Hey guys! During a recent trip to the iD Tech headquarters (buried deep within the mountains of Silicon Valley) our CEO, Pete, asked if I wanted to go the San Jose Technology Museum and blog about it. Of course, my answer was: “YOU BET I DO!” What a great technology museum it is, the exhibits are well chosen and creative, but most importantly it provides a truly hands on experience. You really get to play with technology in a variety of ways! In the photo above, I was having fun with the thermal imaging exhibit. As you can see, my glasses and goatee provided enough variation in temperature to render a clean shot of my face, awesome! Below are more pictures of my adventure an the museum!
Next to an exhibit demonstrating 3D modeling and animation physics was this composition, depicting the evolution of video games. I thought it was cool that they used one of my favorites to represent modern video games (especially because it includes Void Rays), but they skipped the 80’s entirely, where is Pacman!?
This similar composition shows the evolution of graphic arts and photography over time, starting way back with cave paintings (Italian I think). The connection between cave paintings and modern day “street art” is blatant but I had to take a moment to consider the relation of the 3rd panel which depicts a network of geo-tagged photographs, presumably gathered from a user-base. I think the implication is that all of these works are: geographically rooted, unauthorized and collaborative between multiple artists, who may not be working directly with another. Whatever the link, I’m impressed by the creativity in the selection of that 3rd panel, as it does seem to fit.
Ok, here are some more hands on exhibits, as I promised! This one was super fun – a virtual bobsled! It could fit about two people who would shift their weight back and forth to navigate a virtual track! Bobsled courtesy of Northern California school UC Davis.
Oh man, I nearly flipped out when I saw this exhibit, a Google-maps viewing room in nearly 360 degrees! It was hard to get a shot of this room not crowded by people – everyone wanted to zoom into their neighborhood or school!
When I was in high school, I used to organize arm-wrestling tournaments for charity so I was really excited to see this arm-wrestling exhibit. In this exhibit people wrestle a mechanical arm – but they are actually wrestling another person! The mechanical arm in networked to another, identical device elsewhere in the world and the amount of force it exerts is proportionate to the persons on either side. How cool! With a webcam competitors can watch each other just like they were going head to head in real life! I would love to get one of these at each of our camps!
In this programming and robotics exhibit students first entered their name in a computer, then a robotic arm would search through letter blocks while organizing them to spell the students name. A clever girl “hacked” it to say “Ekta Is Awesome”, good job Ekta! I wanted to make it spell out “iD Tech Camps” but the kids were just having too much fun for me to intervene.
Over the years I’ve enjoyed watching “Netiquette” and “Internet Slang” evolve from something that people simply “did” to something that is now studied and discussed at a scholarly level. To that capacity, I enjoyed seeing this whole Netiquette exhibit. At iD we post our own techno-etiquette rules on the walls of our labs, quite similar to the ones in the pic above.
I had a great time at the museum and I highly recommend you all make a trip to it yourselves. If you aren’t local to San Jose, nearly every metropolitan area has a science museum of their own and they are great, educational fun for the whole family.
Here is a fun bonus pic…
Reminds us of how far we've come in such little time!