265 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02139 csf@cambridgesciencefestival.org

Family Events in 2012 #cambscifest

Hi Folks! Here’s a breakdown of all great family friendly activities at the 2012 Cambridge Science Festival this year.  Hope you enjoy! Friday, April 20, 2012 Of course, there is the annual Science Carnival – this year themed as the Science of Circus! From 12-4pm at the Cambridge Public Library. 10:00am-12:00pm  Caution: This Game is Under Construction  Making a video… 10:00am-4:00pm  Squeaks, Squeals and Songs   Curious about how marine… 10:00am-5:00pm   Free Day at the MIT Museum   Participate in hands-on… 6:00pm-9:00pm  Level Up: Gambit Game Night  Come celebrate the 5 year… 7:30pm-9:00pm  16.7 Million Colors on the Greenway!  Come to the Rose… 8:00pm-11:00pm  Urban Astronomy   In spite of bright lights and restricted… Saturday, April 21, 2012 12:30pm-4:00pm  Math and Origami (but mostly origami)  Less it more when… 1:00pm-5:00pm  Robots Gone Wild   Bugs, birds, and cheetahs, oh my! Take… 1:00pm-4:00pm  Earth Day Recycling Program  Tour the warehouse… 1:00pm-5:00pm  Artisan’s Asylum Open… Read More

Of Bots and Bugs

Janine Benyus will be a guest lecturer in Evolved to Fit: Biomimicry in the Built World for MIT’s Goldstein Lecture Series, April 5th at 6:30pm at MIT Room 10-250.   Janine Benyus, author of Biomimicry : Innovation Inspired by Nature, is President of the The Biomimicry Institute, a non-profit organization whose mission is to naturalize biomimicry in the culture by promoting the transfer of ideas, designs, and strategies from biology to sustainable human systems design. See Benyus’s TED Talk here.   Interested in biomimicry?  Come to the Science Carnival and check out MIT Lincoln Laboratory’s booth featuring:   Swarming Nano Hex Bugs  Watch 12 bug-like robots exhibit swarming behaviors. Ask questions and interact with the robots to learn how simple robot design, probabilistic programming, and swarms can lead to seemingly intelligent behavior. Why do they move forward? What about their shape makes them always flip onto their feet and allows them to get around each other? Learn how… Read More

Busy busy bees… we’re 22 days away.

Hi, folks!  Sorry about the hiatus on the CSF countdown.  Things are really getting crazy with prep for the festival! Check out our Event Index!  Want to get involved?  Volunteer with us by taking photos at events, spreading the word about the 2012 festival, continuing the CSF countdown here! A few tidbits: Earth Hour is just around the corner One of our lovely Curiosity Challenge-tackling classes has a website of their entries.  Check it out! Everyone has a question about Climate Change.  What’s Your #climatequestion? Submit it today. If you haven’t pre-registered for events yet – here is my current list of the CSF events you need to pre-register for: For students and teachers: Scratch Workshop for Educators | Pre-register 6th Grade Solar Adventure | Pre-register Center for Ultracold Atoms Kids Day | Pre-register Central Squared (C2) Challenge | Pre-register Taleblazer Location-Based Augmented Reality Game | Pre-register Vertex Community Lab… Read More

Countdown Catch-up: Your Career

At the start of your career?  Looking for a change?  Not sure what’s out there for you?  The Festival’s got you covered.    Check out these career search events!   6th Annual Vertex Networking and Industry Session Tuesday, April 24, 2012 3:45-5:30pm 88 Sidney Street, Cambridge   Careers in Science: Speed Networking Event Tuesday, April 24, 2012 6:30-8:30pm 43 Vassar Street (MIT Building 46), 3rd Floor Atrium   Venture Café Thursday, April 26, 2012 3-8pm 1 Broadway, Cambridge (4th Floor)   Career Invigoration Friday, April 27, 2012 88 Sidney Street, Cambridge Best Practices for Writing a Resume            9am-12pm Interviewing for your Next Technical Job            1-5pm

Solar Cells, Ultracold Atoms, 43 Days to 2012 CSF

MIT student wins $30,000 dollars from the Lemelson-MIT Student Prize Miles C Barr, Chemical Engineering MS ’08, PhD ’12 has developed a method for printing solar cells on a variety of materials, chipping the ice on the potential for widespread, cost-effective solar energy and technologies. Phew.  There are so many possibilities for materials science and energy research from this kind of invention.   But, aside from the world-changing ramifications, I think what really struck a chord with me is the statement by Joshua Schuler, executive director of the Lemelson-MIT Program, that emphasizes the inherent multi/inter-disciplinary attitude necessary for the creative process of invention.  It’s really why universities and research institutions really ought to do more to create a culture where students and faculty from different departments mingle and interact in all sorts of different spaces.  But that’s enough of my thoughts on that… onto the Event of the Day!   Center… Read More

