Monday, April 27, 2015

#EdTechTidBIts of the Week (April 21, 2015)


Here's your #EdTechTidBits for the week of April 21, 2015. This list is dedicated to #MakerEd. I found two new apps, a Disney article, a robotics competition to the moon, and a repository of maker projects!

AutoDesk 123D's TinkerPlay for Mobile Devices

AutoDesk 123D, the maker of other great free apps for 3D design, such as Tinkercad and 123D Design, have released a new free app called TinkerPlay for iOS, Android, and Windows devices. TinkerPlay lets you 3D design your own moveable action figures and then you can download the files and print it on a 3D printer. It's very simple to use by just dragging and dropping a variety of body parts and "snapping" them together to create your figure. You can customize the background and the colors as well.

Printing the head of my action figure.
If your students have written an imaginative and detailed story, let them 3D design and print the characters to reenact the scenes! With so many body parts and accessories to choose from, your students have endless creative potential! I've begun printing my own, and I had a lot of fun designing it myself!
Finished 3D printed head.
Now I just have to print the rest!


Makerbot Printshop for the iPad

The Makerbot company, sellers of the Makerbot 3D printers, released a free iPad app called Makerbot Printshop. With this app, you can easily create 3D text, bracelets, rings, and it will even transform a drawing into a 3D shape! You can then wirelessly send it to a Makerbot 3D printer. You can explore and print from a gallery of other user generated content, and you can save your own designs to the cloud and access them via the Makerbot Desktop application.

Snap a photo of a drawing & transform it into
a 3D object.

Example of a my drawing converted to 3D.

Create 3D text!


Disney Experiments with 3D Printing in Fabric

The Disney Research division has been playing around with the idea of 3D printing soft, deformable objects with layers of plain, off-the-shelf fabric. I first got word of this through Make: on this Google+ post and this article.


Here is the original publication and a YouTube video from the DisneyResearchHub YouTube channel showing the process in action. The implications of such a process are interesting to consider and create opportunities for a variety of new soft toys & objects.



Join the Google Moonbots Lunar XPRIZE Challenge!

The Google Lunar XPRIZE Challenge recently announced the Moonbots Challenge for students ages 8 - 17!


Students can form teams of 2 to 4 to participate in an online international competition. The task is to design, create, and program a robot that can rove & navigate on the moon's surface. The rules, dates, prizes, FAQ, and more can be found on the website.


Share Those #MakerEd Projects with MIT's "Build in Progress"

Fellow Hawaii educator, +Justin Lai, recently shared (via our Google+ Community: STEMLink Hawaii, please join!) a great online project repository space by MIT called Build in Progress.


What I appreciate the most about Build in Progress is that the purpose is to share the process of the project (not just the final product and the instructions). When you submit your project, you create a tree map of the process. You can include research gathered, prototypes, successes & failures, instructions, and final products. They also have an Android app!

An example  of the process of a project.
From research to final presentation.

The next time you assign a project for your students, have them upload their entire process to Build in Progress. They could upload along the way or at the very end of the project. Give them a space and a platform to share what they've learned and created with the world!



Thanks for checking out this edition of #EdTechTidBits of the Week! See you next week!

Do you have any #MakerEd resources to share? 
Add them in the comments below!