On April 27, 2009, President Barack Obama said the following:
"I want us all to think about new and creative ways to engage young people in science and engineering, whether it's science festivals, robotics competitions, fairs that encourage young people to create and build and invent -- to be makers of things, not just consumers of things."The maker movement has actually been going on for a time much longer than the Obama presidency, and unfortunately almost nothing seems to be happening in the Department of Education except more testing. Government seems to see the need for making as a purely not-for-profit endeavor unworthy of governmental support.
Three friends of mine, Eliot Washor, Charlie Mojkowski and Dale Dougherty, are featured in a new book, Design, Make, Play: Growing the Next Generation of STEM Innovators. It is fantastic to see such emphasis on making in the United States and see our young people being encouraged to make, instead of merely reclining into a consumptive life. Consumption is a disease. Making is the foundation of human culture, and without it, we do not reach our full capacities as human beings.
There is one serious limitation to the maker movement that has to do with quality of work. At the core, art and science are one thing. A single breath. A singular expression of humanity. I could talk again about the vector of human achievement. But let's just say this: "You can't successfully whittle a stick without making scientific observations about the characteristics of wood, its density and direction of its grain."
Today I got my copy of a video, called Doug Stowe, filmed, produced and edited by friends Murdo and Nancy. It is long, but it offers a brief view into the nature of my own work and I hope expresses some of the importance of working with our hands. The blog shrinks the size of the display. Please double click the video to see it full screen.
Make, fix and create...