I never dreamed about success. I worked for it. -Estee Lauder

Category: I am a Thinker (page 1 of 2)

Considering Viewpoints: Freedom of Speech

Should freedom of speech be absolute, or should it be limited? I’ve created tweets of people who are on both sides of this debate. Click the hyperlink below to look at both sides of the argument.

Considering Viewpoints – Freedom of Speech

Project Collisions: Design 1

Our team constructed the first design using a small piece (about 50 x 50 cm) of a clear plastic trash bag we found. We
used 4 pieces of string that was knotted at the four corners to our parachute, and was hot glued onto each side of the box. We also laid sponges at the bottom of our box to better protect the fruits. Multiple drops took place and we noticed that the parachute wasn’t puffed up, which meant that there wasn’t much air resistance, so the velocity was pretty much the same as a package falling without a parachute. Even if the parachute worked, it would still take long to even “react” because it was too far away from the package, so by the time it started to puff up a little, the package was already almost landing. The sponges we put at the bottom didn’t stay at the bottom, and when we opened the package, all the fruits and sponges were all mixed up, and the plastic boxes for our fruits had opened.

In order to improve our design, we paid attention to areas where it failed. Here is a list for everything that failed for Drop 2:

  • There wasn’t air resistance because the parachute was too small for the package.
  • The strings connecting the box and the parachute was too long so the parachute couldn’t “react” fast enough.
  • The plastic bag wasn’t strong enough, so it ripped after our first drop and one of our strings were detached.
  • The sponges and the fruits got mixed up inside the box.
  • The smaller plastic boxes holding the fruits opened

These are things that went well for the drop of our first design:

  • Two out of the three drops hit the force plate
  • You can see in the videos that Drop 2b and 2c started to puff up more than during Drop 2a

For our next design, we will improve our first prototype by:

  • Making a bigger parachute that will support the weight of our box
  • Use the concept of a double parachute
  • Create layers with cardboard pieces to separate and secure the sponges and the fruits

Project Collisions: Design 0

This is our package that will hold the fruits.

In Project Collisions, my group is creating a system to deliver fresh fruits by drones. The drones will drop a package from a height of 10 meters, and it is our job as engineers to develop a solution so that the package is protected in its fall. For Drop 0, our box has the dimensions of 20 x 20 x 30 cm (length, width, height), and was dropped from a height of 5 meters. This is the photo of the package:`

The box will hold 4 apples (weighs about 400 grams), a box of blueberries (about 340 grams), a box of strawberries (about 1,000 kg), and 8 tangerines (about 960 grams). The two boxes of strawberries and blueberries will go at the bottom of the box, and the apples and tangerines will go on top of the strawberries and blueberries.

My drawing of what will go inside the package.

The purpose of Drop 0 is like the “control” in our experiment, to get the baseline data about our package. Our group developed a procedure so that we can be consistent about how we are dropping our package and collecting data.

During our first drop, we didn’t line the package up with the arrow mark properly, so the box didn’t hit the force plate and we weren’t able to collect data for the force of the landing. After opening the box, we also noticed that the fruits weren’t that badly damaged, only a few bruises on the strawberry and blueberries, so now we know how to protect the fruits from getting damaged. Below is the data we’ve collected so far:

The procedure and data table.



The package took 1.08 seconds from the moment it was released to the moment it was dropped, and we used LoggerPro to plot out the fall of our package. Below is the image of the plotted points of our package. At first, the package didn’t drop very much, which is why the points are plotted so close together. But the box’s velocity increased as it dropped further down and gained momentum, which is why they grew further apart. At the end, the package also bounced off the table, which is why there are many dots bunched together at the end.

A force plate was set up at the bottom to collect data on the impact force of the package. One of our metrics of success was if the package hit the force plate and the force plate was able to collect data. For our first drop, the package did not hit the force plate, so we weren’t able to collect data for Drop 0, but for Drop 1, we were able to successfully hit the force plate. Our average force on impact was 28.9 newton’s. Our goal is to be able to hit the force plate, which is a 28.5 by 31.5 cm area. Our goal for our first design is to reduce the force impact to 15 newton’s, and if we can reach that goal, we will keep reducing the number so we can have a softer landing. We are also planning to do this with the velocity as well.

The data we collected put into LoggerPro.

