that will be at the core of the Faire.

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Maker Mania #8: Rikki’s Tropicals, Openponics, Gizmo Dojo, Deccibulz, Colorado Quilting

The Faire is upon us, dear Boulderites, Boulderinos and various surrounding Boulderphillics! Or at least it will be upon us come Jan 31 – Feb 1 at the Boulder County Fairgrounds. And that means MAKERS galore! Join us here in the next few weeks as we preview the awesomeness that will be at the core of the Faire.

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Maker Mania #7: LEGO Rube Goldberg, LulzBot, Arrister, Geekify, Healing Poetry

The Faire is upon us, dear Boulderites, Boulderinos and various surrounding Boulderphillics! Or at least it will be upon us come Jan 31 – Feb 1 at the Boulder County Fairgrounds. And that means MAKERS galore! Join us here in the next few weeks as we preview the awesomeness that will be at the core of the Faire.

Read more