Art: Blender Project – Newtons Cradle

I love art and I miss it a lot. I wish I had not given it up completely this year as that was my ‘thing’ for so long. Moving towards a more tech-centric me, I have taken up 3D animation. I find this interesting and challenging and I enjoy it. I did a few projects last summer and decided to start another one now. The whole that art has left has been filled up – and overflowed – with Physics. This happened very organically – my project idea just so happened to be, creating Newtons Cradle. I have just started and want to set a goal to finish this after Project Week.

I really like this and want to merge this skill with data analysis in some way later on in life. I can see a lot of uses as I am concurrently learning about Databases in HL Computer Science

SheLeads w Ruki Roy: Reflection

SheLeads was an event that I found out through Coding for Good. It was an event where the organizer Ruki Roy reached out to her contacts for help. Coding for Good was part of helping build their website and part of their advertising team. The event was a conference aimed towards young female aspiring engineers; Ruki made sure, however, to not make the event exclusive and not only catered towards girls. Ruki reached out to a ton of different inspiring speakers whom she video conferenced in. The impressive list includes a former NASA director, NASA engineers, and Georgia Tech and Standford current students. (The poster I created is below) She is an aeronautical engineering student at Georgia Tech with a Brooke Owens Fellowship. I found this event very cool and chose to help organize this event.

I think that I took a lot away from this event. I could not help but draw comparisons to Coding for Goods Hackathon. There was so much I learnt from watching Ruki lead the event – she was filled with confidence and was not scared at all. Things went wrong and she took it in her stride. I found this very inspiring. There are plans for next year, and it looks like Coding for Good will be taking a larger role in this. Things to take away were the advertising had to be better and the audience should have probably been a bit more filtered and perhaps more mature.

EE Day reflection

Today I decided on which route to take for my EE by doing preliminary experiments to see if there is a solid relationship between what I am testing. There was a slight but consistent difference of around 6% between the depth and upthrust. This allows for me to continue my experimentation at the pool once I make a few more adjustments to my model, to reduce uncertainties in setup. Moreover, I have made many approximations but still have not accounted for them and this needs to be done before I head to the pool. I am proud that I was able to set up a prototype method with relative accuracy in measurements and that there was actually a relationship evident in about one meter depth. All of this allows me to be more confident when I reach the pool.

During planning for what I was going to do during the day, I was certain of another topic, the ascent rate of a diver depending on its volume. I had planned relevant preliminary tests and developed a model for that, but I chose not to go with this after discovering that there was a relationship with my initial idea. Now that there is, I have to go back to analyzing the static model and derive a relationship between depth and buoyancy. Moreover, as my experiment is related to fluid dynamics there is space for my experiment to go either extremely complicated or, on the other hand, extremely simple. I fear that I am on the ledge between it going simple due to my approximations. However, if I am able to explain the phenomena occurring and elaborate on why I chose my approximations, explaining what would have happened if I (for example) acknowledged that the flow of water was not laminar and gas was not ideal and so on.

My main objective currently is to first, make changes to my set-up, and then cement a working model. Next, I would like to finish my EE outline. I feel that this is extremely helpful to keep me paced and that I should clean up and collate all my research in one place as doing this will help me when I am writing my background theory and creating my citations. Lastly, I was talking to a physics teacher and they said it may be possible to get a Houdini style clear acrylic container about 2 metres tall with a 1 meter square base. However, I will have to find the manufacturer myself and ask the department to purchase it. I will have to weigh how useful this is and how much it will benefit my experiment.

Initial Reflection

Before my first meeting with my supervisor, I made sure to research relevant fundamental principles in textbooks and online, so that I had a better understanding of my topic leading to a more constructive discussion. I quickly learnt that to investigate my initial research question, the experimental setup required would be difficult to achieve and so accuracy would be compromised as it would be difficult to keep other variables constant, especially ensuring laminar flow in the testing liquid, due to various practical problems. Therefore, my supervisor suggested that I focus on creating an accurate set-up to minimize such errors and also find or create a correct liquid container that will allow for the relationship between depth and upthrust on the gas, accounting for some disruptions in flow, to be seen. This then allows me to spend a lot of time conducting test trials and revising my set up so that my final data will be viable.

