ITM 50: Mechatronics



the influent thinking machine is a production of cue flaming robots and smoke belching cannons read the throngs of visitors at the San Francisco makers faire a group of seniors from Dos Pueblos High School in Goleta made the pilgrimage from Southern California to display their one-of-a-kind mechatronics carousel made up of 15 separate wedges of physics demos wrote eating around the central core the curacao contains more than 50,000 parts and was created from scratch in a single school year metal balls delivered from the central core move through the cure cells activating the physics demonstrations and this wave generator so on these two sides we have a camshaft which is basically just a rod with a bunch of disks on it and they're all offset so we have a sine wave being created on this side and a sine wave being created on this side the complex project sprang from the mind of MacArthur Genius award winner and master teacher Tom near hablo shards I wanted to be a collaborative project and I also wanted it to be something where every student had something they could take ownership of research all these different kinds of cool projects like on the Internet just as many cool presentations as we could find and then we kind of grouped them together and from there we chose the 15 different topics that make up each sector also we learned about like how important it was to make all the design kind of human oriented and compelling to actual like actual audience you know viewers that can't just be that no one can understand or no one like guess what the concept is I mean this is the level of complexity this is an optic show and we knew that people wouldn't be able to see the laser light so in order to see the laser light we had to create fog the fog part is this this small part of it but without it it doesn't work it in and of itself total pain like huge pain like where do we put the fog machine how do we make the fog how much fog do you need you know on the other end of this we've got lasers and every one of these optics is articulated so I mean it's just the amount going you can see how much is going on in one project how rich it is I learned a lot about how light is manipulated via lenses but really I think what are the greatest things about the entire carousel is the fact that every single one of us has our own project that we had to like learn how to manage and design and prototype test and then redesign and work through all the problems and kinks in order to get something that actually works first because the county rod and secondary coil are attached the same dodging plate and two jumps this gap in repeat the circuit and the two mirrors the Dos Pueblos students won best in class and Editors Choice Awards affair but shinier and his team have their eyes on a bigger prize transforming public education we're not making a science project that if it works at or if it doesn't it's okay and learning is great and wonderful it's like no we we were saying look part of what we're teaching you is how to basically be high functioning and how to be successful and how to make sure that what you create that you have the stick-to-itiveness and the tenacity and everything else needed to close out this project and to close it out professionally

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