Guess What: A Museum Exhbition

Posted by on Aug 9, 2011 in Blog, Knowledge Integration | No Comments

This is an article I wrote for the uWaterloo engineering newspaper about a project that I was involved in. We designed and built a Museum Exhibition.

It is indeed an exciting time to be living considering how much development that we, 21st century students, get to experience. I am talking about an opportunity that even a seasoned curator with several years of experience behind his belt has never ever cleaned before. If you do not know what I am talking about, you have not only missed out on one of the best opportunities to witness such a development but also lost out on all the adventure it entailed. Here, let me quell the suspense at which point you will be gnashing you teeth for missing this occasion. Over the course of the past week, the 3rd year students at University of Waterloo’s Knowledge Integration (KI) program setup a full scale museum exhibit under the mast of the famed East Campus Hall facilities.

This marvellous project, unleashed after over a year of incubation, was such an exciting opportunity that only a selected few around the world got to experience and I, for one, was very pleased to be a part of it . I am currently doing a major in mechanical engineering with a minor in KI Knowledge Integration is a new program, in fact the first batch of students only graduate next year. It was initially started by Ed Jernigan a systems design engineering professor. As part of the course, the students in KI at the end of the 2nd year visited Amsterdam to study museums. Amsterdam has one of the highest exhibitions per capita in the world. Yes, it really does besides other things.

The museum exhibition is an 8 month project where for the first term we as a group come up with a theme, topic, run a mock study, give presentations about your project, build poster and finally make a storyboard/overall design of the exhibit. The next 4 months (my current term), we take our designs from the previous term, refine our ideas, run an even larger study to test our assumption and from our results we alter our decisions. We then go to the build our exhibition and bring it to life. The exhibition ran from March 14 to 16th.

Touring the exhibits, you learn why robots may make you feel uncomfortable. Explore forms of peaceful protest and how you might get involved. Learn how limitations in mathematical tools led to the development of new ones. Understand the impact of a concussion, and learn about other neurological phenomena like dreams, or why some people see letters and numbers in colour. Discover how archaeologists determine the purpose of an unknown object, and have a chance to try it out yourself.

My exhibition titled Guess What: Discovering objects through archaeology, in a smaller scale of things aimed to teach the skills required to figure out mystery objects through. In a larger scale, we wanted people to think about how their everyday objects would shed light on you, our culture and our civilization several thousand years from now. The exhibition had been a tremendous success, as several visitors expressed their awe in students being able to such well thought out curiosity provoking design and its implementation.

For more information about museum exhibition please visit our official museum website

Me and Professor Larry Smith during our exhibition opening playing with one of our mystery object.

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