Find us on Google+ Living the Future of Making, and Learning Things ~ Inventor Tales

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Living the Future of Making, and Learning Things

About two years ago, I decided to return to school in the evenings and began taking Aircraft Maintenance Classes at Mount San Antonio College.

The practical, hands on nature is at times stressful and frustration, but most of all, inspiring and rewarding.

I realized that I miss having "dirty hands".  It's also teaching me to be a better designer.  After installing mounting bolts purely by feel, I look at Inventor 3D models in a renewed light of practicality.

The best way to learn how a jet engine's fan is assembled?
Take a wrench and take one apart!
It's been nearly 20 years since I've taken classes that contain a heavy theory component, in addition to labs.  I'm amazed that in many ways, college hasn't changed.  But moreover, I'm impressed at how much has truly changed. 

The Internet.  AKA the "cloud" has found away to change how I'm learning with a device nearly all of us carry around now. 

A connected smart device.

The new window to learning.

My homework is no longer written out in long hours spent at a desk.  I keep them safe and sound with Google Docs.  I can even have them archived for years to come!

My homework, online in the cloud instead of on paper. 

I've sat on a patio enjoying lunch, and thought, why don't I answer a couple of homework questions?  

No looking for a book, no wishing I had brought a pen.  I just pull out my smart phone, and start working. 

When I wanted to get more practice building and understanding electric circuits, I was able to find a cloud based simulator that allowed me to build circuits at test them even when I don't have access to the lab with it's physical simulators.

The physical electric circuit simulator with a digital multimeter on top.

I showed it to a few of my fellow students, and I was met with various forms of the phrase "Where did you find that?!?"

Relay Activated Transistor switch - EveryCircuit
Cloud based applications, and connected devices are giving me a competitive advantage in improving myself.  Most of all, it's doing it right now, in my every day life. 

It left me realizing one thing.  The Future of Making Things may not be revolutionary.  It's happening every day, all around us.

It's not necessarily about making things.  It's about how we interact with the information we use to make things.

It's not a revolution.   It's an evolution.  

And it's not the future.  It's here, now, in an evolving information age.. 

I bet your using it, and don't even know it! 

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