Finally, the official Maker Faire is coming to Europe - specifically to Rome! This is the first European edition of the famed American event dedicated to the DIY and Maker movement, those who unite technology and creativity, make physical things and also know how to communicate information about them online and through social media.

When is the European Maker Faire? From Thursday October 3 to Sunday October 6, 2013 in Rome, in the Testaccio area (at Campo Boario). The event is organized in collaboration with Arduino and Make Magazine, with the support of Asset-Camera (a sub-section of the Camera di Commercio di Roma), Tecnopolo (which attracts high tech companies to the Rome area) and O’Reilly Media, the editorial group that owns the brand name “Maker Faire”. Just like the one in New York, with tens of thousands of visitors expected, and hundreds of Makers showing off their latest inventions.

Who are Makers (according to the organizers)? Massimo Banzi, founder of Arduino and Maker Faire European Edition organizer, defined makers (in Wired Italia Nov 2011) as "interesting types, not nerds, actually quite cool, interested in technology, art, design, sustainability, and alternative models of business. They like online communities, open hardware and software, and dream of automonous production, living off their own inventions. In this time of crisis, they invent their own jobs."

Why Rome? Because in March, 2012, there was an event called World Wide Rome, dedicated to the Italian Makers Movement and organized by journalist Riccardo Luna with the presence of Dale Dougherty (O'Reilly Media). The event was a big success - in fact, we were there and it helped spark the idea for MakeTank! The event in Rome is expected to be the perfect place to show off how traditional Italian artisanship meets technology and design in a way that distinguishes Italian Makers from the rest of the world.

Here in Italy, it's so important that young engineers, designers, artisans and artists understand that they will have to invent a career for themselves using their own skills and creativity. This is the challenge that the European Maker Faire launches, while it will also help unify the community of the entire continent, providing a free venue for Makers to show their work.

As of today, February 18th, the much awaited Call for Makers is open on the Faire's official website. The call for Makers requires you to simply fill out a form online, in English, telling the organizers about your project and slotting yourself into certain categories they have established. A first informal or draft application will be reviewed in a few weeks and those accepted will be asked to send a more refined proposal. The Faire is searching for makers interested in exhibiting or speaking at the event, as well as entertainers and sponsors.

 

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