Katherine

when the sky is darkest you can see the stars. except beijing is polluted. :)

Category: I am a communicator

Tiger and Lynx

Alex is happy right where she is. She’s always been content. But for some reason, Alex feels like she’s waking up. Remembering more… of her own life. The orphanage. All in one huge tidal wave. Another incident at the museum leaves Alex running until she finds shelter… in the most unlikely place.  An exhibit that seems like a zoo. All of the animals have something in common. They don’t exist anymore. They’re gone, but not temporarily. Forever.

Read?

The Mystery of the Enlarging and Shrinking Eggs

So, to sum things up. We did an experiment involving eggs, vinegar, water, and corn syrup. First, you pop two eggs in vinegar to dissolve their shell, and then wait 24 hours. Afterwards you put those two eggs in water and corn syrup separately and wait. When you take them out after 24 hours, the one in water should be swollen and the one in corn syrup will be shriveled. (h-heh, shriveled eggs.)
and like… shriveled heads from Harry Potter.

investigative design

investigative design + data table

observations + final model

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My design is repeatable by another person because I have a procedure that states very clearly what to do and have an appropiate model as well. The investigative design says the liquids are vinegar, corn syrup and water. It also states what inquiry question topics we can observe! As well, it shows my prediction for what would happen. An improvement would definitely to be writing down the amount of liquid used and more specific instructions.

When I first watched the phenomenon, I thought that there might be air bubbles inside the egg escaping and going inside. However, it is much different after I weighed them, with their weight changing from around, not being the same, like my prediction. Also the egg in water didn’t float, because it should’ve if it had air bubbles. In corn syrup it turned from 75.4 to 51.56, which obviously shows it getting lighter, and 75.4 to 100.25 in water. After looking at the experiment, I believe that the egg membrane allows certain molecules to pass and certain not to pass with the size of the particle. Sort of like a netting? But a tiny microscopic one… So, in Karo Syrup, the glucose was to big to get in so water molecules went out of the egg so it shrunk, sort of an explanation for the watery consistency of the corn syrup (but it also did separate into layers), and how in the water, it enlarged because stuff couldn’t get out of the egg, but water molecules could flow freely in between the two.

This is called a selectively permeable membrane and apparently can also be seen in cells, letting nutrients get in and other things that might be useful to the cell. This is an effective way to sort things automatically as some molecules will harm the eggs while other molecules the egg needs. A cell is like an egg, with a membrane. The egg’s white fluid can also be like the cell’s cytoplasm and the yolk is like the nucleus. The nucleus contains genes, as does the egg. Some differences are that the egg can have a small baby in it and develop into a chicken while the nucleus cannot “hatch” a baby, but it can duplicate the cell.

Material moves in or out of a cell by passing through the membrane and the movement of matter is based upon particle’s sizes! Water molecules are smaller than sugar molecules so water can pass through the egg’s “netting” but glucose can’t.

 

 

Shrunken heads eggs for life and expanding eggs.

What? So What? Now What?

What? So what?

One of the issues we’re dealing with today is the mass extinction of many species. This is caused by habitat loss and pollution, while poaching also plays a part. In this article, it states that “Recent studies in Europe have demonstrated that the species currently at highest risk of extinction most likely got that way because of human actions 50 to 100 years ago.” This shows that we are the problem. We are the ones who are affecting all these animals. And without a lot of animals, ecosystems can collapse and biodiversity decreases. Another problem is plastic pollution. Plastic cannot be biodegraded, so that means it’s there for a long time and in the meanwhile, can harm animals and us, through consumption and strangling.

Now What?

I can take initiative by using less plastic wrappers and containers. To help endangered animals, I can take part in clubs, like Roots and Shoots to help them! I can also spread the word to everyone and also educate people.

 

The Fifth F is for Fail

A while ago, we were supposed to write something about the development of humans throughout the years and make a visual representation of it. So I made a poster! In the beginning, I thought about just making a poster and pasting the graph into it but then I thought, what if I made it a flip poster? So I put down my idea and let my peers tell me about it. I had a bit of trouble with the trading range symbol and they helped me out and explained it to me. So I changed a few of my icons and they helped me with ideas.

closed flaps

open flaps

So this is my poster! You can open the flaps to see the individual icons and things. It is a bit faint, but that’s only because it’s scanned. Each image I used it about the time era it represents – The Chauvet Cave for the forager time, as it was painted by foragers, some wheat for the farmer age as it was a crop, a train for the Industrial age because they developed new forms of technology, and finally, a mega city for the future.

 

 

The explanation for the icons can be found here.

