While some may imagine technology builders as people behind a screen, fiddling with abstruse code and hard-to-understand programs, the truth is that there is a lot of cutting, hammering, fitting, and sizing that goes into technology innovation. And those who do it are craftsmen and women of another sort. They may not be behind a potter’s wheel or in a dark room, but the craftsmanship that goes into products, apps, games, and software is as complex and heartfelt as any handmade good.
And a lot of this tech craftsmanship is happening in Austin. According to the Austin Chamber of Commerce, high tech companies in this city added more than 5,400 new jobs in 2014. Since January, venture capitalists have invested roughly $265 million in Austin companies, up 31 percent from this time last year.
Makers who have crafted the technology featured in this year’s Makers Issue have had to contend with battery capacity, wiring, and LEDs – the innards that give meaning to an exterior’s pristine design. Plus, just like wood- or metalworkers, these craftspeople are building tools with practical applications, anticipating problems, and fashioning solutions.