Saturday, October 31, 2009

Getting Ready for the Austin Trip

Chris Carter sat and talked about his experiences with the Project Lead the Way program. He is currently working as a Civil Engineer.

From the left: Nick Florin, Tom Corona, KC Bianco, Chad Baker, Tristan DeJesus, and Mackenzie Knight.

Today, several members of the InvenTeam woke up early on a Saturday morning to come to the high-school to finish some things up to prepare for the Austin trip. We met with past Project Lead the Way student and R.P.I. graduate Chris Carter to catch his memories of PLTW and his thoughts on the program on camera. Also, we each talked about a Project Lead the Way class offered at our high-school on camera. We plan to show these videos at the PLTW symposium in Austin, Texas. While some students were working on the videos, other InvenTeam members worked on cutting the laptop holders out with a laser cutter and bending them in order to sell them in the future as a fundraiser. Finally, KC Bianco worked on cutting the parts to a syringe robot out in order to put two together to bring to Austin.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Today, our class worked on finishing up the rendered videos of all the InvenTeam members that we plan to take to Austin, Texas with us. Also, past Project Lead the Way students Tom Hayes and Juliana Wakeman stopped by so they can share their thoughts on the program. Both students, who are currently enrolled at W.P.I., talked about how Project Lead the Way has helped them decide what they want to do for the rest of their life and how it has helped them get a jump start on their careers. Also, Mr. Gallagher brought in the button-down shirts that he is going to get embroidered with the Project Lead the Way logo for the InvenTeam members travelling to Austin with him. In terms of the InvenTeam members' projects, the team working on the Wind Power Assisted Device is researching programs that they can use to simulate wind tunnels and determine pressure and wind resistance values based on a 3D model that they use. Also, the members working on The Guardian have gained access to the class notes that the actual Java class is working on at our high-school, and is working with Tom Hayes on learning the language.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

New Grant Money

Today, a member of the group working on The Guardian, Chad Baker, announced that he has recieved a two-hundred dollar grant from Environmental Design Partnership located out of Clifton Park, New York. This money will go a long way for all six class projects which are for the most part, past the stages of research and looking to start purchasing materials to build their prototypes. Of the groups in this stage of the design process, the Wind Power Assistance Device group is looking to purchase materials to construct a wind tunnel to test wind resistance as well as DC motors to turn the wind energy into electrical energy. The group working on the Emergency Vehicle alerter is focusing on purchasing electronic components such as wires, transmitters, LED light bulbs, and sound chips that they will use to build their prototype. InvenTeam members working on The Guardian are working hard after school and during class on learning the Java programming language and are looking to purchase research materials while the group working on the Shower Temperature Control unit is looking to purchase logic analyzers to control the digital functions of the unit. Finally, some group members are diverging from their projects temporarily in order to create multiple models of a syringe robot that they plan to take to Austin, Texas to present at the PLTW symposium as well as to present at the Saratoga Springs High School during First Night.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Mr. Gallagher Honored for Work as PLTW Teacher

On Monday, October 19, the InvenTeam students working on The Guardian met in a coffee shop to discuss programming techniques with past InvenTeam Project Manager and current WPI student majoring in Computer Science, Tom Hayes. While there, the Saratogian stopped by and took pictures with the intentions of doing a story about the award Mr. Gallagher will be recieving in Austin, Texas as well as the trip that the InvenTeam members Chad Baker, Mackenzie Knight, and Nick Florin will be taking to Austin, Texas to the Project Lead the Way Symposium. While in the coffee shop, The Guardian group began learning Java programming code as well as how to use software to compile the code such as Eclipse. This code will be fundamental to the design and programming of The Guardian website as well as the functioning of it on smartphones. As well as learning the code from Tom, the group members plan to purchase several books that teach Java as well as using online tutorials to learn it. They plan on purchasing these books with a five-hundred dollar grant the the InvenTeam recieved from General Electric in order to purchase resources for research as well as materials for the implementation of groups' proposed design prototypes. All group members are very thankful for recieving this grant and know that the money will go a long way and be put to use almost immediately.
Link to Article

Friday, October 16, 2009

Today, Mr. Gallagher informed us that he has decided to create the Invent Club at our high school. This will allow the InvenTeam members to stay at the school past 4 P.M. as well as allowing students to help out with the projects even if they are not in the Engineering Design and Development program. One of the first priorities of this new club is setting up the Project Lead the Way tutoring program that we want to do at the high school. Chad Baker has decided to take the lead on this project and is starting to create log sheets to ensure that all students are participating in the program.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Our EDD class met for the first time this week on Wednesday because we had Monday off. Some members of the class are working hard on creating video-recorded interviews to show in Austin, Texas during the Project Lead the Way symposium while other students are working on putting together posters for other presentations. Even with the heavy workload from these assignments, the students are still making progress on their projects. For example, the Shower Temperature Control Unit’s group has begun to use CAD software to design a preliminary visual concept of the device while the class members working on The Guardian have started to order books in order to learn the programming they will need to know. Finally, the Wind Power Assistance device group has obtained a remote controlled car to test. However, they are still finalizing their testing procedures.

Friday, October 9, 2009

This week Mr. Gallagher presented us with some wonderful news: First Night of Saratoga is allowing us to do a presentation. We are currently working on this presentation - hopefully it will get our program and our ideas out to a much larger audience. Through the presentation we will hopefully garner more support for us from the community. We are very excited because we will likely be the only students presenting at First Night. We feel it is a great honor for them to let us get our ideas and program out to a broader audience. Patrick Foss and Tristan DeJesus will be heading up the presentation and they feel that it is an honor for them to have this opportunity. Our class is grateful to First Night for allowing us to present and we are working make it worth it for them. We are planning to have an engaging presentation for the community.

Friday, October 2, 2009

InvenTeam 2009

October 1, 2009

The start of another year, and another EDD group to go with it. So far, 6 projects have been begun by different groups or individuals: the “Water Saving Sprinkler System,” by Ben Steer, the “Wind Power Assisstance Device,” by Gary, Elliot, and Colin, the “School Safe Speed System” by Ryan Bobbitt, the “Emergency Vehicle Alerter” by Pat and Eddy, the “Shower Temperature Control Unit” by James and Mackenzie, and “The Guardian,” by Tristan De Jesus, KC, Nick, Tristan Frey, Tom, and Chad.

Each group is at slightly different stages of the design process; however, they have all put in time to research their topic and continue to do so. Some groups, like the Shower Temperature Control Unit, Water Saving Sprinkler System, and Guardian, have made mock-ups of their idea, whether as sketches in notebooks, or Inventor drawings. Others are still working on the actual ‘doing’ of their idea – the Emergency Vehicle Alerter, for example, are trying to determine the best way to transmit a signal from emergency vehicles to standard cars. The School Safe Speed system is trying to get professional ECU reprogramming companies to aid in designing a program which is critical for the project to succeed.
As we continue to research our solutions, we are also looking for means to fund the projects.