My Time at the USA Science and Engineering Festival (USASEF 2014)

SparkFun USASEF 2014 solder blob(Image courtesy of SparkFun Electronics)


This past weekend, my fellow coworkers and I attended the USA Science and Engineering Festival in Washington, D.C. More than just attended, we had a booth to teach kids (and adults) how to solder. People would wait in line, get a free kit (Yes, free. They got to take it home.), and sit down at a soldering station where we would help them learn the basics as they made their way through the soldering kit. This was a huge hit, and apparently, it has been for some time for SparkFun.

SparkFun USASEF 2014 soldering(Image courtesy of SparkFun Electronics)

People love free stuff. And, given the chance, they are generally willing to sit down for a solid 45 minutes to assemble something. I had several parents tell me that they stood in line with their child for 1 1/2 hours in order to solder. I find that incredible. I don’t think I would stand in line that long even for Disney’s best ride.

We ran out of kits by the end of the 2 days and certainly passed out copious business cards (many people wanted to know where to buy more kits). While it’s certainly good for business, it’s also a step in the right direction for getting people interested in electronics and engineering at an early age.

Also, there’s a video of me crashing a quadcopter. Stay tuned for that.

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