Monday, June 6, 2016

Event #4

For my fourth event I attended an on campus lecture “Replica Praesens: A Lecture on Synthetic Life by Sam Wolk." Wolk’s project was a computer system he created that looked into genetics of plants/nutrients and creatures, how they interact, depend on each other, and daily lifestyles. He started by introducing the nutrients to the audience with a red, blue and green scale which represent different nutrients and the darker they were this meant that they were more beneficial to the creatures. He showed how each was selected by arranging the DNA into different combinations. Through simulations after this that would represent a timeframe that the plants would grow over was interesting to see how the pieces before factored into the location, lifespan, nutrient denseness, and size of the plants.
Next we moved onto see how the DNA process worked for the creatures. I thought it would be similar, but there were many characteristics that were different because of the creatures complexity. One example is how the sex of the creature is determined which I found interesting, multiple creatures could be involved and it seemed that the gender of the offspring was much more random than it would be. 

Then he brought the two together into a world and we watched as they interacted with each other. As this was going on I was comparing it to video games in my heads, but this project was so much more and you could tell by listening to all of the details while Sam Wolk spoke. The amount of time he spent connecting assets of life into a computer programming system to visually represent life was very cool. It interested me in how he was able to create these connections just from writing out codes and making them represent something much bigger and influential. 

Friday, June 3, 2016

Event #3

For my third event, I ventured outside of Los Angeles and went to the Discovery Science center in Santa Ana, CA. When I walked in I was surrounded by many kids everywhere interacting with each exhibit. My friends, brother, and I started to do the same. This was a cool experience many of the events I have been to in the past were very observant and did not have a physical aspect related to them, so this was a fun change from what we had been doing. 

There were many cool exhibits in display, but one theme that was going on while I was here was exploration of Mars. There were many interactive things you could do to learn new things about mars that involved people especially children in an interesting way. One example was you could design your own mars rover after viewing a replica of one. Then it would appear on a large screen and you had to direct it to different spots that would then show different things that have been found on Mars. I thought this was a cool interaction that helped teach people about space and art. Space is such a vast and large area and I think this exhibit was beneficial in helping give people a better idea of what is out there.

Amongst this exhibit there were many other things that helped teach kids about Mars like a large replica of the planet, the mars rover, some exhibits about the difference in gravity on Mars in comparison to Earth and many other things. I found it to be a fun and interesting way to explore more about space and art.