Portland Hackathon with hackster.io and Silicon Forest Developers!

IMG_5941 IMG_5935This weekend in Portland, second on the hackster.io tour of 10+ U.S. cities to bring hacking to the developers. Portland State Business Accelerator graciously hosted us, helped with catering, drinks, and so much more. AT&T, Intel, Microsoft, and other major sponsors make this weekend possible too. 6 catered meals, hundreds of talented people, put together to see what we can collectively make in less than 48 hours!

Screen Shot 2015-03-12 at 10.52.25 AMIMG_5945Portland, you are an amazing city to visit and I can’t even express what a revelation and life changing experience this hackathon was to me. Seattle was too, don’t get me wrong, but now for round 2, this weekend for me was all about 3D printing. Now, I’ve resisted because I am seriously too intensely busy trying to learn and teach everything else, I’ve had to resist 3D printing, promising, “I’ll learn about you later!” However, you confront your strengths and weaknesses at a hackathon, and through many influences, this was going to be my revelation about 3D printing.


IMG_5956Who gets the credit for blowing my mind? It starts with Autodesk Fusion 360 and Michael Aubrey who actively taught us how to use the software in 2 days. He had me hooked right away when he said that we could demonstrate using Arduino Yun, definitely lured me in! He created an Arduino Yun and then proceeded to show the hackers how he could then build a case around it. So cool. Amongst that group was Chris, an amazing maker who works for Rapid Made, across the street! He told me about all the projects that he helped to produce and also totally got me all starry-eyed about the possibilities and creativity with this medium. Then Scott Hanselman had to be all cool and come speak to us during lunch on Sunday and the epiceness runneth over, I have to start a new paragraph.

IMG_5972Scott is so bold as a maker and even as a self-proclaimed phone, he said, “I need stuff! I’m going to make it and 3D print it!” He showed us all his around the house projects where 3D printing added handles and holders to things that didn’t come with them. He even made a spool holder for his 3D printer, as well as the sweet Maker Faire robot that has moving parts but is printed in just one piece…so mysterious. Past 3D, Scott said that he doesn’t send e-mails because anytime someone asks him a question, he writes a blog or makes a video about it. So smart! My favorite quote of his, “Even if a video gets just 100 views, that’s already 99 more people than would’ve read your e-mail.”

IMG_5980Also, it’s a great way to track your progress, learning, teaching, just consistently posting blogs and videos. Anytime you’ve googled for an answer, couldn’t find it, but then figured it out, post something online to help out the next person trying to figure it out. That’s what the internet is for is to build super specific knowledge about stuff! Now, Scott also wowed us with some amazing software feats he’s completed, but also shared his new zest for hardware and more physical making! Lastly, Scott gave a shout out to Sara Jo who makes wearable tech jewelry as a way to teach kids, and I was like, I need to meet her, and within Scott’s talk, I had Tweeted her and she wrote back to arrange a meeting in SF. This is the speed we run at!!

Want a slice of the action? Join us for San Francisco March 14-15, L.A. March 21-22, Phoenix 28-29, Dallas April 4-5, Louisville April 10-11 (Fri-Sat), New York City May 1-2, Boston May 9-10, and beyond!


IMG_5978 IMG_5987 IMG_5983 IMG_5982