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#MINDSTORMSmagic at Maker Faire Bay Area

Bay Area Maker Faire, the Greatest Show (and Tell) on Earth is a two-day event held in San Mateo, California. This is this the flagship event for Maker Faire, with close to 200,000 visitors each year. Maker Faire is a venue for makers of all types and ages: students, educators, crafters, tinkerers, scientists, artists, authors, engineers, and more. It is an amazing place for people to share what they have discovered and made. It is also a place where people become inspired. LEGO and MINDSTORMS fit right in!

From May 19-21, 2017, Marc-André Bazergui, Cyrus Cuenca, Sanjay Seshan, and Arvind Seshan represented the MINDSTORMS fan community at Bay Area Maker Faire. Read about their experiences below.

BayLUG booth
Our community booth was located in Zone 2, alongside 3D printers, laser cutters, and the BayLUG exhibit. LEGO played a huge part in our area, drawing crowds to both the LUG exhibit and our exhibit for the entire weekend.

It was a great location for our booth which focussed on LEGO MINDSTORMS 3D printers and plotters.  The booth was visited by a variety of people, including educators, families with children, companies, and the media.  
EV3D Printers and Plotters
The reactions to seeing our printers were all the same, one of surprise and delight. People never expected to see a printer made with LEGO MINDSTORMS.  We heard comments such as "Now I have seen it all!", "This is the most interesting thing I have seen at Maker Faire" and "I have a 3D printing pen, LEGO, and a MINDSTORMS set. I could do this too!"

Meet the ROBOT MAK3RS:
The booth was very busy all weekend
Marc-André brought two generations of 3D printers made with MINDSTORMS. The machines printed hundreds of little High-5 hands, Christmas trees, MAKE logos, and more. Thousands of people were excited to see Marc-André's EV3D Printer (made in collaboration with Thomas Madeya), and were really inspired to make one themselves.  It was great that Marc-André already has his LDD and code files shared, as people expressed interest in making a printer themselves. 

Cyrus brought his version of a 3D printer, G-Code Pars3r(made in collaboration with Xander Soldaat). During the weekend, Cyrus enjoyed working together with Marc-André, Sanjay, and Arvind to redesign his printerIn addition to his printer, Cyrus brought his new Graffiti CubeBot. This interactive cube allows kids to build LEGO mosaics. It can also move around using an app called RemotEV3 from the Google Play store. 

The Seshan Brothers brought their EV3D Pi.G Print3r as well as one of their PIX3L PLOTT3R robots. They printed hundreds of R2-D2s (a crowd favorite), Makerbots, and more on these machines.

Memorable Moments for the #MINDSTORMSmagic team:

Dhruv's prototype
Swati visits the booth
We particularly enjoyed the special visit by Swati Gupta and Guruvinder Singh from the MINDSTORMS Facebook group. Being able to connect with members of the MINDSTORMS community in person made Maker Faire extra special for us.

We are excited to meet our MINDSTORMS friends and glad to be able to inspire them.

"Seshan Brothers have inspired my son, Dhruv, a lot. After attending Maker Faire, he is trying to design a 3D printer himself. The 3D pen came today and experiments are on!" - Swati.
Monoprice visits our booth
Maker Faire was also a great place to meet and discuss collaborative projects. Since we were using 3D printing pens in four of our robots in the booth, 3D pen manufacturers were very interested in our exhibit. Monoprice stopped by the booth to see their pen in action. Take a look at Monoprice's Instragram Post from their visit to our booth.  The 3D Printing pen companies had no idea that their pens could be used to create 3D printers with MINDSTORMS and LEGO. They were all intrigued by this novel use of their tool.

Meeting Josef Prusa

Another memorable moment was meeting the 3D printing legend, Josef Prusa, from Prusa Research 3D Printers. Josef Prusa visited our booth to look at our 3D and dot-matrix printers.

The EV3D Pi.G Print3r is actually designed to look like the Prusa i3 printer. Therefore, it was particularly inspiring for us to meet Josef Prusa in person. Prusa was amazed to see what we had built using LEGO and MINDSTORMS.

Overall, attending Maker Faire Bay Area was an amazing experience for all of us. The best part of Maker Faire was being able to connect with the community, inspire other builders, share our innovative LEGO machines, and even spark new ideas for our next project.

Photo Credits: Marc-André Bazergui and Asha Seshan

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