Just a few weeks back, I attended SXSW. At the conference it was clear we are in the midst of a “maker revolution”, referring to a do-it-yourself (DIY) community of people who create and build products. Makers make things.
In the software world we call ourselves developers, but it made me ponder the difference in meaning between these two words. I decided the distinction is that a maker is someone who identifies with the act of making something from nothing. Coming from the software industry, I see some developers who are indeed makers. But there are others who aren’t because they don’t self-identify with the personal act of production. This group tends to assign equivalent or higher importance to software process, attending meetings, and reviewing other developer’s code. With this distinction in mind I have decided to use the term maker to refer to the do-ers in the software industry. The person who can make something out of nothing that is a special breed.