Orlando Mini Maker Faire is a community-organized, family-friendly celebration featuring local do-it-yourself science and technology, art, rockets, robots, crafts, music, hands-on-activities, and more. It’s an event where people show what they are making and share what they are learning.

The individuals behind these exhibits are known as “Makers” and they range from tech-enthusiasts to crafters to homesteaders to scientists to garage tinkerers. Makers are of all ages and come from many backgrounds. They all share a love for innovation and creativity, as well as an educational spirit to inspire and encourage new Makers. The even-larger, 2-day, 2014 Orlando Mini Maker Faire at the Orlando Science Center will feature exhibits and experimentation across the spectrum of science, engineering, art, performance and craft.


Meet the Maker: Barry S. Anderson, Ghoul-School FX Workshops

With more than 30 years of experience under his belt, Barry S. Anderson is more than a special effects makeup artist. He is a sculptor, prosthetic designer and currently, The Professor of Ghoul-School FX Workshops.

Mr. Anderson’s training has brought him to television and movie sets, such as Jeepers Creepers and Day of the Dead. He has been catapulted to other business ventures such as forensics and creating medical training devices for the Department of Defense and private sector.

Barry S. Anderson

Photo Credit: www.Ghoul-School.com

With the Ghoul-School FX Workshops under his masterful supervision, Mr. Anderson has designed a curriculum to take a novice of any artistic level and equip them with the skills to become a scream-queen (or king — either way, your work will be sure to fright and fascinate). All workshop information and pricing can be found on his website. You can also find Mr. Anderson’s work available for purchase.

Be sure to witness The Professor at work on Saturday, Oct. 5 at the 2013 Orlando Mini Maker Faire when he presents fun, creepy special effects makeup and art workshops.

Profile written by Jamie Frishman, Public Relations & Marketing Intern at Orlando Science Center.

Meet the Maker: Gabriel Anzziani, of Gabotronics

Gabriel at Orlando Mini Maker Faire 2012

I first met Gabriel Anzziani, founder of Gabotronics, a couple of years ago when he came out to our inaugural Tampa Mini Maker Faire in 2012. He had these remarkable, and remarkably tiny, oscilloscopes that captured everyone’s interest.

Gabriel’s been on the Maker Faire tour ever since! Since his last visit to Orlando Mini Maker Faire in 2012, he has attended Tampa Bay Mini Maker Faire 2013, and gone to New York for World Maker Faire, and to San Francisco for Bay Area Maker Faire. He’s also successfully funded two KickStarter campaigns: The Xprotolab Portable and the Xminilab Portable.

“KickStarter has been an invaluable channel for funding and to promote my ideas,” says Gabriel.

Gabriel will bring his main products (at discounted prices) to Orlando Mini Maker Faire 2013, and about a dozen demos, among them: an “etch a sketch” done by setting the oscilloscope in XY mode; data decoding from a Nintendo Wii Nunchuck; Xprotolabs flashing to the beats of music by using FFTs; a component curve tracer; and a robotic arm using servo motors, controlled by the waveform generator in the Xprotolab.

Gabriel will also be launching a new KickStarter campaign in mid-September for

ow his most ambitious project yet – the Oscilloscope Watch. He’ll have a prototype at Orlando Mini Maker Faire.

A little about Gabotronics

Gabotronics, based in Lakewood Ranch, FL,  specializes in design and manufacture embedded systems, a direct outgrowth of founder Gabriel’s lifelong interest in electronics.  Gabriel remembers disassembling RC cars, and building fans with the motors; creating door alarms from dial phone parts; and getting shocked when playing with relays, and  always imagined having his own company called Gabotronics. He got his bachelor’s degree in Electronics Engineering at Simon Bolívar University in Venezuela in 2003. Gabotronics was formally founded on 2009.

“I really enjoy designing, inventing, making,” says Gabriel. “When I receive feedback from my customers saying that my products are awesome, it makes all the hard work worthwhile.”

Gabotronics is also an Orlando Mini Maker Faire 2013 Sponsor.  Many thanks, Gabotronics, for supporting Orlando Mini Maker Faire!

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Guest blogger, Terri Willingham,  is founder and Program Director of Learning is for Everyone (LI4E.org) and has been lead curator and promoter  for TEDxYouth@TampaBay since 2010, and Tampa Bay Mini Maker Faire 2012 and 2013, as well as lead organizer of Gulf Coast Makers.  I am also the Regional Director for FIRST STEM education programs in Central Florida.   And I like making stuff!

The Robots are Coming!

I’ve worked with FIRST teams for more than 7 years, as a parent volunteer, coach and mentor, and for the last two years, as Regional Director for  FIRST programs in central Florida.

