Excerpt 2 of my ITP Camp diary. Hard to keep up on all that is going on!
ITP Day 2 – Thursday June 2nd 2016
Today I had my first real day at ITP and I’m feeling too tired to write about it. But better something then nothing at all:
The plan was to be at ITP at 14h for the shop safety session, but I’ve got stuck at Strands bookshop – miles and miles of books – and I couldn’t leave. It was “terrible” 😉
Arrived at ITP at 17. Had the Safety session led by counselor Thea. The session is mandatory and spread throughout the entire course, so that everybody can have a go at it. The Workshop facility is well equipped with the basic machinery for working with metal, wood, paper as well as a big and accessible supply of electronic components. Take what you need and don’t lose a finger while at it.
About ITP facilities: ITP cover an entire floor of the TISCH NYU building at Broadway. It has the look of a big workshop and artist atelie, more so than a high tech facility. This feeling is heightened by the used hardwood floor and easygoing disposition of tables and equipment. The class rooms are more like conference rooms in a startup. Actually, “startup” is a good description of how everything feels around here. Bureaucracy seems, until now, to be kept at a minimum. For using some equipment, for example I asked if anyone had an Oculus Rift VR head mounted display and i was directed to the equipment room. There i could use, among many many things, several Oculus and the powerful laptops required for VR. Every equipment, including cameras and VR gear, could be taken home and brought back the next day. All I needed was to ask.
Compare this with my situation at the UFRJ, where my oculus rift is the only VR equipment in the entire department and any defect on it could put at risk other peoples research – the reason why haven’t brought it with me. I love my department in Brazil – some of the most amazing minds I know – but lack of access to technology is a fact of life there. Americans are good with having a lot of stuff. It is liberating to have technology as a tool for the students and not as something precious that only a few can have the honor to touch.
It is true that most, if not all of the sessions are very tech centric. They have the technology and are eager to use it. But I haven’t seen a single one on the philosophical and social aspects of technology. At UFRJ we might not have the best equipment, but we do try very hard to overcompensate with a lot of reading, discussing and thinking.
I took part in two sessions. The first was about UX prototyping tools. The second was a very technical and straightforward look on how to start creating spherical videos for VR using the Rico Theta and a Go Pro Hero 360 freedom rig.
I will try to write in detail about each session. But for now this is all I can post.
Oh, and before that I went to the Instigator’s meeting. They summarized the whole program as “Very Chill”. Instigators are expected to be present and be aware of any opportunity to make the camp experience better to all fellow campers and are encouraged to lead as many sessions as they see fit.
check out more at the official ITP summer Camp blog!