Projects take off
Things started to get more intense in the curriculum as we begun our presentations for our first origami robots on Monday. We each had to present a short video about the various actions by our origami and explain the rationale behind their designs. Some of us had beautifully designed handicrafts while some had intricate design components in their origami motions. It was a good learning process watching how everyone designed their origami and tried to come up with robots that not only mimic actions of an animal or object but to give it life and relate it to a specific persona that is intuitive and natural.
We shared which one of the 5 robots were our favorite or requires improvement. One of our favorite was a cobra robot because of the randomness behind its action; there is no specific angle or timing for its motion when it springs out to ‘attack’ but it totally based on randomness. This gives it a more fun element which provides more opportunity for this robot to be suited for a specific context or function.
Smart Home Products
We have also kick started our main project with a meeting with an Alibaba marketing representative to present our knowledge on IoT where we shared our experience in our past Digital World or Design Projects. They also shared what they can provide to us to help us in our stint here to design smart home products suitable for their clients. It is an exciting start as we will be staying for 2 nights at a village to learn and observe their lifestyles and habits so we can better understand how we can design a smart home product for them. I always loved to experience different cultures and understand their way of life so this will be an enriching memory for me!
Second Visit to Hushu Special School
We went to Hushu for a second time to play sports with them this round. Initially, we were taken aback because of the clash with other volunteers and we had to come up with a 40 minutes impromptu session before our planned sports activity. We went to play with them and taught them simple english words but we realised teaching them really requires great patience and understanding. Most could not sit still or even feel hostile to us and would not accept a stranger.
The Frisbee session was fun where we managed to get closer and able to teach them certain basics of catching and throwing. This group of children is younger than the previous batch and they are more active thus gets restless more easily. This was the challenge for us as they soon drifted off and wanted to play with other toys or simply just got bored. We could not carry on with conducting our mini competition but we improvised with what we knew about each of the children and played or sat around with them to accompany them. Again, it is not an easy feat for the teachers especially when they have to scold some of the children to get them to listen. It must be very tiring emotionally and physically for the teachers as they definitely do not want to do that but they have to educate them. However, seeing their laughters and smiles when they enjoy the sessions really do spark a joy in me. I really hope they will get better as the days past.