Contact Victor Williamson with your questions about simulator based experiential education programs for your school.

Sunday, July 29, 2018

InfiniD Takes the Starship Experience to Adobe's World Headquarters in San Jose, California. Great Things are Happening. Utah Valley University's Prep Class flies on the Galileo. Watch a Video of their Experience. Imaginarium Theater

Casey Voeks at Adobe's Headquarters in San Jose, California
      Who better to spread the good news of experiential education through simulations than our good friends and partners at InfiniD?  InfiniD has mastered the art of educational simulations; and using that understanding, successfully crafted the starship experience developed over the last 28 years at the Christa McAuliffe Space Center and other Space Education Centers into an affordable computer lab based experience.  It's The Space Center experience for the masses.
     On Friday InfiniD's leadership took a road trip to Adobe's World Headquarters at San Jose, California.

     It was Adobe's Field Trip Extravaganza, put on yearly for the children of Adobe's employees. InfiniD was asked to run simulations throughout the day.  Last year InfiniD took the mobile starship Titan. This year they showcased the new InfiniD by converting a meeting room into a starship bridge. Adobe was getting the real InfiniD experience.  

The meeting room at Adobe waiting to be converted into a Starship.
See how easy it is for any school, worldwide, to have a simulator of their own.

InfiniD's Skyler Carr outside Adobe. It's Showtime!
     Step One:  The Room Conversion. A few lights, a few laptops or Chromebooks (InfiniD's controls are browser based so they can run on any platform) set up the sound system and the ship was ready for launch.

     Step Two: Set up the posters.  InfiniD ran two different missions, one for the little ones aged 4 to 7. and another for the 11 - 14 age range.  

     With the room (ship) ready for launch, the first crews were anxiously waiting.

     Kendrick Gines, InfiniD's master flight director, directed the missions in the same room with the young astronauts.  This is the InfiniD way.  Teachers can monitor the class and pace the curriculum much better by being in the room rather than sitting in a control room watching from a camera.  In a way, flight directing in the same room is really old school. I ran the first starship simulations in room 19 at Central School back in the Spring of 1983 in the same room with my students. I sat behind my desk with an overhead and boom box cassette player.     

Kendrick is visible on the far left.
Notice the simplicity of the set up.  Easy to used. Easy to understand, and highly effective. 
Notice the effects lighting on the floor. That is all it takes. 

      Of course it was a hit.  Adobe's youngsters loved the experience.   

      They say an army marches on its stomach.  The same is true of a starship crew.  Casey, Skyler, and Kendrick took a lunch break between missions to recharge for the afternoon flights. 
      InfiniD is doing great things.  They will be in 80 schools throughout Utah by the start of of the 2018-2019 school year. That number grow as the months pass and more and more schools realize the value of this unique educational experience for their students.  
     "To InfiniD and Beyond!"  


     Please enjoy a fun video of a group of campers from UVU PREP filmed aboard the USS Galileo at the Christa McAuliffe Space Center this last week. From within the chaos a bit of team work and quick decision making seems to have saved them for now.

     UVU PREP is a free STEM Summer program for middle and junior high students, which provides three summers of rigorous academic instruction, educational hands-on projects, challenging homework assignments, daily career awareness and field trips.   
     The program allows 7th, 8th, and 9th grade students who have an interest and aptitude in Science, Technology, Engineering, and/or Mathematics fields to receive accelerated curriculum in preparation for high school and higher education. UVU PREP strives to provide opportunities for underrepresented and first generation students to pursue STEM studies and careers.

Imaginarium Theater
The Best Gifs From Around the World Edited for a Gentler Audience

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Nathan King, Director of the Lion's Gate Center, Creates Impressive Computer Animated Short Films. More Historical Space Center Photos: Summer Camp 2007. From the Archives: The End of Summer Camp 2002. Retirements, Promotions, and Sage Advice...

