Mar 23, 2010
MIT Engineering Museum
Today we went to the MIT Museum in Cambridge. It was a couple of blocks away from our hotel, so we didn't have to walk very far in the bad weather. Although it was rainy outside, it didn't lessen our experience at the museum at all. Throughout the museum, there are exhibits of machines and inventions former or current MIT students have created. These exhibits ranged from inventive kids toys and games, to 'intelligent' robots. The museum had many interesting and breathtaking exhibits.
A group favorite was the exhibit with multiple robots that can walk/ hop by themselves. These robots ranged from one- legged machines that hop like kangaroos, to four legged robots that walk like a dog, or two legged robots that can even do flips. There were also robots that can interpret human expressions and voices and react to them accordingly. MIT had one of the first (and still does) research departments dedicated to developing and progressing the field of artificial intelligence. At the museum, there was an interactive wall where visitors could post their thoughts about the future of robots.
Several of our students left responses. Here are two of them:
"Robots that function as a guardian and care for the elderly and physically impaired..." M.F.
"I think that robots and artificial intelligence are going to bring advances to the world we know today. I ask MIT students, scientists, and staff members to continue with their research and inventions." C.B. and G.A.
After we explored all of the upstairs of the museum, we headed downstairs to see what else the museum had to offer. There was an exhibit which showed the newest advancement in cheap solar energy. Solar energy isn't as popular as it should be, simply because it is extremely expensive. Luckily for the planet, the advancement created energy by mimicking photosynthesis by splitting water molecules to create energy. It really looks like a project that could totally be incorporated into society because of it's simplicity and affordability. All in all it was an amazing experience that showed us perspective on how far technology has advanced.