 

From Foragers to the Future

Forager

For the foragers, I chose a slab of meat, a foot, a hand with a mouth, and binoculars. The slab of meat is to represent how foragers got all of their food from hunting and foraging. Their diet consisted of all-natural items like berries and dear meat for example, but the meat are easier to see because bones can be preserved. Also, foragers got around by walking and running, without using any other means of transportation except for the occassional raft/boat. A foot is the symbol of running and walking. I also used binoculars to symbolize that they could only trade as far as they could see. I used green because ironically, this time was when the humans were most “green” with their usage of energy, and that green is the symbol of nature.

Farmer

I chose toast, horse, a scroll, and a market to symbolize the farmer times. The toast is made up of bread with an egg, because these two are the products of farming, wheat and eggs from a chicken. A horse is used to symbolize a classic horse and carriage which was their form of transport back then. The paper and quill is to symbolize the usage of letters back then, and the developing of language. But at this time, only wealthy people could afford books and to read. The market is their trading “spot” and that trade was a common thing nowadays, especially if you produced goods, like bread.  The color I went with was tan, because that was the color of wheat and other crops, and it was also the color of wood, which was a resource starting to be used.

Factories

This time area is us right now. I put some fast food, a plane, a speech bubble, and the whole globe. Food was hard for me since I didn’t know what food we ate right now till I remembered that fast food is very popular in America. So I put that down instead of packaged food, which I was going for. I also used a plane, since we use planes to travel to different areas for vacation. For the communication, I put a speech bubble. This is kinda like our messaging sites, but we still talk to each other and lead very social lives, so we can use that for both reasons. The last one is the globe. I chose this because it reminded me about how countries trade with each other, importing and exporting goods to each other. So our range of trade is pretty wide… heh. I chose a deep red color as it’s kinda the color of rust? But it’s close to black (which is the color of our skies in the future, shush) and I feel like this means that we’re getting closer to polluting the earth? And it’s the color of smoke. The style used in this one is more sketchy, which emphasizes the use of a drawing program for it (which signals advances in technology.)

Future

I struggled with this a lot. For food, I chose a bug. But it looks oddly glitchy… maybe it’s to do with 3d printing food or the use of technology in food? The second one for transportation, I chose a hovercar. This may not be what I was aiming for, but I didn’t find any other icons. It symbolizes how we’ll develop cars to do a multitude of things though. For the communications, I chose someone Facetiming another person. It really is vague, but maybe we’ll develop some sort of wireless technology that allows us to communicate with anyone in the world? The last one is a screen with stocks on it and demographics, which allows us to monitor trading. I believe that in the future, maybe with a click of a mouse, we can trade instantly? And get the items shipped to our house in no time. For this one, I tried to look for ones with many shapes and I chose the color blue since it reminds me of being connected, and blue is a calm color, as if we’re totally immersed in our digital world.

 

This may not make sense because I haven’t posted my poster yet!

 

It’s just Static (Not)

It sounds a lot like static in the beginning, this was because I used a pre-recorded track of a vent in the cafeteria. The faint “sparkling” sound is me clattering the utensils in the kitchen, and the notes in the background were made in Garageband. The vox is a prerecorded loop from Garageband’s resources.

I hadn’t imagined the air conditioning to be this loud and I really didn’t like how it turned out. I was originally going for a more action music, but the pre-recorded clips I got were not good and I didn’t get any good ones. I got inspired by a lot of songs that I like which are more of a lo-fi theme, which is more of the static noise and relaxing.

This music is very repetitive and very simple, which I don’t like, but this is my final project. This one was to use pre-recorded sounds that I got from the cafeteria. Recording these sounds were very easy but I had to make sure I wasn’t shifting the computer too much or else you could hear it. In the beginning you can hear a bit of talking, but it’s very faint. I love electronic music and I thought I would enjoy this but it didn’t come out like I expected.

Another trouble I had was to get the notes I made right, I think this was because of the loop I used. I didn’t know what key I was using so I just went along with it and didn’t really care. I feel like it’s a bit too rhythmic and I could definitely improve with more time given. Originally, I would’ve liked to add some small instruments but I didn’t know which ones sounded ideal, so I just went along with a xylophone-like synthesized sound.

To be honest, I didn’t like how this turned out, even if it kinda sounds like it’s raining in the piece, which was my intended purpose. I may have completed the goal I was going for, but I kind of did it half-heartedly or with not much effort, as composing’s not my thing. I really liked composing it though because I enjoy music and a lot of different types of music!

 

Where’s my Privacy?

                  It’s on the news. A big data breach. Watching the TV, you notice that it is hospital records that have been broken into. Recognizing the hospital, you immediately panic and realize that you are at risk, that your private data is now being used. How would you feel? Scared, of course. Even though Big Data is useful and can innovate many ideas and inventions, we need to protect our privacy. Our data is being used to target people, track people, and it can also be exploited.

