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Project Idea
thumbnail The Incredibles, Ratatouille, Up. What do these Pixar films have in common? They are all computer-animated films. While the writers and directors came up with the compelling stories and the kinds of scenes that would best tell the stories, the computer animation experts brought the films to life. In this computer science project, you will easily be able to create your own animated story using a simple computer programming environment called Storytelling Alice. To create your animation, you will… Read more
CompSci_p037
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites You should have access to a Windows-based computer and the Internet.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety Animating a story can involve a lot of time in front of the computer. Be sure to take plenty of breaks in order to stretch and give your eyes a break.
Project Idea
thumbnail Video games come in many varieties: aim-and-shoot games, city-building games, racing games... the list goes on. In many, you get points for colliding with or hitting something. In this computer and video games project, you will learn about how hit boxes are used to detect collisions and you will determine if the size and placement of a hit box affects the score in the game. Read more
Games_p028
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Project Idea
thumbnail Psychologists have long studied why people find certain faces more attractive than others. One interesting method used in this area of research is mixing several faces together to make a composite face. The composite face averages the input faces, so that small, non-symmetric features tend to get lost. In this human behavior science project, you will use an online tool to make composite faces, and determine how they compare to real faces in perceived attractiveness. Read more
HumBeh_p055
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites This science project involves making a set of pages containing images (faces) that have been downloaded from the Internet. Access to Microsoft® Word or similar word processing software is required. You will be making copies of and handing out your figures to your test subjects.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Project Idea
thumbnail Have you ever had several different design ideas for a project and not known which one to try first? Engineers use computer models of real-world objects called simulations to help them make decisions before they start building prototypes. This helps them save time and money, so they do not have to physically build and test each design they come up with. In this project, you will use a free physics simulation program called VoxCAD. VoxCAD has been used for research at NASA, MIT, and other… Read more
Robotics_p016
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Project Idea
Imagine yourself as a software engineer, a decade and a half from now. You are called upon to help solve the world energy crisis by programming nano-organisms (NANORGs) to extract energy from industrial sludge. Your program must be small enough to fit in the NANORGs' tiny processors, yet at the same time meet several challenges. First and foremost, your NANORGs need to navigate on their own, extract energy from the sludge, and find collection points to deliver the harvested energy. Second,… Read more
CompSci_p021
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
Prerequisites Previous computer programming experience, familiarity with assembly language programming is helpful.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Project Idea
thumbnail If you have seen any of the "Star Wars" movies, then you probably remember when Jedi knights like Luke Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi used "The Force" to push, pull, and even throw objects — including some helpless battle droids. Have you ever wished you could do that in real life? In this robotics project, you will build and program a LEGO® robot that you can push and pull using an "invisible force" — almost like a real Jedi! We make no promise that you will be taking down the… Read more
Robotics_p013
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites You should know how to build a basic car with a LEGO Mindstorms kit, and also be familiar with basic programming in the Mindstorms software (NXT-G or EV3).
Material Availability This project requires a LEGO Mindstorms EV3 or NXT kit, and a computer with the appropriate programming software. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Very High (over $150)
Safety No issues.
Project Idea
thumbnail Have you ever heard the phrase, "Seeing is believing"? Well, it is more accurate than you might think! In this science project, you can investigate the phenomenon of apparent motion by making your own flip-book animations Read more
HumBeh_p041
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Time Required Very Short (≤ 1 day)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Project Idea
This is a more challenging JavaScript project: can you write a program that can play Tic-Tac-Toe? You'll have to figure out a way to translate the game strategy into a computer algorithm. The project will show you how to create a working Tic-Tac-Toe board on a webpage. Your challenge will be to show the computer how to play. Just think: you'll be creating artificial intelligence! Read more
Games_p014
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites To do this project, you should already be comfortable with creating basic HTML files using a text editor. You should also be familiar with creating HTML form elements, and having them interact with JavaScript functions.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Project Idea
Sudoku puzzles have become extremely popular over the past couple of years. You can find books of puzzles for beginners to experts, and many newspapers print Sudoku puzzles daily. This project challenges you to write a computer program to check if your Sudoku solution is correct. Read more
CompSci_p023
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites An understanding of the material covered in "ABC's of Programming: Writing a Simple 'Alphabetizer' with JavaScript."
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Project Idea
Do your parents ever get upset with you for "wasting" paper and ink from your printer? Maybe you wanted to print a comic you found online, or a whole bunch of pictures of you and your friends being goofy, or all the instructions on how to put together that really awesome LEGO® castle. But 20 pages of text and pictures later, your mom or dad is yelling at you. Why do they even care how much you print? And why do people say it is a "waste" of paper? Try this printer-saving science project to… Read more
CompSci_p041
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Time Required Very Short (≤ 1 day)
Prerequisites You must have access to a computer with an Internet connection and word processing software. You should also be familiar enough with your word processing program to perform simple actions like changing font size and printing. Ask an adult to help if you need it.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
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