sc_post_date] • Lotte Hoes
Innovation Playground offers opportunities for experimentation
The Innovation Playground in the Atrium was especially designed for experimentation. On 13 December, the Innovation Playground will have a lunch for everyone wanting to know more about the possibilities this facility provides and the projects that have taken place there.
Innovation Playground: an introduction
‘Essentially, you could do anything at the Innovation Playground that you could do anywhere else,’ says Köksal Aytemir, the facility’s coordinator. ‘Here, however, we offer extra opportunities for innovation, experimentation and creativity. This is a place where almost anything goes: people could write on the windows, hang things from the railings, rearrange the space – you name it. Anything that encourages them to think creatively and use a multidisciplinary approach.’ To do this, the Innovation Playground is equipped with a video wall, a virtual reality headset, a Microsoft Surface Hub, craft materials, cameras, a green screen…enough stuff, thinks Aytemir, for lots of great projects.
Here are three examples of activities that have already taken place in the Playground.
In this workshop, Laura Stevens challenged her students in Industrial Design Engineering to observe nature to discover how nature solves problems. ‘Laura introduced this workshop by providing some background information and then asked the students to spend some time looking at the branches, leaves and chestnuts she had brought in,’ says Aytemir. ‘Afterward, they listed the results of their analyses on a big blackboard on the wall.’ One of the ideas generated by this workshop involved heavy rainfall. The participants observed that many plants store water that would otherwise be excessive runoff. They then thought that it would also be possible to apply this principle to large works of art. One way to do this might be to construct them so that they would become larger during a heavy rain.
Gym activities using projections
Danica Mast, a researcher who is currently in charge of the Gym of the Future project, is experimenting with interactive projections. ‘We plan to suspend a projector from the ceiling in the Innovation Playground that will project all kinds of objects,’ says Aytemir. ‘Just imagine, for instance, a crocodile at the bottom of a climbing wall.’ He doesn’t know exactly how the project will develop, but, he says, ‘That’s also the beauty of the Playground – people can wander by to see what works and what doesn’t.’
Experimenting with scale models
For their project ‘Moerwijk on the Wall’, students taking the Smart City minor had to figure out how they could improve the Moerwijk neighbourhood. They did this by making a scale model and then projecting maps onto it. The model was made of traditional materials like Styrofoam and then hung vertically against the wall. The maps were created on the laptop and then projected onto the model with a projector. ‘This project wasn’t as successful as it could have been because the maps had not been completed,’ says Aytemir. ‘Even so, I think it’s a good example of a project that’s appropriate to the idea behind the Innovation Playground. By definition, experiments are also prone to failure, but we also learn from failures, too. The important thing is to keep on experimenting!’
Would you like to have lunch in the Innovation Playground on 13 December and see what it has to offer? If so, be sure to sign up.