I bet a lot of us associate drones with stories of surveillance and international conflict. So why on earth are we featuring them at a family-friendly celebration of creativity?

To explain, here’s what Chris Anderson, editor-in-chief at Wired magazine, founder of DIY Drones (an online community for people building their own unmanned aerial vehicles), and a speaker at the East Bay Mini Maker Faire, said in the New Yorker last year:

“The Internet was once a military thing, but we colonized it and took it away from them. Right now, drones are scary. I’d like to make them unscary.”

Building your own drone is not only a way to learn physics, electronics and sensors, mechanical assembly, and how things fly, it’s also a way to put a powerful technology in the hands of regular citizens, which makes for a better and safer society. It’s also a way to feel what it’s like to be a bird, to experience that amazing sensation of flying, safely, from the ground, when drones have eyes and share their view with you. And if you’re still thinking about the military implications of this technology, here’s Chris again in Wired earlier this year:

It’s safe to say that drones are the first technology in history where the toy industry and hobbyists are beating the military-industrial complex at its own game.

Be at Studio One on the Mini Maker Faire grounds at Park Day School by 11 am next Sunday, October 14th, to hear Chris explain how and why he builds drones, and shows them off.