The third day of Cousin Liza’s visit was very interesting. Nelson, David, Liza and I went to OMSI, which is short for the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry.
Their special exhibit for this summer is the Science of Pixar, which shows all the modeling work and computer programs that need to be created to make the Pixar movies like Toy Story, The Incredibles and Bug’s Life. Some of these programs are written by people, and some are written by other programs! Yes, some computer programs are so complicated that it is easier and faster to create a program to write it.
For details like the hundreds of trees Merida rides past in Brave, or the millions of blades of grass in Bug’s Life, the programmers set parameters (no higher than this, no wider than this…) and the programs did the rest.
After we explored the Pixar exhibit, we went to the completely re-furbished Turbine Room. This is the hands-on room, with erosion control experiments, turbines to invent and improve, and sound to play with.
There is a big harp-like creation that our neighbor Jonathon helped design which Liza loved playing! The activity is part dance, part music, part light show. It was wonderful!
Our last activity was trying to create “flinkers”. These are items made up of metal washers, bits of wood and cork, held together with rubber bands. They are supposed to neither sink nor float, but hover mid-water, or “flink”. It was hard! But we kept at it for quite a while, getting wet as we went along.
After a nice lunch a a look out over the river, we went home to rest before our next adventure.
Auntie Katie came over for a picnic dinner with the cousins at Laurelhurst Park. We ate, told stories, and played Frisbee. We managed to get pretty good just before it got dark.
Then, everyone off to home and bed.
What a day!