Maker Faire UK has won support from key backers

Member Article

Firing the imagination at Maker Faire UK

“It fires the imagination and gets kids excited about science and engineering – that’s the vital first step in getting them to think about careers where they can use these skills!” said Anne Reece from the Reece Foundation which has pledged £20,000 in support for Maker Faire UK which returns to Life Science Centre this April (25 & 26).

Billed as the “greatest show and tell on Earth”, Maker Faire UK is a celebration across the spectrum of science, engineering, art, performance and craft. Makers from all walks of life will descend on Newcastle to showcase their projects to an expected audience of more than 10,000 visitors, all keen to soak up the buzz of this creative, innovative and inspiring event. The two-day spectacular has also attracted the interest of one of the largest chip-design companies in the world, MediaTek.

Mimmis Cleeren, Director of MediaTek Labs for Europe & India, said: “Maker Faire is a world-wide phenomenon and the Makers who attend are at the forefront of new emerging technologies and the burgeoning Maker Movement. As MediaTek Labs identifies with and supports creative and driven pioneers in the maker and developer communities, we are delighted to support Maker Faire UK 2015 in Newcastle. We are looking forward to demonstrating interesting new prototype devices built using MediaTek LinkIt™ development platforms for Wearables and IoT, and to engage first-hand with makers from all walks of life.”

With everything from robots to rockets, the aim of the event is two-fold: to give Makers a platform to show what they have made and share what they have learned and also to spark and nurture a curiosity for science and the role it plays in our lives amongst adults and children alike.

According to Lucy Winskell OBE, Northumbria University’s Pro Vice-Chancellor for Business and Engagement, Maker Faire UK is the ideal event to get young people interested in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM). She said: “Northumbria University is supporting Maker Faire UK because it makes a difference and helps inspire people – especially young people – to have a go and see what they can do. That’s exactly what we need if we want to plug the skills gap and address the gender imbalance in STEM. It is vitally important we encourage the next generation to see the exciting range of careers available to them in this area.” She added: “Our ongoing support for this wonderful, family friendly weekend of invention and creativity further demonstrates Northumbria’s commitment to driving world-class research and teaching across STEM disciplines following the launch of our innovative Think Physics project and our co-funded £6.7 million investment in new STEM facilities.”

Linda Conlon, chief executive at Life, said: “It’s clear from the success of previous Maker Faires that people are viewing science and engineering differently.”

She added: “While the event is for all ages, it’s an important part of our efforts to inspire and support the next generation of scientists and engineers, Maker Faire really emphasises the huge range of opportunities open to young people by studying STEM subjects. So we are thrilled to have our key supporters on board, as without them, the event would not be possible.”

This year’s headline supporters are: Northumbria University, The Reece Foundation, MediaTek Labs and Make Magazine.

Tickets are now on sale and cost £9.95 per adult and £24.10 for a family ticket (2 adults and 2 children or 1 adult and 3 children). For more information or to buy tickets online, please visit www.MakerFaireUK.com ENDS MEDIA CONTACT: Nicola McIntosh at Life Science Centre, Tel: 0191 234 8209 Email: Nicola.mcintosh@life.org.uk Mobile: 07941801552

Twitter: @ScienceatLife @MakerFaire_UK Facebook: @ScienceatLife

Notes to editors:

To view video footage of previous Maker Faire UK 2014, see: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gm0WBReGsqc

About Maker Faire: Part science fair, part county fair, and part something entirely new, Maker Faire is an all-ages gathering of tech enthusiasts, crafters, educators, tinkerers, hobbyists, engineers, science clubs, authors, artists, students, and commercial exhibitors. All of these “makers” come to Maker Faire to show what they have made and to share what they have learned. The original Maker Faire event was founded by the editors of MAKE magazine and held in San Mateo, CA. In 2013, Maker Faire Bay Area celebrated its eighth annual show with some 900 makers and 120,000 people in attendance. World Maker Faire New York, the other flagship event, has grown in three years to 500+ makers and 55,000 attendees. Detroit, Kansas City, Newcastle (UK), Oslo, Shenzhen, Rome, and Tokyo are the home of “featured” 2014 Maker Faires (200+ makers). Additionally, 100+ community-driven, independently organized “Mini” Maker Faires will be produced around the world in 2015.

Maker Faire is primarily designed to be forward-looking, showcasing makers who are exploring new forms and new technologies. But it’s not just for the novel in technical fields; Maker Faire features innovation and experimentation across the spectrum of science, engineering, art, performance and craft.

Maker Faire is a gathering of fascinating, curious people who enjoy learning and who love sharing what they can do. It’s a venue for makers to show examples of their work and interact with others about it. Many makers say they have no other place to share what they do. DIY (Do-It-Yourself) is often invisible in our communities, taking place in shops, garages and on kitchen tables. It’s typically out of the spotlight of traditional art or science or craft events. Maker Faire makes visible these projects and ideas that we don’t encounter every day.

Maker Faire is brought to you by Maker Media. Maker Media publishes MAKE magazine, produces Maker Faire, and offers DIY electronics, tools, kits, and books through its online and pop-up Maker Shed stores.

The Reece Foundation: The Reece Foundation was set up by engineer and businessman Dr Alan Reece to promote manufacturing and support education relating to engineering, maths and physics.

Dr Reece’s name became synonymous with engineering across the UK after he developed a technique of burying subsea cables, which was widely adopted in the growth of the North Sea oil and gas business. He had earlier trained as an apprentice engineer at the Vickers-Armstrong works before going on to become a lecturer at Newcastle University, where he worked for almost 30 years. But after inventing the deep sea plough to bury pipelines, he set up Soil Machine Dynamics (SMD) to deliver the project and later went on to acquire Pearson Engineering, which focused on the military market, and latterly Velocity Road Patching.

MediaTek Labs: MediaTek Labs is a global ecosystem initiative that supports device creation, application development and services based around MediaTek offerings. MediaTek Labs builds on MediaTek’s proven track record in delivering industry-leading reference designs for its system-on-chip (SoC) solutions: designs that offer the shortest time to market for our extensive customer and partner base. The Labs portal is the central hub for developer offerings, including software development kits (SDKs), hardware development kits (HDKs), and technical documentation, as well as technical and business support. Join the growing and thriving online community of device makers, application developers and partners at http://labs.mediatek.com

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Nicola McIntosh .

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