Dr. Woody Flowers, FIRST founder Dean Kamen and Will.I.Am at 2013 FIRST Championship in St. Louis, MO

Founded by inventor and biotechnologist ,Dean Kamen , nearly 25 years ago, in an effort to inspire young people to be science and technology leaders, FIRST is a K-12 nonprofit education organization that uses robot challenges to build science and technology skills and interests ,along with self-confidence, leadership, and life skills . In Florida, FIRST serves nearly 10,000 students statewide. At the high school level, over $16 million in scholarships are available to participating students.

2013 Orlando FRC Regional crowds

From an adult perspective, FIRST is building future well rounded science, technology and business leaders. From a youth perspective, it’s nerdvana! A technorock gear head geek fest – with scholarships! George H.W. Bush once famously described FIRST as “Like WWF but for smart people.”

One of my favorite jobs as RD, is working with teams at outreach events – essentially any event that offers an opportunity to share FIRST with the general public or the business community; business conventions like IBM Innovate, and PTC Users, and professional associations like the recent NAACP ACT-SO conference in Orlando a couple of weeks ago. The Afro-Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics (ACT-SO) is a yearlong achievement program designed to recruit, stimulate, and encourage high academic and cultural achievement among African-American high school students.

Boys and Girls Club Walt Disney Branch FTC Team 6090 and Orlando Science Schools robotics teams, FTC Team 5070 N.U.T.S. (Nerds United for Technological Superiority), and their FRC Team 4013 Clockwork Mania did a great job showcasing FIRST, giving students opportunities to drive their robots and talking about their competition experiences.

Checking out a big FRC robot at Otronicon 2012

Teams love outreach events for some obvious reasons – sometimes it gets them a field trip day, and even better, they get to run their robots, which you can never do enough! But outreach events are awesome because teams often get to see and meet some amazing people – like Grand Hank at the NAACP ACT SO event – and to see some amazing applied science, and technology, like outreach teams at last year’s Orlando Mini Maker Faire and at Otronicon last fall, at the Orlando Science Center.

Demoing an FTC robot at OMMF 2012

It’s one thing to build a robot for a high school competition, and something else entirely to realize that those fun tinkering skills can translate into building and programming robust industrial robots or highly specialized robotic instruments like the da Vinci Surgical system.

There will be FIRST teams at Orlando Mini Maker Faire again this year – FIRST LEGO League elementary and middle school teams, and FIRST Tech Challenge and FIRST Robotics Competition high school level teams. These are all student built robots, built in six to 12 weeks from scratch to meet each program’s challenge.

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FRC disc flinging bot at Gulf Coast Makers 2013 Tampa Bay Mini Maker Faire

This year’s FRC robots are industrial strength ultimate Frisbee flinging machines; the FTC robots are grapplers and manipulators; the FLL robots are made out of LEGOs. What more do you need to know?!

So be sure to check out the FIRST Robot Makers at Orlando Mini Maker Faire 2013, where you can try your hand at driving , try out the Robot C Virtual Worlds simulator and more, and see this awesome Sport for the Mind!

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I’m founder and current president of Learning is for Everyone (LI4E.org) and have been lead curator and promoter  for TEDxYouth@TampaBay since 2010, and Tampa Bay Mini Maker Faire 2012 and 2013, as well as lead organizer of Gulf Coast Makers.  I am also the Regional Director for FIRST STEM education programs in Central Florida.   And I like making stuff!

Let’s Do This, 2013!

Greetings from a guest blogger!

Hello, all! This is Ali from NiftyBa. As a maker, I love the mediums of nail polish and photography (everyone has their niche). I enjoy watching people and capturing joyful moments, so if you are around town, be on the lookout for me- I’d love to snap your picture! Foremost, I am here to help cover the awesomeness that is the Orlando Mini Maker Faire!

But perhaps not “mini” for much longer? We promise that this year’s event at the Orlando Science Center will be even bigger and better. I see this as testament to how great the support was of the 2012 OMMF, not only by makers of Central Florida, but the entire community.

I would have never imagined being part of something like Maker Faire in Orlando. This seemed to be what cool people did in awesome places elsewhere. Then I got involved in FamiLab with my partner, and found that even I had a place among the cool people. And let’s face it: we live in an awesome place. Makers are found everywhere and in everyone, and it surprised me how true that was for Central Florida. I have met people from all walks of life who enjoyed the same things: learning, experimentation, fun. The rest is history: we now find ourselves getting ready for round two of the Orlando Mini Maker Faire, and the excitement builds.

My interests lie mainly in the creative, and I love seeing how imagination fuels investigation. OMMF offers something for both sides of the brain. There are many different ways a person can be a “maker,” and the Orlando Mini Maker Faire is a perfect place to immerse oneself in the best of Orlando.

