Dichotomy Of A Real-Life Maker Online

I love the maker movement. The wide spread community of people who love building and modifying things for fun & profit, practical and just-because, resonates with my natural inclinations. If it breaks, fix it. If you need something, build it. Modify stuff until it works for you and makes your life better in some way.

This is the great thing about the internet – we can now all share the myriad of things we’ve built, hacked, or dreamed of, and be inspired to create things of usefulness & beauty. The only bugger is that I get so busy being inspired that I don’t get anything done. I could (and have, may times) spent hours reading hackaday or Instructables or the Make: blog. It’s awesome. And colossally time-sucking. In which lies the rub; for in my quest of the cool and useful inspiration I find myself with increasingly little time to actually build the things already on my list.

The principle holds for most of the internet, really. It’s an incredible resource, a wealth of knowledge on almost any subject imaginable and then some that aren’t. The magnitude of information at the fingertips is both exciting and mind-boggling, because I love information. I love knowing and learning about things, I love being able to search the world for opinion, experience, and data at a moments notice.

At the same time, I have trouble managing large amounts information. If I’m not careful, the ever-branching search for whatever bit I was looking for (or just happened across) inflates exponentially. That is when I find myself, two hours later, with thirty more browser tabs and enough reading material for another week of evenings – and still with my list of projects I’d like to actually, physically do. Never mind the stack of books and last month’s Popular Mechanics waiting patiently on the end table.

Ah, dichotomy. A Maker doesn’t just consume, a maker creates, taking ideas and raw stuff and turning it into something better, something useful. How can I create when my I leave no space for it? All the thinking, reading and book-larnin’ doesn’t cause completed things to magically appear. I have to actually get out and do something. So if you see less of me around the internet, it’s because I’m living more in real life. And building stuff, too.

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