At Maker Faire, taking place this weekend at the San Mateo County Events Center in San Mateo, Calif., builders of all sorts can find inspiration and innovation, exploring new ways to build and exchange ideas, creating exciting projects and DIY masterpieces.
From fire to fibers, Maker Faire brings together people who think big and want to see their dreams come to life. It's art and science all in one.
Here, first-timers learn to soldier circuits and build LED-based games that beep and blink.
2 of 24 James Martin/CNET
R2 builders club
The R2 Builder's Club is a group of Star Wars fans who have designed and published plans for building a DIY droid a la R2-D2. Throughout the weekend, club members are giving workshops on construction techniques and showing off some of their rebel droid designs.
3 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Out in the metal sculpture garden, the Giant Eye is about to be set on fire early Saturday morning at the Maker Faire in San Mateo.
4 of 24 James Martin/CNET
A combination of bikes and cars, these huge pedal-powered vehicles paraded through the fairgrounds Saturday.
5 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Combining two of the high-wheeled bicycles known as penny-farthings, this double-wide bicycle drew attention as one of the coolest pedal-powered vehicles at Maker Faire.
6 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Eepy Bird made a special appearance at Maker Faire this year and put on a show in which they drop Mentos into hundreds of bottles of Coke, producing geysers of soda in a choreographed show that sent soda shooting onto the crowd.
7 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Atop a small tower at the center of the expo hall, a homemade tilt-shift telescope gave a unique view of the makers below.
8 of 24 James Martin/CNET
The three-story-tall Raygun Gothic Rocket was the centerpiece of the fairgrounds.
9 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Step right up
Step right up to the greatest show on Earth at the vaudeville games corner of the fair, where you can play a huge game of labyrinth, tilting the board on two axes and steering the heavy metal ball through the perilous maze.
10 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Keyboard controlled dragon
This colorful character is part dragon and part musical monster. His maker uses a keyboard to control the movements of the neck and mouth.
11 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Soma, a fire-spewing sculpture by the Flaming Lotus Girls, is a neuron at 10,000 times scale. Each end is a neuron, with the bridge an axon connecting the two sides. The fire simulates the nerve stimulation taking place inside us.
12 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Ben Lowe of Scotts Valley peers into the sky with First Light, a homemade Dobsonian truss-tube telescope made by amateur telescope maker Douglas Smith.
13 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Interactive noise makers and sound manipulators Sonic Nomadic on stage at their booth at Maker Faire on Saturday where musical instruments and toys are hacked to create new music and circuit-bending sounds.
14 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Together Windell H Oskay and Lenore M Edman are Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories, and they have created an analog version of the classic video game Pong.
15 of 24 James Martin/CNET
We all may not be able to fly to space, but with a little propellant and some applied science, we can build rockets that mimic flying to the moon.
16 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Mark Galt's Quadrapod kinetic sculpture dances inside the expo center Saturday.
17 of 24 James Martin/CNET
The Three Dogs watch over the festivities in the parking lot Saturday at Maker Faire.
18 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Outside, model rockets zip hundreds of feet into into the air, leaving behind a trail of smoke before parachuting back to earth.
19 of 24 James Martin/CNET
In a series of actions and reactions, a bowling ball follows the maze of metal down ramps, up elevators, through bathtubs and catapults until it sets off the mousetrap.
20 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Outside, Taylor chases his brother Andy, who has just hopped on one of the modded bicycles in the parking lot. Bikes have been deconstructed, with their parts reform into abstract pedal powered pieces of art.
21 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Steve Daniels' colony of 50 bug-like kinetic devices respond to changes in ambient light levels, opening and closing their limbs as shadows pass over their area.
22 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Walking through interactive sound exhibit SonicSense you can hear the way you move. Three cameras monitor the Mylar-coated corridors, and the visual data is translated into abstract sounds depicting the motion.
23 of 24 James Martin/CNET
Hannah Ellis poses with her custom hula hoops at Maker Faire on Saturday.
24 of 24 James Martin/CNET
A diesel-turbine-electric serial plug-in hybrid sports car, the CMT 380X is a modified Factory Five Racing GTM C5 Corvette chassis with a Capstone Liquid Fuel HEV C30 MicroTurbine Generator, and a 10-gallon fuel tank with an EV range of 40 to 60 miles and a serial hybrid range of more than 460 miles.