April 16, 2020

Makers turn to virtual jamming during pandemic

Normally on Wednesdays, the Education Makers group invites anyone who is interested in tinkering and tech to meet up at their space, MilieuxMake. Since the pandemic, the group is adapting to a new normal. Maker jams have moved online and members are asking a big question: What does making look like in a time of scarcity?

Maker jam participants usually have access to MilieuxMake’s workstations that include all kinds of tools: 3-D printers, vinyl cutters, a sewing machine, soldering equipment, and computers for programming. Now, the group has turned to online discussions on how the maker landscape is responding to pandemic lock-down, with cases from Adafruit, Arduino, Thigniverse and Tinkercad. Scavenging old electronics for copper wire, LEDs, and other cool materials is now playing a larger role in the making process. During one session, a member made a hole in a plastic container and stuck his camera on top to make a demo. 

The group is using the virtual jamming time to brainstorm ideas for projects. Two weeks ago they made potato batteries (pictured above). Last week they talked about using Snap to create online collaboration games using databases. This week they challenged each other to make different types of dough. The basic idea behind the event, creating an informal gathering of people at all levels of experience to share information and try out new ideas, lives on virtually.

From electronics to flour to all sorts of widgets to give demos online, the Education Makers are staying creative and connected. Still, they very much look forward to when they’ll be reunited at MilieuxMake.

To learn more visit the Education Makers website.