Meet Our Projects

Here are some very brief descriptions of all of the great things that are going on in our lab right now.  Be sure to join our mailing list and stay up to date with the blog!


An earthly adaptation of NASA’s Mars Rover imaging technology - GigaPan helps bring distant communities and peoples together through images that have so much detail that they are, themselves, the objects of exploration, discovery, and wonder. Using a small robotic device, point and shoot camera, stitching software, interactive online platforms and large-scale prints, GigaPan is enabling people to explore, experience, and share each other's world.

Time Machine
Zoomable, terapixel-scale animations -- timelapses of our changing planet, a field of plants growing, or a carnival being assembled and torn down. GigaPan Time Machine gives new ways to document, explore, and understand complex and important phenomena.

Arts and Bots (formerly Robot Diaries)
Students combine craft materials, robotic components and a custom visual-programming tool to build and animate their own robotic creations. Our initial target audience was middle school girls, but the project now engages both genders from elementary school through high school. Arts & Bots is a flexible program that can be adapted to many contexts and subjects in and out of school. News and examples can be found at the Arts and Bots blog.

Message From Me

Kiosks at childcare centers enable young children to record their daily experiences through pictures and speech and send them to their parents' cell phones or email. This age appropriate adaptation of existing technologies allows young children to practice their communication skills and build their self-confidence by talking about their day, their accomplishments, and their discoveries. Message from Me enhances parent-child conversations and involves families in the educational experience of their children.

Hear Me
Hear Me amplifies kids' voices using media and technology to create a world where they are heard, acknowledged and understood, giving them the power to inspire social change. Kids voice their authentic stories in five ways: Writing, Art, Audio, Video or Digital Storytelling. We allow kids to be heard through our multimedia Hear Me site and other forms of media and outreach. News and examples can be found at the Hear Me blog.

A low-cost, easy and mobile method to monitor small streams, empowering communities, educators and children to monitor and log the effects of industry and pollution on their watershed systems. Flamingo units are real-time conductivity and temperature sensors that wirelessly feed data to users for visualizing and sharing their water quality data.

Explorables is open cyberlearning infrastructure that enables creation, exploration, and collective sense-making around geolocated, high-resolution imagery and data representations over time.

Charge Car
The ChargeCar Project seeks to revolutionize urban commuting by providing practical, affordable electric vehicle conversions utilizing local resources. ChargeCar’s community-centric approach to electric vehicle conversions combines crowd-sourced commute data, programming contests, activities with local schools and a variety of public events to engage with many facets of local communities

The Finch is a new robot for computer science education. Its design is the result of a four year study at Carnegie Mellon's CREATE lab. The Finch is made to easily integrate into high school and college CS courses. Institutions piloting the Finch have shown improved retention and year-over-year enrollment growth in their CS1 courses. 

Speck is a low-cost particulate monitor (PM) currently under development as a tool for citizen science and personal exposure tracking. Measuring airborne particulates can identify the greatest public health hazards related to air quality. Through community-generated advocacy maps and data visualization, this device will enable communities and individuals to better understand and quantify the quality of the air they breathe.

A low-cost device, designed to monitor the quality of well water from inside the home. CATTFish measures real-time conductivity and temperature to better understand how the ground water is changing in a rural area.

Children’s Innovation

This project takes a broad interdisciplinary and integrated learning approach, focusing on creative exploration, expression and innovation with technology. Children explore and learn about electricity through hands-on engagement with a kit of components designed for young hands. Utilizing this learning, children disassemble toys, identify components and then repurpose and reconfigure these internal components into new circuits, empowering them with new relationships and understandings of their world.

The BodyTrack project develops open source self tracking tools to aggregate and visualize data from diverse sources such as wearable sensors, observations from mobile apps, photos, and environmental data. Our goal is to empower individuals to explore potential environment and health interactions (food sensitivities, asthma or migraine triggers, sleep problems, etc.) and better assess strategies they think might help.

A citizen scientist project that prototypes a low-cost, easy and mobile method to monitor small streams, empowering communities, educators and children to monitor and log the effects of industry and pollution on their watershed systems. WaterBot units are real-time conductivity and temperature sensors that wirelessly feed data to via Google Fusion Tables for unique and easy visualization and sharing of water quality data.
Energize Haiti
The mission of Energize Haiti is to empower the people of Haiti to effectively utilize energy with the aid of educational technologies that focus on sustainability, independence, and awareness. The current project provides CAMEJO Hospital in Leogane (see picture) with open-source energy monitoring hardware and software in addition to energy-generating playground equipment. The ultimate goal of the project is to provide a model for infrastructure education and development in energy-scarce areas.