Sally Applin is a Ph.D. student in social anthropology and computing at the University of Kent. She studies how we make technology and how it makes us. She works with Dr. Michael Fischer on AnthroPunk, the idea that "individual people collectively make the world around them, not only from the materials and ideas available to them, but from new materials and ideas that they construct." One of their messages is that while we may DIY, we work with materials and ideas that come from collaborative sources. In short, making is social and people can make more than things, we make ideas and we are continually making and remaking the culture that we reside within.
She gave a terrific talk at Maker Faire about the making of things, knowledge, culture, and ideas.
Mark Frauenfelder is the founder of Boing Boing and the editor-in-chief of MAKE and Cool Tools. Twitter: @frauenfelder. Come and hear Mark speak at the ALA conference in Chicago on July 1.