Thursday, May 28, 2009
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Monday, May 25, 2009
Because the world needs good engineers and scientists, and because the kids who will grow up to become engineers and scientists need a way to get hands-on experience with physics, math and engineering.
In this age of 200-plus channels of TV, the Internet and computer games, kids are also spending far less time building tree houses, tinkering with engines, or designing downhill racers. We believe those are important skills to have. They help form the basis for good problem solving skills and an innate understanding of the real, physical world that you just can't get from a computer game, no matter how good its physics simulation software is.
Ballistic motion was one of the key players in the development of the science of physics. The word "engineer" even originated as the builders and designer of Siege Engines
Why is a budding engineering student expected to take a year or two of calculus in high school, but she isn't expected to have any real-world experience in building or working with machines and materials? Pencil and paper (or computer screens) are only one part of the learning experience. Where will she apply all of the stuff she learned in geometry and trig? Without physical projects to touch, feel and see, the lessons become abstract, their utility questionable.
A catapult project gives students a chance to see that science and engineering really can be fun, and it's a lot more than just numbers on paper. The real payoff for an engineer is in the field, where she can see and enjoy the results of her ingenuity. And it may seem counterintuitive, but engineering projects not only help kids learn math and science, they are also great at getting kids back outdoors, away from the massive over-exposure to video games, TV and the Internet.
Why all this interest in getting kids to study science and engineering? Because it's important to our society, and it's great mental cross training regardless of what field of work the kids eventually go into. Most people develop a sense for what they want to do in life while they are still in high school or even earlier. A catapult project is fun and interesting enough to inspire some kids to study the science behind how they work, and then go on to become the engineers and scientists of tomorrow.
I seem to recall building matchstick rockets, then model rockets, then Chinese rockets and learning about force, thrust, motion, weight and more. This is too cool!
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
"Fortunately, it isn't required to go to design school in order to be a graphic designer. A good foundation in graphic design history, theory, and practical application will help you hit the ground running. There are plenty of resources available in which you can learn graphic design on your own. Don't set your expectations to high at first, as it will take enthusiastic study for years to become great. You can do it though!
If you would like to learn graphic design from the ground up, through self directed study, then this article lists some great resources that will get you started with your design education. Also, even if you do go to design school, at least three-fifths of your education will be through self directed study anyway. Let's get to it!"
Saturday, May 16, 2009
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
And it's spreading to OP:
Bork Bork Bork!
Sunday, May 10, 2009
Monday, May 04, 2009
Coal fired power plants cause upwards of 24,000 excess deaths from pollution, radiation, etc. each year. Assuming we've had 70 years of serious coal fired power plants, thats 280,000 excess deaths.
Nuclear power plants caused between 0 and 19 excess deaths in that same time frame in the US; up to 4,000 worldwide including the Chernobyl foulup.