Our team has decided that these metrics of success are the most important criteria that our design should follow:

  1. Fruits should not be damaged (eg. bruised, juice seeping out, squashed)
  2. Package hits the force plate
  3. The force impact is 15 newton’s or less
  4. The velocity is 1.6 / second

Below, each metric is described and the goals were determined based on data we have collected from Drop 0.

  1. Fruits are in mint condition
  2. The package hits the force plate
  3. The force impact is 15 newton’s or less
  4. The velocity is 1.6 m / second

Our group is now building our first prototype. We are planning to slow the fall with a parachute, and have some padding at the bottom of the box for protection. I hope that we are able to meet all our goals for Drop 1, and will be able to learn more from the data we are collecting.

Eggs in Corn Syrup and Water Experiment

For the Eggs in Corn Syrup and Water experiment, we first put an egg into vinegar to get rid of the shell. We then put each egg into water or corn syrup, and the eggs would shrink or expand. Below are some pictures of my investigative design, data table, and initial and final models from this experiment.

For my investigative design, my design can be repeated by others because it is clear what components like the independent and dependent variable is, and my procedure is clear and detailed. Something that might have been an issue is that we couldn’t soak the eggs for exactly 24 hours, because there isn’t always exactly 24 hours between classes. Something that I could improve on is for the procedure is that I shouldn’t write in third person view. I have also collected additional information by putting the egg that had already shrank from the corn syrup into water, and vice versa.

In my initial model, I showed how I thought the phenomenon worked in the beginning. I had thought that the corn syrup somehow sucks the air out of the egg, so it shrinks and deflates. I also thought that when the egg is soaked in water, the water would go inside the egg, causing it to expand and grow. This was partly correct because water particles are small enough to go inside the egg.

Now, I know that water particles are small enough to be able to pass in and out of the egg membrane, but sugar particles are too big to do that. So that’s why when put in corn syrup, the water particles from the egg move out of the egg, and the sugar particles stay out, and the egg shrinks. And when put into water, the water particles all move into the egg, and the egg grows.

From the data I collected, I found that mass of the egg increased by 18.17 grams when put into water. This evidence shows that the egg has increased in mass when put into water. When put into corn syrup, the mass of the egg decreased by 32.21 grams, which shows that the mass of an egg decreases when put into corn syrup.

The purpose of conducting this experiment was to learn about cells, but replacing a cell with the egg. We were able to learn a lot about cells, and about how particles can pass through the cell membrane. Overall, this was a very fun experiment, and I learned a lot doing this.

Links for:

Investigative Design

Initial Model

Final Model

Procedure and Data Table

Houses of the Future: 3D Printing

Below is the Tinkercad design for our group’s (Samantha and Victoria) house in the future. Our Tinkercad design isn’t
completely finished as we still have small details to do like the pillows or some furniture pieces, but we have the house structure laid out.

I’m happy with how our design turned out, and I like how everyone has something they want part of the group design. I also like how we each get our own “corner” in the space, and we can personalize it however we want to.



One thing I think I did well as a collaborator is I shared my ideas, but I also listened to my teammates’ ideas, and accepted them. I also compromised on some ideas, and I worked collaboratively with others.  As a group, we all worked well together, and communicated and collaborated with each other. We respected everyone’s opinion, and discussed when there was something we didn’t agree on.

Something that I feel like we could work on or had some challenges while working together is finding time to work together
outside of classes to get work done, and communicating with each other outside of class.

Overall, I’m happy with how the design turned out, and I’m looking forward to continuing to improve our design and then 3D printing it.

What? So What? Now What?

The global issue that I am basing my dystopian story on is the issue of overpopulation. Overpopulation of humans is what causes all of our big problems today like climate change, global warming, poverty, or lack of resources. I really think that if there were no humans, these problems wouldn’t exist. Books like the “Hunger Games” or the Netflix series “The Thinning” also helped spark my ideas to write a story based on this problem. Some videos like “Human Population Through Time”, “Population growth and climate change explained by Hans Rosling” and “Population pyramids: Powerful predictors of the future – Kim Preshoff” all talked about how the world population suddenly increased, and continues to rapidly climb. So as our population continues to grow and exceed 9 billion people by 2050, global issues will become worse and worse as more humans are using up resources.

Although one person can’t exactly control the entire world population, we can all do some things to help with the issues that are the effect of overpopulation. These actions vary from showering instead of bathing, showering for a shorter period of time, reducing your amount of food waste, or using less plastic bags or items. These things will all contribute to solving problems like climate change or plastic waste, which are some things that affect the world in my story. You can also collect data on these things. You can time how long you are showering for each day, or count how many one-time-use plastic products you are using.

