The back streets of the internet: meet the Japanese projects changing art and tech

From internet-flavoured coffee to digital ‘pills’ loaded with healing music, Katy Beale, co-founder of Caper, blogs about some of the most innovative arts and technology projects and organisations in Japan.

Going beyond the concept of Cool Japan, Tokyo today sees creatives, thinkers, designers and black-market movements mixing up culture, innovation and technology. The country is an inspiring urban mix of creativity, consumption and tradition, and on a recent visit to Tokyo and neighbouring Yokohama I explored where and how these things are meeting, fusing and exploding into new ideas.

I was introduced to a whole host of fascinating organisations and people: art galleries, science museums, creative agencies, co-working spaces, city government policy teams, makers, artists, technologists and the open data movement. Here are just a few examples of the innovative work being done there.

(c) Katy Beale

(c) Katy Beale

The Internet Yami-ichi
The IDPW is a voluntary organisation and web-based secret society that celebrates the “back streets of the internet” by hosting online parties, developing useless software and holding a regular offline internet-themed flea market called the Internet Yami-ichi (Yami means “dark side”).

At its 2012 event, 500 people came to buy things as diverse as glitch art-embroidered hoodies, internet-flavoured coffee and the real world retweet: a service in which a man shouts your message at Yami-ichi attendees. Described as the internet black market, the event also saw artist Tomoya Watanabe peddle pebbles. With each stone came a CD-rom of its 3D scan data as an IP address. The work was a direct response to the fear the internet might one day use up every possible IP address, but it turns out that if you assign one to every single rock on earth, you still wouldn’t run out.

Digital music pills
The Japan Pill-harmonic is a project that takes a user-centred design approach to the problem of dwindling audience figures in classical music. The solution? Consumable, neatly-packaged micro SD card “pills” loaded with music ready to cure your ailment or affliction. Want a better night’s sleep? Simply connect the pill to your laptop and feel the benefits.

For this particular project, the Japan Philharmonic Orchestra worked with advertising agency BBDO Japan to prescribe different pills to improve various aspects of your health or mind. For beautiful skin, try Vivaldi’s Four Seasons; for an enhanced appetite, swallow up Rossini’s Barber of Seville; and for constipation issues, relax with Brahms’ Symphony No 1: The First Movement.


The Japan Pill-harmonic campaign

Open data cities
The City of Yokohama, a metropolis that merges with Tokyo, has been embracing the possibilities of open data for the benefit of its citizens. Leading the way in the Japanese open data movement with its policy of “giving power to the people”, the city is using open data as a tool to identify issues and create policies.


Elevenplay dance company perform with drones at Spiral Hall in Minami-Aoyama

Rhizomatiks
Creative collective Rhizomatiks produces digital art installations, commercial design work and education programmes. Out of its Tokyo studio – which has its own R&D and internal hackspace, 4nchor5 La6 – the are masters of experimental work that includes musical shoes(planned by W+K Tokyo), human/drone dance performances and theMuseum of Me, which uses your Facebook profile to create a digital exhibition all about you.

Interestingly, the company implements a truly flat structure – much touted in agency land, but in reality poorly realised – where employees get to decide on things they want to work on and can veto projects.

Museum robots
In Tokyo, the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation(Miraikan) has a giant 10m pixel, LED-screen Geo-Cosmos globe complete with soundtrack by techno DJ Jeff Mills. The installation itself shows a live, scaled version of the Earth based on everyday image data taken by weather satellites. Another highlight of the museum are its human-like robots that can run and kick balls around, much to the delight of visiting school children.

(c) National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation (Miraikan)

(c) National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation (Miraikan)

Art hacks
Children are also catered for by Canvas, an organisation that has an anarchic approach to bringing together arts and science. One of its projects, Workshop Collection, brought together 100,000 people for hundreds of self-facilitated free workshops over just one weekend, opening up coding, crafts, art and design to the public. On another project, the company hacked public spaces by hijacking digital screens across Japan to display children’s artwork in over 6,000 places, including TVs for sale in shops and screens in train stations and airports.

(c) Katy Beale

(c) Katy Beale

Musical trees
The Yamaguchi Centre for Arts and Media (YCAM) was founded in 2003 to work at the forefront of art and technology. It supports the work of innovative practitioners, such as Sakamoto’s Forest Symphony, an installation that takes bioelectric data from trees and turns it into hypnotic soundscapes.

