The first words I heard on saturday when I was at the first european edition of the MakerFaireRome were the following: “children come here, you are taking a look into the future. When you grow up these inventions will be part of your everyday life“. I spent a few minutes to realize that what was saying that father to his sons was the truth. I was surrounded by many stands full of creative people of all ages showing their projects and ideas.
I started to walk through robots of different kind and size, furnishings, 3D printers, toys, special pillows, bikes without seat, electric paint pens…
Find a way to reach the makers it was not easy but in the end I had the opportunity to chat with some of them. Unfortunately I am not an engineer and, for that, I am not able to properly appreciate the technical details of some inventions based on Arduino. However I will try to share with you the stories of a selected range of products that awoke my curiosity.
The Electrically Conductive Paint of Bare Conductive from London was definitely my favourite invention. I am talking about a new generation of paint that allows you to draw circuits and attach components to the painted surface. It will be used on different materials such as plastic, paper or textiles and it also works with electronics. You can check out their tutorials for interesting ideas. For small surfaces you can use the conductive pen but in case of big surfaces you can use the jar format and a brush. One of the Bare Conductive’s products on the table were the flashing cards, greeting cards to build up following simple instructions. So funny!
After leaving the guys of Bare Conductive I stopped to talk a bit with Annaluisa Franco, professor of fashion history and coordinator of the Department of Fashion at the Istituto Europeo di Design (IED) in Florence. She is also the founder of Hipstercurves, a collection of lasercut acrylic tools that she sells on Make Tank, a marketplace of handmade objects founded by the homonymous italian start up. I loved her special USB ring and her dressmaking toolkit for travellers.
Walking along the stands I stumbled upon into the T4AT Robot created by a young Italian duo: Marco Giacomelli and Damiano Bertato. The prototype consists of a shopper robot that it is able to follow you everywhere, carrying on bulky items for you. Imagine the possible uses of this kind of robot for people with reduced mobility: their life could be much more easier than today.
After that I started to swim in the 3D printers’ sea. I saw the french made 3D printer Tobeca foldable in its wooden case…
and a lot of open source Ultimaker in their DIY version. These printers were creating a lot of toys, pots and mini-robots to play with.
I also saw a 3D printers stamping some chocolates with the MakerFaireRome’s logo… it was awesome and so, so sweet!
The inventions in this article are only a little part of the 250 exhibited projects so, if I can give you an advice, please go visit the official website of the MakerFaireRome to discover something more interesting about this unique event in Europe and the makers movement. Waiting for its second edition I will go in a galaxy far, far away looking for something new to share with you. Stay tuned!