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Dan Schneiderman

Rochester Mini Maker Faire

Interview No. 47

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Rochester is a blooming city with new ideas and passions popping up from it’s roots.

What part of Rochester are you from?

I grew up in Henrietta on the edge of Rush.

What is your favorite part of living in Rochester?

There is something for everyone. If you like museums, we have tons. If you want to go hiking or just get outdoors, there are parks everywhere. Music? Pick a genre and there is probably a concert going on somewhere in Rochester. Making? Pick a project and there are dedicated areas for whatever ideas you have. It’s just super easy to find places that cover all of my interests.

Do you have any favorite/secret Rochester spots?

Mostly random studios for makers and other artists. Whenever I’m surrounded by another person’s projects, their passions just energize me. Same goes for community spaces like the Rochester Makerspace and Interlock Rochester.

What is your favorite time of day to hang out in the city?

Mornings, usually with a cup of coffee or tea.

What's your favorite day of the week?

Saturdays. You can pack a Saturday with as many places or events to attend as you want, or just kick back and enjoy the day.

Describe your dream Rochester day.

I would start the morning with a large cup of coffee from either Starry Night Cafe or Upper Crust followed by hanging out with friends in one of their studios. Would then head home and make some progress on the backlog of projects or interactive exhibits that I’ve been wanting to work on for awhile. The day would end with taking my wife out to dinner at the Old Toad followed by spending the rest of the evening at one of the Rochester Museum and Science Center After Dark events.

It’s hard to put Rochester into one niche, we have so much history of arts, music, science, engineering, and social impact that we defy definition.

Do you have a favorite neighborhood?

NOTA, I find myself driving up and down Goodman all the time. Between helping out at the Rochester Museum and Science Center, attending events at the Memorial Art Gallery and Village Gate, or visiting the tons of studios you find in that area.

Favorite bar?

Probably a tie between The Old Toad and Nox.

Favorite hungover eating spot?

Mark's Texas Hots. Can never go wrong with getting a plate there.

What's your personal coping method for cold/gray weather?

Either curling up with a good book, or working on a project that I’ve been wanting to work on for a while.

What is your favorite Rochester memory?

That’s a tough one. Probably going to see my family perform in the Off-Monroe Players (OMP) shows. My mom has been part of the community theater troupe since I was 4, and still continues to perform with them. The troupe is also where I met my wife, so seeing the shows on Bittner St. will always hold a special place in my memory.

A follow up memory would be the first Rochester Mini Maker Faire and the feeling of seeing so many Rochesterians being able to show off their passions and projects.

What makes Rochester unique?

It’s hard to put Rochester into one niche, we have so much history of arts, music, science, engineering, and social impact that we defy definition.

What do you think could be improved?

Rochester needs to get out of it’s own self-defeating narrative and move forward. We need to not be afraid to get our hands dirty, try new things, and get out into the community.

If Rochester were a season, what would it be?

It would be Spring. Rochester is a blooming city with new ideas and passions popping up from it’s roots.

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Dan Schneiderman is one of the co-chairs of the Rochester Mini Maker Faire, and is now working as a Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) Researcher and Community Liaison at RIT for the Center for Media Arts Games Interaction Creativity (MAGIC). The Rochester Mini Maker Faire is a giant show and tell mixed with a science fair, a craft fair, and a carnival, where anyone can show off what they make. Starting in June of 2016, Dan became a representative of the New York State maker movement to the White House.

The 2016 Rochester Mini Maker Faire will take place on November 19th, at the Rochester Riverside Convention Center.