Making Things That Matter

A message from the founder:

In 2008, I had a series of conversations about open-source DIY kit businesses with several new friends I had just met at a conference. My life had just gone through dramatic upheaval after the failure of my third startup, Bionica, and the existential search for direction was again upon me. These new friends told of businesses which were strong, growing, and most interestingly, brought meaning to their lives…

I had been to my first Maker Faire a year earlier in Austin, Texas. I think I talked to every one of the Makers at the event. Wandering around and meeting attendees and exhibitors made me feel something I’ve never felt before. Here were people just like me that loved to make things for themselves, their family, their friends, and their communities. It’s what made them happiest, and it was one of the most important and meaningful activities that they pursued.

2009 came upon me. I continued to watch the Maker and Maker Faire community grow. I had become part of the Make Magazine team, organized the first of the regional Maker Faires, Maker Faire Rhode Island (now known as Mini Maker Faire Rhode Island) that attracted 5000 people and 40 Makers. I also continued to watch SparkFun, Adafruit, The Maker Shed, Evil Mad Scientist, and others supply the community with tools for project success. Friends continued to suggest that I apply my biomedical engineering and toy inventor skills to designing kits. I began to wonder, “is this what my future holds?” After a fourth failed startup, Leotus, it was clear that I needed to re-think my business strategy. Why do I keep following the standard model of beginning a venture when there is so little success? Why not just do something meaningful and try to share it with the community?

That’s how this all started. I’ve been making stuff since I was very little. Hovercrafts, high-pressure gear pumps, pneumatic robots, high-power motor drivers, LED controllers, bicycle technology, medical devices, musical Cookie Monsters, you name it, I’ve done it. Now I’m taking my best works and sharing them as open-source kits. Even better, I’ve assembled a team of fantastic engineers with sometimes decades of industry experience to bring you the very best solutions to your kit needs.


Thank you,
Kipp Bradford

Make Things That Matter