Pilots are taking off! The Nimbus Centre in Ireland Creates Prototyping Camp for TY Students

Towards the end of the summer, researchers from the Nimbus Centre conducted a prototyping workshop with a group of forty-seven transition year students. Working in collaboration with CIT Enterprise Camp, a series of session took place over the course of a week at the CIT main campus. These workshops are part of the greater piloting activities of a European initiative entitled the H2020 UMI-Sci-Ed project which aims to use UMI technologies (ubiquitous computing, mobile computing and the Internet of Things) to promote STEM careers to young people aged 14-16 years of age.

A selection of materials from the prototyping kit used as part of the camp

The workshops took place over the course of two days, during which time the students were introduced to a number of techniques, from ideation to storyboarding and modelling, to building working prototypes. They were also introduced to IoT technologies, including the Texas Instruments SensorTag, which allows a user to collect environmental data with their mobile device via Bluetooth. The workshop required students to work together to solve a design problem using the prototyping techniques introduced to them. Later in the week, the groups used these prototyping techniques to develop their own products and services. This marks the beginning in a series of STEM-related events and initiatives taking place as part of the UMI-Sci-Ed project. The Nimbus group responsible for the prototyping sessions plan to take their workshop on the road to secondary schools around the county, to promote prototyping techniques as a tool for solving problems, and to introduce TY students to IoT technologies.

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