CAD

Art & Technology Departments Ask: What Makes A Better Designer Today?

Art & Technology Departments Ask: What Makes A Better Designer Today?

What makes a better designer today? In Form II this year, we experimented with project-based learning. The boys examined existing chairs and reengineered a personal version using digital tools in technology classes.

Rapid prototyping with technology has become commonplace in many professional services. In this class, the boys explored pragmatic tools including Computer Aided Design, 3D printing and Virtual Reality to produce a minimum viable product. In the third iteration, students built a virtual experience using the Unity programming language and Oculus Rift. Furthermore, the boys scanned ceramic models with Mr. Davis and imported these organic structures into a VR realm where they could be displayed next to CAD models created in technologyclasses. Our class meetings often resembled a studio where boys would “learn, create and problem-solve in an unstructured environment” (MIT Admissions Office, 2013). This process was the intentional result of meaningful collaboration between the art and technology departments. Through student process, our line of inquiry offers a glimpse into the world where learning to become a better designer will include an interchangeable order of experience with computers or clay.

US Engineering Class on Internet of Things Selected as Case Study

US Engineering Class on Internet of Things Selected as Case Study

This winter, one of the hottest tech startups littleBits found out about the Form IV Intro to Engineering class offered last spring. A West Coast publicist reached out for an interview and asked if littleBits could publish a case study on the class. Following weeks of collaboration, the final piece is live on the littleBits website for you to read and share alike at littlebits.cc/case-study-the-browning-school

Form II Design the Subway Station of the Future

This semester in Form II technology, students explored how they can use design to solve real-world problems. The boys were divided into groups and asked to design a subway station for the year 2035. As the boys worked through the design thinking process, they developed empathy for the future users of the New York City subway system. Soon the boys were crafting problem statements that guided their thinking for the rest of the projects. After ideating multiple solutions, each group focused on their most viable improvements. As the groups started to finalize plans, they made rough prototypes out of foam board and push pins. This allowed them to express their original ideas in tangible artifacts before they created their final models using Adobe Illustrator and the laser cutter. After the Holiday break, each group will have to justify their design decisions through a presentation of their final models to the rest of their class.

Micro City Design with Form II Technology

Over the past month, Mr. Sambuca's Form II Technology class have been learning how to design three-dimensional shapes. The boys are currently using Tinkercad, a free web-based CAD application that allows the student to drag and drop geometric shapes to create 3D designs. The limited learning curve makes Tinkercad well suited for the K-12 setting,  where students learn real computer aided design skills and can apply the knowledge as they move on to professional design tools.   The Micro City design project was a two week assignment to test the the skill set on perspective drawing using a city skyline. Students were randomly selected a US city and began to research landmark buildings and different skyline views to get their personal perspective. The students were given design rules and size constraints (100mm long x 100 mm x wide  x 100mm high). The micro cities are all available below on Thingiverse for download and will be on display in the 2014 Browning School Art Show. Click here to view the pictures