A few weekends ago, we kicked the Hackaday Prize into gear with World Create Day. This was a celebration of building stuff, and served as a get together for master builders to figure out what they’re going to build this year. We had an amazing turnout all around the globe, and a splendid time was had by all. Continue reading “Robotsota, Fighting Geese, and Machine Speak at World Create Day”
In the last few weeks, we’ve been seeing a remarkable growth in the entries to The Hackaday Prize. This is due in no small part to World Create Day, a worldwide celebration of building stuff. It’s a worldwide buildathon with hackerspaces all around the globe. Now we’re getting a peek at the results of these gatherings, the videos are posted, and we’re simply gobsmacked by what was created during World Create Day.
Spinal Cord Hacks
The gang over at the Blusson Spinal Cord Center in Vancouver put together a two-day event for World Create Day. The goal of this event was to build a lipsync; a device that enables people with limited use of their hands to use touchscreen devices. It looks like a ray gun, but it’s actually a sip-and-puff device entered into last year’s Hackaday Prize.
Gardening in Cyprus
The Limassol Hackerspace in Cyprus had what is probably the best World Create Day out of all the hackerspaces who took part. Why? Grilled meat, of course.
Instead of trying to improve the entire world, the team at the Limassol hackerspace decided to think locally. Improving their own hackerspace with an automated irrigation system for their vegetable garden, planting vegetables, and building a barbecue took up most of the events of the day. One member even built a few serving platters out of sections of a eucalyptus trunk. These sections of tree cracked, but with the clever application of a CNC router, this hackerspace was able to inlay a few butterflies in the wood. It looks great, and even better with a pile of skewered, grilled meat.
The Osaka Makers’ Space
A few of the members at the Osaka Makers’ Space — like most of us — are interested in miniature robot battles. The first part of the event was, of course, spent tinkering with these tiny robots. A few members of the space made a breakout board for a BLE module, coding it so it could be voice-activated. No, that’s probably not the best way to control a battling robot, but you should do what you want, not what other people think is best.
Also during World Create Day, a few members of the space built three tiny chairs for children. The kids, unfortunately, were busy watching Sesame Street. But hey, at least the screw holes were doweled up. Also on the roster for Osaka’s World Create Day was fixing a broken MacBook Air. The fan quit, and the repair involved soldering wires from the fan to pads on the motherboard.
The folks at the Orotava Hackerspace put on a great event for World Create Day. Wait, where’s Orotava? It’s a town on the island of Tenerife, in the Canary islands. No, the birds are named after the islands, and the islands are named after the dogs.
While they didn’t have hordes of hackers come to a Hackaday meetup on an island in the middle of the Atlantic (St. Helena meetup, anyone?), the Orotava hackerspace did have a few people show up to discuss Hackaday Prize projects. The interesting projects generated from this discussion included an automatic farming robot, mobility problems for mental patients, and a low-cost bandsaw.
A few weeks ago, we took Hackaday IRL and into hackerspaces around the globe. This was World Create Day, a community effort to come together and build something that matters. Think of it as the pre-game for the Hackaday Prize, our online competition to change the world by building hardware. The groups at these hacker meetups have sent in pictures and reported on what they created. What happened during this worldwide hacker meetup? So much awesome stuff.
The SupplyFrame Design Lab
Did you know Hackaday has its own Hackerspace? It’s true! We have an eight-foot ShopBot, a Tormach, we just got a rig to do injection molding, and apparently, the intern is busy setting up a resin printer.
There are a ton of really talented people associated with the Design Lab, and they were out in full force on World Create Day. [Diego] from Deezmaker has been working on robot muscles and customizable linear actuators for a while, so that was obviously the focus of his World Create Day. Everyone needs mirrored LED-equipped welding/steampunk goggles, so that was [Rich Cameron]’s build, pictured to the right.
A fabulous time was had by all, but just because this was only one of three World Create Day meetups hosted ‘officially’ by Hackaday doesn’t mean it was the biggest or the best. There was plenty of fun the world over.