44 Days to 2012 CSF & Living Plastic

What do you think when you hear the words: “the first eating material”?  This 60-second Earth podcast “Living Plastic Eats Split Food” describes a self-cleaning plastic surface. I generally consider myself a very technology-friendly person.  I enjoy the tech-takes-over-the-world story lines of Blade Runner, Terminator, and the Matrix as much as the next scifi geek, but overall I think the advances we make in robotic and computing technologies are very much a good thing.  But I can’t seem to get over the “ick” factor of the idea of a plastic eating remains off of itself.  Add your thoughts in the comments below. Annnnnd, moving on to the Event of the Day! Standing Up for Science Media Workshop Tuesday, April 24, 2012 10:00am-4:30pm Broad Institute, 7 Cambridge Center Are you passionate about your research? Do you think it is important for good science and evidence to be communicated to a wider… Read More

45 Days to 2012 CSF & Flying, Music-Playing Robots

Very cool video of a UPenn engineering research project UPenn Quadrotors This is just so impressive. No, they would be impressive if they were remote-controlled (because, that’s a lot of coordination), but the fact that these guys are autonomous is just plain awesome. Also, this incredible video is built out of a project designed for robotics mimicking biological swarming behaviors in the birds, etc. They are aware of each other, and deciding how to get out of the way of the other units. Incredible! So, enjoy the music as you learn about today’s Event(s): Do It Your Damn Self!! Film Festival   The Do It Your Damn Self!! National Youth Video and Film Festival was created in 1996 when four teens from Cambridge, MA felt misrepresented in the media and decided to do something about it. This festival is not just about the videos, it’s about who makes them and… Read More

46 Days to 2012 CSF & “The Future”

A few interesting things to share today… glass, plastic, and the cloud! This Corning glassware advertisement for the home of the future or “A Day Made of Glass” is pretty fascinating. And I have to say that I would love some of those features on that kind of hardware. But does it remind anyone else of Monsanto’s House of the Future? Look after the jump for video clips of both ads and to continue the CSF event countdown! Here’s the Corning Ad And here’s the ad for Monsanto’s House of the Future from Disney’s Tomorrowland 1957-1967 Okay, and back to the CSF Countdown! (Sorry about the delay, folks.) Join Joe Guarino of Evolutionary IT in… Cloud Computing: A Plain English Intro to the Cloud Thursday, April 26, 2012 6:30-9:00pm Cambridge Public Library Lecture Hall, 449 Broadway What is the cloud & what can it do for you? You may have… Read More

56 Days… and Ant Farms

Some interesting forward-thinking playgrounds I love it when people experiment with play and play spaces.  It’s such a necessary piece of society.  But is it just me, or do some of these look like those kid-toy plastic ant farms? I mean… just for the sake of comparison: “Classic” Ant Farm “Playground of Tomorrow” And, moving on – the Event of the Day! The Race for What’s Left: The Global Scramble for the World’s Last Resources Saturday, April 21, 2012 2-3:30pm Harvard Museum of Natural History, 26 Oxford Street, Cambridge In his newest book, The Race for What’s Left, Hampshire College’s Michael Klare describes a world facing an unprecedented crisis of resource depletion— from oil to coal and natural gas, copper and cobalt, water and arable land. Klare explains how the frenzy of extreme exploration and acquisition carries grave consequences – of which the Deepwater Horizon disaster is only the beginning…. Read More

57 Days to 2012 CSF

And today’s event of the day is… *drumroll* Urban Astronomy: Bringing the Stars to the Street Friday, April 20 (in case of clouds: Saturday, April 21) 8-11pm 2 locations: Cambridge City Hall; Deguglielmo Plaza, Harvard Square in front of 27 Brattle Street You may be in the middle of the city, but that doesn’t mean you can’t see the stars! This popular sidewalk astronomy program is now expanding to two locations with telescopes from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. Join us at Cambridge City Hall or Harvard Square to get fantastic views of Venus, Mars, Saturn, double stars, and distant star clusters. We will be hoping for clear skies on the evening of Friday, April 20; in the event of clouds the event will take place instead on Saturday, April 21. Check for weather cancellations or updates at www.bostonastronomy.net We need volunteers for this one, so get on over to… Read More