The maker movement has reestablished a connection with hardware that I think many of us had lost as things were mass produced and we no longer had to adjust the tension of tapes or exchange disk platters. Somehow plugging and unplugging a disk drive is not the same. I now have a serious soldering iron in my study and have breezed my way through several kits. Haven't lost my soldering talent but I do have to use serious magnification when I do solder!
Leatherman Squirt. It is very handy when building kits, in fact I usually use it instead of going to my kit to get needle nose pliers. It also has other attributes for the aging hacker. If your hands are a bit sore after decades of emacs chording, the multitude of tools really helps from opening packages to prying lids. As Jerry Pournelle would say, another aging hacker mainstay, highly recommended.
A future post will explore the interaction of STEM, the Maker movement, arduinos, rasp pis sensors, cosm and big data. Later!