GSCI101
General Science COURSE

WELCOME

Students should visit this page for general advisories and course updates.

This is a course designed to satisfy the
goals and objectives for Cluster
3 (Mathematics and Science). These ideas will be explored by examining the
current state of
robotics. The successful development of machines capable of
completing complex tasks as autonomous entities or as remotely controlled
machines requires input from all science and mathematics. From the examination of biological systems
that provide nature’s solutions to various engineering problems to the complex
mathematics and engineering that are used to solve problems for flight,
robotics provides an excellent overriding theme.

The plan for the fall of 2011 is to examine
the field of robotics by weekly viewing TED talks
or other available lectures (at home).
Lectures will then attempt to address some of the basic science as well
as discussions of any material assigned.

Since this a new version of this course there may be adjustments
made during the semester to address student feedback and the instructor’s
perception of the effectiveness of the
methods employed.

We may be entering the “Age of Robots”. Significant advancements in both the
mechanical and computing arenas seem to be opening a door for significant
advancements. Whether or not the field
continues to grow and profoundly impact our daily lives or encounter
difficulties that delay progress, this seems to be an ideal time to see where
we are and where we are going. A true
appreciation of these developments will require some mastery of basic
science. To appreciate the challenges
and the dramatic achievements one needs to have some grasp of the essence of
science and mathematics. Therefore
students can expect to grapple with basic notions such as motion, force,
energy, materials, and computing.

IMPORTANT DATES |
||

1 |
Test 1 |
Tuesday Oct. 11, 2011 |

2 |
Test 2 |
Thursday Nov. 17, 2011 |

3 |
Final |
Thursday Dec 15, 2011 8:00 AM |

Outline: ------------------------------------------

DRG will try to put some outlines and
comments about each week’s work. It may
not be possible to keep the web site up-to-date so notes taken in class may be
necessary to kep track of all of the material
covered.

WEEK1: Assigned the first TED talk video (see Lon Capa ).

Policy quiz should be completed.

WEEK2: Two assigned videos (see Lon Capa). One video will examine some of the ways robots can be used. The second video introduces the skeptical scientist and the evaluation of various ideas through the lens of science.

WEEK3: One video, finish chapter 1. Problem set due end of September. Finish chapter 2 Newton’s laws

Week 4 topics one video, start chapter three finish momentum start energy. Energy will be the important topic for this chapter.

A very good discussion of energy can be found in -Physics for Future Presidents- a pdf version of this chapter can be found online.

Energy chapter from Physics for Future Presidents

Week 5 topics Supplemental reading rather than a video.

Energy chapter from Physics for Future Presidents

Power point (didn’t work in class)

Week 6 topics Continue with energy (video see Lon Capa)

Week 7 topics Test Tuesday, no classThursday

Week 8 topics Start Electricity and Magnetism. [Chapters 8,9] (video see Lon Capa)

Cover some aspects of the basic interaction: electric force, magnetic force, charge, magnetic poles, Maxwell’s equations pictorially, fundamental particles and charge (electron)…

Cover some aspects of the applications: current, voltage, resistance, circuit diagrams …

Week 9 topics Conclude fundamental ideas of E&M and more on circuits and applications to robots. (video see Lon Capa)

Handout explaining the requirements for E&M basics

Week 10 topics Work with electric circuits (video see Lon Capa)

Week 11 topics continue circuits and discuss electric signals (video see Lon Capa)

Week 12 topics add some AC and time dependent signal discussion

Week 13 topics final video (algorithms), returned test, cancelled Thursday class

Reading assignment PDF version

Feedback Systems

An Introduction for Scientists and Engineers

Karl Johan Aström, Richard M. Murray PDF version

- Chapter 1
- section 1.1-1.2,
- from section 1.3: Early Technology, Power Generation, Robotics and Intelligent Machines, Networks and Computing
- section 1.4

Final exam will be comprehensive covering both mechanics (forces, Newton’s laws), E&M with and emphasis on electric circuits (E and B fields, circuits) and an overview of robots (control, sensors, algorithms).

I will include an optional part that will follow the same form as in the previous two tests and ask specific questions about the videos viewed and the assigned readings. The reading on control will be covered in the required section of the final.

Homework, quizzes and assignments will be provided on line
through the LON CAPA system. If a
student encounters problems he/she should email Dr.Giovanetti
with a brief
description of the problem.
Assignments and quizzes can be reset provided there is timely
notification.