Lab 1: Circuit + Creative Enclosure

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For this lab, I created a simple circuit containing a switch, an LED, a voltage regulator, a resistor, and a barrel jack connector for power.

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Something I did not expect to struggle with as much as I did: creating the enclosure for my circuit. From this alone, I have one more goal in mind for the class than before: learn to shorten wire. 

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After struggling with several ideas for materials (I first tried ribbon, then twine, then cardstock) I realized I’d need something that would hold my wires in place, but not pull them out. Aluminum foil seemed my best option. 

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Thus, the little gift above was born. I wanted originally to mix future and past and historically feminine and masculine stereotypes. The ribbon screamed “ballerina” to me, and the aluminum said, “robot”. Accordingly, I worked to create a piece with a bit of whimsy, to make these two themes collide in a fun way: “press me,” in true Alice in Wonderland style. 

In this class, my goal is to learn a bit about computers that I previously have been unable to wrap my head around. I look at my computer, and I know a lot of the fundamental parts it contains. I look at the webpage projected on it, and I understand how the Internet is functioning to allow this to happen. But I have no understanding of how it’s powered, how it projects to the screen, what on earth a motherboard contains… I think of this class sort of as step A in the process of having at least a minimal understanding on how a highly electronic world I live in works. 

Perhaps because of my lack of knowledge, the idea that the physical aspect of computing could have a creative edge is incredibly fascinating. I hope to grow my overall technology understanding through this design lens. 

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