Archive for ‘7. Midterm Project Ideas’

May 6, 2012

Evolving Shapes

by amobramaein

An interesting article on the usage of genetic algorithms to generate shapes.

May 4, 2012

Autism- What are the signs?

by adhishbhobe

While we were working on our final project Kinect the Dots, we were looking for ways to tackle autism. But before doing that we had to find what were the specifics of it or how we could understand autism better before we began our project. This video we came across on YouTube allowed us to.

May 4, 2012

Final Project Poster session

by adhishbhobe

I got to see a lot of interesting final projects during the poster session. One of them was related to AR Storytelling. This was an innovative way to implement storytelling. By having QR codes and Argon to identify those codes to make images was really innovative. I also found the game designed on Flash based on Around the World in 80 Days to be quite an interesting and compelling idea. I saw several other ideas each very different but as engaging and interesting as the others.

May 4, 2012

Our Inspiration for Kinect the Dots

by adhishbhobe

When we started out with ideas for the CIC event, we weren’t sure of the path we should take nor the category we wanted to compete in.    We fiddled around with ideas relating to social commerce, campus community. They were interesting and challenging, but nothing spectacular that would interest anyone to take it forward to change the world!!

And then we thought: every great product or idea has its roots in the intention of changing peoples lives. My classmate, Sanika was already working on a research project associated with autism in children. Among the numerous workshops/hack-a-thons happening on campus, we happened to attend the Microsoft Kinect workshop. The idea of working on Kinect was appealing, and then it struck us: using Kinect and storytelling and amalgamating the two in therapies for autistic children. What a brilliant idea and we hadn’t even though about using this idea in CIC yet !! But then we came across  this video ( that inspired us to take this forward and the rest is history!!

March 20, 2012

The Free Universal Construction Kit

by Ellen Yi-Luen Do

3D-printed adapter bricks allow interconnection between ten kids’ construction toys

Golan sez, “The Free Universal Construction Kit is a collection of adapter bricks that enable complete interoperability between ten popular children’s construction toys. By allowing any piece to join to any other, the Kit encourages totally new forms of intercourse between otherwise closed systems—enabling the creation of previously impossible designs, and ultimately, more creative opportunities for kids. As with other grassroots interoperability remedies, the Free Universal Construction Kit implements proprietary protocols in order to provide a public service unmet, or unmeetable, by corporate interests.”

The Free Universal Construction Kit offers adapters between Lego, Duplo, Fischertechnik, Gears! Gears! Gears!, K’Nex, Krinkles (Bristle Blocks), Lincoln Logs, Tinkertoys, Zome, and Zoob. Our adapters can be downloaded from and other sharing sites as a set of 3D models in .STL format, suitable for reproduction by personal manufacturing devices like the Makerbot (an inexpensive, open-source 3D printer).


February 27, 2012

Midterm project Pecha Kucha

by Ellen Yi-Luen Do

Midterm Project Ideas

  • Each person should work on their project proposals – to figure out whether you are writing a paper about something (what? a literature survey about child creativity and measurements, about personality and design collaborations, about design thinking, or about where people find inspirations, etc. etc.), conducting some sort of empirical studies (protocol analysis of design activities or meetings? interviews with practitioners? designing creativity support tools? using cultural probe to investigate daily life? etc etc), or inventing tangible artifact (software, hardware, website, toys, community portals, playground, etc. etc.) by any means.
  • Be prepared to have a story to tell in 3/14’s Pecha Kucha session – to tell people what your research topics for this class will be, and how you plan to do it, are there precedents or related work? and what might we expect to see at the end of the semester.
  • Yes, you can decide to do it either as individual project or a joint team project (no more than 3 persons per team please.)
February 18, 2012

“Insight, Fixation, and Incubation” and a related project idea

by dharris63

I really like the story about Archimedes realizing that he could calculate volume by using water displacement. The philosopher/mathematician’s royal relation wanted to know whether a commissioned crown had the density of gold. Archimedes realized one could find the volume of any object by measuring water level before and after the object is submerged in water, and noting the displacement. It was interesting to me that this was compared to the behavior of monkeys reaching for bananas. It seems to me that the “strokes of genius” all share the common trait of being straightforward ideas that solve the problem with a small number of steps, but from a direction that had not been considered previously. This makes me wonder if these insights are limited to “simple” ideas, and if there is a limit to the complexity of an idea that is the result of one spark of inspiration.

I also found it interesting that the common brainstorming technique of recording as many different ideas as possible supported Brown’s 1981 study that claimed “output interference can explain inhibition of retrieval from semantic memory. As we’ve mentioned in class, engineers often latch onto the first solution that makes itself visible. I wonder if perhaps these students have a harder time bypassing the blocks your mind imposes after it has generated an acceptable solution to a problem. I think that engineers and left-brained people (myself included) can really benefit from brainstorming activities that attempt to pull more items from semantic memory.

Creating a system that would take specific problem space and help users work past cognitive blocks would be an interesting final project for this class. For example, if the prompt was to create the a method that tried to determine whether an x, y coordinate existed within a two dimensional shape, the system could ask the user to build a function that solved the problem by determining whether the point was within the shape, then write a second function that decides whether the point is outside the geometric shape. By trying different solutions, you could arrive at a more logical or more efficient algorithm. In the example above, it turns out it’s actually much simpler to prove the point is outside the shape then it is to prove it is inside.