Maker introduction for Maker Faire Singapore – Mr Ng Pan Yew

Maker Faire Singapore logo with dateThe Maker Faire Singapore team has been excited about the elevation of our Maker Faire status from a “Mini” event to a “Featured” one. Leading up to the event that will happen on 11 & 12 July at 15 Tampines Street 11, we will continue our practice of showcasing our participating makers .

The first to be featured this year will be Mr Ng Pan Yew, coincidentally the first maker to be featured for Singapore Mini Maker Faire 2014 as well.

Recapping the year 2014, Mr Ng jokingly commented that he has over participated. Well, I think not everybody can do that, and it is in itself an achievement. Despite being his first year taking part in a Science Centre programme, Mr Ng has been most enthusiastic. He started with two workshops in April and June 2014, leading up to the Mini Maker Faire itself in July where he not only took a booth to showcase his works, but conducted two workshops as well to teach people how to make their own Kaleidoscope and Roly – Poly.

Mr Ng was very reflective of the activities he conducted. “Frankly speaking, my successful rate for lead-up event or mini workshop is only 50%”, he said. He explained that not everything turned out to be what he expected them to be. He noted the challenge to come up with interesting activities for 7-12 year-old children and to use materials which are easily available.

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Participating in the Singapore Mini Maker Faire became a family affair for Mr Ng. Together with his wife, Mr Ng and their two grown-up daughters carried out the workshops and explained to interested visitors about Mr Ng’s showcase at the event. Mr Ng also took the opportunity to thank his wife and two daughters, who assisted him patiently during his workshops, helping him with facilitation, photography and publicity. Such a sweet gesture!

Tips for new participating makers

We asked Mr Ng for advice for first time participants, and he encouraged new makers to try to form a team to work together as there are challenges working alone. For his case, he single-handedly take charge of 2D-drawing, laser cutting, laser engraving, electronics circuit design, PCB art-work and the sourcing of affordable resources. Mr Ng also highlighted that it is inevitable that hardware-intensive hobbies incur higher cost compared to software-based ones, so new makers would need to be aware of such cost issues.

What’s new?

For the upcoming Maker Faire in July, Mr Ng is working towards expanding his acrylic showcase. While he will keep his previous display (Supertrees at Gardens by the Bay, Esplanade, etc), he will also be adding the Helix Bridge, the Marina Bay Sands, the Singapore River Bumboat and more!

SG50_MarinaBay

Interested to find out more? Mark your calendar for 11 & 12 July and drop by 15 Tampines Street 11 Singapore 529454 to speak with Mr Ng in person!

Call for Submission for Art/Science Installations

Call for Submissions for an exhibition on Art/Science Installations at the Science Centre Singapore

Frozen Shadow

For the period of May to August 2015, in collaboration with Ars Electronica, Science Centre Singapore will be bringing in exhibits specially curated by a stellar line up of creative contemporary artists for its mid-year Blockbuster Exhibition. The exhibition will take on the overarching theme of Digital Interaction and promises to be a truly visceral journey.

Ars Electronica Linz GmbH is an Austrian cultural, educational and scientific institute active in the field of new media art, founded in 1979. It is based at the Ars Electronica Center, which houses the Museum of the Future, in the city of Linz. It is probably the most famous institution in new media. Ars Electronica’s activities focus on the interlinkages between art, technology and society. It runs an annual festival, and manages a multidisciplinary media arts R&D facility known as the Futurelab. It also confers the Prix Ars Electronica awards.

The Science Centre is currently seeking for interactive works in the form of installations which will be part of the exhibition at the Science Centre. The works should have a focus on interactive media systems that have an innovative technological concepts blended with excellence in science, art and/or design. We are also encouraging works which have harmonious parts of content and interactive technology, with a focus on human usability, and expanding the scope of media for use in human society.

Aims of the exhibition

  • Demonstrations for emerging interactive techniques for the public
  • Promotion and propagation of interactive techniques
  • Sharing of knowledge of virtual reality, augmented technologies and its roles in entertainment
  • Promotion of collaboration between experts, edge researchers and industry
  • Out reach of interactive techniques

The type of works which we are seeking may include:

  • Innovative interfaces
  • Music and audio
  • Novel displays
  • Haptics
  • Sensors
  • Robotics
  • Entertainment and Gaming
  • Collaborative environments
  • Health and medicine / biotechnology
  • Virtual and mixed reality
  • Ubiquitous computing
  • Wearables, hand-helds
  • Real-time graphics and animation
  • Mobile technologies

It is a prerequisite that the projects have already been realized to the extent that they may be judged on the basis of documentation and must be ready for installation by 4 May 2015

The work entered must have been created, realized or significantly updated within the last two years. Participants may be individuals, groups, schools, institutions, companies etc. Exclusively commercially oriented activities in the sense of product advertisement or commercially available products are excluded.

