Cardboard Skeeball

Client:

Lawrence Hall of Science - Public Science Center

The Challenge:

The Ingenuity Lab wanted an interactive game made from cardboard to show the potential of the materials. This exhibit would be on display during the month of the Cardboard Arcade Ingenuity Lab Challenge to inspire the visitors to think big.

Our Solution:

After several working prototypes of different games, we settled on a cardboard skeeball game because the mechanics could be easily replicated by the visitors. Sensors were made from cardboard and foil to detect the balls landing in the different chutes. The same sensors were used to create a ball counter. Coded in Scratch, we programmed a score board and sound effects. The Scratch program was connected to the buttons via a MaKey MaKey.

Results:

The skeeball machine was very popular with visitors of all ages. Kids were waiting up to 20 minutes for a chance to play. This project inspired the visitors when they built their own cardboard projects in the space. Many visitors used the same sensors to create their own game that contained ball counters.

The TechHive teen interns took ownership of this project including doing required repairs, design improvements, and maintenance from high visitor use during the summertime.

Animation Camp

Client:

Lawrence Hall of Science - Student and Family Programs

The Challenge:  

With many campers returning year after year, there was a need for a camp design that could generate new experiences for the repeat camper especially for the middle school aged learners.

Our Solution:

We developed a new two-week summer camp that combines animation techniques with new digital media tools, providing students with a unique opportunity for creative expression. Students used physics, geometry, and classic animation practices to create original short videos. The two-week camp culminated to an animation showcase that took place on the museum floor.

Results:

Animation camp has been running since summer of 2011 and remains one of the Hall's most popular offerings. Students, their families and Hall visitors look forward to the animation showcase every year, which ties in well with the Hall's design-oriented exhibits. TechHive teens learn how to teach and then assist in delivering the classes and camps.

Design Quest Commercial

Client:

Lawrence Hall of Science - Marketing Department

The Challenge:

The Marketing Department required a 30-second and 15-second TV spot that advertised the new Design Quest exhibit.


Our Solution:

Kids of various ages were invited to interact with the exhibit and TechHive teens and staff recorded their candid experiences and responses with their permission. The participants were then interviewed on camera about their experience in the exhibit. All of the footage was then edited and delivered as per Comcast and PBS media specifications using Adobe Premiere.

Results:

The result was a successful television campaign distributed on various channels and distributed online with the help of TechHive teen interns.

The Bike Sim

Client:

Lawrence Hall of Science - TechHive & Public Science Center

The Challenge:

We were asked to create a self-sustaining exhibit that could engage many visitors at once on the museum floor. The exhibit was to survive on the floor for two of the busiest weeks during the summer. The exhibit had to follow the "design, build, test" challenge model of the Ingenuity Lab.

Our Solution:

Adapting an exhibit we originally showcased at MakerFaire 2013, we made an interactive, community-based paper-made city on the surface of a large, bike powered drum. As the bike was peddled, the drum would slowly rotate. A small video camera was mounted on one end of the drum, provided visitors with an ant’s- eye tour of the tiny city. Visitors could add to the city by building their own 4” x 4” lot.

Results:

This project attracted new teen interns to the TechHive because they saw that this project was built with the help of our current teen interns.

As the city was constructed over time and evolved, the experience of riding through it would change. This resulted in prolonged and repeated visits to the Bike Sim. The Bike Sim was built from familiar components (bike parts, repurposed classroom tables, a webcam). Additionally, the mechanics of the Bike Sim were visible and thus accessible to younger visitors who could relate to bike gears. Visitors were inspired because they could create a similar project at home using materials they already have. 

Giant Makey Makey

Client:

Lawrence Hall of Science - Public Science Center

The Challenge:

MaKey MaKey’s are easy-to-use interface devices that can turn any conductive object into a button. However, their small size (3.75” x 2”) makes them difficult to display and explain in a public demonstration or festival setting.

Our Solution:

TechHive created a large-scale, working replica of the MaKey MaKey. An actual MaKey MaKey is wired to the model making it function exactly like a normal Makey Makey. This playful exhibit introduces the public to MaKey MaKeys and helps to explain conductivity in materials.

Results:

The TechHive teens learned about CAD, basic circuits, and electrical conductivity, as well as gained experiences communicating with the public by facilitating this table-top exhibit. We also got to take a photo with Jay Silver, one of the inventors of the MaKey MaKey.