LEGO®, LabVIEW, and Robots- Oh My!

Lego Robot and assorted pieces on a play mat

As one of the largest companies in the world, the bright colors of plastic Lego bricks are a familiar sight to any toy aisle. These interlocking bricks provide an engaging outlet for creativity and innovation, going far beyond playtime and becoming a valuable asset to classrooms around the globe. Through the robotics kits of Lego Mindstorms®, engineering and programming concepts are taught in a way that actively engages children while also imparting important life skills.

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The Potential of Wi-Fi and Bluetooth

As the new school year starts, there are classrooms full of engineering students who do not remember the time before the use of both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth was commonplace. These technologies did not become widely available to the public until the early 2000s, but given their prevalence within everyday life in 2022, it is clear that these short-range communication networks are catalysts for innovation. With so much technological advancement in such a short amount of time, it’s worth asking the question- how did we get here, and what does the future look like?

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The Tech of Electronic Communication

Picture of dark cityscape with arched lights connecting different places

Today’s world is connected now more than ever before in history. Gone are the days of wired telegraphs and telephones, limited to one place. Cellular technology and wireless signals have forever changed how humans interact- both with each other and the world around them. Images, sounds, and written messages can be sent almost instantly across long distances, and information can be searched with the touch of a button. With convenient communication as the new normal, it is easy to take these advancements of electronic communication systems for granted. The truth is, it takes many different technologies working in tandem to make such communication possible.

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Monitoring Our Ecosystem… from Space

Picture of tall treetops with a clear blue sky backdrop, taken from below

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations has declared 2021-2030 as the “UN’s Decade on Ecosystem Restoration”. Clearly, the urgency to restore harmed ecosystems and fight against climate change is prevalent now more than ever. Stopping, preventing, and reversing ecosystem deterioration requires effort on a global scale, so NASA took observational tech to one of the highest viewpoints possible- the International Space Station.

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