The Great and Powerful OZ
Nathan King as viewed by his peers and students

     Nathan King started volunteering at the Christa McAuliffe Space Education Center during the Voyager Era.  From there he moved to the Discovery Space Center at Stone Gate. From there he moved onwards and upwards until he was hired to be the director of the Lion's Gate Center at Lakeview Academy.  This job includes the set and flight direction of Lakeview's three simulators; the Apollo, Artemis, and Leo.  Classes visit the ships daily from the start of the school day to the end. He is a busy man.

Good evening! I just wanted to share a link with you to an animation I recently published that's set in a Spaceship-themed environment: 

Nathan King on his first test mission as a flight director in training
USS Challenger. DSC at Stone Gate in Pleasant Grove
July 9, 2014

Nathan creates most of his mission's special effects. In fact, many of those creations are being used in Utah County's space simulators.  Computer animation is his profession, hobby, and secret love. 

Tonight I'd like to share three of his most recent animations.
Nathan tells me that with these successes, he is ready to move on to create a series of live-action short films set in the future about starship officers and their adventures

Congratulations Nathan. I'm excited to see what your creative studio creates next!

June 2007
Bryson Lystrup Briefing his Voyager Crew for a 3 Day Camp. I see the Triangle was part of the
briefing.  Central School's new computer lab.

From the Blog's Archives. The End of the 2002 Summer Camping Season and a Thank You to the Magellan Staff.
August 5, 2002

I would like to take a minute and thank all the staff and volunteers who worked in the Magellan this summer season. 

"Fail Safe" was not an easy mission to pull off. With strong acting roles and a very cerebral theme it took a lot of effort on everyone's part to make it successful. Each and every one of you did do your best and made it successful. Your contributions to this mission brought
refreshing new ideas and twists. 

The Odyssey Crew is Boarding through the Voyager's Transporter on the school's Stage.

A look ahead for those that work the Magellan and 
enjoy Magellan missions. There are two, yes I said TWO, new Magellan overnighters coming online. The first one coming online is currently under the working title of "Project X". The actual working title is coming soon. The Second mission to come online is "Midway". It has only been on the drawing board for
over a year. We will see if it gets off the back burners before next summer season. Both missions are very acting intensive. 

Mr. W.

The Galileo Crew is heading down the hall toward the cafeteria.  Remember the old trophy case in the hallway?
June 2007

The Crew of the Galileo.
June 2007

From the Blog's Historical Archives. Space Center Journal. The Start of a New School Year: New Missions, New Attitudes.
Retirements, New principal, New Staff Appointments, New Missions. A Challenge to do your best this school year.
August 26, 2002

The Phoenix Crew. June 2007
First Rotation of the 3 day EdVenture Camp.
Hello Troops,
This week witnessed the start of the 2002-2003 school year. Quite early in August for many people's liking but there are reasons. The Christmas holiday is longer this year and there are a few teacher working days without students so we start early but have more breaks in 
the year. I don't think any of you will complain about that. 

Central Elementary School has a new principal. Her name is Coleen Green. She comes to us from Lehi Junior High were she served as an assistant principal. I'm impressed with Mrs. Green. She has a sincere desire to see Central become the best school in the District. 
She would like the school to be known for academic excellence in addition to the notary that comes from being the home of the Space Center. She puts in the same amount of time that Mr. Adams did when her was here. That type of dedication leads to success. I've committed the Center and our resources to helping her achieve her goals for the school.

The Voyager Engineer.  What a great job and what a great view of the bridge from that platform.
June 2007

One of our Space Center family is now working as a 6th grade teacher at Central. Mr. Mark Daymont was hired to fill the vacancy left by Mrs. Trevino. Mark started teaching on Tuesday. He is in room 18 near the gym. He has a good class tempered by four "troubled" boys. Every class has its share of excitable children but having four - all considered to be the worst by the 5th grade teachers isn't the way to bring a new teacher into the fold. On Friday the 6th grade team met with Mrs. Green. They decided to move one of them into another class. That will help. I think part of the problem is that some people believe some of these boys need a male role model to help them straighten out. Yes, that theory has some merit, but there is the principle of moderation in all things.  I think the change will be good for Mr. Daymont. It will relieve some of the stress and allow him to concentrate in his teaching.

