The fantastic DIY world of Maker Faire (pictures)

More than 150,000 curious and creative visitors are expected over the weekend to Maker Faire, where projects rule and ideas come to life.

James Martin
James Martin is the Managing Editor of Photography at CNET. His photos capture technology's impact on society - from the widening wealth gap in San Francisco, to the European refugee crisis and Rwanda's efforts to improve health care. From the technology pioneers of Google and Facebook, photographing Apple's Steve Jobs and Tim Cook, Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg and Google's Sundar Pichai, to the most groundbreaking launches at Apple and NASA, his is a dream job for any documentary photography and journalist with a love for technology. Exhibited widely, syndicated and reprinted thousands of times over the years, James follows the people and places behind the technology changing our world, bringing their stories and ideas to life.
James Martin
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That way. No, that way.

From drones to bikes and robots to 3D printing, Maker Faire is a fantastic world of projects for just about every type of curious thinker.

Over the course of the weekend, more than 150,000 attendees will get up close with creative projects from more than 1,200 maker entries.

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Drone racing

Aerial Sports League's drone pilots fly high speed and head-to-head, racing through a futuristic racetrack.

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Astro droids!

Whether you prefer BB-8 or R2-D2, Maker Faire has the droid you are looking for.

Brian Munger's BB-8 took four months to build and was completed in December 2015.

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Kinetic squid

Barry Crawford's kinetic squid sculpture Mechateuthis features eight digitally controlled motors that control the movements of arms, beak, eyes, tentacles and mantle fins.

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Axis and the Allied

It's sink or be sunk at the Western Warship Combat Club as the Axis and the Allied naval powers face off and the remote controlled warships battle each other -- firing real pellets to sink their enemies.

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Mobile solar charging station

MOCU, the Mobile Outdoor Charging Unit, was once a remote controlled kid's car but has been transformed into an off grid, mobile solar charging station with two 400Wh onboard batteries.

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Surrealist vaudeville

Tobias Weinberger and the Traveling Spectacular entertained crowds at Maker Faire with their surrealist song and dance vaudeville show.

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Robot Dance Party

Wading through the crowds comes the sounds of a party -- it's the Robot Dance Party!

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Pressure and heat

Using the old fashioned tools of metal and heat to create a Heron sculpture at a demo for The Crucible -- and Oakland, California, arts organization.

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Relaxing transportation

This classic of relaxation -- an Adirondack chair -- has been transformed into a stylish three-wheel electric vehicle.

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Power tool drag racing

This drag strip is made for speed, but not for cars. These pit crews have transformed everyday single engine power tools with stock 110 VAC power sources into speed demons, racing across a 75-foot plywood track.

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Fire into ice

Witness fire being turned into ice as the Bay Area collective dedicated to steam powered kinetic art and education, Kinetic Steam Works, demonstrates steam-powered mechanical refrigeration.

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A chess playing robot

Nico, 13, considers his next move against Del Hatch and Lynn Christiansen's chess playing robot, which combines a sensory chess board with a robot arm.

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Bot Bash

RoboGames gold medal winner Zachary Lytle has transformed his designs into modular robots.

Bot Bash Parties Robot Battle Kits are mini robot kits -- a kickstarter project launched this week which lets you assemble your own battle robots.

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Telepresence Android

This Telepresence Android is a project based on InMoove 3D printed Open Source Human Sized Android and uses Oculus and MoCap to achieve precise android movements.

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Smart seat belt

Saarang Sumesh, 8, conceived, designed and built this Arduino smart seat belt, which senses a car accident and tightens to secure the passenger, releasing the seat belt to free the passenger to safety afterward.

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Space Helmet Photo Booth

Reyna Zeitler, 10, and Zephyr Martin, 5, become astronauts for a moment as they take a photo in the Space Helmet Photo Booth.

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Catching a dream

There's a lot to see at Maker Faire -- and you can't possibly see everything. It's a busy day, and the Dream Catcher immersive experience, which invites viewers inside to interact and discover the hidden beauty of light and form, was the perfect spot to stop and rest.

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Vortex smoke ring blaster

The Sense Shocker is a vortex smoke ring blaster made by father-son team of Todd and Alex Marks that shoots rings of air more than 120 feet.

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Dragon Glow Forest

Fabric artist Stan Clark describes his Dragon Glow Forest as an astro botanical garden under the watchful eyes of the Guardian Dragon above.

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Mechanical animals roam the grounds of Maker Faire. The Electric Giraffe is a life-size robotic giraffe that walks using a small 12-horsepower engine burning propane gas.

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Meditation machine

The consciousness-enhancing meditation machine from The P.e.a.c.e. Museum is using audio and visual cues to bring the curious user to a transcendent state.

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Laser Maze

The Stanford Optical Society's Laser Maze is a Mission Impossible-like challenge to pass through the gauntlet undetected.

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Brazilian-style percussion and dance

Batalá SF marches through the Maker Faire grounds Saturday morning performing their Brazilian-style percussion and dance.

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Landau the Dragon

Brett Jacobs' Landau the Dragon is a fire-breathing steampunk metal dragon built on top of a motorcycle, typically seen cruising the Black Rock Desert as a mutant vehicle.

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