PacSci Perspectives

A Learning Experiment

by | Nov 4, 2016

Pacific Science Center’s Tinker Tank is one of our most popular attractions. Our guests just love to come in and build all sorts of stuff. Rube Goldberg-style creations, air-powered rockets, small creations that fly in our vertical wind tunnels, and on and on. With the addition of our 3D printer, Arduino and Makey Makey circuit boards and the Scratch programming language, the possibilities are endless. The interactive space has become so popular, we moved to a bigger space and expanded hours. Now we’ve decided to take it to the next level and during November we’re conducting experiments to figure out what’s next.

To begin with we’re calling this new space The Lab. It’s in Building 3 near our Denny Way entrance. So far, we have four events planned:

  • Thursday, November 10 – Tinker Lab: Makey Makey & Scratch (2–3:30 p.m.)
  • Saturday, November 12 – Tinker Lab: 3D Design for 3D Printing (2–3:30 p.m.)
  • Monday, November 21 – Tinker Lab: Makey Makey & Scratch (2–3:30 p.m.)
  • Tuesday, November 29 – Tinker Lab: 3D Design for 3D Printing (2–3:30 p.m.)

All events will be held from 2-3:30 p.m. There is no cost involved, just general admission or it’s free if you’re a Member.

These Lab sessions, as we’re calling them now, will no doubt change by the time we fully implement the program in January. We may figure out we need a small charge to cover expenses, or we may forego any charges. We call it The Lab now but maybe we’ll figure out a better name based on how our guests use the space. Our first sessions make use of Makey Makey circuit boards and Scratch programming language, 3D printing and design, but we may figure out better topics or procedures come January, again, based on what our guests tell us.

To that end, we’re asking for your help. If this sort of thing appeals to you, please make plans to stop by and try it out. We would love to hear your thoughts.

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