Maker Faire Bay Area 2016, best one yet!

Every kid should make something and exhibit at Maker Faire!

Maker Faire Bay Area is one of the few events where kids of all ages get to show off their creations to a large audience and get a chance to meet makers, inventors and leaders from all over the globe. And this year it was bigger and better!

For Omkar (a huge fan of Mythbusters), the absolute highlight of the event was meeting Adam Savage!

The biggest shout out for Omkar’s project came from none other than Massimo Banzi, the co-founder of Arduino, who talked about Omkar and O Watch in his annual State of Arduino address (at 15:30 in this video)!


The best part of Maker Faire is meeting old maker friends and making new ones, not to mention experiencing all the cool exhibits and activities.


Some of the kid makers we came across (there were many others):

Mark you calendars for the next Maker Faire or similar event near you and encourage+help your child make and exhibit something. It’s just an awesome experience for kids! Nothing quite like Maker Faire Bay Area.

And one more thing…. Omkar got featured in the local newspaper! 🙂 🙂

Simple way to integrate Twitter to your projects using Photon and IFTTT

The folks at Particle (erstwhile Spark) are awesome – they make great IoT products and are really super nice people. They gifted Omkar a Photon at the MakerFaire. His summer break just started and this was his priority #1.

Omkar wanted a way to know when someone mentions or follows @IoT4Kids. Particle makes this incredibly easy to do with just a few lines of code. You essentially can make any action happen (light up or move something and/or make some noise) based on Twitter activity using their Arduino compatible WiFi integrated micro-controller and their integration with IFTTT.

This simple example lights up an LED.

BTW, the display box is 3D printed using Printrbot Simple which is another awesome product for kids to get started with 3D printing.

This is all made so easy with the Particle Spark.Function() that is triggered ‘automagically’ 🙂 from IFTTT. All you need is the code below and create a recipe with Twitter trigger and Particle action.

int ledpin = D7;
void setup()
// register the cloud function
Spark.function("tweet", twittermessage);
pinMode(ledpin, OUTPUT);


void loop()
digitalWrite(ledpin, LOW);

// this function automagically gets called upon a tweet mention
int twittermessage(String ignore)
digitalWrite(ledpin, HIGH);

Here is a more fun example of this by Brian Sherwin. He also has an example of making this with your own node.js application to make the action trigger immediately instead of the 15 min cycle on IFTTT.

So folks, if you liked this please follow or mention @IoT4Kids and light up Omkar’s day. :).

Truly the greatest show on earth!

MFBA15 2

That’s Omkar’s statement after exhibiting his O Watch as a maker for the first time at Maker Faire 2015 Bay Area. Thanks to the organizers, volunteers and all the amazing makers, attendees and exhibitors for the encouragement and support.

O Watch at Maker Faire!

O Watch Preview

  • What is O Watch?
    • A Kids Arduino Programmable Watch to encourage young kids get started with programming and 3d design.
    • This current prototype is made using the TinyScreen kit with associated sensors and 3d printed cases using SketchUp and Printrbot.
  • Why O Watch?
    • Omkar’s vision is to make kids design their own watches and personalize it.
    • His goal is to make it kid friendly by creating some libraries with help from the community, friends and family.
    • This is a good way to get kids interested in designing their own 3d printed custom cases and straps.
  • What next?
    • Omkar is seeking partners to bring this idea to market.
    • Plan is to launch on Kickstarter later this year.
    • Please sign up below for early Kickstarter notification.

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