Icons for the Past, Present, and Future

The  Foragers to Future  project is a project where we have to find icons representing the food, transportation, communication, and trading network in different time periods like the when foragers were around, farmers, factories, and the future.

This is my initial plan for the icons I was going to use.

Where there were two icons, I wasn’t sure which one I would use. When I asked my partner for some feedback, they said that they think choosing the grains would be a better choice for farmers’ food, and the plane rather than the car would be a better choice for transportation in the present. My partner had also said putting a sunset for trading network wasn’t a very good choice because it didn’t clearly show what trading networks were like during the time of the foragers. Not many people would know that a sunset would mean the horizon, and people would only trade within the places they “knew”.  So instead, I put the icon of four tents, indicating that people would only trade within small areas like their villages.

Overall, I think this was a fun mini project, and I really enjoyed doing this. This was something that we could personalize and use our creative thinking in, and I that was something I really enjoyed doing.

Click  here  or on the hyperlink above to see my project!

Stories of the Future: Day Zero

  1. Three urgent problems that we need to solve by 2050 is global warming, scarcity of resources, and overpopulation.
  2. Two wonders or questions I have about the future is:

      – Would we run out of resources (food, water) before 2050?

      – Is it too late now to even solve all these global issues before 2050? 

3.  I have a pessimistic view of the future because I think all are problems have already started to go downhill, and there’s no        going back and trying to fix our mistakes now.


Reflecting on the Day:

Today, we did three different activities: measuring how much rice can the ISB field produce and how many people it can feed, filtering water and carrying it around to experience what it’s like without access to clean water, and building a city out of Legos that we think will exist in 2050. Overall, today I learned so much about all three different global issues, and I am still pessimistic about this situation. Experiencing what many people have to go through everyday, I was able to understand how deep this “No Clean Water” situation is around the world. Learning about how a field full of rice can only feed 38 people in one year, I found it really shocking how so many people aren’t even able to eat one full meal in a day, yet so much food is being wasted at the same time. With the population growing at the rate it is now, who knows what condition we’ll be living in in 2050. We’ve made our bed, and now we must lie in it. Because of our mistakes we’ve made, we need to face the consequences in the near future.

Summary of the Day:

Concluded from shocking discoveries made today, the future has no hope.

Ignite Week: Exhibition

Our project for Ignite Week was to create a “record player”. We used an old bike wheel and attached many wires to it. Those wires would be taped down by copper tape. In our scenario, there are two reasons why we used copper tape. One, so it wouldn’t insulate the wire, and two, when the spoon touched the bike wheel, the tape which is connected to the wire would make a sound. The wire would be programmed on Scratch to play a specific note, and the longer the copper wire would be, the longer the note. So we planned out our song, and supposedly, when the wheel spins and the spoon drags along the tape, it would play a song. But the wheel only has one pattern taped on it, so it will only play that one part and nothing else. 

Friday was the final day to put finishing touches on our projects, and we would have our first Ignite Week Exhibition of the year. Angel and I still had to finish attaching the wires onto the wheel, and we used the first two blocks to do that. But when we were finished, we discovered that the copper tape wasn’t very sensitive, so it didn’t work as well as we hoped it would. We had to slowly “scoot” the wheel along instead of spinning it really fast, and we would only occasionally hear a melody and rhythm instead of the entire chorus being played like we originally planned. The holder for the spoon didn’t really work that well, so we also just held the spoon with our hand. During the exhibition, we would play the song for them, but in the end, we just let our audience play and experiment with the wheel, even playing the notes with their hands. That worked out better because our audience could see where our project came from and our inspiration, and they would be able to experiment with it themselves which they thought was really cool.

Overall, I thought that this first Ignite Week project of the year was really fun and an enjoyable experience, and even though or wheel didn’t work as well as we hoped it would, I still learned a lot from this experience.

Make It: Create and Improve

Questions to Answer for Feedback:

-Are the notes being played clearly?

-Does the wheel spin smoothly?

-Do you hear a song being played?


Feedback from Other Group:

They can hear the specific notes, and they can sort of hear a song being played. But because we didn’t finish programming the notes, they didn’t hear the entire song. The wheel spins smoothly, but we should figure out how the notes will actually sound like a song when the wheel is spinning. They also told us how we could make something hold the spoon up so we don’t have to hold it.

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