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Teaching Tools Sensing and Robotics- Computer Vision Prototype - This is an image of the a simple machine vision program. The purpose of the program is to demonstrate the capabilities of and difficulties with vision systems on the farm. The program featured a two-panel display. The bottom panel displayed video feed without any filtering; the top panel applied various filters to the feed. Additionally, the top panel employed color and blob detection to specify particular areas of interest, and highlight how machine vision works in a context of actuation.
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Teaching Tools Sensing and Robotics- Mechanized Awning Early Prototype - This is an early prototype of an actuation mechanism. Along with the machine vision program is a hardware component that actuates based on light changes. This small prototype illustrates the potential of a mechanized awning to provide the appropriate lighting conditions in the field. The prototype contributes to how we explained the Sense-Think-Act paradigm of robotics. The DIY aesthetic is a deliberate ploy to lower the threshold at which participants understood robotics.
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Teaching Tools Sensing and Robotics- Computer Vision/Mechanized Awning Prototype - This is final version of the computer vision/mechanized awning prototype. We wanted to expose the parts of the process to allow participants in the workshop to feel able to unpack and question what the parts do. We also made the aesthetic decision to demonstrate the level at which we expected the participants to prototype their own ideas. Rather than creating a more finished product, this prototype uses the same materials we gave to the participants during the workshop.
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Teaching Tools Sensing and Robotics- Computer Vision/Mechanized Awning Prototype - Here I am demonstrating how my prototype works. We asked the participants who are watching to do a similar presentation of their idea. As much as this prototype explains ideas about robotics, it also attuned the group to the skills needed to explain a design prototype.
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Teaching Tools Sensing and Robotics- Sensor Display (v1) - This is a learning station to explain how digital sensors work. Using Arduino and three simple sensors (photo resistor, capacitance/moisture, IR distance sensor), the display gave participants the opportunity to play with hardware.
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Teaching Tools Sensing and Robotics- Sensor Display (v1) - Here a member of the lab explains how the display is sensing moisture by using electric current. The participant is using two metal leads to get a moisture reading of soil.
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Teaching Tools Sensing and Robotics- Sensor Display (v2) - For the second iteration of the sensor display we made a more self-contained display. Text was added to allow participants to engage with the display independent of us. We wanted to start to acclimate participants to the notion of tinkering, and allowing them to independently play with sensors was one way we sought to accomplish this.
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Teaching Tools Sensing and Robotics- Sensor Display (v2) - Here I am providing a more detailed explanation of what is being shown and how the sensors work.

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