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Week 1 News

Weekly Newsletter for 1/20/2012

Welcome to the second project with the Makeshop, which is a space within the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh dedicated to providing hands-on building workshop environment. The Makeshop provides children with an informal learning environment that sparks their creativity by simply asking, “What do you want to make today?”

Our focus this semester is the creation of a physical digital interface that can be integrated into the Makeshop for simple projects and instruction. Our frame of reference for the platform is the SMALLab embodied learning platform, and we will be working with a similar mockup during our research and prototyping phase.

The Team!

Team(left to right):  Anisha Deshmane, Michael Tsai, Hyun “Joo” Oh,  Xing “Star” Xu, Matt Stewart, Ariel Han, Feiran “Vera” Li

Advisors: Drew Davidson, Chris Klug

This Week:

Getting Settled In

We started the semester off with some cleaning supplies and began to organize our workspace. After getting things arranged, we started in with some improv games to get to know each other.

Kickoff Meetings

We met with our advisors, Chris and Drew, on Monday to get a general overview of the project, and set a time for weekly advisor meetings. We also raised the issue of generating a strategy for getting through GDC and spring break, and also discussed conferences applicable to the project.

Children’s Museum

On Thursday afternoon, we had a chance to meet the staff and facilitators of the Makeshop! Lisa Brahms gave us her view of the project and its goals, and we picked everyone’s brains for wish list items and general advice.

Brainstorming and Research

A definitive name still eludes us, but we have been storming towards something that inspires us and explains our project. We have also been researching SMALLab and other relevant interactive digital media that could be the focus of our project!

Next Week:

  • Decide on a team name!
  • Arts’n’Crafts activities to decorate and get in the making spirit!
  • Continue researching interactive media platforms, as well as teaching methods for the demographic
  • Begin constructing an in house mock up based on the SMALLab platform for initial exploration
  • Create the Website
  • Start creating media: logo, poster, half-sheet, website
  • Visit the museum in smaller groups to help facilitate the space and gain a better understanding of the demographic

Quote of the week:

“As long as everyone leaves with all their fingers, it’s alright.” -Kevin(Makeshop facilitator)