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The Art of Tinkering: Meet 150+ Makers Working at the Intersection of Art, Science Technology

4.13  ·  Rating details ·  264 ratings  ·  37 reviews
The Art of Tinkering is an unprecedented celebration of what it means to tinker: to take things apart, explore tools and materials, and build wondrous, wild art that’s part science and part technology. Join 150+ makers as they share the stories behind their beautiful and bold work—and use the special conductive ink on the cover to do some tinkering yourself!

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Hardcover, 224 pages
Published February 4th 2014 by Weldon Owen (first published October 22nd 2013)
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Average rating 4.13  · 
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Amy
Nov 02, 2014 rated it liked it
I'm happy this book exists, I just think its target audience is small.

As my official introduction to the "maker movement" I found myself very distracted by all the pretty pictures, and, well, everything. I'd look at a page and be so confused as to where to focus my attention. Then, when I started reading, I found myself hitting so many techno-newbie roadblocks ("What's a script?" "Wait, what's an LED light?") that I found myself resigned to scanning the pages to look at pretty pictures. But scan
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Yoo-Yoo
Mar 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book, by the folks at the Tinkering Studio at the awesome Exploratorium science museum, is filled with creative applications of everyday materials. To only list a few of my favorites:
- Inflatable plastic bear, placed over NYC subway vents and expand when a train goes by, to the delight of passerby (page 190)
- Using foam and paper to build cam mechanisms - mechanical linkages that transfer rotary motion to linear motion, or vice versa (page 146). This was mind-blowing - what a novel human in
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Lorena
May 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book was amazing. It's organization is so straightforward and inspiring that I read it cover to cover rather than as a table book. First it introduces you to a Tinkerer, then it shows you how to do that style yourself and then it shows you various other artists working in that same tinker genre. I ended up looking up so many artists/ tinkerers to learn more about their work. This book is inspiring, interesting and a fun read weather you tinker or not.
Suzanne Artis
Jul 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: tech
What an amazing book...any librarian interested in makerspaces should read it cover to cover. I skimmed it once and then really began reading each page. The ideas, inventions and projects are eclectic and incredibly creative. The book is arranged in little chapter of 4 spreads. The first spread highlights a project by a specific maker, the next is a visual journal bio about the makers creative process, a manageable project follows and then the last spread is about additional makers and projects ...more
AJ
May 06, 2018 rated it it was ok
The Art of Tinkering is sort of like an inspiration-porn type of book. Rather than offering discrete tips and tricks to beginners, it showcases several different types of projects that live at the intersection of art and engineering, and then indicates how something similar might be accomplished by a "normal" person.

I honestly found most of the projects in this book to be either intimidating (and I've been a "tinkerer" for years) or ugly AF. Thankfully I'm already established in my creative and
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Erin Buhr
Oct 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a mesmerizing book that captures the possibility and amazing power of tinkering. Truthfully I found it overwhelming at times, but I think that is only a testament to the fact that books and activities like this were not encouraged with my generation or the ones that came before it. How wonderful that we live in a time that art and science and technology can intersect and be celebrated in such a fashion. Our world needs more tinkering. An inspiring must read for any aspiring tinkerer, sci ...more
E
Nov 19, 2018 rated it it was ok
Not what I expected. It's an art book that happens to use rudimentary technology (like battery + LED) used in "tinkering". Even for what it was within expectations, it's just a (static) showcase of (moving/dynamic) art pieces, but in a book. A video/documentary may have been a better medium for this content.

I love the Exploratorium but unfortunately this book did not satiate my interest in tinkering/making, and the art projects did not quite come off the page as maybe was intended.
Paul  Hankins
Feb 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Recommended by Austin Kleon in his weekly newsletter. There is so much to love about this book and I am thinking a STEaM teacher would want to have this on hand as a go-to idea generator for kids in the room.
Terri Fleming
Nov 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Great book. An inspiration to those of us who work to inspire others.
Tabitha
Mar 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Utterly fascinating, definitely planning to reread in more depth soon
Crystal Johnson
Mar 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This was a very fun book to look through. I don't have much of a science background but I enjoyed it thoroughly. The text to pictures ratio (lots of great pictures, by the way) was perfect. You'll be jotting down names and ideas and materials to do further research or some fun youtubing.

