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LVL1 Makership Recipients

LVL1 is proud to announce the recipients of our groundbreaking Makership program!

We had initially raised enough funds within our community for 2 Makerships. In a surprise twist, LVL1 Google Group subscriber Dmitry S. graciously donated $250 to fund a 3rd! Thank you Dmitry!

Let’s meet our 3 Makers!

    Nicolas Searcy – Currently pursuing a Masters in Electrical and Computer Engineering at U of L’s Speed School of Engineering, Nick’s Makership lays out a vision to develop open source hardware and software for ultrasonography. Nick presented a well researched proposal with prioritized goals for both A-mode (one dimensional) and B-mode (two dimensional) ultrasonography using transducers and a Maple development board. Nick was realistic about the challenges of commercializing an open source medical device, but views it as a device to fundamentally change the market. “While a hackerspace-produced ultrasound system could never be sold commercially and it would probably never be a good idea to distribute kits (low power ultrasound is completely harmless but it would be a bad idea legally if nothing else), if a system could be designed and demonstrated for less than $500 (ideally, more like $100), that fact alone could introduce pressure to the ultrasound market”


    Ezra Clark – An engineering student at U of L and president of the RE3 (Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Club), Ezra’s Makership proposal builds on RE3′s successes in building low-cost solar panels from solar cell manufacturing waste. “Individual solar cells are a mere 200 microns thick and thus are broken and chipped easily during the commercial process of solar panel manufacturing. These damaged cells can be compared to a 2-liter of Coke with a torn label; it can still serve its purpose but is deemed by the company as “manufacturing waste.” I currently know of no commercial recycling efforts being made to use this potentially valuable material.” Ezra plans to use LVL1′s facilities to fabricate (and train others in fabricating) these solar panels. “We than plan to spend the next one and a half months making solar panels and teaching those who are interested the process and theory behind them. During the final few weeks, the club will focus on installing our fabricated solar panels on the UofL greenhouse, just in time for spring. If time allows, the club will also attempt to outfit a community garden in the Clifton neighborhood with a solar panel array. “


    Patrick Joyce – Patrick is currently unemployed and has been making the best use of his time hanging out at LVL1 7 days a week. Patrick’s Makership proposal is the design and development of a Guitarist’s Keyboard. “What I want to build is a keyboard like device, but instead of the piano like layout of keys, rows of velocity sensitive buttons corresponding to the strings of the guitar, with columns corresponding to the frets. This would allow someone who is familiar with guitar but not piano to play the whole range of keyboard sounds without having to learn another layout of notes and chords. Alternate tunings and different ranges of notes would be changed in software, selectable by buttons or knobs. This would be a MIDI device, so the range of sound types would be nearly limitless.” Although Patrick is new to LVL1, he didn’t waste any time creating the first phase of his project. While the Makerships were still being decided on, he developed a key matrix MIDI device with an Arduino and is showing great progress. Now that he has a Makership and a key to LVL1, I doubt he’ll ever leave.


We at LVL1 wish our new Makership recipients the best of luck on their projects. Know that you have the full support of the LVL1 community behind you, and we will provide whatever resources we can to help you succeed.

While we are excited for all 3 of these Makership proposals, we had 6 applicants and therefore 3 Makership applicants of comparable merit didn’t make this round. Unfortunately, we don’t have funds for all of them… yet. We encourage you to resubmit proposals for our next round of Makerships in the very near future.

You can help LVL1 provide more Makerships with a small donation of $5/mo. We will announce a new Makership as soon as the donation funds make a new one available! Click the Paypal donate button below to contribute to a Makership:




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  1. [...] See their blog post for more information on the winning makers. [...]

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