is the name of my latest project. MIXXER will be a maker space in Winston-Salem, NC, and if that is a new term for you – a maker space is a place where people gather to share resources to make things. The kinds of things made, and the way they are made, depend on the people that organize and use the maker space. MIXXER could be a mix of artists space, a metal shop, wood shop, rapid prototype shop, robotics lab, scrap exchange and more (or less); really there are few parameters to constrain what happens in a makers space. The only real constraint, other than physics, is the limitations of the imagination and interests of the people that participate.
I have talked to a lot of people about this idea for a few years now; starting out as casual conversations, and then over time the conversation came more frequently and with more intensity. What I have discovered is that there are a lot of people in the Winston-Salem community that connect with the idea of a maker space. I decided it is time to move beyond just talking about it; MIXXER is an idea Winston-Salem is ready for.
Recently I partnered with Community Design Studio to ask for help in organizing a meeting to start developing a plan to bring MIXXER into being. Steve Harberger of CDS helped me to conduct a meeting with some influential people in Winston-Salem. Now there is a team of people working to bring MIXXER into being. So far we have some preliminary objectives that we need to meet to begin formally organizing. In addition to the research we are doing, we are throwing a party on Sunday July 27 from 4-7pm at The Olio at 840 Millworks St. Winston-Salem, NC 27101 where we will gather people to introduce them to MIXXER. When all of these people arrive to see and meet all the other people in town that are interested in sharing resources, I believe we’ll be able to get people to commit to supporting MIXXER.
MIXXER will take advantage of the power of sharing to make it possible for people to take their great ideas from vision to reality. If you consider the cost of high-tech equipment and the space to use it, for an individual with a need for a specialty tool or machine it should not take too much calculating to see the power of sharing. Need a welder to build a custom piece for your motorcycle – sign up with MIXXER. Need tools to build a new cabinet or table for your home – sign up with MIXXER. Have an idea for a new invention and need to make a prototype – sign up with MIXXER. Soon you will be able to sign up. For now you need only make your voice heard. Contact me to tell me your vision, and if you show up at our party you’ll have plenty of opportunity to be heard.
More to come later so keep checking in. Things are really heating up.
Awesome idea. Let me know what you need from me.
Thank you Susan. All I need is two things – your support and recommendation, and to connect me to people that want to get involved. I do have one thing in mind that you and Forsyth Education Partners may be interested in. I want to incorporate a scrap exchange in our program. This could be a source of school supplies for cheap. I have mentioned the idea to some people that teach art classes and they seem to think the school systems could really benefit from that. Also we are curious if any schools in town would like to run special programming through our space. High tech equipment and education go hand in hand.