New CMK Features

Brian Smith leading a tutorial on microcontroller programming and basic electronics


dragon team photo

We take the unique design and experience of Constructing Modern Knowledge seriously. We also try our best to be responsive to the needs of the diverse learners who participate in our institute. Based on feedback and success at last year’s institute, we have decided to add two new features to the CMK 2017 experience.

Optional Pre-institute Workshop

While CMK is about learning by doing, many recent participants have worked with microcontrollers. This technology changes rapidly and we try to respond by having lots of different micro controllers and shields for you to choose from (It is perfectly OK if you have no idea what this is about).

Making a plethora of similar electronic components available for project use is empowering, as well as intimidating.

Despite this potential confusion, CMK participants find a way to use cutting-edge technology in their projects every single year. Standardizing on one hardware platform would mean that we were running a traditional workshop where you would be taught to use this or that. Taking off your teacher hat requires letting go of the desire to be taught so you may better use your time and energy learning.

Rather than compromise on the non-coercive material-rich learning environment of Constructing Modern Knowledge, we have decided to offer a full day pre-institute workshop for those who wish to understand the tools in the toolbox before they start making something.

Introduction to Learning with Electronics ($125)

Smith helpingThis Monday July 9th workshop, led by members of the CMK 2017 faculty, will provide participants with guided experiences in connecting an Arduino microcontroller to a computer, troubleshooting the communications between the computer and external device, breadboarding, engineering, and programming simple, but exciting interactive projects. The workshop will also explore the differences, benefits, and tradeoffs between Arduino, Hummingbird Robotics, shields, Raspberry Pi, and some of the other materials available for use during the Constructing Modern Knowledge institute. You may register for this optional workshop along with your CMK registration here. Space is limited!

 

Optional Participant Requested Tutorials

amy giving adviceCMK faculty are always available for just-in-time tips, advice, questions, support, or brainstorming. However, participants often report that they are so absorbed in their project work that they don’t find out as much about various tools and material as they might like. So, this year we will solicit suggestions for morning tutorials, beginning at 8:45 AM. Day 2, 3, and 4 will begin with these brief informal sessions led by CMK faculty or Fellows.

Arrive 15 minutes early and only sacrifice 15 minutes of project time, if you wish, to learn about a specific technology or technique.