Free to Make by Dale Dougherty
How the Maker Movement is Changing Our Schools, Our Jobs, and Our Minds

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A thoughtful and enthusiastic analysis of how more and more people are inventing and creating truly remarkable products and services.


Dale Dougherty, creator of MAKE: magazine and the Maker Faire, provides a guided tour of the international phenomenon known as the Maker Movement, a social revolution that is changing what gets made, how it’s made, where it’s made, and who makes it. Free to Make is a call to join what Dougherty calls the “renaissance of making,” an invitation to see ourselves as creators and shapers of the world around us. As the internet thrives and world-changing technologies—like 3D printers and tiny microcontrollers—become increasingly affordable, people around the world are moving away from the passivity of one-size-fits-all consumption and command-and-control models of education and business. Free to Make explores how making revives abandoned and neglected urban areas, reinvigorates community spaces like libraries and museums, and even impacts our personal and social development—fostering a mindset that is engaged, playful, and resourceful. Free to Make asks us to imagine a world where making is an everyday occurrence in our schools, workplaces, and local communities, grounding us in the physical world and empowering us to solve the challenges we face.

About Dale Dougherty

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Dale Dougherty is the founder and CEO of Maker Media Inc. in San Francisco. Maker Media produces Make: magazine, which launched in 2005, and the Maker Faire, which was held first in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2006. There were 151 Maker Faires held around the world in 2015. Dougherty was born in 1955 in Los Angeles and grew up in Louisville, Kentucky. He was a cofounder of O’Reilly Media, where he was the first editor of their computing trade books, and developed GNN, the first commercial website, in 1993. He coined “Web 2.0” in 2003. Make started at O’Reilly Media and spun out as its own company in January 2013. In 2011 Dougherty was honored at the White House as a Champion of Change through an initiative that honors Americans who are “doing extraordinary things in their communities to out-innovate, out-educate, and out-build the rest of the world.” At the 2014 White House Maker Faire he was introduced by President Obama as an American innovator making significant contributions to the fields of education and business. He lives in Sebastopol, California, with his wife, Nancy.Since 2007, Ariane Conrad, a freelance writer, editor, and coach known as the Book Doula, has collaboratively authored seven nonfiction books, including three New York Times best-sellers. Most recently she supported Kennedy Odede and Jessica Posner with Find Me Unafraid: Love, Loss and Hope in an African Slum (Ecco, 2015). More about her collaborations, interviews, presentations, and other adventures is available at
Author Residence: Sebastopol, CA
Author Hometown: Louisville, KT
Published September 27, 2016 by North Atlantic Books. 337 pages
Genres: History, Self Help, Computers & Technology, Education & Reference, Humor & Entertainment, Arts & Photography, Science & Math. Non-fiction
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on Jul 19 2016

A thoughtful and enthusiastic analysis of how more and more people are inventing and creating truly remarkable products and services.

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