Ever heard of the Makelangelo? What about the Pebble; or Coolest? If you haven’t, don’t beat yourself up about it – it turns out they’re pretty smart, well-engineered inventions created to solve real-life, everyday problems. And just in case you were wondering, they are, in that order: a mural-drawing robot, an iOS/Android compatible smartwatch and a tech-savvy cooler box with a built-in speaker and blender.

The point?

These items are all born out of the ‘Maker Movement’; an idea which dictates that no product or service is considered laughable or impractical if its function outweighs its feasibility. Far from new, the Maker Movement is greatly reminiscent of business attitudes that were adopted by Apple founder and technology demi-god Steve Jobs; who preached and believed that ‘(e)verything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you; and you can change it, you can influence it, you can build your own things that other people can use – and once you learn that, you’ll never be the same again.’

Fundamentally, ‘Maker culture’ turns typical consumption on its head by allowing consumers to become prosumers; developing products and/or services for others based on prior problems they have had with said previous goods and services. It’s an inclusive subculture, utilising other Maker’s with great ideas and outlooks to generate batches of even better ideas that are becoming increasingly popular amongst the public and even the biggest of companies. Technology giant Intel is said to be launching America’s Greatest Makers, a reality show which supports the Maker culture by seeking game-changing products in the tech field – and then offering a $1 million prize for them. The Maker Faire, a festival showcasing the efforts of adventurous Makers, is a positive display of the Culture gaining momentum within broader social circles. And, there’s even a magazine – Make – which documents the progress of various ideas as they continue to permeate into a marketplace increasingly infected with clunky, expensive and unnecessary products or services.

We’re supporting this movement for several reasons: first, it’s on-trend and embraces everything great about the Sharing Economy – we’re talking 3D printing, open-source learning, peer-to-peer funding networks and consumer-centric design. Secondly, it’s a convergence of many trends we’ve worked with and advised our clients on in the past, like Hacklife, Provenance, Rise of Me-tail and the Sharing Economy, to name a few. Lastly, as technology and resources continue to increase exponentially in their capability, we’re imagining a world whereby people have the means to create and fashion any product they can imagine, cutting corporate empires at their knees and reducing the power they have over their consumers.

We see it changing a lot of things: the way people consume, what they will refuse to accept from brands and companies and most importantly, how they will make a living. It is, quite literally, bringing the power to the people – and we’re all for it.

For a deeper understanding into the world of Making, be sure to check out the trailer for the documentary Maker, a film which showcases the rise of the subculture. For a look at Intel’s efforts, click here. And for Kickstarter, where you can track great innovative projects, click here.

Credit goes to ‘Maker’ for the image we used.