Day 05 - Smarter Communications (Middle School)

What a productive last day at IBM! We began by presenting our prototypes and getting feedback. The presentations and feedback were more impressive than ever. (See the video above.) Next, we jumped into Design Challenge 4: Design a way for people with challenges to better communicate. We did research on different challenges that affect people’s ability to communicate, as well as the different types of assistive technology that exist currently. We learned about Stephen Hawking and his eye gaze communication device, as well as how smartphones have dramatically improved communication for deaf people. We looked at many other types of assistive communication devices, and then got into our brainstorming mode.

Once we defined our users and design ideas, we diagramed and built our prototypes. Since we had some extra time today, after our presentations and feedback, we had time to create a video commercial for our design (hopefully coming soon to our blog.)  Our products ended up being quite impressive: an eco-friendly device that reads lips and speaks or texts for people, and a solar and wind powered  hovering device and headset that reads your thoughts and communicates them to others through a laptop or handheld device. Our secret word for the day is: Skyline.

  • Clyde: Today I enjoyed design challenge number four. This week I enjoyed all the design challenges.
  • Will: What I liked about today was creating design challenge number 4 and making the commercial for our prototype. This week I learned how to build design challenges.
  • Niamaya: I like today’s design challenge. This week I enjoyed learning how different people have such different ideas.
  • Ava: What I liked about today was design challenge four because I liked making something for people with challenges. This week I enjoyed learning about different innovators and creative people.