Making Machines

Hey guys, for the last couple of weeks we’ve been working on a new project in scimatics called Metaphor Machines. This project was based around creating a Rube Goldberg machine that was a metaphor for something, we also had to include a electric circuit in the machine since that was one of the thing we had been learning about at the time. But I’m sure you’re wondering what our machine would be a metaphor for, well the answer is the scientific method.







Here are some pictures of the machine we ended up creating, we ended up having our metaphor surrounding the use of the scientific method in creating an electrical circuit as you can see in our video.

Of course, it’s not a PLP project without Competencies and for this project there were four different competencies that we were being assess on. Questioning and Predicting, Reasoning and Analyzing, Planning and Conducting, and Scientific Communication. First I’m going to talk about the Questioning and Predicting competency. This competency states: Demonstrate a sustained intellectual curiosity about a scientific topic or problem of personal interest. I think I did a pretty go job at using this competency because I was genuinely curious about how electricity works and different types of circuits that are used. However, I may not be the best at actually showing when I’m genuinely interested in something.

The next competency is Reasoning and Analyzing which has one of the shortest descriptions I’ve seen for any competency yet, it’s: Estimate reasonably. I think I wasn’t as good at using this competency because our blue prints and ideas for our machine were way too ambitious for this project and we also completely overestimate how much materials we would actually have access to. In the end we changed our design a bit and took away some of the more complicated elements and I think it actually made it better.

After that we have the Planning and Conducting competency that states: Select and use appropriate equipment, including digital technologies, to systematically and accurately collect and record data. I think I did really well at using this competency while making our electrical circuit because since I was so interested in how they worked I was paying a lot of attention to exactly what worked and what didn’t so I was able to get the correct equipment to create a good circuit and measure the voltage and current of the circuit itself.

Finally we have the Scientific Communication competency which states: Formulate physical or mental models to describe a phenomenon. The competency is basically the metaphor machine which I think my group did a great job at creating. I think I did a particularly good job at using this competency because I was one of the main people on our team that built the machine and also helped come up with most of the solutions for the machine.

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