schmalz blog postDeanna and Brian Schmalz are the father-daughter team behind Schmalz Haus LLC and are returning for their second year at the Minneapolis/St. Paul Mini Maker Faire with new projects and a lot of enthusiasm.

Deanna was our youngest presenter at the 2015 faire – she discussed the learn-to-solder board that she designed and uses to teach her elementary school classmates. At this year’s faire, she will show you how to solder with her specially-designed board. Deanna is an experienced teacher who learned to solder four years ago, at age 8 (early soldering and making in general runs in the family – her dad learned at age 6!). Deanna’s favorite project is still the first circuit board that she designed, called Blinking Grapes.

When Brian isn’t at his day job as a systems engineer, he develops open source software and hardware. Last year he brought his Egg Bot and Watercolor Bot to the faire. This year, he is giving a workshop on chipKIT, a higher performance alternative to Arduino, which he helped develop. During his presentation, he will give an overview of the chipKIT project and some of the nifty things that you can do with a chipKIT board.

We always ask makers who or what is inspiring them at the moment. Deanna went with the obvious, awesome and sweet choice: her dad, Brian. Brian looks to other makers who are sharing their work on YouTube including Jimmy Diresta and local open source hardware creators Wayne & Layne (we are partial to this answer as Adam Wolf, one of the Wayne & Layne founders, is an essential part of the Minneapolis/St. Paul Mini Maker Faire planning team).

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