Sunday, April 10, 2005

Video Analysis

I just got back from the other side of Michigan where I was attending a meeting of the Michigan Chapter of the American Association of Physics Teachers. J.D. Birchmeier and I gave our presentation on video analysis using Logger Pro. This is the fourth time we've given it so I suppose we should retire it for now.

Any way, Logger Pro is a great program that was originally designed to interface with Vernier's probeware. With version 3 they added video analysis. With the video analysis you can import a video and track the motion (position and velocity) of objects. This is a very powerful learning tool. As someone once pointed out, if a picture is worth 1,000 words than video is worth 30,000/second.

With version 3.3, Vernier has added the ability to show vectors on the video. This is a great way to show the change in velocity in the vertical direction and the constant velocity in the horizontal for projectile motion, or centripetal acceleration in circular motion. I do more with vectors with my seniors, but even the freshmen benefit from seeing them on the video.

The best part is you may already have Logger Pro in your building and if not it's cheap.

Logger Pro 3.3 costs $149 for a site license and the ability to have students install it at home, (if you already have version 3 than the upgrade is free). If you have a version earlier than 3.0 then the upgrade cost is $50.

We've passed out CD's at the meetings we've attended that have lots of stuff on them: 200 Meg of videos, instructions on how to make movies and capture them on the computer, instructions on how to do this without logger pro, written instructions on how to use Logger Pro, video captures showing how to use Logger Pro, and some examples of how to use video analysis in class. If you would like one email me and I'll see what postage costs. I can also email the documents we've created to you directly.

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