People with a science background probably already did a lot of their own tinkering shown in the book but I think they will take away some creative ideas to try out. This book will appeal to both adults and childr
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Jonathan Cassie
Nov 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Lots of wildly creative projects for schools embracing a maker ethos. What I really liked about many of these projects is the ways in which I could see them being seamlessly integrated into programs that really have nothing to do with making on their face (like English or World Languages). The more that the maker ethos gets embedded in the regular experience of students, the better it will be for them from a creativity, criticality and open-minded perspective.
Henry Huang
May 16, 2014 rated it really liked it
The book cover can conduct ELECTRICITY. How cool is that? Within the pages are tons of projects inspired by the Exploratorium for DIYers of all stripes. This isn't exactly a how-to book; rather it's a buffet of what's possible to stir your creative juices. I particularly liked the section on photography using DIY drones.
Lafayette Public Library
Jul 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
The book cover can conduct ELECTRICITY. How cool is that? Within the pages are tons of projects inspired by the Exploratorium for DIYers of all stripes. This isn't exactly a how-to book; rather it's a buffet of what's possible to stir your creative juices. I particularly liked the section on photography using DIY drones.
Marcia
Nov 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book from the Exploratorium does an excellent job of sharing the fun and inquiry of the maker movement. Cool stuff. The book breaks down tinkering into categories- with amazing projects and their creators highlighted. There are projects to try on your own, and loads of inspiration.
An excellent addition to the Maker Space.
Andrew Watt
Feb 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book is part of the Design Library at my school now. It's a great introduction to what tinkering is, why it matters for kids and adults, and it has thousands of photos which explore both inspiration and perspiration — some great ideas, and many how-to's that take longer than an afternoon to complete.
Heydi Smith
May 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: adult-non-fic
This book is freakin awesome! If I was like 8 or 12 and had to be stuck in a car or plane or any confining space this is one of the books I want with me. It has the coolest, weirdest stuff you can think of and projects toucan try to. Love it.
Sarah
Nov 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Magazine styled picture-filled book showcasing tinkerers and their passions, brimming with inspiring little snippets of their stories. This is not a how-to book but displays a buffet of ideas and possibilities that could catapult you through your own adventure as a maker. Love it.
Josi
Feb 11, 2014 rated it really liked it
If you like art/engineering def check this book out! :)
Jim Tiffin Jr
Apr 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Phenomenal book of ideas to inspire the experienced maker.
Mills College Library
500 W6868 2013
Michelle
Very cool ideas for people who are interested in techy art. Great pictures. (As an aside, I learned that I'm personally not interested in doing projects like these myself.)
Story❤
Nov 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
Full of inspiring ideas to get people of all ages creating. Especially good invitation to the world of tinkering for girls and women
Megan
Dec 31, 2014 rated it liked it
A lot of fun to browse, with lots of great projects that would translate well to Hive-land. Notebook-hacks, wearables, and the squishy circuits are totally in the cards.
Jon
Feb 04, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: kid-craft
I expected more of a project book with art elements, but this is really an art book with maker elements. It got me thinking about art, but it wasn't what I was looking for.
Amy
Mar 10, 2015 rated it really liked it
Great ideas for projects at the intersection of art and technology!
Ananya Garg
Jun 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
This book is great for anyone who wants some inspiration! One day I want to make the watercolor typewriter.
Heather
Nov 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I wish I owned this book.
Julia
Nov 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: haisln
A great book for people considering a makerspace for their school and for kids and adults that enjoy "tinkering."
Alejandria  Galarza
Great source for program ideas or tinkery crafts in general. Great profile on tinkers currently working on projects.
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