Open source disaster design
Design firm Nosigner is an expert in open source and social innovation design, applying it in the face of natural disasters with Olive: an open source, Wikipedia-style resource for people to use after the last major earthquake. The project gathered useful open source designs, for example how to make a temporary toilet, wash your dishes, make a water purifier, make rubber bands from old bicycle tube and increase the size of a battery with paper. It was made in just 40 hours by four people.

Katy Beale is co-founder of Caper and travelled to Japan as a part of the British Council’s Creative Economy programme – follow her on Twitter @katybeale

This article is also featured on the British Council Creative Economy website and Guardian Culture Professionals blog.

 

Japan/UK: open data, innovation and culture

Our Director, Katy Beale, is going on a week-long trip to Tokyo and Yokohama, Japan, on Saturday 24th May 2014 with the British Council to explore the work happening in the UK and Japan across culture and technology – innovation, design and collaboration.

Japan Skyline

I’m looking forward to meeting with people who work in arts, culture, creative and technology sectors (and the places in between) and we’ll running a salon to talk about what’s happening now in the UK and Japan, hosted at the Krei Open Source Studio.

I’ll be introducing the work Caper has been doing in the UK in culture and technology: Culture Hack‘s push for open data and better technology commissioning in the arts, and Happenstance, a viable model for collaborative working and immersive digital practice, as well as showcasing a range of other UK projects. Through our knowledge of brilliant UK work in this field, I’ll be exploring opportunities for British organisations and individuals to work with their contemporaries in Japan in the near future.

The Arts team in British Council Japan have arranged meetings with an incredibly interesting set of people and organisations including Open Knowledge Foundation Japan, Mori Art Museum, Mitsubishi UFJ Research and Consulting, Wieden + Kennedy Tokyo, Rhizomatiks, co-lab, Policy Bureau – City of Yokohama, Yokohama Community Design LabThe Center for Global Communications (GLOCOM) International University of Japan and Loftwork to name a few.

Do you know anyone in Japan I should meet or invite to the salon? Think open data, artists, creatives, technologists, etc.People doing innovative work individually or in organisations; those blurring the boundaries between tech and culture. For example, Alpha-ville in the UK have been very helpful in pointing me towards their summary of “Japanese masters”: sound artists, musicians, film-makers, designers and performing artists.

+ I’m collating a list of any recommendations for good things to see and do in Japan which is looking like more than I can possibly fit in, but genuinely excited about exploring Tokyo – from Japanese design museums and galleries, keirin bicycle racing at Kawasaki Velodrome, to temples and shrines, fish markets and trying all the sushi and tofu.

Let me know on katy@wearecaper.com if you do. Can’t wait!

 

 

 

Guest post: Ben Templeton from Thoughtden

Ben Templeton

Ben Templeton is the co-founder and Creative Director of Thought Den, an award-winning creative studio from Bristol. Ben leads web, mobile and installation projects for organisations such as Tate, Science Museum, National Museums Scotland and the BBC.

Ben worked with Caper to plan and facilitate The Great Map Prototyping Lab at the National Maritime Museum. Here’s his thoughts on his experience of three remarkable days with 15 of Britain’s brightest technical and cultural thinkers.

The Lab HQ is a long room with two grand book cases at either end, remnants of its former life as a wood-paneled library. High windows run the length, looking out over the immaculate lawn of Queen’s House on one side and the Great Map on the other. Participants press their noses to the glass, like the 10 year olds we are designing for, looking out over the Great Map for inspiration.
Green Ship

Day One was idea generation, Day Two idea refinement with Day Three focused on presenting solid ideas to museum staff. It’s rare for hacks and labs like this to have such a clear content and audience focus so the first day required some rapid acclimatisation. 12 museum experts spent 2 hours with participants; Visitor Advisors explained the challenges they face while curators discussed the curiosities hidden deep in the archives.

Having boldly thrown open their doors to a new way of working, the museum couldn’t completely escape the hoop-jumping you’d expect in an organisation of this size. For security reasons groups had to line up to be escorted to the Map and back again, armed with feedback from families who were invited to critique the ideas as they evolved.

Kids on map

Audience needs played an important role in distinguishing the groups’ responses. Where some focused on specific technical solutions to help young people uncover hidden mermaids and treasure, others took a more holistic approach to the space as a whole and how to signal digital activities. Basing ideas around Raspberry Pis, Arduinos, Kinect and cardboard 3D models, it was a lively lab that signalled the next phase for The Great Map.