Submission Details

Each work is to be explained in a combination of
(1) No more than 4 page demo/exhibition description (essential)
(2) A video of the work (essential). *send the YouTube link only

(3) Other supporting media or documents (optional)

Deadline             : 15 April 2015

Notification       : 24 April 2015

Submit to            : Lee_Lian_Soon@science.edu.sg

Since a presentation of an outstanding interactive work naturally also depends on the technical requirements for on-site realization, it is essential to include information that is as specific as possible about technical hardware and software and spatial requirements. All entries will be judged by a jury of experts. In addition to the works entered by participants, each jury may also nominate other works.

Selected works will be offered support for the travel and exhibition costs. This support may not cover the entire cost of travel and exhibition costs, depending on the nature and expense of the work.  Open Call submissions must be showcased for the whole duration of the exhibition.

For further inquiries and clarifications, please contact: Lee_Lian_Soon@science.edu.sg

Pop Up Maker Space at SSEF

This is the second time Maker Faire team is putting up a Pop Up Maker Space at the Singapore Science and Engineering Fair held in Science Centre on the 11th and 12th of March. I must say that it attracted so much crowd, especially on the second day, since the judging was over and students were much more relaxed and free.

Yasu made mircowaveable origami, David Liew did Notebook Hacking, 12 Geeks did cool tech stuff and we made microscopes.

Microwaveable origami, the name sounds cool right? Bascially, you stick heat shrink tubing with thin strips of aluminium on paper wherever you want it to be folded. Then you place it inside the microwave and the heat shrink tubing shrinks when heated, as the name suggests, and you get the shape you want!

David Liew brought embossing machines, paper design cutters, various coloured ink pads etc and students were to emboss their book cover or cards and decorate it with any of the provided materials. It was up to their creativity.

Luther and Fazli  brought bananas which played music! Actually they connected the bananas to Makey makeys and once the students touched the bananas the circuits were closed as their bodies are conductors of electricity. The Makey Makeys are connected to the Scratch software in the computer which is programmed in such a way that each banana makes a different sound (Doh, Ray, Me, Fah, Soh, Lah. Te, Doh). They also brought along a VR headset and students had the experience of virtual reality.  It was also fun comparing the commersial headsets with a $2 version.

Bananas can replace pianos?

Bananas can replace pianos (with Makey Makeys)?

The activity that we conducted was making microscopes out of laser pointers. Three easy steps:

1. Dismantle the laser pointers
2. Take the lens out
3. Attach the lens to your phone camera using a transparent tape or poke a hole through a foam sheet, fit the lens into the hole and then attach the lens to your phone camera

Did you know that grey ink that we see on a printed paper is actually made up of white dots on a black background?

Did you know that grey ink that we see on a printed paper is actually made up of white dots on a black background?

Microscopic view of a tea bag

Microscopic view of a tea bag

That isn't his blister, it's just his skin

That isn’t his blister, it’s just his skin

Mass destrcution of laser pointers ><

Mass destruction of laser pointers :P

The research students aged between 16 to 18, being so interested in Making such things, instead of saying that “All these can be bought isn’t it? Why bother Making?” shows that Singaporean youths embrace/have started embracing Making. The fact that they enjoyed the Pop up Maker Space was evident from the never-ending crowd and the excitement on their faces.

Make ‘n’ Speak Camp

Science Centre Singapore collaborated with The Kidz Parade to organise a two days long Make ‘n’ Speak camp which was all about design thinking, and of course Making. The theme of the camp was sustainability. The main objective was for the kids to Make a prototype which allows life to be more sustainable.

Day 1
The kids understood what sustainability is all about through brief discussions and also through  a guided tour around the climate change exhibition. I believe that after the exhibition they had a better idea of what the world is facing now and why thinking about sustainability is important. After that they  were told to think of two things:

(i) The problem –> The solution
The solution should be in the form of a machine and not just “Don’t do it because it harms the Earth”

(ii) A problem which already has a solution —> Make the solution more effective

There were discussions about how there should be lunar panels instead of only solar panels. Some kids talked about how water is being wasted and automatic taps and motion sensor taps were invented to decrease water wastage. Another group discussed about the waste of toilet paper because people wash hand and waste a lot of toilet paper and that led to the invention of hand dryer. Thats when one kid asked “Isn’t that a waste of electricty?”.