World Create Day is a worldwide event, so of course we had a few events in the second most populous country on Earth. [Inderpreet], [Shubham], [Simrat], and [Navjeet] put together a World Create Day event at the Department of Electronics Technology at GNDU Amritsar, their local university. A slew of people showed up, [Inderpreet] gave a talk on The Hackaday Prize, and much fun was had by all.
FabLab San Diego
The Fab Lab in San Diego also hosted a World Create Day event, Projects that made the cut included a real time, IRL closed captioning device. Think of this one as a universal translator, but only one language, with a screen. Or a voice to text thing running on a phone. Either way. Other ideas included an improved mobility cart, an underwater autonomous robot, wireless communication nodes, pressurized algae incubators, and a whole bunch more.
The folks at the San Diego Fab Lab also produced a short video of their World Create Day activities, you can check that out below.
World Create Day was huge this year. Over 70 different groups on six continents got together on Saturday to work on projects as a global Hackaday community.
LearnOBots Labs in Islamabad, Pakistan
Perhaps the best documented World Create Day so far comes from our friends in Pakistan. LearnOBots hosted a day-long extravaganza of projects on everything from home automation, to wearable computing.
[Haziq] and [Rafay] didn’t just build an IoT lighting project together, they took the time to present their work in this excellent demo video. The build connects Arduino, a Bluetooth module, and a relay to drive the lightbulbs all controlled by an app they built with MIT app inventor to help a friend who is stuck on bed rest.
Browse through the event logs LearnOBots has posted and see a lot more of what went on. This image shows work on wearable interfaces. Fabric markers are used to draw out interesting designs which are then given interactivity using conductive thread and Lilypad boards. We also get a look at a user interface for Summer camp sign-up that was made using Raspberry Pi Zero and a 7″ screen. Other groups were working on custom input projects using Makey Makey and Arduino. The image at the top of this article shows some of the LearnOBots crew with a World Create Day poster, neat!
Appalachian Forge Works in Newland, North Carolina
World Create Day at Appalachian Forge Works brought a baby guitar amp to life on World Create Day. The basic circuit is built around an LM386 amp. It was designed using a whiteboard schematic before moving to the breadboard for prototyping.
For some folks that might be enough of a hacking sessions, but the effort didn’t stop there. An enclosure was designed and laser cut from plywood. This included etching labels for the power button and volume knob. There’s even fabric mesh for the speaker grill for a completely finished look that’s a showpiece even when not belting out some Black Keys.
Baltimore Hackerspace Breaks Out the Welder
Tiny wheels, big motors, and square tubing — it’s almost ready to hit the test track for some time trials. The gang over at Baltimore Hackerspace spent their World Create Day fabricating what surely will be the next championship entry in the Power Racing Series.
After this picture was snapped the team got to work on the control electronics for the racer, which end up in a transparent box between the motors. The team didn’t have time to install a driver’s seat but that didn’t prevent a late night test run.
Sounds of Sewing and Embedded Tinkering at The Bodgery in Madison
I celebrated World Create Day at The Bodgery in Madison, Wisconsin. There were a surprising variety of projects worked on at the meetup, at least three of them using something new to me:
[Josh Lange] brought along the driver boards he’s been designing. I was delighted to see the batteries used in the project. I didn’t realize you could buy 18650 Lithium cells in a consumer-friendly package (like AA batteries but larger) and there are battery holders to go along with them. I’m used to seeing these pulled out of old laptop batteries.
Hackaday’s own [Bob Baddeley] was on hand, working feverishly at the sewing machine. He’s fabricating an entire line of Wacky Waving Inflatable Arm Flailing Tubemen costumes. They use those springy laundry baskets as the internal skeleton. Also being worked on at The Bodgery was an NES expansion port project that will make a custom cartridge hosting a Raspberry Pi Zero utilize the NES video hardware without altering the stock hardware. We also had a fun time working on embedded basics with a software engineer who is getting up to speed with embedded.
