Blog

A magical entrance

August 2014

Philips HUE Tap

Reinventing the light switch.

Philips released this month the HUE Tap, an add-on for their HUE range of lighting (see below for further details). This is essentially a multi switch with four individual buttons (one is used as an off button), to allow you to choose 3 different lighting configurations of your own choice, which are setup using the free app for both apple and android tablets/pads.

Unlike other switches this one has no wires and no batteries; Philips has reinvented the light switch using the kinetic energy generated when we press the switch to power the unit. This is a remarkable idea and works very effectively, the buttons require a good press to activate them but we have found it to be very easy to use and works every time.

We will be adding this to all of our current projects to allow quick and easy access to 3 coloured scenes without the need of a pad/tablet.

A magical entrance

1st May 2014

Sense 3D Scanner

I recently saw the SENSE in action and was really impressed with the results at this price point (under £300).

The SENSE is a hand held 3D scanner produced by a company called Cubify, and while the results are not high resolution it still offers an easy way to scan any object or person to be used in most 3D software or printed on a 3D printer.

What struck me was the ease of use; including the software, even a child could use it easily. This is where I thought it would be great as a possible add on for this project, you can scan students, objects or models they have made into the computer, then import them into iClone to be used in animations. For example if students made their own models for a scene, (trees, houses, grasses, hills, lamp posts, etc.) a 3D scene can then me constructed in the computer for animating in.

A magical entrance

14th April 2014

A magical Entrance

One of the ideas I had for the project at the Mead Community Primary school was to have a magical entrance to the SMILE room. The idea I came up with was the wardrobe from the Chronicles of Narnia as an entrance, the idea being students feel they are entering a new magical place every time they enter the SMILE room.

While researching this idea I came across the photo opposite which was created for a Disney exhibition, this shows my vision for a magical entrance really well.

Epson's EB-W16SK Projector

26th March 2014

Philips HUE lighting boldly goes where no lighting has gone before.

What is HUE lighting? HUE is an LED based lighting system that changes colour with the aid of an app on a tablet or smart phone. You can learn more at: www.meethue.com

Why am I getting excited about HUE, because you use a WI-FI network to control the lights and Philips have released a developer’s Kit for the project allowing anyone to develop apps and software to control the lights.

What does this mean? You can control the lights using any method you like including sound responsive, movement interactive and even depending on the colour on a screen. Someone as already created an interactive book where as you progress through the story the lights change colour to match the story. Over time we hope to see even more creative ways of using and interacting with the hue lighting system.

Epson's EB-W16SK Projector

11th March 2014

Epson’s EB-W16SK

I was very lucky today to be able to see Epson’s EB-W16SK, passive 3D projection system in action.

Unlike most 3D projectors this one uses two projectors, both with different polarized filters over the lenses. This technology is the same as when you visit your local cinema, you use an inexpensive pair of glasses with different filters for each eye to create the 3D effect. The glasses for this system are just a few pounds compared to £75 - £100 for active shutter systems.

I was very impressed with how easy it was to set the system up and even more impressed with the picture, which was brighter that other systems I have seen. Unlike other systems it is only HD 720p projection apposed too Full HD 1080p, but with the affordability of the glasses combined with the fact more people find this type of system produces less eye strain, it appears to be an ideal solution for schools and the SMILE room.

The Mead Academy Trust Logo

1st March 2014

We are very happy to have a new website up for the first SMILE room.

We have been very lucky to be working with the amazing staff at The Mead Community Primary School in Hilperton, Wiltshire, the Mead is an Outstanding school, a teaching school and a lead school. We have been developing two SMILE rooms for them at both of their sites (most of the images here are for these projects); you can view this site at: www.smileforschools.co.uk

We will keep you updated with its progress.

1st February 2014

I am very happy to say that we have now had interest from over 8 countries on this project. Please contact with any questions, we want to hear from you.

18th January 2014

The new website goes live for the SMILE room. Please visit us regularly for updates to the project.

Printer Friendly Logo

SMILE room Project - 27 Cresswell Drive, Hilperton, Trowbridge, Wiltshire BA14 7TN
E: smile@bythegate.com