Thats when the facilitators stepped in to explain to the kids that we compare which is more eco-friendly and cost-effective when we find solutions. We could tell that the children tried their best to think and also attempted to answer our questions instead of expecting answers from us. The usage of the Scratch software and Makey Makey was also taught to them so that they can incorporate that technology into their innovative inventions. They were also breifed on presentation skills such as acting confident even when one is nervous by not fidgiting and having eye contact with the audience rather than just looking in front. At the end of the day each kid had his or her own idea(a rough one at least) of the prototype they might want to make.

Climate Change Exhibition

Climate Change Exhibition

Listening intently to the briefing on presentation skills

Listening intently to the briefing on presentation skills

Makey Makey and Scratch

Makey Makey and Scratch

"Makey Makey can do cool stuff. So how do I make my sprite move, mhmm?"

“Makey Makey can do cool stuff. So how do I make my sprite move, mhmm?”

Day 2

It started off with ideation where the kids thought and discussed more about their prototype and decided on a prototype their group will be taking up as their project. And then the Making started…

The children were so brilliant! Many of them had to try again and again to make their propeller rotate using a DC motor, solar-powered gadgets work, enable to the car wheels to rotate etc. Some worked in a team very well while others had issues working as team because they were not open to suggestions from their fellow team-mates. But eventually they had to come to a decision and one had to give in to the other. We were also glad to see children being able to learn from failures, pick themselves up and think of another alternative. One or two groups felt that they did not achieve what they wanted to but they did not pull a long face. Instead they explained what went wrong and what could have been better with utmost pride of their own creation. When we said dismantle certain parts of your prototype because we need the solar panels, DC motors etc back, they were so sportive. They immediately did so and brought the remaining back home.

Solar panels

Solar panels

Plane in the Making

Plane in the Making

Trying to make the pulley work

Trying to make the pulley work

Wheels

Wheels

The tsunami causes the turbine  to turn which produces current which is then transmitted to the houses through wires. Such  a cute and creative idea.

The tsunami causes the turbine to turn which produces current which is then transmitted to the houses through wires. Such a cute and creative idea.

"Teacher could you please help me with this?"

“Teacher could you please help me with this?”

Saying that the facilitators were impressed with the kids attitude and Making skills is definitely an understatement. They simply knocked us off our feet. And at the end of the day I thought “At their age, I was probably doodling on paper and watching cartoons. Look at them they talk about DC motors, LEDs, batteries, solar panels etc. I learnt them all in secondary school.”

Nico Nico Gakkai Beta in Science Centre Singapore

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Nico Nico Gakkai Beta is having a mini version of the craziest Japanese conference in Singapore!

Date : 11 March 2015
Timing :  7.00p to 8.30pm
Venue : Science Centre Singapore

NicoNicoGakkai Beta is a new style of academy that emphasizes user-generated research. It is an online and offline research academy that recognizes research on a diversity of merits, from cultural and artistic values to academic and industrial strengths. (http://blog.stepup.io/post/71963779785/nico-nico-gakkai-the-craziest-japanese-science)
There have been four NicoNicoGakkai Beta symposiums since 2011. For the first event there was an audience of over 110,000, who left a total of over 80,000 comments.

Rapid Fire Research 100
“Rapid Fire Research 100” was one of the two formats unique to this conference. In just 15 minutes, five world class researchers made 20 pitches each about their presentation. As a result, each speaker had to go though their 20~30 years worth of research in a very short time. To the audience, it was a comprehensive guide to each field as well as a motivating talk about how (initially) humble and error-prone research turns into world changing results.

The profiles of the speakers of the first Nico nico Beta Symposium in Singapore are below:

Masahiko Inami
masahiko

Masahiko INAMI is a professor at KEIO Media Design. He is also directing the JST ERATO Igarashi Design Interface Project as a group leader. He received a Ph.D. from department of engineering, the University of Tokyo in March, 1999. His research interest is in Interactive Technique, Physical Media, Robotics and Entertainment Technology. He is known as the inventor of Optical Camouflage system. He received Laval Virtual Technopole Mayenne Trophee, TIME Magazine Coolest Inventions2003, IEEE Virtual Reality 2004 Best Paper Award, ICAT 2004 Best Paper Award and more.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hXyLh8z6Gi8

Koji Tsukada

Tsukada
Koji Tsukada is an Associate Professor of Future University Hakodate. He received his Ph.D. from Keio University in 2005. His research interests include augmented commodities, interaction techniques with novel materials, and support system for personal fabrication. He received the Ig Nobel Prize 2012 (Acoustics) for creating SpeechJammer, a machine disturbs person’s speech using delayed auditory feedback.

