William Kamkwamba was a Maker at Maker Faire Africa and focused his efforts on creating windmills. Here is some of what he has to say about his experience:
People often ask me, “So how did you manage such a thing?” Well, I designed and built my machine in much the same way many Africans are getting by these days: by taking simple, everyday materials and being creative. All across the continent, people are using innovative solutions to address the biggest problems, such as lack of water and electricity, and to find ways poor people can easily make a living.
Most of the materials for my windmill were found in the scrapyard of a nearby tobacco estate. This place was filled with abandoned cars and trucks just rusting in the sun, in addition to old water pumps, coil springs and other random metals. Unfortunately, the school where I’d dropped out was just across the road, and as I went exploring, my mates would tease me from the playground, calling out …
Read more about William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer here
(images: Design Observer / Tom Reilly)
Editor and publisher of MAKE, and general manager of the Maker Media division of O’Reilly Media, Inc. talks about how we are all makers. He gave this talk at TED in Detroit this January.
Electronics and crafting kits are a really great way to DIY with friends – and a key aspect of Maker Faire.