Great Map lab group

Any comparisons with Tate’s Turbine Hall are made in hushed tones but The Great Map space is fast becoming the a focus for visits to the museum for families. Lab participants threw themselves with gusto at this opportunity to imagine the future of such a key space for visitors – how to manage babies, boats and 12,000 RFID tags.

Ships

Lawrence Chiles, Head of Design and Digital at the National Maritime Museum, was keen the Lab would be used as an example of new ways of working in the museum and Caper are thrilled to be working with an organisation already known for moving quickly when it comes to digital innovation. The Lab was designed to go as wide as possible in a short space of time and, while it’s always a challenge generating concrete ideas in such a short space of time, the real hard work starts now.

Ships, stars, maps, navigation, pirates, explorers…

GreatMapsmal

In April, we’re running a 3 day technology ideas lab at the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich, to look at applications for the next phase of The Great Map.

The Great Map is many things: as a social and civic space, a learning and creative space and somewhere to play and run around.

We’ll be taking advantage of the Easter holidays, carrying out some live user testing with our target audience – families – whilst working on the prototypes.

We’re learning about stories and objects from museum: real life pirate maps, paintings by J.M.W Turner and Nelson’s jacket; there are a lot of intriguing artifacts from which we can take inspiration from, and building on all the work and learning that has gone into The Great Map to date.

We’re also tapping into the many knowledgeable people at the museum – curators, learning teams,  front of house staff, interpretation, etc – with whom we’ll be having conversations in order to shape the outcomes.

We’ve recruited a team of inspiring creatives and technologists to take part in the lab : internet of things expert Alexandra Deschamps-Sonsino, illustrator Abi Hiskey, artist and technologist Ben Eaton from Invisible Flock, software and hardware developer Gareth Foote, map illustrator Gareth Wood, creative technologist Henry Cooke, graphic and interaction designer Helen Maier, interaction designer Joel Gethin Lewis of Hellicar&Lewis, wearable tech and electronics expert Katrin Baumgarten, UX and interaction designer Pollie Barden, creative technologist and curator Melissa Coleman, ex-Tate Kids editor and now Hopster director Sharna Jackson, Raspberry Pi artist-in-residence Rachel Rayns, creative technologist Tom Armitage and Viviane Schwarz, maker of interactive children’s books.

Caper News: All Change

Caper has been changing over the last few months, and I have some big news to announce: I’m leaving in March 2014 to become Planning Director at digital agency Friday.

Caper will carry on going strong without me – focusing on making change happen through developing organisational strategies, designing R&D labs and producing digital prototypes. Katy will be at the helm, working with our team of associates, and you should hire them straight away: they’re some of the smartest people working at the intersection of art and technology. Caper programmes and projects are often copied but, I’m proud to say, rarely bettered. The team will carry on changing the way the UK arts and cultural sectors understand the digital world, and I’m really excited to see what they do.

This comes after three brilliant years of running Caper with Katy (this is what we did in 2013). We’ve achieved a lot in this time – much more than can be documented here. While we can write-up projects such as the influential technology residencies Happenstance, the prototypes we’ve produced for clients such as Radio 3 and the RSC, or the innovation labs we’ve run for Kings’ Cultural Institute or the University of Leeds, we haven’t been able to document all of the meetings we’ve had with funders and policymakers, the strategies and funding bids we’ve written, or all of the talks and workshops we’ve run.

There is much to be proud of with Caper. It’s not just about delivering work with and for clients: it’s also about making stuff happen. It was this spirit that led us to launch Articulate last year, the Lanyrd-supported directory of women speakers. Building on great work by Playful organiser Greg Povey, there are now more than 700 female speakers listed, with specialisms from marine biology to game design. There’s still lots of work to do, but Articulate is a step in the right direction for helping to make industry conferences and events just a little bit less male-dominated.

We’ve also worked hard to create a culture we could be proud of, and as a part of this we’ve tried to abide by these principles:

– Pay people for their time – and pay them a fair rate, on time.

– Be open and collaborative about our findings, and share them with anyone who’s interested.

– Credit things that have gone before us, or that have influenced us.

Staying true to these principles has been one of the most difficult things we’ve done, but it’s allowed us to grow a brilliant team of friends, collaborators and associates.

