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Makers: All Kinds of People Making Amazing Things In Garages, Basements, and Backyards. Hardcover


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 184 pages
  • Publisher: Maker Media, Inc; 1 edition (December 14, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596101880
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596101886
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 9 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #968,868 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Get rid of your TV set and make something instead. This book rules. -- Powell's Technical Books, Powells.com Staff Picks

No mention of teledildonics, homebuilt jet engines, or homebrewing, but neat nonetheless. -- drewzhrodague, Slashdot.org

The ability to create something from almost nothing -- that's why the 100 grass-roots inventors in "Makers" so intrigued me. . . . -- Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 19, 2006

a different brand of innovator . . . profiles on an electrician who made a Tesla coil from an old washtub, and more. -- GQ wire, January 2006

About the Author

For more than 10 years, journalist and author Bob Parks has covered the quirky, fascinating personalities behind the latest technologies. His feature articles on innovation in business, sports, health, and the outdoors have appeared in magazines such as "Make", "Wired", "Outside", and "Business 2.0". He's read essays on National Public Radio's All Things Considered and discussed trends in consumer devices with the likes of Regis Philbin and Russ Mitchell on television. Parks worked as an editor for Wired magazine for five years, directing coverage in new consumer technologies and contributing feature articles. He received a BA cum laude in English in 1992 from Bates College. He lives in Brattleboro, Vermont, with his wife, Eileen, and children, Archer and Lucy.


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Customer Reviews

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Now, back to my workshop... to Make something!
Bradley J. Dixon
An incredible feat of engineering... O'Reilly has done a superb job with this "coffee table" book.
Thomas Duff
The pictures are good quality and a mix of the entertaining and informative.
A Williams

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By A Williams on December 18, 2005
Format: Hardcover
I find a my love of "Make" magazine a strange thing. I've only built one thing from the magazine and two from the website, yet I enjoy enormously the tales and instructions. I read the magazine and the RSS feed religiously. Perhaps it is that I am heartened that the day of the backyard tinkerer both having fun and doing serious work are not behind us. Perhaps I enjoy knowing there are other nerds out there.

It's therefore no surprise that I enjoyed what must be O'Reilly's first coffee table book - "Makers". Subtitled "All Kinds of People Making Amazing Things In Garages, Basements, and Backyards" this marvelous hard cover volume covers a large range of projects from an incredibly diverse group of people.

The tales are amazing, from a 19 year old high school student (who looks five years younger) who took atmospheric samples with a kite and a plastic drinking cup all the way through to the electrical engineer in Virginia who spent a year and $1,000 building a nuclear fusor.

In between there is a good sampling of the home enthusiast, high school students, researchers and the downright kooky. There is a good mix of design hacks, electronics, engines, useful, strange and marvelously useless that really define the home tinkerer. Here are the tales of a bunch of people who just had to "scratch their own itch."

Most of the stories are a two page spread with a picture or two showing the project and on the facing page the text. The pictures are good quality and a mix of the entertaining and informative. For each story you get the name, occupation and location of the maker along with the cost and an estimate of the time taken to build. For most you also get a URL where you can go for more information.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Duff HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 28, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Tools and I usually don't get along real well. But that doesn't mean I can't appreciate the skill of those who can make something out of seemingly nothing... Makers: All Kinds of People Making Amazing Things In Garages, Basements, and Backyards by Bob Parks. A beautiful book that salutes the sometimes off-beat inventor we'd probably all like to be...

Parks has taken 91 "makers", those who have invented and created things out of the ordinary, and given them a short one to two page write-up on their invention, their story, and their motivation as to what makes them tick. In many cases, it's a matter of making a gadget out of trashed treasures that someone else threw out. Take Greg Miller, for instance, who built his own night vision scope from discarded parts and $39. Or you have the group of hackers who built an electronic lock-picking machine out of obsolete and castoff computer parts... cost $0. But there are also the serious inventors who devote large amounts of time, energy, and money to pursuing their dreams. Like Tom Chudleigh who has built a spherical wooden treehouse that took him two years and well over $10ooo. Or Hans-Joerg Krohn who missed being able to fly all the time before he was transferred to a job in Kazakhstan. To satisfy that urge, he spent over $12000 and 10 years building a full-scale flight simulator with multiple computers and customized instrument panels. While the back of the simulator looks like a Rube Goldberg device, the seating canopy looks like a professional trainer. An incredible feat of engineering...

O'Reilly has done a superb job with this "coffee table" book. After the success of their Make magazine, it's not surprising that they would publish something like this. What is unusual is the quality and beauty of the volume.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By D. Donovan, Editor/Sr. Reviewer on April 12, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Around the world there's an underground of citizen engineers hard at work making their own cameras, weapons, medical equipment, computers, and more in their garages, backyards, and homes - and their worlds come to life in both interviews and color photos in MAKERS: ALL KINDS OF PEOPLE MAKING AMAZING THINGS IN GARAGES, BASEMENTS AND BACKYARDS. From a farmer in Montana who modified a hay baler to break up derelict homes on his property to a Seattle apprentice electrician who has developed a fascinating Tesla washtub coil, these are lively portraits of inventors at work.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Jack D. Herrington on March 8, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This book is a collection of one or two page stories about people who create things, the Makers, as it were. And the stories about the people, and what they make, are fascinating and inspirational. Garage handiwork is back (though it really never left), and this book shows how is chic to be geek.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mark E. Robbins on August 24, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Basically, if you're a fan of Make: Technology on Your Own Time for the interesting PEOPLE who make stuff, you'll enjoy this book. If you're mainly interested in the ideas and the projects, then skip it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By William Gurstelle on April 24, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Bob Parks is a Vermont based free lance writer, well known among those who tinker with interesting mechanical, electrical,and other machine-like things. In Makers, Parks goes deep within that world to learn about and describe some of the best, and in my own opinion, most clever machines that individual makers have built.

His world of "Makers" is a big, exciting, and nuanced sort of place. Best of all, I think Parks understands what makes these folks tick, and brings that out well through excellent prose and helpful diagrams.
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