I stopped by the Milwaukee Makerspace for a few hours last weekend, and I was pretty impressed with the progress they’ve been making.
If you’re not familiar with a Makerspace (also sometimes referred to as a Hackerspace) check out hackerspaces.org where you’ll learn that they are: community-operated physical places, where people can meet and work on their projects.
At the Milwaukee Makerspace you’ll meet people who know how to build robots, hack Arduinos, weld, cut, drill and use every power tool/hand tool you can imagine. These guys have built electric cars, furniture, camera control systems, and even gained some recognition in the PowerWheel Racing series at the Detroit Maker Faire.
What was going on Saturday? Brant was working on building shelving space for projects, Matt was planning his guitar repair, Ron brought his keychain video camera (and I played with it a bit) and Royce repaired the access control system. There’s still much to do before the open house on April 9th, 2011.
So even though the Makerspace has drills and saws and tools and welders and electronics testing equipment, and they’re building a CNC mill, and repairing a laser cutter… you might wonder why you would really want to be a member… and the reason is: community.
The guys at the Makerspace are passionate about making things, but they want to do it around other people, not in their basement or garage, but in a space where collaboration takes center stage. And these guys are pretty smart, so if you’re trying to do something but don’t know how… chances are there’s a Milwaukee Makerspace member who knows how to do it, and can help you.
This might be my favorite photo of the Makerspace, and it’s a great motto: “If you can hack it, you can have it.” :)