I’m excited about MAKE’s Hardware Innovation Workshop, May 15-16, at PARC in Palo Alto. The workshop is an opportunity to explore what’s shaping the newly emerging businesses that makers are creating.  Come meet the people who are leading this new wave of hardware innovation and contribute to the discussion about new opportunities in making. You’ll be able to get a “big picture”  understanding of how new technology and new communities are changing product development, collaborative design, and manufacturing.

The makers themselves are part of an open R&D lab that any company can benefit from, if they know how to engage them.  Increasingly, businesses and investors are beginning to pay attention.

Here are some of the headlines:

  • Open source hardware and software are providing standardized components on which to build new applications.
  • New fabrication tools are creating a rapid-prototyping revolution that makes iteration cheaper, faster, and easier.
  • Collaborative design practices are using new tools and tapping new kinds of expertise.
  • Options for manufacturing at scale are improving, as more and more of the process becomes automated.
  • Crowdfunding is helping launch new projects and providing funding to test out new product ideas.
  • Traditional investors are wary of hardware, but hardware-focused incubators hope to soften resistance by helping hardware startups become better prepared for investors.

Check out the full list of  makers who will be speaking at the Hardware Innovation Workshop.    Phil Torrone and Limor Fried of AdaFruit, Massimo Banzi of Arduino, Ayah Bdeir of LittleBits, Tod Kurt of ThingM, Liam Casey of PCH International, Bunnie Huang, Caterina Mota of OpenMaterials, Allan Chochinov of Core77, Nathan Seidle of SparkFun Electronics, Mark Hatch of TechShop and Carl Bass of Autodesk.   In addition, on Tuesday evening, we will open with a showcase of 25 hardware startups along with demos by companies like Autodesk, ShopBot, MakerBot, and more.

The Workshop is a one-and-a-half day intensive introduction to the business of making and the makers who are creating these businesses.  We will be sharing the ideas that come out of this workshop in a variety of ways during and after the event. Watch Makezine for details.

If you need information on the event and to register, go to:  Hardware Innovation Workshop.