                  One reason you should keep your data safe is because companies can use it to target you. According to Kurt Wag­­­ner in “This is how Facebook uses your Data for Ad Targeting”, Facebook does not actually sell your data but can use your data to make money. It shows you ads that based on a profile that you have made, are more likely to click on or more likely to enjoy. Their advertising revenue last year was 40 billion, and with new technology, it’s going to grow more. This shines a light on how companies use your data, and that they might be using your data to make money, or just outright selling it. You thought they were just analyzing your data, right? No, they are actually using it to make money. In “Convenience Vs Privacy: The Latest Study in the Data Tracking Debate” by Andrew Hutchinson, companies can categorize you into a specific group of people that might have the same interests as you. Data scientists can influence your political choice, your career path, and even alter your psychological state. Being in control of what you want and what’s going to happen to you is important, and then companies can easily use that data to sway you to end up choosing something you do not like or do not want. Because companies can misuse your data by using it to categorize and influence things that you should be able to control, you should keep your data private and safe.

                  Secondly, companies can not only use it to target you, but they can also use it to track you and monitor your life. An example of this is when Strava, a fitness app, tracked down a US military base by using a heat map. According to “The Strava Heat Map and The End of Secrets” by Jeremy Hsu, he states that “Certain analysts have suggested the data could reveal individual Strava users by name.” This data could potentially be harmful and be used for purposes that can target the military. Finding the location of military bases could be used by other countries to launch an attack and harm the US. Also, Wall Street Journal states in their video “Next-level Surveillance: China Embraces Facial Recognition”, that people can use their faces to sign into an office, to get meal recommendations, and even take money out of ATMs. The not-so-convenient usage of this technology is also used to shame jaywalkers or to find people of interest to the government. Photos taken by your own camera can also be of use to the government, as well as China having 170 million surveillance cameras. In China, your data could be used to target you and crack down on you, letting the government track you and use the personal photos you have and also use the photos they have seen of you. Companies are tracking your life right now and now, they can get knowledge of where you’ve been and what you’ve been doing just by security cameras, photos, and facial recognition. This more than ever calls for keeping your data private and safe, not letting prying eyes use it to track you.

                  Lastly, data can be exploited, such as hacking or other means of data usage that you would not like. In “The Power of Privacy” by The Guardian, hackers can upload files to your computer without your knowledge and also download files off of your computer. This ability can be abused to find compromising pictures which can then be used to blackmail and may be sold. Your digital footprint is very hard to erase, so people can easily find what posts you might have deleted or “erased”, so “sacrifice convenience for privacy.” Your data is at risk of being exploited and at risk of being used for something you don’t want, so keep your data safe. A video “Big Data” by Privacy International details how companies might use your data. Some may use your data and put it into a dataset and use it to find out private things, like your age and income. Also, companies will not detail how they would use your data, so you’re never sure what they’re doing with it. Because of this, you never know, and they could be doing something that invades your privacy or something that could be used against you and exploited. Because our data can be at risk of being hacked or exploited, you should value privacy over convenience.

                  However, some people argue that Big Data can innovate and make things more convenient. I disagree because companies can use Big Data to actually know who you are and use that information to target you and track you. Also in the same article mentioned above, “Convenience vs. Privacy: The Latest Study in the Data Tracking Debate,” by Andrew Hutchinson, he regards that in a new study conducted by the University of Pennsylvania, states that 91% of the people surveyed disagreed with the statement that “if companies give me a discount, it is a fair exchange for them to collect information about me without my knowing.” This implies that although some people think big data is convenient, many customers do not like when companies use their data without their permission for a “trade” for the convenience. Because companies can still use your data without your knowing for convenience, it’s best to keep your data safe and value privacy over convenience.

                  Keeping your data safe is more important than ever in the modern world. People can use it to target you and potentially make money off of your data. Companies can use it to track you and your everyday habits, tracking your life. Finally, data can be exploited and be used for inappropriate and irrelevant purposes. On the other hand, you can prevent your data being tracked by getting an extension that blocks data trackers. In some of your favorite devices and apps (Facebook, iPhone, etc.) you can disable data tracking and in Facebook, you can view what profile Facebook has built of you and choose to clear it. However, this doesn’t mean you’re always safe from companies tracking your data. Be aware of what companies might be doing with your data. The future is growing, and so is big data usage.

 

 

I feel like today I am strongest in thinking because I have thought and explained my ideas to people and I have expressed my idea well. I have also evaluated and thought about other people’s ideas, supporting them or adding on.

I could be better at communicating my ideas to people or expressing agreement as well as talking and explaining about my idea.

 

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