I’ve written a practitioner reflection for the Journal of Peer Production Issue #12, where I talk about the efforts that maker communities around the world are making to be more inclusive and accessible. It’s a special journal issue on the institutionalisation of makerspaces, so check it out for a bunch of other interesting papers too!
The Factory, part of the Knowle West Media Centre, is a makerspace offering digital fabrication courses and product design and manufacturing services from a shiny new business park on the edge of the Knowle West housing estate in Bristol.
A strong thread of reflexivity has run through the maker movement since its birth around a decade ago in the mid-2000s. Neil Gershenfeld, creator of the first FabLab at MIT, heralded personal fabrication as a “coming revolution on your desktop”; Cory Doctorow tempered this with a utopian/dystopian (and just barely fictional) vision of making in the near future; and Chris Anderson lauded the Maker Movement (with capital ‘M’s) as nothing less than the New Industrial Revolution.