Participating in the Knitathon

The service knitting for Katike held a Knit-a-thon where volunteers came together for 24 hours to knit as much as they could. All of the finished products would be sent to children in Katike with not enough protective clothing to withstand the harsh winter months in the mountains. The knitathon was open to pro knitters and beginners alike.
During middle school, I was actually part of a crochet club and so in part due to nostalgic emphasis, I was eager to volunteer my Tuesday afternoon to this noble cause. I guess, I was also very interested in how this “a-thon” was run, as my “hack-a-thon” had ended only a week back and I wanted to compare and see if there were improvements to be made next time.
The experience was heartwarming as members of the GC/Focus-group shared intimate stories about their experiences with the GC and the hardships that the children they were supporting had to go through. Moreover, the environment was comforting as students were sitting comfortably in nooks around the classroom, or laying on pillows and cushions watching TV as they knitted. There was music playing and it was a relaxing hour right before the G11 mock exams.
If you needed help in your knitting, members of the GC were very happy to come and help you. Overall, it was a great experience and I enjoyed it immensely.

Networking Event PSE

What went well?

I think that the sheet handed out to us helped us prompt our thinking. Also due to the different types of teachers present, there were various types of conversations being held that helped prepare us for the real world. I also felt that the environment was artificially created in such a way that it allowed us to take risks that we perhaps would not be able to have taken as there was low risk. As in, as some of us are not able to talk to teachers that easily this did help people step out of their comfort zone and try things that they may not have tried.

What could be improved

There was a distorted ratio of students and teachers. Therefore there was a lot of waiting for involved and caused groups of students to feel disinterested. There was also little incentive and preparation for this activity so that also decreased possible realistic level. A way to improve this may be to split the groups up into different days to improve the ratio.

What have you taken away from the process

That being confident and taking risks are good. Adding on to this, the way you talk to adults is different to children and so that was helpful.

IFP Training Day 2

We had our second training day on Saturday. It was held at UWCSEA East and lasted till 4pm. I found it very interesting and I liked that it built upon our training from the previous training session. It became more evident that our trainers are preparing us for how to host a conference and interact and lead groups through peaceful discussions. We are gifted with so much knowledge sometimes it feels that I should be taking notes. A constant theme was being put into different small groups and being able to hold conversations, be sociable, jovial and in this way put everyone at ease. There was a lot of brainstorming that had to be done which means that it is unequivocal to be comfortable to speak in your groups. Another common thread for each activity we were put in before lunch was that there was always a seemingly irrelevant opener or icebreaker. It is not until this reflection process that I realize that they should be mandatory in that they allow groups of people who probably have very little in common and do not know each other to have something to talk or laugh about.

Lunch was not an explicit training session but in some ways, it felt like one. Me and my friend, who would usually just sit with people we knew and were comfortable, saw someone that we just met in the previous activities and sat with them instead. People seemed to follow us and soon this long table was filled with people from an eclectic array of backgrounds who barely knew each other peoples names, chatting and laughing and agreeing together. The topics that we quickly leaped upon were of such a higher standard than anything that could have come with just me and my friend in months. We discussed issues of race, income inequality, corruption in influential institutions, and plans for the future. The connection that happens in a blink with people once they choose to be friendly and open is rare and I, as well as everyone, savored it.

After that, we had lectures by Cathy Jones and Mr. Watersomething. I found Mrs. Jones really interesting as it was a skill that otherwise I would have looked over. It was unprecedently challenging as it was suppressing the urge to talk.

Lastly, we got into our final groups and discussed activity plans.

It was a fruitful day and it was hard to leave school that day as it was also leaving that wonderful community! I was looking forward to coming back on Tuesday.