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Maker Faire Bay Area 2017: Everyday Innovators

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Matthew Beall
Matthew Beall

IT Technician


Tinkerers and DIY-ers unite!

The impressive “Greatest Show (and Tell) on Earth” attracted a sea of people to San Mateo, CA on May 20-21.  

Maker Faire could be described as a combination of summer fair with a carnival, Burning Man, Exploratorium, comic con, and inventor show-and-tell.
It could also be described as the heart of innovation for the everyday person. 
You hear “innovation” thrown around all the time in business contexts. It’s a concept to be strived for, aspired to. It creates better processes, new products, and a higher stock valuation for public companies. 
Family dinners, on the other hand — now that’s a different story. “Okay, son, how have you incorporated innovation into your day today?” But that’s exactly what you get at Maker Faire: everyday innovators. 
As out of place as it seems for a family dinner to be about innovation, that’s where it happens. Innovation comes from people, not companies. 

The same people who create Tapigami cities or underwater drones can create cost-saving initiatives or your favorite brand of optimized synergies. People make buzzwords happen.  

I found the Tapigami displays fascinating. Artwork made of from masking tape blew my mind! 

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Does the creative mindset translate to the workplace?

As I think about the amazing individuals at Maker Faire, typing this today in my cubicle dressed in business attire, I can’t help but wonder how Maker Faire affects attendees’ work performance. 
After all these individuals, united by a common sense of creativity, see the inventions and artwork and out-of-the-box thinking, how can they not go on to put together the everyday pieces of their jobs differently? 
Maker Faire provides such an excellent breeding ground for creativity and resourcefulness. It allows ideas to collide and form new ideas. It encourages people not only to do it themselves instead of hiring it out, but to do it themselves when no one else in the world has done it. 

For example, check out this giant MechWarrior robot. It looks like it belongs in a RoboCop movie! This attraction brought in a large crowd of people to see. Now that’s innovation, baby. 

As the Maker Faire audience returns to work this week, I wonder how they’ll put the same pieces together in new ways. Just like the Lego area attracted swarms of people to see the incredible creations made from the same building blocks, I’m convinced that a company out there somewhere will benefit from rearranged pieces to make something remarkable. 
Maker Faire encourages that sort of thinking. That’s the mindset of makers all over the world. That’s what was celebrated at Maker Faire. 

Photo credit: Maker Faire 

Wondering where innovation and creativity are heading to in events? Download the insights paper: Tomorrow, Today: The Future of Brand Experience.

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