Find out how videogame developers, music producers, roller coaster designers and other creative problem solvers use math and science to meet their design challenges.
Design Zone consists of three main thematic areas:
Music – Hear It!
Hear the math in the music while you explore relationships between length and pitch in musical instruments, ratios and rhythms, and visual representations of sound.
Drum Machine – Be a DJ and pick the sounds and the number of repeats for a two-beat track, a three-beat track, and a four-beat track. Then see if you can get all tracks to end on the same beat.
Music Mix – Try out your music production skills by putting together music samples. Pick your best song and email it to your friends.
Turntables – Practice your DJ skills on simulated turntables.
Sound Graph – Talk, sing or whistle into a microphone and see the sound displayed on a real-time graph of pitch over time.
Whack-a-Phone – Hit tubes of different lengths to make music.
Slide-a-Phone – While a friend beats on the drumhead, slide the tube to play different notes.
Digital Strings – Adjust the lengths of eight virtual strings and then hear your musical pattern.
Laster Light DJ – Using a real laser and rotating mirrors, create Lissajous patterns – the basis for laser light show effects.
Light Show DJ – Put together laser light patterns to match the music.
Art – See It!
Find out how visual designers use scale, pattern, coordinate grids, equality and slope to turn ideas into reality. See the math behind visual creativity as you design your own 2-D and 3-D art.
Mirror Multiplier – Explore relectional symmetry using colorful geometric pieces and a hinged pair of mirros.
Picture Calculator – Take a picture of yourself and manipulate the values of the piexels to transform your photo.
Drawing in Motion – Work with a friend to create images on a giant screen.
Balancing Art – Discover the math behind mobiles as you create your own balancing art from colorful pieces.
Build a Wall, Build a Plaza, Build a Tower – Test your abilities to continue a pattern in three dimensions as you try building a wall, a tower, or a plaza from architectural blocks.
Marble Maze – Adjust the variable of a simple marble maze game to design a game that gives you the highest score.
Jump On It – Play this arcade-type game by choosing a character, selecting a scene, and adjusting the jump power and gravity to find out how these variables affect your character’s jump height.
Hit the Target – Launch a ball in the air and attempt to hit a target while learning about the relationship between release angle and distance traveled.
Action – Move It!
Discover the math and physics behind anything that moves. Build a custom digital roller coaster, design your own skate park, and race your bike to the finish line.
Roller Coaster Hills – Roll a ball down a ramp from a certain height and find out how far it flies off the end of the ramp. Fast Tracks – Assemble your track to create and test your own roller coaster course using a giant magnet wall.
Design a Roller Coaster – Design and test virtual roller coaster tracks in this computer graphing simulation.
Bike Race – Choose from three bike stations – two recumbent bicycles or a hand crank bike – and experience a full-body bike race.
Testing Gears – Test three different gear combinations by competing with a friend to find out who can go furthest.
Designing for Speed – Test a series of wheels on a downhill course of two parallel tracks.
Design a Skate Park – Manipulate slope to create essential skate park features in this computer simulation.