It isn’t for prizes that large numbers of “makers” from Silicon Valley to Israel to Japan spend all their free time “thinking with their hands” and creating original objects, some of which have no practical uses at all. About six years after the “Maker Faire” (from the French for “to do” or “to make”), Israelis joined the “Maker Revolution.”
Jerusalem’s Bloomfield Science Museum hosted for only two days a mini-maker faire with some 70 exhibits.
The event, which was first held in a small way last year, was perfectly suited to Israelis blessed with creativity, flexibility and daring. The gadgets on display ranged from a large Viking ship made from cast-off metallic tubing and old tires to an “orifice traffic light,” actually a bathroom chronometer that warns visitors to public toilets not to open a stall until it has aired out.
A plethora of colorful electronic parrots respond to the sounds of passersby; a three-dimensional printer spits out plastic parts; a rocket ship one can build and launch; a device that creates music with kitchen utensils while one prepares a salad; dinosaurs you put together and control remotely with your smartphone; interactive origami objects integrated with little lights; a path of medical tongue depressors that come to life when activated – these were some of the surprising objects dreamed up and built by makers from around the country.
Didi Vardi, the brother of start-up king Dr. Yossi Vardi, showed off his homemade contraptions, including one that kept a dozen plastic saucers twirling on sticks at once.
Another man, named Eyal, built an electric bicycle, dismantled it and turned the parts into a Segway-like device and then into a mini-electriccar.
People can be strapped into a hammock-like device that, with the push of a button, turns them into human milkshakes by tossing them up, down and sideways.
Some of the inventions may be displayed permanently at the science museum, said Bloomfield director Maya Halevy, who said the Maker Faire will probably be an annual event.