Visual Tour: Steampunk and Other Creative Anachronisms @Maker Faire 2017

Thursday, June 8, 2017

The do-it-yourself spirit runs strong in steampunk culture, so it's no surprise that many projects at Maker Faire had that wondrous techno-Victorian look. One section was devoted to steampunk, but you could find steampunk-inspired contraptions throughout the fairgrounds. Other projects were not steampunk in the strictest sense, but shared a similar sort of creative anachronism.

My favorite project at the 2017 Bay Area event was a steam-powered pencil sharpener from the Oakland-based Kinetic Steam Works. When I remarked to one of the makers that it looked like a steampunk contraption, he corrected me. "We're not steampunks," he said. "We're steam dorks." His point: steampunks may look the part, but his group recreates actual steam-age technology, albeit with 21st century power tools.

Personally, I can admire any work that demonstrates cleverness and creativity, whether it's powered by a steam engine, battery or nothing at all. Here's a look at some of the steamy highlights from the 2017 event.