It’s true that running a small business can be very tough. We didn’t start Caper to be “entrepreneurs” – we did it because no one else was doing the work we wanted to do. Like our friends at Hide&Seek, there are times it has been financially and practically difficult to sustain our activities. Being an SME that also delivers grant-funded work for the Arts Council is incredibly tough to manage, but it’s great that in just three years Caper projects have influenced initiatives such as Lighthouse Studio, British Council’s Culture Shift and Broadway’s exciting Near Now programme.

Lastly, I’d like to thank some of the people I’ve had the chance to work with over the last three years: as well as our great clients, we’ve worked with some brilliant associates and freelancers to deliver projects, including Leila JohnstonJames JefferiesNat BuckleyJames BridleTom ArmitageTim WrightDean VipondLauren Parker, Linda Cockburn, Sophie Sampson and Beckie Darlington.

But enough looking back! Here’s to the future of Caper.

Rachel Coldicutt was a founding director of Caper with Katy Beale, 2011-2014. 

Highlights from 2013 at Caper…

We were very pleased to be selected as one of Artangel’s Open 100 for our Molinology idea, transforming an old windmill in Brixton, the home of pirate radio, into an operational radio transmitter to create a persistent audio artwork.

We were both mentors and mentees: we offered support to creative practitioners through Blast Theory’s mentoring programme and we were part of the Nesta Creative Business Mentor Network, gaining support from Mike Kelly of Northern Alliance, previously finance lead at the UK Film Council.

We successfully pitched the online audience engagement product Concert Club to the Technology Strategy Board and BBC Radio 3, leading to us developing a user-facing prototype.

Concert Club Front Page

TMitchell_130523_5146We continued to develop our prototyping formats with three key lab projects…

We started development of the National Maritime Museum prototyping lab which will run in early 2014.

King’s Cultural Institute invited us to design and produce a creative lab series for academics, arts organisations and technologists, including Coney, Crafts Council, Wellcome Collection, London Review of Books, Fuel Theatre, and the Natural History Museum. Some incredibly innovative prototypes were created including a ‘haptic hand’ that allows gallery visitors to virtually handle 3D sculptures and Inkvisible, a Kinect hack that allows gallery visitors to add “digital graffiti” to gallery walls.

In Cambridge, Hoipolloi, The Junction, Wysing Arts Centre, ADeC, CRASSH and Cambridgeshire County Council took part in the Culture Hack East ideas lab which lead to a number of commissioned prototypes.

We were very happy to hear that one of the teams on the University of Leeds technology lab, which we ran in 2012, was awarded a significant grant to develop their original prototype.

We worked with the University of Cambridge Museums to help them map opportunities for collaboration and digital development.

2nd birthday cake

IMG_3003

We celebrated Caper turning two by bringing together all of our favourite people for a party. Hosted at Microsoft’s Shoreditch space, Modern Jago, we asked Leila Johnston, one of our Associates, to curate a ‘Hack Circus’ to entertain the crowds which included Sarah Angliss and her theremin, James Larsson and his pressure controlled Pong game, Alex Deschamps-Sonsino showing off her internet-connected Good Night Lamp, and Leila’s and James Jefferies‘ internet-enabled thermal printers.

We took temporary tattoos, designed by Wes West, to Maker Faire, enabling people to badge themselves physically with skills –  Physical Making, Digital Making and Electronics.

tattoo crop

Caper diagram end of day

Six to Start commissioned us with a Technology Strategy Board innovation voucher, to research opportunities around cultural data for game development.

Rachel provoked debate with an article in Sync about being ambitious and unexpected – and investing properly in digital work and makers. She spoke at Watershed, Women Shift Digital, the Open Data Institute and at an AMA workshop on her paper about being a ‘social organisation’.

Katy was on the judging panel for the British Library Labs, an open call to experiment with their digital collections. She started running a Code Club in her son’s school in Hackney, offering a weekly opportunity for kids to get involved with learning the basics of computer programming using Scratch.

We started working with the British Council Creative Economy team on helping them identify their audiences and to tell their story more effectively.

The Articulate speaker directory went live on Lanyrd, with hundreds of women showcasing their specialisms including service design, architecture, software engineering, entrepreneurship and biomedical science.

Culture Hack launched, not one, but two new resources: an open data repository, showcasing all the open cultural data in the UK in an accessible and informative way; and the toolkit, a guide for producing your own digital prototyping events.

