Twin Cities Maker

Thursday, January 8, 2009 | |

On January 6th I launched Twin Cities Maker, a website dedicated to realizing a high-tech maker shop in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area.

The goal of the website is to find people interested in creating a maker shop, and give them an avenue to start talking about it.

A maker shop as I have coined it is membership based physical location where people combine their talents and capitol to create a workshop with tools and classes, that are out of the price range of the individual.

Think of a maker shop as a membership based gym like the YMCA but instead of racket ball courts and yoga lessons, there are CNC routers, and micro-controller classes.

Maker shops have been growing in the last few years here in the United States and abroad. Some specific movements to note are the NSF funded Fab Lab, the community based hacker spaces initiative, and California based Tech shop.

Each one of these maker shops are approaching the same idea from different angles. Some maker shops are have about 10 members and meet primarily on the internet while other maker shops have 15,000 square foot facilities with over 400 annual members.

The thing that they have in common is their community approach and their goal of making high-tech affordable.

At Twin Cities Maker we would like find out the interest level in such a maker shop and to see what type of high-tech equipment is wanted, be it laser cutters, 3D printers, or T-shirt screen printing presses. We also are starting the conversation on where the maker shop should be located and how to fund the endeavor.

I invite anybody interested from the Twin Cities or elsewhere to join the conversation and help the project get off its feet.