A prerequisite to describing the Tolocar projects is a shared understanding of some key terms.
Getting Started in Making: Key Terms[edit | edit source]
A maker is an individual who engages in do-it-yourself (DIY) or do-it-with-others (DIWO) activities, particularly in the fields of engineering, electronics, and crafting. Makers are often enthusiastic about creating, inventing, and building things using various tools, materials, and technologies. They are driven by a hands-on approach to learning and problem-solving, and they often share their projects, knowledge, and ideas within the maker community.
Makerspaces also known as open labs, hackerspaces, or Fab Labs, are collaborative workspaces that provide makers (and anyone who is interested) with access to a wide array of tools, equipment, and resources to bring their projects to life. These vibrant spaces cultivate a spirit of collaboration, networking, learning, and creativity, allowing makers to explore their interests and transform their ideas into tangible creations. Equipped with 3D printers, laser cutters, hand tools, and other advanced machinery such as milling machines and band saws, makerspaces offer ample room for experimentation. This empowering environment fosters a sense of self-determination and discovery, enabling individuals to strengthen their own abilities and gain a sense of support and accomplishment.
Makers often contribute to open-source projects, participate in maker fairs and events, and share their knowledge and experiences offline and online, creating a vibrant and supportive community of like-minded individuals. This maker community has gained significant popularity globally, thanks to the increasing availability of affordable technology, such as 3D printers, microcontrollers, and other electronic components, which has made it easier for individuals to engage in various DIY and DIWO projects and innovations. The maker community's influence extends beyond its popularity, with makers often driving innovation, inspiring educational initiatives, and fostering community development through their collaborative and hands-on approach to problem-solving and creativity.