We produced a joyful new website for the Fun Palaces project, Stella Duffy’s new movement of creativity, inspired by Joan Littlewood and architect Cedric Price who conceived the concept as a ‘laboratory of fun’ and ‘a university of the streets’.

Screen shot 2014-03-07 at 02.00.02

Fun Palaces

 

And finally, Caper expanded in a slightly different way with two new babies – Rachel’s son Ivor and Katy’s daughter Ada were born.

Many thanks to all the wonderful people who supported the work that we do and made it happen. Special thanks go to our team of  2013 Associates: Sophie Sampson, Beckie Darlington, James Jefferies, Linda Cockburn and Lauren Parker.

Out and About

As we run Culture Hack, we’re always interested in events that don’t just rely on the classic conference format. Conferences are often thought of as training or learning opportunities, but the following recent events have all caught our eye because they seem to do something more: perhaps they have been organised with the intention of provoking a wider change, as a catalyst to making something or just as an excuse to bring some interesting people together.

Art Hack screengrab

From the Art Hack showcase http://arthackday.tumblr.com/

The Serpentine Gallery holds a “marathon” every year, as part of the Pavilion programme, to investigate a single theme. This year’s theme was 89 plus, focussed on “emerging practitioners, born in 1989 or after, with influential speakers of all generations.” This is part of a larger project to understand an emerging generation:

89plus is a long-term, international, multi-platform research project co-founded by Simon Castets and Hans Ulrich Obrist. It is conceived as a mapping of the generation born in or after 1989. Without forecasting artistic trends or predicting future creation, 89plus manifests itself through panels, books, periodicals and exhibitions, bringing together individuals from a generation whose voices are only starting to be heard, yet which makes up nearly half of the world’s population.

One highlight from this year’s event was James Darling’s talk, reflecting on education, politics and his experience as a software developer. (You can also watch the talk by Bruce Sterling, referenced in James’s piece.)

Aldeburgh Creative Talent conference was held on 14 and 15 October and was billed as an “extended debate on how we nurture talent”.  The numerous financial difficulties of nurturing talent appears to have been a recurring theme: from the cost of education and access to resources through to paying a fair wage. Jon Jacob has written a thorough round-up of the discussion and the conference live blog promises a manifesto.

Meanwhile, Rhizome have been to London, bringing both Seven on Seven, which pairs technologists and artists for a day of making, and a discussion on Post-Net Aesthetics at the ICA.

One of our favourite conferences, Playful, has happened again. Our highlight was Dan Catt’s talk on making the best Snakes and Ladders Board of all time, which showed how patience and curiosity can unlock the most intricate of puzzles in things that might seem to be commonplace and mundane.

And Rachel was really pleased to go along to the Fun Palaces Open Space, organised by the brilliant Stella Duffy and Sarah-Jane Rawlings. Fun Palaces will be brought to life all over the world on the weekend of 4/5 October 2014. First imagined by the theatre director Joan Littlewood and the architect Cedric Price, a Fun Palace is somewhere you can:

Choose what you want to do – or watch someone else doing it. Learn how to handle tools, paint, babies, machinery, or just listen to your favourite tune. Dance, talk or be lifted up to where you can see how other people make things work. Sit out over space with a drink and tune in to what’s happening elsewhere in the city. Try starting a riot or beginning a painting – or just lie back and stare at the sky.

We’re really excited to be involved in this project, and hope to have more Fun Palaces news to share soon.

There have also been a few interesting hack days:

MIT Hacking with Art at the end of September, at MIT Media Lab. The data sources and winning hacks are all listed here.

Art Hack Day in Berlin, 26-28 September, around the theme of “Going Dark”. You can see what was made here: http://arthackday.tumblr.com/

EdTechHack in London, 26-27 October, with data from the Tate, V&A and National Maritime Museum among others.

And upcoming talks by us include a session on Creative Entrepreneurialism for the Watershed Digital Producers Lab and a lunchtime lecture on Open Cultural Data at the Open Data Institute.

Partner Opportunity: Arts Open Data Wiki

We’re looking for a partner to help us make a public database of UK arts and cultural open data.

What’s the Project?

