Sunday, November 19, 2006

Instructables

I've been enjoying many of the projects on Instructables from some time. Today I contributed my first project.

Instructables is a site for people to "share what they do and how they do it." It is an incredible site. There are projects on nearly any subject you can think of including: cooking, electronics, robotics, catapult making, programming, paper airplane making... the list goes on and on. Anyone can see them, but if you create a login ID you can comment on the projects or ask questions of the project creators. A login is also required to submit your own projects.

The project submission process is no more complicated than writing a blog entry and there is the possibility to collaborate on projects through the site, although I haven't tried this yet. Even if you don't use the collaboration tools on the projects, the ability to leave and receive comments can lead to an informal collaboration. Within a few hours of posting my project it had already been commented on and I was able to elaborate a bit to make everything more clear.

My project deals with the creation of the solar cell probeware I've outlined previously. In the future I'll be adding more instructables detailing how to use the probe and software (Audacity and Visual Analyser) for a variety of lab activities or teacher demonstrations.

I'm considering incorporating this site in future student building projects. I've already referenced it for my electronics students and some students searching for good science fair projects.

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2 comments:

Ben said...

That's a great idea of allowing students to share projects as well as try them in class.

Steve Dickie said...

I'd really love to use this in class, unfortunately there is an issue with my school's firewall.

You can browse the site just fine, but you can't use the site search engine or login. I've been talking with the instructalbes folks to see if we can resolve the issue.