Thinkamingo + Maker Faire = Fun!


I wanted to share with you a little bit about something different we did this past weekend. We had a booth at the Tampa Bay Mini Maker Faire.

We have several interests that intersect at an event like this: robotics, makerspace, Arduino, Raspberry Pi, and general creativity.

We did not do this to sell anything. In fact, we set Story Dice to go free all day Saturday resulting in over 12,000 downloads and Top 10 rankings in Education for both iPhone and iPad, and a Top 200 ranking in OVERALL iPad Apps. After all that, we still had a great sales day. We did this to get practice talking about what we do, explaining our apps, interacting with a variety of people, and watch people interact with our apps.

Our activities:

Story Dice Flash FictionActivity #1 – Roll the Story Dice using one of our devices, and create a Flash Fiction on a postcard to take with you. This engaged guests to actually play with the app on a device (iPhone, iPad, Kindle Fire), write a short fiction, and have a souvenir that had our company name and logo on it.


Group Fiction ProjectActivity #2 – Group Fiction Project called Mini Maker Faire-y Tale. Participants were invited to add a sentence or illustration to an ongoing story throughout the day. This was extremely popular and attracted a lot of attention. Kids and adults were excited about it all day.


Group Fiction

This was the first of four completed Group Fiction projects throughout the day. It was a smashing success and I will likely do this at future events.

Ann gives a talk about creativity and brainstorming




Activity #3 – Spark Your Creativity workshop. I gave an informal talk about brainstorming and different ways to get unstuck. I shared a lot of my own secrets and demonstrated our newest app Sketch Spark at the end of the talk.


Set up

Specific things we had at the booth: pipe cleaners (we made flamingos with them!), baskets of pens/pencils/markers, postcards for the writing activity, iPad, iPhone, Windows Phone, 2 Kindle Fires, sign stand with a listing of all of our apps and platforms, easel with a company sign, email signup sheet for newsletter, hand sanitizer, media feature book containing articles/reviews/coverage, roll of paper for group fiction project, marine battery in a rolling backpack for recharging devices throughout the day, business cards with holders, lanyards and nametags, flamingo necklace, camera, QR code stickers for Story Dice, and sparkling personalities! We also packed our lunch/snacks/drinks.

story dice
Results: We gained newsletter subscribers. We spread goodwill in our maker community. We acquired photos of us actually doing things with other people. I am ready and willing to give another talk/workshop about Creativity and Brainstorming. We finally got business cards, a large sign and easel for future talks, and started a physical media feature book.

We had a ton of fun and learned a lot. If you have an opportunity to do something like this, go for it!

This post would be incomplete without a shout out to Mark Frauenfelder, editor-in-chief of Make magazine, and the founder of the popular Boing Boing blog. He and his daughter, Jane, featured Story Dice on NPR and Boing Boing because they love playing with it!

Spooky Story Dice

Spice up your campfire tales! Bewitch your audience with creepy creativity! Roll the dice to get your creative juices flowing! Make up stories with your kids at the dinner table!

9 out of 10 zombies prefer Spooky Story Dice over  brains!

Great for Halloween storytelling and seasonal writing prompts!


  • Universal App!
  • High-resolution graphics supporting Retina Display
  • Choose number of dice to roll, 1-3.
  • Realistic dice sounds and still images.
  • 74 pictograms in dictionary; 23 are unique to this Spooky Edition!
  • No reading necessary.
  • Optional game instructions included in app.

Available on the iTunes App Store

Our latest app: Name Dice

Name DiceWe are happy to announce our latest release: Name Dice!

This free iOS app makes character naming easy by providing nearly a million unique names at your fingertips!

How does Name Dice work?

Name Dice randomly generates a first and last name pair from lists of hundreds of names.

Basically, Name Dice makes names. It does NOT make you more creative, write your story for you, make sandwiches, refill your glass, clean your room, or knit you a sweater.

If you are stuck on getting a story idea, or ideas for a main character, Name Dice can help you. Maybe you’re a spy and you need a new identity. Maybe you and your friend want to pretend to be someone else when you go out to lunch. Maybe you are having a sleepover and you and your friends are going to pretend to be celebrities and you need help coming up with a good name. Maybe you are a writing a novel about your mom and you want to publish it under another name so she doesn’t find out about it.

Whatever the reason, Name Dice can give you some ideas for just the right name!

Give it a try! It’s free!

True Confession of a Distracted Writer

“One reason I love this app is that it just feeds my imagination! I roll the dice, see the name, and my mind is immediately buzzing with activity creating a life story for the name. If I don’t like the name for whatever reason, I just roll again! Voila!”

How do I save my favorite name?

The easiest way is to take a screenshot by holding down the home button and the power button simultaneously. It’s a good idea to practice this before you need to use it. After you take the screenshot, you can find the photo in your iOS device’s Camera Roll. You can share the photo on Facebook or your blog.

We hope you enjoy this fun little free app! We’d love to connect with you on facebook and twitter and hear stories about your alter egos!



Lists for Writers is now available on Amazon

Lists for Writers icon

Today is an exciting day for Thinkamingo! Our first app is in the Amazon Appstore today!

We have completed the App Store Trifecta:  iTunes, Google, and Amazon.

Our experience getting apps approved with all three companies has been very positive and we are excited about our upcoming submissions!