We all know those makers who are a few steps ahead of us.
They are producing unbelievably creative prototypes, manufacturing tons of items, and learning cutting-edge skills. They seem to be tapped into an industrial realm of resources and connections that leave the rest of us summing it up by saying, with a sparkle of jealousy: “They got it all figured out.”
But how did they learn those skills? Where did they go and who taught them how?
As a part of a recurring series, we will be following the story of an up-and-coming journalist who has been travelling across the country researching hackerspaces along the way. He has met makers, hackers, entrepreneurs, artists, musicians, engineers, scientists, professors, and various others in-between.
After spending a few nights at The Adelaide Hostel on the corner of Isadora Duncan Lane, our journalist has decided to seek out friends and family in The Bay area. His clean laptop, electrical chargers, and tie-dye tapestry have all been packed away neatly into a black suitcase; which is then thrown in the trunk of his car. The engine revs up putting the vehicle in motion. Onward towards a home!
The next morning, eggs are gathered from a few free-range chickens in the backyard. Breakfast is cooked for everyone at the house. They fuel up for the day, ready to go wherever the winds of change may take them. For our traveller, his adventure begins at a fabrication studio called TechShop only a few miles away.
Inside the building are a variety of heavy machines. A tour is given by an acquaintance named Nick who knew the environment quite well. Laser cutters, plastics, electronics, metal working tools, welding stations and water-jet cutters are all found here. There is even a 3D printing company called Type A Machines testing out their new prototypes.
The scene then proceeds nearby to an event hosted by Momentum Machines who was showing off there shiny new hamburger-making robot. Posted on the wall was ‘The Laws of Thought’ by George Boole, LL. D. In the crowd were lots of people including robotics engineer Michael Sudano and an energy-intelligence pioneer. Many others showed up to taste the wine and try the delicious burgers.
Afterwards, the journey continued North to the small town of Cotati. There was an Accordion Festival going on where the Troglodyte Jug band ‘Thee Hobo Gobbelins’ were playing. The after-party was held at a red house over yonder that sat underneath the starry skyline. Lights flickered and creatures of the night walked about outside.
Conversations of energy surfaced in the morning right before leaving. Little did the journalist know who exactly he was talking to. Eventually, he would figure it out, but only after driving across the country for again for a 2nd time. First he would have to return to Los Angeles to try to find his place among the millions of people there.
The environment he was looking for was located in a warehouse complex called Big Art Labs where two old metro buses where being retrofitted for the food truck industry by the Fojol Bros. They were preparing to travel from LA to DC and invited the journalist along for the ride to help document the experience. His role would change everyday as the trip became wilder and wilder.
When ‘The Startup Dream’ returns, we will journey across the country driving through various states encountering many obstacles along the way. There will be flashing lights, elastic highways, and intense fights. 6 people will start the trip, but only a few will make it to the finish line.
Article written by @industychanger
This is a continuation from The Startup Dream: Journeying into the heart of San Francisco pt. 2 (of the Startup Dream online series).
The Adelaide Hostel’s website: http://www.adelaidehostel.com/
TechShop’s website: https://twitter.com/techshop
Type A Machines’ website: http://www.typeamachines.com/
Momentum Machine’s website: http://momentummachines.com/
The Laws of Thought’s Wikipedia page: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Laws_of_Thought
Accordion Apocalypse’s website: http://www.accordionapocalypse.com/
Thee Hobo Gobbelins’ website: http://www.hobogoblins.com/
Big Art Labs’ website: http://www.bigartlabs.com/bigartlabs_home.html
Story of the Fojol Bros: http://www.brownalumnimagazine.com/content/view/2467/40/