Category Archives: Events

MakerCon last notice, Makerfaire first notice

Now is the time to plan your attendance at the local festivals of Make.


MakerCon is next weekend (Saturday, April 18) at the Florida State Fairgrounds. It’s an easy 2 hour drive down I-4. Over 75 exhibitors have signed up for an intense day of building and destroying stuff. The most popular categories seem to be robotics (including live robot combat), entrepreneurship & inventors, and other makerspaces. Highly anticipated activities (other than the robot combat) include the ability to have yourself 3D body scanned for printing (bring your own thumb drive), an outdoor pod drone race, an open demo mosh pit, and the kind of explosive chemistry demonstrations that have been banned from more timid maker events. Innovation House will have a booth. We probably won’t blow anything up but it should be a kinetic day.


Orlando Makerfaire has been announced for September 12 & 13, at the Orlando Science Center once again. This is the big one for Florida. About 2000 people attend each day, anxious to get their hands on stuff and be impressed by your brilliance. Stetson has had a booth every year of this event and I encourage you to start thinking about what projects you would like to bring, even if it’s only for part of a day.

Arduino Day

Arduino Day at the Melrose Center, March 28

The Melrose Center at the Library in Orlando is a cool place with 26,000 square feet of tech toys (, mostly audio/video/multimedia production. Arduino day is being co-run with the Orlando Robotics and Makers Club (
I will be there with my usual Arduino gadgets and the project. You should come.
Bill Ball​

Soldering workshop

I will be giving an introduction to soldering workshop at Innovation House on Thursday, February 19th at 7 p.m. This is aimed at people with no previous soldering experience.

Learn to solder badge

Make a spiffy learn to solder badge

The workshop is limited to the first 10 people who sign up below. I will offer at least one more workshop for those unable to attend the first one.

The workshop will cover the basics of soldering. You will make and take home your own light up “Learn to Solder Skill Badge” from the people at MakerShed (cable knit sweater not included).

I will cover basic safety issues with soldering.

Learn how NOT to redecorate with a soldering iron.

Learn how to NOT redecorate with a soldering iron.

We will also, for once and for all, resolve the question of whether it is pronounced “soLdering” or “soddering.”

The workshop is first signed up, first come. Use the form below to sign up. I am collecting your e-mail address and cell number to confirm your registration and in case I need to contact you about any last minute information, I won’t be sharing them.

Bill Ball


Workshop: Creating 3D Objects for Printing

Conducted by Bill Ball

4-5:30 pm, Thursday, January 15, 2015

East Room Computer lab, duPont-Ball Library

Learn how to create 3D objects for printing on one of Stetson’s 3D printers using the simple, online and free application Tinkercad. You will be creating objects inside a web browser within a few minutes with no previous experience necessary. Your work will be saved online and you can print out your creation whenever you like. The introduction to Tinkercad will take about 30 minutes, so come by anytime between 4 and 5 to get started.



Wait, wait before you go….

Although we are currently wrapping up the semester, I’d like to get you input on what to do for a workshop series when the spring semester starts. Below is a poll for possible workshops. All of these would be at the introductory level. They would be 60 to 90 minutes in length. Where possible you would leave with a finished product in hand. Please check all of the workshops that you would take. Don’t just check everything, which is of no help, but check just the ones that you would make the time to attend. This will help me prioritize what to offer. The workshops will start the first week of the Spring semester at a time, date, and place to be announced.


Let’s Take the Show on the Road

Stetson has organized successful exhibits at all three of the Orlando MakerFaires. Here is another opportunity to be the cool kids.

On April 18, 2015 Gulf Coast MakerCon will be held at the Florida Fairgrounds (East of Tampa). Although the MakerCon is an hour further away than the Orlando event, it comes at a much better time of year, when you all should have some great projects to showcase. In fact it’s a week after Stetson Showcase so you can double down on anything you prepare for that.gcmc-logo

The event website with more details is at:

They plan to host “80-100 makers, with expanded outdoor exhibits, a large scale *fighting robots *competition, a *ComicCon*, a *Young Makers Corner* and a *Steampunk Ball* after party for makers and guests.” Apparently they are fond of asterisks as well.

If you would like to be part of a Stetson booth at this event, let me know at Don’t worry about transportation or fees, just start thinking about what you might share with Gulf Coast makers.


SHS meeting

Organizer Nathan Hilliard has sent out the follow about a meeting of the Stetson Hacker Space. Everyone involved with Innovation House is invited to attend


Hey all,

So I just wanted to let everyone know that our meeting Thursday will feature John giving a talk on his procedural level generation algorithm based on cellular automata.
We will be meeting in the Innovation House as per usual from 6 to 7.
Following his talk, we’ll discuss getting started with the e-nable project for 3D printing prosthetic hands that we talked about last week.
See you all on Thursday!

Pitch your way to $300!

SEG (Stetson Entrepreneurial Group) is holding a competition to allow your ideas and solutions to be heard. All you need is a 90 second video and an idea. Submit your idea by November 5th! There is a Social and For-Profit category. You may enter as many videos as you would like however you may only represent one from each category if chosen to go to First Pitch Live which takes place November 11th. Here you will pitch in front of real entrepreneurs and receive feedback.

All you have to do is:

Like the Stetson Entrepreneurial Group Facebook Page and Join your category to enter! Submit as many ideas as you would like but if you make it to the live competition you can only qualify for one in each category, You may have one partner.

Videos Due November 5th!

This link will direct you to the For-Profit Category

This link will direct you to the Social Category

Check out the Video on the SEG Page if you have any questions or email me at

Direct Link to Rules

Innovation House Takes a Big Bite out of Orlando Makerfaire









Stetson was well represented at the 3rd year of the Orlando Makerfaire at the Orlando Science Center by a booth organized through Innovation House.

Our team of students, staff, and faculty for this year consisted of: Christian Micklisch, Dan Nunez, Vanna Blasczak, Nathan Hilliard, Katie Porterfield, Dun Burrhus, Dan Lane, Harry Price, Michael Branton, and Bill Ball.

It’s never too early to start working on projects to bring next year!



























Innovation House Party (and Prize Award Event)

Next Tuesday’s Stetson Showcase provides an opportunity to announce the winners of the first round of the Innovation House prize and hold a brief party for ourselves. So I am inviting all members, their guests, and anyone else who can find the place to come by at 4 pm on Tuesday, April 15.

We will announce and recognize the winners of the prize.

We will have treats. Please participate in the following poll to select the menu:

I’m not trying to bias the results but if we pick the first menu, there may be dry ice to play with after the frozen food’s gone.

Lastly, we will have a new toy to play, with namely this one:









So if you ever wanted to create 3D models freehand, or just stick stuff together with melted plastic, this is your chance.

Vote in the poll and try to let me know if you are coming ( so I know how much stuff to bring.