Posted by Casey Schulz on July 13, 2015 at 1:09 PM
Preemadonna and our Nailbot’s first visit on June 25, 2015 to Alexa Café was a blast. So first, a heartfelt thanks to Alexa Café Palo Alto and its rockstar campers for letting us come talk with you all! For those of you not familiar with Alexa Café, it’s a week long summer camp for girls that focuses on creative technology, with 10 campuses across the country.
During Preemadonna’s visit, Pree and I toured the campus to see what types of projects the girls were working on. Since we came on a Thursday, the projects were very far along, so we got to see their inspiring creations.
A few groups were working on e-textiles, making sewing projects that had LEDs controlled by the Lillypad. One camper made a pillow with rain drops on it that blinked in a sequence to spread awareness about the drought. Another made a large cupcake shaped pillow with randomly lit color LEDs to spread awareness about childhood hunger - we were very impressed.
Soon after our tour, we started our Preemadonna Nailbot presentation, walking them through the prototype process for building our first Nailbot, Gracie. By explaining our first prototype, which used an arduino and a resistive touchscreen, the Nailbot’s journey was a great way to showcase other things the girls could do, since many of the campers had exposure to various forms of Arduinos during camp. We explained how the prototypes got more and more complicated as it approached the final version with the most functionality, which the girls were excited about.
We wrapped up the Preemadonna visit with a Q&A session - I was impressed with their questions! They were asking technical details about each version of the prototypes and why we chose to implement certain features and technologies. Their time at Alexa Café opened their minds to be more curious and inquisitive about technology that they come across.
Several of the girls asked if Preemadonna would be selling a DIY kit for a Gracie inspired printer that they can build at home…..and I’m happy to announce that it’s coming soon through a special program! Pree will be announcing more details on this awesome Ambassadors initiative on July 28, 2015 at 2 PM (Eastern) - so subscribe for hacker updates on how to build your own Preemadonna Printer!
VIP UPDATE: We are also so excited to announce that two NEW visits to Alexa Café are on the books for July. That means another 130 girls get to learn about the NAILBOT! We are pumped!