Don’t feel overwhelmed if this is your first Maker Faire experience! I am here to help with exactly that, especially as a casual observer quickly distracted by cute things. I am not the most technological person out there, so I am at best very enthusiastic in my understanding. A favorite part of the 2012 OMMF was walking through the crowds, seeing people with the same look of wonder on their faces. Let’s do that again. Over the next few months, please join me as we take a look back at last year’s event, and get the ball rolling on OMMF 2013!

Florida Hackerspace / Makerspace meetup at Orlando Mini Maker Faire

FamiLAB and Orlando Mini Maker Faire will be hosting a Florida Hackerspace / Makerspace meetup at Orlando Mini Maker Faire on October 5th at Orlando Science Center.

We’d love to have your group exhibit at the event, compete in Power Racing, and hangout at FamiLAB after the event.

If your group would like to participate, either register as makers, or email us at makers@makerfaireorlando.com to chat about how you can get involved!

A Guest Blogger Hello

Terri Willingham

Hello there!  My name is Terri Willingham, and I’ve taken Orlando Mini Maker Faire up on the call for guest bloggers because I’m a big fan of OMMF , a big fan of FamiLAB, a big fan of the Orlando Science Center and a big fan of all things fun and productively creative!

I believe fun productivity is at the heart of everything from individual empowerment to strong societies to solid and enduring economic development.  The return to a maker movement – and it is a “return” – we were producers before we were consumers – is a return to self-reliance and self-sufficiency. And it’s fun!

By being fun and inviting everyone to play, the maker experience sends the message that we can all do this, that being creative is satisfying and energizing, that we can make things that are enjoyable, useful, and sometimes even potentially life changing.

In the coming weeks, I’ll be sharing stories about some of the central Florida makers, thinkers and doers you’ll see at the Orlando Mini Maker Faire. So check back regularly, and save the date – October 5th – and come celebrate the DIY inventive spirit with us!

A little about me
My work focuses on helping empower individuals to live and learn in meaningful, personally fulfilling and socially productive ways. I’m a writer and photographer by trade, the author of two books on health, and numerous articles across a range of topics from health to education.  I am the founder and current president of Learning is for Everyone (LI4E.org) and have been lead curator and promoter  for TEDxYouth@TampaBay since 2010, and Tampa Bay Mini Maker Faire 2012 and 2013, as well as lead organizer of Gulf Coast Makers.  I am also the Regional Director for FIRST STEM education programs in Central Florida.   And I like making stuff!

July Maker Saturday at Orlando Science Center – Fun & Games Edition

This summer, we are running a series of small events at leading up to Orlando Mini Maker Faire on October 5th.

July’s theme is “Maker Gaming”, and will be held at Orlando Science Center on July 13th from 11am – 4pm. (standard Orlando Science Admission or Membership required)

We will have several makers from our community:

FamiLAB will be teaching MIT’s Scratch programming language for kids and will have some 3D printers on display at the event.

scratch1

Stay tuned for announcements about the August and September Maker Saturdays, coming soon to the Orlando Science Center!

Calling All Makers!

Do you have a DIY project of your own? Whether it’s in your garage, classroom, or office, we want you to share your talent and passion with Central Florida. We welcome experienced Makers as well as those who have never shown their work to the public before. At Orlando Mini Maker Faire, featured Makers will find a welcoming and appreciative audience that’s excited to see what you can create.

Call for Makers – Submit Your Application Today!

Application deadline is July 21st, but we appreciate receiving your application as soon as possible!

Email any questions to makers@makerfaireorlando.com

Maker Saturdays at Orlando Science Center

We are excited to announce Maker Saturdays a new MONTHLY event at Orlando Science Center leading up to Orlando Mini Maker Faire 2013!

The first Maker Saturday is  June 15th  from 11am to 4pm at Orlando Science Center (standard admission required).

To celebrate the Blue Man Group exhibit at Orlando Science Center, we’ve brought back some of our favorite musical instrument makers, and will be teaching the Arduino electronic platform which can be used to create electronic music and much, much more. We’ll also have some of the latest personal 3D printers onsite making fun things from plastic.

Arduino classes are free, and all equipment is provided. Registration for classes is onsite only, and first-come, first-served. Please arrive and register early to ensure your spot. Arduino classes are recommended for ages 8 and up. Adult supervision required.

Let Us Know You’re Interested

Are you interested in exhibiting as a Maker or  becoming a Maker Faire Orlando Sponsor? Would you like to Volunteer at Maker Faire Orlando? Let us know!

Our Registry of Interest is now open!

This registry will be used as the Maker Faire Orlando Team plans for this event. We will notify you when the official calls for makers, sponsors and volunteers are opened.

Patina Paul Garden Robot Sculpture