Weekly Journal Repository
Week 1 (May 30 - June 6)
During my first week of research under Dr. Gilbert of the University of Florida, I met my fellow DREU research peers, MG Hirsch and Rosa Saldana, as well as had an overview of what was expected of us during our assigned project and our lab area. Moreover, we also met the other REU students also working at UF for the summer and had a tour of their respective labs. Jeremy Waisome, assisted us in obtaining our UFIDs and Gator1 cards, which are essential to obtaining access to faculties and resources around campus and online, as well as a general tour of campus life. Wednesday, we attended a workshop giving an overview of the faculty and staff in the engineering/computer science department at UF as well as a few icebreaker activities to get to know everyone doing research this summer. The following Monday, we once again attended a workshop, but this time involving how to write a research paper as well as how to read a research paper in regard to ethics. Also, we looked at examples and constructed opinions on how to construct the best paper possible as well as the differences between research papers and scientific journals.
Week 2 (June 6 - June 13)
On Thursday, we left for the Self Advocates Becoming Empowered (SABE) conference in Birmingham, AL, which is to ensure that people with disabilities are treated as equals and that they are given the same decisions, choices, rights, responsibilities, and chances to speak up to empower themselves; opportunities to make new friends, and to learn from their mistakes. While attending, we administrated an election using the Prime III voting system. We were there from Thursday to Sunday in order to properly prepare and also carry out other vote hosting tasks.
Week 3 (June 13 - June 20)
During this week, we had a meeting concerning the election we held the prior week. The meeting mainly focused on how the elections could be improved as well as how we can apply those new principles to other elections in the future. I also discovered a new switch that could possibly be used in the future instead of the ones we used, which at some points failed to work properly. The new switch is constructed by Microsoft to help video games be more accessible to people with disabilities but we planned to re-purpose it for accessible election conducting situations. We also went over topics for our research project.
Week 4 (June 20 - June 27)
For my research project, I was torn between two options: using augmented reality to conduct physical therapy within one's home and brain computer interface application development using popular BCI devices. I had some experience and exposure last summer using BCI devices along with Python to control drones via EEG data. As a result, I leaned more towards the AR therapy project as it was refreshing as well as something that had interested me in the past and also allowed me to explore using hardware I would otherwise not have access. During the week, I reviewed tutorials on how to use Unity and C# to develop scripts as well as game scenes, both static and dynamic.
Week 5 (June 27 - July 4)
During this week, I began developing scripts that could be used in conjunction with my project topic. To get my feet wet, I developed a small space bar game that used a counter that would store the amount of times pressed (which would be similar to an element within the actual project) and used dynamic physic elements that would need to be present to ensure the best experience for the end user.
Week 6 (July 4 - July 11)
Building on last week, I began constructing a scene using vectors as they play an important role in Physics, for example the velocity and acceleration of a moving object and the forces acting on it. Using integrations for Microsoft Kinect 2 and HoloLens, I developed an application in the Unity3D game engine which transforms the Kinect body tracking data into first-person space on the HoloLens.
Week 7 (July 11 - July 18)
Moreover, after developing the application the prior week, I worked to construct two versions one without gamification and one with gamification to determine if that would motivate users to use the application more, less or not at all. However, previous research has shown that gamification tends to fade after a while but to discover my own findings I did it anyways to see if my discoveries aligned with that research.
Week 8 (July 18 - July 25)
During this week, I began to set up a pilot study to gather user perspectives of the system. I wanted to answer questions such as was the user interface easy to navigate, are the instructions on how to use the system clear and accurate and could they see themselves using the system in their personal lives.
Week 9 (July 25 - August 1)
This week, I formed my final conclusions on the system as well as the information gathered from the pilot. As a result, most of the concerns I had concerning the system mainly come from the limitations of the hardware we used and not the concept itself. In conclusion, I believe from the information gathered the concept is good but the hardware implementation could be better. Although, as technology advances and more affordable options come to market it will make the concept a more viable option.
Week 10 (August 1 - August 8)
The final week, we constructed posters for presentation for faculty, staff and students. I also attended a workshop with several REU/DREU students presenting their summer research. Finally, we went out for food one last time as a group.