Takuya Nojima 
takuya
Takuya Nojima is an associate professor of the University of Electro-Communications, Tokyo, Japan. He received his BE and ME in mathematical engineering and information physics, and Dr.Eng. in advanced interdisciplinary studies from the University of Tokyo in 1998, 2000, and 2003, respectively. His research interests includes haptic (particularly proprioception and physical activity) technology, and augmented sports .
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R12hGylmY8A

Tsutomu Terada
terada
Tsutomu Terada is an Associate Professor at Graduate School of Engineering, Kobe University, Japan. He received Ph.D. in Engineering from Osaka University in 2003. Dr. Terada is working on Wearable Computing, Ubiquitous Computing, and Entertainment Computing. He has applied wearable computing and sensing technologies to various stage performances and actual entertainment systems including theatrical performances.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B7ET8hSuNbc
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kbsa9H2ZS0o
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T9Y6G0enwC4

Junichi Rekimoto
junichi
Jun Rekimoto is Professor in Interfaculty Initiative in Information Studies at the University of Tokyo and doubles up as a Deputy Director of Sony Computer Science Laboratories. His has worked in the field of Human Computer Interaction has created lasting and highly significant impact that is present in a multitude of interfaces and devices used by millions of people. His invention list includes the world first mobile augmented reality, multitouch, location sensing. He is now focusing on technologies for augmenting humans. Rekimoto strongly believes in the power of imagination as our primary drive force to create the future, and questions how our lives and this world would change if our dreams were to come true.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N5f3z3_vPVU

Emcee
Masakazu Takasu
takasu
Masakazu Takasu, technical evangelist at teamLab,  Committee of Maker Faire Singapore 2015, and Shenzhen 2015 takes us on a journey to his homeland of Japan and their exciting ways of using technology, design and science. TeamLab combines these disciplines to create innovative digital solutions often with physical elements of interaction.

Through playing and experimentation, connecting prototyping with 3D graphics, art and much more, they’re creating a whole new world of gaming, interactive decorations and augmented reality.

Come on down to Science Centre to learn new facts from our speakers!

To join our event: https://www.facebook.com/events/1476482112572441

Making in Art workshop for families

Making in Art workshop took place at Science Centre last saturday, 14th February. There were 8 activities – Paper Pantograph, Wood Pantograph, Paper Circuits, Junk Sculptures, Fish Bone Sculptures, Harmonograph, Polymer Clay Art and Box Cards.

Download instructions for making a wood pantograph

Yet again another interesting workshop where we witnessed kids being innovative. Children were not restricted by any hard and fast rules hence the sky was the limit for their creativity. At the end of the workshop, we were pretty sure that the kids tasted the joy of learning through tinkering.

Kudos to the parents who allowed children to figure out how to Make things while guiding them  instead of telling them what was right and wrong. Afterall even Edison made umpteen mistakes before inventing a light bulb. I suppose, the spirit of resilience is also nutured in the process of Making.

Through such workshops parents and children  work together and bond with one another.

Such cool stuff made out of junk!

Such cool stuff made out of junk!

Foam Pantograph in the Making

Foam Pantograph in the Making

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Awww, she loves Art and our workshop. This was an energy boost for us because we know that our effort is worthwhile.

Measurements for wood pantograph

Measurements for wood pantograph

Father and Daughter using the hot glue gun to glue junk together.

Father and Daughter using the hot glue gun to glue junk together

Snippets of certain incidents that stood out during the workshop :

While I was facilitating the Junk sculptures station where children glue random junk together to form cool sculptures, a mom told me “This is very cool, I think I get to learn more than my son when I come to such workshops”.  I was very happy to hear this because it is indeed a workshop for families as our title suggests where not only the kids are enlightened, but also their parents.

There was a significant number of kids who were asking me where to buy the hot glue gun and how much it costs. Many commented in the feedback forms that they would like to know where to purchase the raw materials. This goes on to show that they would probably go home and Make as well. It is very heart warming to hear such things.

Children are so passionate about Making and they take ownership of what they make. A child named Morgan explained to me how the castle he made works and the unique features which it contained. Another kid, Sophia, was telling me how she made her the polymer clay bear. There is so much satisfaction and pride when the children talk about what they Make.

Call for Makers to collaborate for Tampines Learning Fest

Our partner, Tampines Central Community Club is organising Play @ Tampines on 14 March 2015  at the  Open Plaza Tampines Mall (rooftop) from 11am to 3pm.

