From MENG member Julie Robertson:
Part 3 in the Digital Transformation series “Digital Transformation: How Will YOU Need to Change?” was focused on making things – and making things happen! As TechShop CEO Mark Hatch espouses in his book, The Maker Movement Manifesto, making things is in our blood and even those who don’t feel they are meant to use their hands to make things have come away from exposure to the TechShop with ideas and inspiration to make something themselves. As co-founder of TechShop, Mark shared the spirit and amazing output of the world’s largest and most advanced community-based, open-access DIY Maker space.
We were treated to an immersive TechShop experience with a tour of the facility, safety goggles and all. The San Francisco shop was a-buzz with activity despite the evening hour and Mark explained all the ways in which TechShop members can use the facility. Stations accommodate all manner of invention, from woodworking to industrial strength sewing machines. The Shop is set up so anything that can be dreamed can be created. TechShop is also designed for maximum collaboration so members with different skills and know-how can step in where needed on various projects.
Classes and events take place at every one of the TechShop locations. And more are on the way.
After our tour, Mark walked us through the TechShop philosophy and an amazing sampling of success stories. We heard about the inventor of the fastest electric motorcycle and everything from a copywriter turned jeweler to a homeless man who founded The Learning Shelter, a program that teaches homeless people hardware skills so they can find useful work. And yes, the TechShop has even led to saving lives. We learned about the dynamic duo who invented a portable incubation blanket for pre-mature babies.
And did you know Square (mobile payments device) was started at Tech Shop?
MENG COMMUNITY DISCUSSION:
After Mark’s presentation, we explored how we plan to incorporate the maker mindset into our daily lives. We broke into groups to discuss, brainstorm and report back to the larger group.
THE BOTTOM LINE:
In all, this was an unbelievably informative, entertaining and inspiring MENG meeting. First-of-its-kind for NorCal MENG. A TechShop tour is a highly sought-after outing in the Bay Area and usually comes with a hefty price tag.
Mark is a true Silicon Valley A-lister and his story-telling is captivating. He motivated and inspired all of us as we learned about the makers in the movement, many of whom come from surprising backgrounds, which proved Mark’s point that we are all makers at heart.
Did you miss it?