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Final Project

Alix and I presented our final project today. You can see my earlier blog post about it by clicking here. Our presentation went well! Alix programmed the majority of the code for the Arduino while I was working on art and we both worked on the project’s design.

Here is a picture of the poster I made:


Here’s a picture of Alix and me presenting:presentation


Memories from SPCS

Today is the last full day of SPCS (Stanford Pre-Collegiate Studies) and tomorrow we will leave and go back to our homes, but we will not go back the same way we came. Each of us took a course in our area of interest, and I can say that I had a great time but also learned a lot. When school starts and the students I met this summer are all over the world going to school we will all know a little more but also have new valuable skills. Everyone in my class learned about empathy and narcissism. We learned the importance of both bragging about your projects and relating to others, yet the most important thing to know is the balance between these two skills. I will miss everyone I met this summer, but I know that I will hear their names on NPR when they are experts in something. Maybe I’ll see their names in headlines of the New York Times when they invent the newest gadget, after which I will have to contact them to hear all about it…or maybe we made it together! As for our teacher Sherol Chen, in a few years she will have invented the next huge program or made the new Flappy Bird. I can’t wait to see all the great things she will do. To all my classmates-this is not goodbye, but see you soon, keep in touch! 🙂


Sebastian Alvarado

Sebastian Alvarado talked to us yesterday about a company he co-founded called Thwacke. They consult and help incorporate science into science fiction games or movies. He is also really good at magic tricks! Here is a link to their blog if you want to check out their recent activity:

I want to thank Sebastian Alvarado for taking the time to share how he combines his scientific knowledge with his passion for video games and movies. He strives to help keep things true to science while also making the product entertaining. He helped work on Captain America by making Steve Rogers become Captain America in a scientifically correct way. You can check that out here:

Here’s a picture of Steve Rogers’s transformation after the serum (scientifically correct) compared to the comic:

Brandon Tearse

I appreciate Brandon Tearse telling us about Google internships and getting our foot in the door at large corporations. He told us about his experience during his internship and how it helped him land a job with Google afterward. He also told us that the “Google 15” was a myth, despite how many wonderful foods are available in the Google Cafeteria. Here’s a picture of the cafeteria:

Jay Silver

Today our class talked to Jay Silver. In case you’re unsure who he is, he invented Makey Makey. If you’re still unsure who he is, or what Makey Makey is, as I was a few days ago, watch this video you won’t regret it! I want to thank him for explaining to us how Makey Makey works and his inspiration for it. He is very passionate about empowering common people with creative technology, which sounds so cool! 

Here is a picture of Jay Silver working on a Makey Makey project:

Mike Marmarou

I’d like to thank Mike Marmarou from Apple for taking the time to talk to our class. He told us what we need to stand out from the crowd for our resumes. He also emphasized how important it is to be passionate about something and share what you know about it. He worked on big Apple applications including Photos, GarageBand, and iMovie to name a few. 

Here’s a picture of Mike Marmarou:

Bret Victor

I’d like to thank Bret Victor for coming to talk to our class yesterday! I really enjoyed hearing about his views of programming and seeing his program to type and see the result of the program at the same time. Bret Victor greatly influenced Apple’s new programming language, Swift. You can read about his impact on Swift here:

I thought that his views on programming and seeing its impact were very cool. I hope that one day all IDEs will use this, but until then Bret Victor told us we should code our own. 🙂 

Here is part of a program he showed us where you can change the path of the character by changing the bounciness of the turtle:

Final Project Proposal:Prisoners’ Dilemma

Alix and I are hoping to work on a project about the Prisoners’ Dilemma. We will create a prototype that simulates the prisoners’ experience. The audience will learn about human behavior-even when it is in the prisoners’ best interest to help each other they may also try to help themselves, thinking the other person won’t rat them out.  It will be interactive, we will choose members of the audience to simulate the experience. The users will choose to remain silent or rat the other person out, independent of the other user. We plan to use Arduinos to take in the users’ input using buttons. Our design is similar to the Exploratorium’s 2-way water fountain, where the users choose to give each other a sip or squirt of water. You can see the exhibit here:

The easy version would be using candy to simulate reward or penalty. The clever version would be using computers or Ardunios. The advanced version would be an entire scheme of actors pretending to arrest and interview witnesses. This would be closest to the real situation since the prisoners would think that they were really in jail.

Alix and I both are designers, programmers, and artists.

Here is a diagram I created:



Our class got to play around with Arduinos last week. I did 5 different projects, most included making LED lights blink. I made a light with a spinner that selects the blinking speed. I also used OR with buttons to make it that if either button was pushed the light would turn on. I also had 8 LED lights and made them dance like Christmas lights. Here’s a picture of the OR with buttons: 

photo 5