And so it begins! ….Again.

Welp! It happened! I was admitted into Northeastern University Design PhD Program!!!!!!!!!!!

I was looking for something new to get into. I have a lot of thoughts and feelings that I’m still unpacking, so I’ll post that stuff later.

I look forward to exploring/research the various uses of educational escape rooms to include their use as an informal STEM learning tool, and military training enhancement tool!

London Tingzz

I FINALLY made it to London. I was in town for the World Experience Organization’s inaugural summit. I had no idea what I was in for. What WE were in for, because you KNOW I dragged my daughter once again! lol!

The WXO Summit was amazing. We got to meet so many amazing people and I learned so much about experience design during the many many sessions offered that week.

Outside of the conference, I can confidently say that London is the center of the immersive universe! There were so many immersive activities to do! My daughter and I went to as many as we could in addition to seeing 2 Harry Potter plays and The Crucible. I can’t wait to go back because we didn’t even do 1/10th of what was available to us.

Graduation – New Beginnings

My baby girl has graduated high school. She has always been an amazing student, so that was never in doubt. However, I don’t think I gave much thought to the feelings that would come AFTER her graduation. The worry, the feeling like I’ve lost my best friend. The thing about my daughter is that she’s always down for a trip! She’ll pack a bag in a heartbeat! I’m going to miss having her by my side, but she’s on to bigger and better things out in California.

Open Source Hardware Summit 2023

This month I attended the Open Source Hardware Summit in NYC. It was such a great event! Once again, I dragged my daughter along. However, this time – like most times – she had a really great time. I think the event and the people she met there gave her a lot of clarity in terms of the possibilities for her career as an electrical engineer.

Speaking of people, I am in a group chat with some really amazing and talented lady makers. This conference was our first time all meeting up and it was chicken soup for my soul!! We had such a great time and I can’t wait until our next meetup.

Note to self: post about affinity communities. lol.

Also, I don’t think my photo choice is so great. I’m trying not to fuss over the details in favor of getting these blogs posted in a timely manor. 😅

Community Art Classes

Signed up for 2 community art classes through the local university: Sculpting and Printmaking. I dragged my daughter along to the sculpting class. The first instructor was a prolific sculptor and she made the experience so much fun. She was a bit all over the place, but it didn’t take away from the fun for me. It was cool seeing the wheels turning in her brain and then she’d switch the entire focus of the course. My favorite part was when we got to mold each others’ faces.

My second class was printmaking. This one was my favorite of the two. There was just more of a sense of community in that class. The instructor was so so so very talented. It was great learning from her. Clearly she had tried a bunch of things that didn’t work and she was able to save us from so many mistakes. I also liked her informal communication style. She was just a regular person who a genius printmaker! So many laughs in this class.

Takeaway: These classes led to me making friends with people I would have most likely never met otherwise. We were all very supportive of each others’ work and now we all follow each other on Instagram. I’ll make a post later about affinity communities.

Hopscotch Immersive Venue

Took my daughter and her bestie to an immersive venue called Hopscotch. It was very interesting – sort of a chill version of Meow Wolf. I’m happy to see more of these kinds of venues coming to my city.  However, as an escape room fan, there just wasn’t enough interactivity for my tastes.  That said, I’m very happy the kiddos had a good time. I think this is a great spot for first dates and people looking to dip their toes into immersive experiences.  

From an experience design perspective, my visit started off rough. We went to the ladies room and it was filthy. Not only were all of the stalls out of toilet paper, but all of the paper towel dispensers were empty as well. Thinking of the peak-end theory here.  My takeaway is that I need to mindful of the entire experience to include the restrooms! Otherwise, customers will have made up their minds before they have even seen what I’ve created for them!

E-Textile Spring Break

Co-taught workshop titled “Touch and Feel” with Kate Hartman, author of Make: Wearable Electronics. E-Textile Spring Break is a weeklong program and The Mill in Vicksburg, Michigan, hosted by the Prairie Rhonde Artist Residency program.

Participants were taught the basic setup and use of the Arduino IDE. Then they were taught how to build a circuit which included one hall sensor that triggered a small disc motor when a magnet was detected. Lastly, they returned to their stations and integrate their knew knowledge into their existing weaving and knitting practices.

Escape Room Conference Presentation 2021

I was a speaker for the Reality Escape Conference held online in 2021 (Available online).

I designed and built an escape room puzzle that was completely contained in a cabinet participants could order from Amazon.

The goal of my talk was to show how easy it is to create a tech puzzle with lights and sound.

The video of the talk can be viewed on YouTube.

The supply list and code for the puzzle can be found on GitHub.