Visiting son Michael here in Rochester this weekend, he “scored” a couple of VIP Passes to the RIT Imagine Festival (http://www.rit.edu/imagine/) a free event that over 20000 will attend.

We got there early to see the start of the energy race. The idea was to see which vehicle could travel the 3 mile campus course using the least amount of energy. The winning entry used 27.5 watt hours of energy from solar charged batteries.

The entry below did not win but i thought it was an interesting vehicle.

 

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There were two winners one took Dr Destler’s 1800’s banjo (I hope they give it back!) and the other got a $1000 prize.

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This was of particular interest because I graduated RIT in 1975 with a degree in Electrical Engineering. The campus has expanded dramatically, perhaps by a factor of 4. Had to get this picture of me in front of the Gleason Engineering building.

 

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The number of projects and innovative things the students are doing is mind boggling. Here are a few of the things i thought were interesting. The great part is that many of them combine multiple disciplines to build real things. This list is a very small set of things, the range of things on display was simply amazing!

  • Women in engineering middle school educational sessions teaching kids about fuel cells and electronics
  • Investigation into the ways that nanoparticles can enter the body through the lungs.
  • Building real hybrid rockets and related telemetry and electronics
  • A number of internet developments like http://www.newdigs.com and http://bookmaid.com
  • Biomechanics simulating human hand operations. I did not ever see some of this close up before. To simulate a contracting muscle they use what look like fiber covered 1/2” or so balloon tubes. When they pressurize it with air it becomes fatter and contracts longitudinally. When you let the pressure out it relaxes and stretches out.
  • The robotic hot dog assembler but that was packed and it was hard to even get a glimpse of it.
  • The concrete canoe
  • A visit with the off roaders club with a collection of killer jeeps.
  • http:tagg.rit.edu is a way to track the most popular exhibits. By texting the exhibit number, votes are automatically tallied and displayed on screens around the festival. And you can go to the website, enter your phone number, and not only see what you have tagged (try my cell: 9542701186) but also see what other exhibits you might want to visit.

Here are a couple more pictures from the day:

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Take a close look at the hat, yes we had propeller heads there!

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Computer Science Lobby displays:

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