About nic schofield

I am the ICT technician at Merton Park Primary School in Merton, and the children never fail to amaze me with their enthusiasm for all things ICT!

Create your own Google Doodle!

Next week is Hour of Code week!!

Here are a few nice Scratch projects:

Google Doodle

LGfL has a similar project – and this one has a PRIZE!!

“Most creative use of code will win a small bag of computing goodies!”

To win this, you must send me a link to your project so I can share it on Twitter. if it doesn’t work below you can try the project here.

 

And now Scratch has one too:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Well done Harriet, a very appropriate message for a healthy school!

Scratch Challenge

I was so impressed by your ideas in Code Club chat this week that here’s a challenge for you to show next week:

Make any AI “Scarecrow” in Scratch:

  • Animals (at least 3 sprites) appear randomly on a suitable background
  • These will be sensed by your scarecrow and they will disappear – how will they be sensed?
  • The “Scarecrow” (what will it look like – is it even visible?) will use a different deterrent that you have researched to scare off each animal (Katie & Rosie this could be a swarm of drone bees for your elephant!)

Here’s a link to the previous article. There may be a prize….

Big Life Fix

This is the Big Life Fix Children in Need programme that Jon was telling us about. we talk about engineers a lot at school – they are so good at devising solutions to complex problems! Are there any big problems in life that you would like to set about fixing?

Homework: An Artifically Intelligent Scarecrow To Scare Away Elephants…

Below is an amended article from the New Scientist DAILY NEWS 16 November 2017. With thanks to Dr Scott Turner of Northampton University for tweeting the link:

Elephants can damage nut and banana plantations because they are too big, tough and smart to scare off once they start eating. Now, Australian researchers have developed an AI scarecrow that can do the job.

Scarecrow technology has a long history of failure, and not just for elephants –  animals quickly get used to scarecrows and ignore them. Many growers have described birds perching and even roosting on devices that were designed to scare them off. So researchers from CSIRO, Australia’s national research organization, decided the answer was artificial intelligence.

Their AI scarecrow has three elements: sensors that detect what kind of pest is approaching, a processing brain to identify them and decide how best to respond, and deterrent devices that can respond intelligently with the right combination of sound or light.

Then it is loaded with a library of predator sounds, animal alarm calls and irritating tones, as well as its own self-generated noises – anything we would consider as scary or startling – leopard and tiger growls can make elephants depart the sceneIt’s also well known that elephants are terrified of bees.
This won’t just help people – it could also save elephants. Vivek Thuppil of the University of Nottingham says that 400 people and 100 elephants die each year in India alone in due to human-elephant conflict, often triggered by crop raiding.

Some questions for you to answer to discuss next Tuesday:

  • Can you say what AI stands for and describe in your own words what it is?
  • Can you write an algorithm for this scarecrow (If This, Then That)?
  • What do you think this scarecrow should look like?
  • Can you think of any other uses for this invention?
  • Can anyone try to code a project like this in Scratch?! Prize: anyone who makes it in Scratch can work as a small team with one of our lovely volunteers to try to then develop it using Micro:bits.

 

 

Festive Message

I spent hours making mine and it still doesn’t do all that I want it to do (if you get an error message below, you need to run Flash – it won’t work on Apple tablet etc):

I cannot find a way to make authentic-looking falling snow from a custom sprite. I am going to award  the following prizes, as judged by our volunteers:

  • Best authentic-looking falling snow from an imported sprite
  • Best Christmas poem generator
  • Most effective animated festive message – remember that simpler may be better, I think mine has too many sprites and too much happening.

Happy Coding!