Making Things Interactive

April 30, 2008

Course Feedback

I enjoyed the concept of giving us weekly assignments to keep us occupied as well as learning. There is no better method of learning than by actually doing. Additionally, people in the class all came in with varying levels of knowledge, and for them to have to learn everything about electronics is unnecessary. With doing things by hand, the level of complexity is determined by one’s self.

I enjoyed the classes where jet would bring in and show us various links online of interesting projects. Firstly, it was good inspiration for our projects, and secondly for someone not coming from a purely artistic background, my exposure to this “culture” is very limited. It was very interesting to see what people are doing in this design space.

The idea of having a fairly complex midterm project forced us to push ourselves and understand how long building something would take. I learned from my midterm fiasco and began planning my final project much earlier.

The class blog is also a great place to look for ideas, assistance and just a simple, easy to use information interface for everyone. I’ve never used a blog for a class, but I think it is a great tool.

There was hardly anything I felt negatively about in the class. My comment is more of a suggestion to improve the class for others. I felt that diving straight into Arduino code was difficult for many people who did not have a programming background. I would suggest, the first few classes should be devoted to getting the class to think in steps, block diagrams, flowcharts etc. this way it is a little less daunting than having to decipher a foreign language.

Reflecting on the semester that was, I have really enjoyed this class for two major reasons. The freedom it gave me in pursuing projects that brought enjoyment to me and really giving me confidence in my ability to learn and undertake tasks associated with electronics and microcontrollers.

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