There are several other changes I should announce. 
1. Josh Webb has announced his retirement. His final mission will be the last weekend of September. 
2. Stephen Porter has announced his retirement. His last mission will be September 13-14. His farewell will be on September 15th. He will enter the MTC that week. 
3. James Porter has moved to Logan and is attending USU.
4. Jennifer Remy retired at the end of our summer season. Jennifer is currently waiting to 
hear on an exciting job prospect. We wish her well and all the best of luck.
5. Aleta Clegg will be our newest Green Shirt in the Education Division. She is being hired
to work with us in the afternoons for the daily field trips. 

The Voyager's Damage Control Officer confers with the Voyager's Science / Records officer
June 2007.

I think that about covers the personal changes. I'm relieved that Chris Call, Lorraine Houston, and Fred Olsen will continue with us for the daily programsIn addition we have some of our outstanding High School students that have arranged their schedules allowing them to intern at the Center.  We are in need of some help still on the B days in the morning. If anyone knows of someone that would like to work for two hours every other day in the morning please let me know. 

I need to congratulate two of our Voyagers, Alan Johnson and Nick Major. Both of them were awarded their Eagle Scout Award last Saturday. Good work gentlemen.

I love this time of year. This is the season of:
1. Football. Nothing beats football season. 
2. Autumn. I enjoy the colors of Autumn and the cool temperatures. I enjoy seeing the  streets and lawns covered with leaves. I enjoy the shorter days. 
3. Holidays. What can top the holidays of this time of year. We've got Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas coming up. 
4. The start of a new school year. Kids are all in new clothes and shoes. Teachers and 
students come to school enthusiastic and ready to learn. 
5. New mission. I'm ready to put Supernova to bed. I'm excited to be telling Stazi this 
year. Stazi is the last of the original black and white missions that need to be colorized and retold.
Next school year will be an entirely new mission never told before. I'd better start thinking about that.
6. Movies! We've got another Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, and Star Trek coming out this season. It will mean hours in the theater with Diet Coke and popcorn in hand.

Let's all enjoy every day of this season! 

Voyager Security listening to their training tapes.
Yes, those are cassette tape recorders. They were great. You could
fast forward and rewind - no hassle.

This was an odd week for missions because of cancellations. I can't remember a time when there were so many canceled missions in such a short span of time. Mind you, these missions were booked last May so that has a lot to do with it. Also, this was the first week of school. These canceled mission were frustrating to the volunteers but the staff were ecstatic! I should not have of booked missions the first week of school. Everyone is just too busy to come in at night and spend nearly 3 additional hours doing their part time job. I made a commitment that next year I wouldn't schedule any missions for the first week of 
school. You folks can hold me to it. 

The overnight mission went well. A very well behaved group of kids. I did Mercy Strike. I described it as a political mission. The kids enjoyed it. The Magellan opened the school year with a new mission called "Potemkin". It, like all first runs, had hiccups but nothing a 
well trained staff can't handle. The reviews were good. Good job Magellan staff! The Falcon will be running "The Helix Nebula" this year. The Odyssey will be running "Masquerade". The Galileo ran Maximus. There will be a new Galileo mission coming up soon. 

The Crew of the USS Voyager, the finest starship ever built.
June 2007
I want to challenge all of you to do your best this school year. Work hard in your classes and go for the top grades. Remember, our grade policy. Everyone will be expected to keep their grades higher than a C. Get to know your teachers. Make good friends. Enjoy 
extracurricular activities. You get to be a teenager only once in life. Enjoy your school experiences without sacrificing your principles and morals. Be outstanding in a group. Stand out in the crowd when you can. Start giving your opinions in discussions. Your generation will be taking this world's reigns soon enough. 

All the Best!
Mr. Williamson

The Imaginarium