If you would like to take part contact Louis at Louis_TAN@pa.gov.sg

FAQs :
1. Who are the target audience?
Chideren aged 6 to 12, about 500 to 700 pax.

2. What kind of booths are expected – showcase or hands on?
We would like hands-on activities.

3. Indoor or Outdoor activities?
We have both outdoor and indoor (a small space).

4. Are powerpoints available?
Yes

5. Will Makers be able to sell items?
Yes

A few weeks ago we worked with Tampines Central Community Club and organised a Pop up Maker programme with around 1000 participants. Here are some of the activities we did then:

Engrossed in quilling

Engrossed in quilling

Preparing the pictures for the zoetrope

Preparing the pictures for the zoetrope

Making paper circuits with aluminium tapes as wires

Making paper circuits with aluminium tapes as wires

Children doing their own biting paper monster

Children doing their own biting paper monster

 

Facilitating at a Pop up Maker space

Before I joined Science Centre as an intern/temporary staff, words like “maker” and “tinkering” were at the bottom of my word bank. An Arts student like me  saw the beauty of Science through simple activities like “Paper circuits” and “Bristle bolts”. I saw the pure Physics that I painstakingly studied in secondary 4 come alive.

Barely 3 weeks into work and I feel that if I had been introduced to ‘Making’ since young, I would have been a more creative person who thinks out of the box.  The life of kids these days revolves around academics and the computer. They are given very minimal opportunities to hone their thinking skills but these are the kind of workshops which create innovative people.

Basic Paper Circuit

Basic Paper Circuit

While explaining to me what paper circuits are and how to make them, Dr Kiruthika made the paper circuit above. How many of us know that aluminium foil and aluminium tapes are alternatives of wires, because they conduct electricity? There is a huge gap between practical and theory.

Students who attended the Pop up Maker space at Poi Ching Primary School used that simple concept of electricity and made interesting things with it.

Another maker, Priyanka Gupta – founder of Just Love Crafts, came down to Tampines to teach the bursary award recipients quilling. Making is just so beautiful, it really feeds one’s soul. Moreover, quilling is not only for relaxation purposes ,it is useful as anything from decorative items to jewelry can be made using paper. Yes, you read it correctly, PAPER.

LEDs was incorporated into a quilled flower

LED was incorporated into a quilled flower

I saw the joy in children, parents and grandparents when they made items by themselves.

Grandmother qilled her own  butterfly

Grandmother quilled her own butterfly

Mother and children taking the idea of a basic ciruit and making intersting things

Mother and children taking the idea of a basic circuits and making interesting things

Look at the smiles on their faces! Making makes one happy indeed!

Look at the smiles on their faces! ‘Making’ makes people happy indeed

It was my pleasure to see people’s face light up upon making their own items and learning things which are not in their textbooks.

The pop up makerspace at Poi Ching Primary school was a real eye opener for me.

Interview with Shaun and Mantej

Last December, over 1500 people came together at Science Centre to participate in HourofCodeSG. The week long coding event was facilitated almost completely by volunteers and members of the Maker community. We are glad to share Lianhe Zaobao’s coverage of the event, as well as two student makers – Shaun and Mantej- who showcased their coding/ robotic creations at the HourofCodeSG.

14 Jan 15_Lianhe Zaobao_Page 8_From hacker to coding expert (2)

Summarised translation of the article:

In order to be better than others at computer games, Shaun Chua, picked up the skills for cracking online games, and inadvertently became interested in coding. The Higher Nitec student now no longer plays online games, but sends his free time coding to create electric toy cars and intelligent sensing system.

Shaun recently participated in Science Centre Singapore’s Hour of Code. He and 40 other volunteers demonstrated self-created robots and games, to interest children in coding. The event, attracted 1,500 children and parents.

15-year-old Mantej Singh was also a guide at Hour of Code, where he showcased his own robots. The ACS (Independent) student developed an interest in robotics after watching Terminator. At the age of 12, he was able to create robots using Lego toys that are controlled by computers.

About the Hour of Code, Mantej Singh said, “I participated in Hour of Code to share my knowledge with young ones, and showcased simple robotics apparatus to encourage them to explore the fun of coding.”

Making in Art Workshop in Feb

 

Join us on Feb 14th to make Drawing machines, Fish bone sculptures, Polymer clay art, Scrap metal art, Paper circuits etc and learn new skills such as Wood work, clay crafting, circuit design, and combining Arts, Science and Tech.

Register at https://www.regonline.sg/makerworkshop5

Making in Art Poster Final