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March 01, 2012

NUIM Engineer Brings 'Maker Faire' to Science Festival

Dublin Mini Maker Fair selected as a featured highlight of the Euro Science Open Forum 2012

Dublin Mini Maker Faire An NUI Maynooth-led proposal, has been chosen as one of the select “Public Engagement Programmes” which will be held as part of the Euro Science Open Forum, hosted in Dublin.

Led by NUI Maynooth lecturer Dr Tomás Ward with help from Caroline Ang in the Research Support Office, the Irish Robotics Club and the Science Gallery at Trinity College Dublin, the Mini Maker Faire will exhibit a selection of innovative designs by European engineers, hackers, Inventors, hobbyists and crafts-people.  The exhibition will take place on 14 July, during the Euro Science Open Forum (ESOF) which runs from 11-15 July, 2012.

Speaking after the launch of the Dublin European City of Science, Dr Tomás Ward of the Department of Electronic Engineering at NUI Maynooth said that the idea of submitting a proposal for exhibiting at the ESOF was inspired by the success of  NUI Maynooth’s Maker’s Club.  The club brings together staff and students who have an interest in creating innovative designs from everyday objects.

Dr Ward emphasised that the goal of the Mini Maker Faire is to inspire creativity, “making and building for the sheer wonder of it”.  He hopes that the Dublin Mini Maker Faire will provide a platform for the many people who enjoy hacking together inventions in their spare time, saying the idea behind the exhibition is “to show the range of creativity and innovative activity that exists in Irish garden sheds”.

The mission of the Mini Maker Faire is to “inspire, inform, connect and entertain thousands of Makers and aspiring Makers of all ages and backgrounds” through the public gathering of those interested in DIY technology and innovative home-made designs.  It is billed as an event for “anyone with a do-it-yourself attitude to technology.”

The open call for submissions was launched earlier this month and entries will be accepted until 15 March.  Applications are open to contributors from around Europe, including individuals, groups, schools and organisations.

Inspiration for the Dublin Mini Maker Faire came from similar events held each year in the United States, with the Bay Area in California hosting the inaugural Maker Faire in 2006.  The Dublin Mini Maker Faire will be one of the first such exhibitions in Europe.