The project has two parts:

1)   Creating a comprehensive list of UK arts and cultural open data sources

2)   Creating an editable website or wiki and publishing the list of open data sources

We’d like the site to be easy to read, easy to edit, and attractive to look at. It should also categorise content through a tagging system. We expect each entry will have a title, a short description of the content, a link to the API and detail data fields, formats, standards and data-set access interfaces.

The project is being funded by an Open Data Innovation Voucher from the Technology Strategy Board. The voucher is for £5,000 and it must be spent with someone (either a company or a sole trader) that we have not previously worked with.

You will need experience of creating lovely, simple websites, an understanding of open data and a good knowledge of the UK arts and cultural sector.

If this sounds like you, please email a short document (no more than one A4 side) telling us about your work and how you intend to approach the project to hello@wearecaper.com before 5pm Wednesday 11 September.

Tattoos, Makers and Data Visualisation

Maker Faire tattoosWe approached to MakerFaire with a spirit of enquiry, wanting to gather data about the community of makers attending, asking “What kind of skills do visitors to Maker Faire have?”. The tricky bit was gathering this data in an interesting way. Could we make doing a survey genuinely fun for everyone involved?

We thought we could ask people to create ‘a badge of identity’ as an output to filling in a short questionnaire about their maker skills. We made temporary tattoos, designed by Wes West, so people could brand themselves within three categories – Physical Making, Digital Making and Electronics.  Physical making was represented by a molecule diagram of cellulose, computer making by a binary table and electronics by an electron moving between electrons. Keen participants could indicate their level of mastery with an army-style three bar system.Maker tattoo keyWe applied them to arms, hands, necks, ankles, even a midriff, and you could spy them all over the faire. Indeed, seeing them everywhere brought people to seek out our rather tucked-away stand in one of the corners of the building, and yes, fill out the survey. Their previously invisible skills were now on display for all to see.

Geek CodeThe tattoos were inspired by Geek Code, letters and symbols used by self-described “geeks” to inform fellow geeks about their personality, appearance, interests, skills and opinions. Other geeks can read the geek code and discover what the writer looks like, what interests they have, and so forth. This is deemed to be efficient in a sufficiently geeky manner.

The gold standard for interactive activities at live events is to design something that passers by can see, quickly parse, and get drawn in by. By looking at it, they’ll understand it and want to participate. Simon Katan built us a colourful, gently spinning diagram which highlighted both relative numbers of people ticking different categories, and particularly strong connections between them. It was important that it updated in real time, so each person could see the change they had made to the sum total of the data. By the end of the day the diagram had become gloriously tangled; to see the spinning diagram in action, go here.Caper diagram end of daySo what did we learn?

The top skills at Makerfaire were soldering, closely followed by coding. Circuit design, sewing, and interface design chased each other for third place throughout the day.

Having a write-in ‘other’ field in each of the three categories triggered some really interesting conversations – especially with those who weren’t comfortable calling themselves Makers. So many people said ‘I’m not a maker but…’ ‘I suppose I’ve re-plumbed and rewired my house’, ‘I grind my own telescope lenses’, ‘Does making your own furniture count?’. There’s a divide in people’s minds between making you do because something needs doing, and making for its own sake, as a hobby.

Kids especially loved the tattoos, and choosing them and filling in the survey with parents triggered some interesting inter-generational conversations.

And finally, having the live visualisation made the process of gathering data feel like a two way transaction, not an imposition. Asking people to join in feels quite different from asking people to give something away.stef-and-kids

Photo credits: image 2 by Rain Rabbit, other images by the Caper team.

Caper brings Maker Code to Elephant & Castle Mini Maker Faire

ElephantCastle_MMF_logos_WordPress

We’re going to be at Maker Faire on Saturday!

Maker Faire has grown up to be a celebration of a culture of prototyping, trying things out, and having fun with technology. Stallholders get a chance to show off what they’ve made, and it will be full of great things to see and people to talk to. However, one of the most interesting things that unites the visitors – their skills and the things they make – is largely invisible when they’re in the room.

So, we’re curious to find out what skills people have, and will be asking everyone to contribute to a group dataset – think of it as a Geek Code for Makers. You’ll be able to join in on our stand, and your data will become part of a live visualisation by digital artist Simon Katan that will build up over the course of the day.

There are also tattoos. Temporary ones of course, but if you’d like to show the room what you can do, this is your chance. Kudos to anyone who can tell us what each symbol is and why.

Entry to Maker Faire is free as long as you register, so see you there.

Maker Faire Tattoos