EECS faculty, students, and staff showed off their electric superpowers on Saturday at Science on Saturday: Circuits and Computers edition, an event hosted by the MIT Museum and the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. Faculty kicked off the event with on-stage demos explaining how, from atoms to apps, the power of electricity has transformed our lives. Afterwards, attendees were invited to participate in hands-on demos in the lobby of MIT's Kresge Auditorium.
Senior Neerja Aggarwal demonstrates the MIT Edgerton Center's laser harp. The musical laser harp is an interactive music-making machine with an unusual mode of operation: more than a dozen bright red laser diodes paired with photo-resistors that act as break-beam sensors to trigger musical MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) output. Waving ones hands or an object inside the open space triggers musical notes in the melodious pentatonic scale and a fog machine enables one to see the red lasers in swirls of smoke. Photo: Audrey Resutek/MIT EECS.
Steve Leeb, Professor of Electrical Engineering, explained how circuits and electric currents work. Photo: Anubhav Jain, MIT HKN.
EECS Lecturer Adam Hartz shows a volunteer how to direct the movement of a "pet robot." Photo: Anubhav Jain, MIT HKN.
Nearly 1000 people attended the event, which included interactive demos in the lobby of MIT's Kresge Auditorium staffed by EECS faculty, students, and staff. Photo: Audrey Resutek, MIT EECS.
Dina Katabi, the Andrew (1956) and Erna Viterbi Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, asks a volunteer to tell a test subject when to hold his breath. Katabi's group has developed a system that can detect changes in breathing using wireless signals. Photo: Anubhav Jain, MIT HKN.
Junior Loren Sherman was the event's master of ceremonies. Photo: Anubhav Jain, MIT HKN.
Principal Research Engineer David Otten demonstrated a Tesla coil. Photo: Audrey Resutek, MIT EECS.
Senior Harlin Lee demos a magnetic levitation circuit developed in 6.302 (Feedback Systems). Photo: Audrey Resutek, MIT EECS.
Vladimir Bulovic, the Fariborz Maseeh (1990) Professor of Emerging Technology and the MIT School of Engineering’s Associate Dean for Innovation (center) demonstrates that white light is made up of a spectrum of colors. Photo: Audrey Resutek, MIT EECS.
Karen Lang, Education and Business Development Coordinator at MIT CSAIL, (left) demonstrates how to build an app. Photo: Audrey Resutek, MIT EECS.
William Freeman, Thomas and Gerd Perkins Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (far left) uses a tuning fork to demonstrate a "motion microscope" that can magnify tiny movements. Photo: Audrey Resutek, MIT EECS.
Bulovic uses a pickle as a different sort of light bulb. Photo: MIT Museum.