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DAVID BRIN's Tinkerers

Metals Publications and Data Services, Inc., 2010

Tinkerers also has a dedicated Facebook page for discussion and comments. Communicate your "like" for Tinkerers — and tell us about your tinkering!

what if hobbies and interests were valued again?

Did America lose its knack for making things, or is there a "maker culture" revival starting? Manufacturing is the root that all other projects sprout from... even the arts!

Set in the near future of 2024, Tinkerers portrays a small American town whose nearby river bridge — its lifeline to the world — collapses one day for lack of maintenance and care. Young Danny Nakamura becomes a hero, using his tinkering skills to save a busload of kids. He then decides to go on a quest, visiting some of the smartest people in town to ask them why and how this disaster could have happened. Did the bridge's decay and collapse illustrate a decline in citizens' ability to maintain their civilization?

Tinkerers combines graphic art with a guided tour of history and tech, exploring how to win back the knack! Some Background: David Brin was asked by the Metals Service Center Institute to create a comic book set 20 years from now that discusses the many reasons for US industrial decline... and how it might come back.

Tinkerers was co-written with Jason Land, with art by Jan Feindt. It was released in print form January, 2011.

study guides

A companion study guide to help individuals, students and classes appraise, understand and discuss Tinkerers is now available.

sample pages of Tinkerers

read the entire 27 page comic (pdf) on this site.


Tinkerers in the world

nonfiction that celebrates tinkering

Makers: The New Industrial Revolution, by Chris Anderson

The Art of Curiosity, by Exploratorium

Creative Economy and Culture, by John Hartley

The Maker Movement Manifesto, by Mark Hatch

Hackerspaces, by Sarah R. Davies


science fiction that celebrates the amateur

Makers, by Cory Doctorow

Autonomous, by Annalee Newitz

Agency, by William Gibson

The Invention of Hugo Cabret, by Brian Selznick

The Color of Magic (Discworld), by Terry Pratchett


articles that explore makers

"Maker Cultures and the Prospects for Technological Action" (pdf), by Susana Nascimento and Alexandre Pólvora

"Why Today's Inventors Need to Read More Science Fiction," by Rebecca J. Rosen

"The Tinkerers: How Corporations Kill Creativity," by Alec Foege

a brief intro to science fiction author DAVID BRIN

To learn more, visit his books page, or see his "about me" page or detailed biography.



David Brin's science fiction novels have been New York Times Bestsellers, winning multiple Hugo, Nebula and other awards. At least a dozen have been translated into more than twenty languages. They range from bold and prophetic explorations of our near-future to Brin's Uplift series, envisioning galactic issues of sapience and destiny (and star-faring dolphins!). Learn More

shorter fiction

Short stories and novellas have different rhythms and artistic flavor, and Brin's short stories and novellas, several of which earned Hugo and other awards, exploit that difference to explore a wider range of real and vividly speculative ideas. Many have been selected for anthologies and reprints, and most have been published in anthology form. Learn More

Contrary Brin blog

Since 2004, David Brin has maintained a blog about science, technology, science fiction, books, and the future — themes his science fiction and nonfiction writings continue to explore. Learn More

social media influencer

Who could've predicted that social media — indeed, all of our online society — would play such an important role in the 21st Century — restoring the voices of advisors and influencers! Lively and intelligent comments spill over onto Brin's social media pages. Learn More

DAVID BRIN scientist


David Brin's Ph.D in Physics from the University of California at San Diego (the lab of nobelist Hannes Alfven) followed a masters in optics and an undergraduate degree in astrophysics from Caltech. Every science show that depicts a comet now portrays the model developed in Brin's PhD research. Learn More

transparency expert

Brin's non-fiction book, The Transparent Society: Will Technology Force Us to Choose Between Freedom and Privacy?, continues to receive acclaim for its accuracy in predicting 21st Century concerns about online security, secrecy, accountability and privacy. Learn More

speaker & consultant

Brin speaks plausibly and entertainingly about trends in technology and society to audiences willing to confront the challenges that our rambunctious civilization will face in the decades ahead. He also talks about the field of science fiction, especially in relation to his own novels and stories. To date he has presented at more than 200 meetings, conferences, corporate retreats and other gatherings.Learn More

future/tech advisor

Brin advises corporations and governmental and private defense- and security-related agencies about information-age issues, scientific trends, future social and political trends, and education. Urban Developer Magazine named him one of four World's Best Futurists, and he was appraised as "#1 influencer" in Onalytica's Top 100 report of Artificial Intelligence influencers, brands & publications. Past consultations include Google, Microsoft, Procter & Gamble, and many others. Learn More

Contacting BRIN

All the Ways in the World to Reach David Brin

an ornery, contrary BLOG, and other insightful wormholes!

Do not enter if you want a standard "Party" line! Contrary Brin's incendiary posts on science, sci-fi and politics and its engaged, opinionated community poke at too-rigid orthodoxies, proposing ideas and topics that fascinate — and infuriate. See for yourself, and if you like — subscribe for more.

Questions? Concerns? Email DAVID BRIN at mail@davidbrin.com


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