Course Description/Outline

About This Class:

As a second semester Major Studio in the four semester MFA program, Computation gives students experience prototyping embedded computing applications, objects, and experiences.  This class focuses on building and refining prototypes based on concepts outlined by instructor, but created and imagined by students. It will also focus on ubiquitous computing, product and experience design, documentation/presentation skills, entrepreneurship, and tend-spotting.

This Class Focuses on 3 primary projects:
A Time Piece:
Use LED light to show the passage of time, and tell/read a certain time.   

Use proximity sensors and speakers to recreate a Theremin-style sound object.

Electro-Plush Experience:
Use light, sound, and proximity senor(s), to create an interactive plush-toy experience.

Once a primary project is built, students will have to keep it operating so it can be used and iterated through-out the rest of the semester.  In final presentations, students will show all three projects as their "final work."
Additional exercises will be assigned through-out the semester to develop the necessary skills to complete the 3 primary projects.

Material Costs:
Since we make prototypes the entire
semester this class will ask you to buy a lot of things.  If you've
taken physical computing  you probably
have most of the tools already. I will introduce all the tools and
materials in class.  Expect to spend around $100-300 for material/tool cost in
the class, for all your prototyping needs.

This is a rapid
prototyping class, you will test your concepts as working prototypes.  Physical computing is a prerequisite for this class.

Making things people play with is not an easy design challenge. 
your designs and prototypes withstand user-testing requires a lot of
time on your part.  In light of this, it may be very likely that this is your most
time consuming class.  But I think you'll find the work very rewarding
as your prototypes begin to live around the home and in your creative