Tell Us About Your World Create Day!
We want to hear about what you did on World Create Day. We’ll be covering more events in the coming days so make sure you add your pictures and stories to your WCD event page. Event organizers get a special treat for making that effort. But mainly we want to show off the excitement and ingenuity that was abuzz around the world this past weekend.
This Saturday is a great day to change the world. It’s Earth Day. There’s a National March for Science where millions will demand evidence-based change. We’re doing our own thing. We’re leading a World Create Day, where hackers gather ’round the soldering iron and find solutions to problems we all face.
Over the last few weeks, we’ve been getting Hackaday readers to organize meetups in their hometowns, encouraging them to get a few people over, and sending them a bit of neat Hackaday swag. We couldn’t do this without the community leaders out there, and we’d just like to take a moment and recognize a few of the fablabs and hackerspaces that are making World Create Day possible.
Up in Vancouver, the folks at the Spinal Cord Injury Forum will be spending their World Create Day building tools that make life easier for people with limited mobility. Already they’re doing some awesome work with 3D printing, and with a few more minds tackling these problems, they’re sure to come up with something good.
To give you a little more encouragement to attend a World Create Day meetup near you, just remember we’re still at the start of the Hackaday Prize, a competition where we’re giving away a quarter million dollars to build hardware that will change the world. Even if there isn’t a World Create Day meetup near you, you can always start your own meetup for tomorrow, or just go solo. And don’t forget to show off what’s going on using the #WorldCreateDay hashtag.
This isn’t an event to miss. When else will you be able to come up with creative solutions to problems with a worldwide audience? Find a meetup near you and do something constructive tomorrow.
World Create Day is this Saturday, and events are being organized all over the world. Anyone can set one of these up, and it’s not too late for you to have one in your own town — just fill out this form to become a host.
We’re sending swag out for everyone that gets together and hacks on World Create Day, things like stickers and a few other goodies. This year we’ve decided on a special thank you to the local organizers. Check out the mockups for these T-shirts. Our Art Director, Joe Kim, has created something truly amazing with this year’s images. You can only get one if you are the meetup organizer and you post pictures and a bit of back story about your World Create Day experience on your event page.
If you’ve been on the fence about being a host, take the leap and give it a try! It’s great fun to get together with other Hackaday folks in real life, and you’ll get this super-rare Hackaday shirt out of it.
Venture away from your workbench and see what others have been building this year. It’s time for Hackaday World Create Day when hackers all over the world get together to work on projects.
On April 22nd, join the creative minds in your area for a few hours of build time. It’s an opportunity to inspire and be inspired by others. There’s no better way to make those leaps forward on a project than to share your work with others. This pollination of ideas is what sparks creativity, and it’s a great excuse to meet new people.
What’s It Like at a World Create Day Meetup?
When the Hackaday community gets together it’s always a fun time. Each meetup on April 22nd will be unique. These are organized locally and given life by those who show up. Bring an open mind and something you’re excited about and you’ll be right at home.
For instance, if I were Brian Benchoff I might bring along my 3D printed WiFi antenna and a few different WiFi devices to see if anyone wanted to do some distance measurements and signal strength characterization. I myself have been working on an art project that uses computer vision and replacement display for my exercise machine so I’ll bring one of those. After a few hours of hacking, it’s customary to go around the room and have people give a very brief explanation of their work.
World Create Day is the perfect place to put together you Hackaday Prize Team. As the ideas fly, keep in mind the power of one idea to change the world. Consider picking a challenge, brainstorming an idea, and entering it in the Hackaday Prize.
Pics or It Didn’t Happen
Don’t let the great ideas live for only one day. Make sure you tell the story of your World Create Day. Post your pictures and descriptions on social media with hashtag #WorldCreateDay during the event. Pictures, project links, and a brief summary should be added on your meetup’s Hackaday.io event page. We want to cover as many of these as possible on Hackaday, so don’t be bashful about telling everyone what people at your meetup were working on — finished project or pencil drawing, we want to hear it!