Week 5 Midterm Blog by Natalie Ridling

            So far in this class we have studied many different topics all related to both science and art.  Though the connecting line may be a bit more gray and fuzzy than just a straight black one, there is still very much a connection.  In the first week of the class, we focused on drawing that first connection between the two campuses at UCLA, the North and the South.  That connection was much stronger than I thought it was.  I am still concerned that people think that the two campuses are very separate, because in my personal experience with the research and education here, the two definitely do overlap and collaborate.  There is a divide, but I do not think that it is by any means too great or wrong.  The reason that we have different majors is so that we can specialize, and then use each other’s expertise.  The next week had a focus on math and perspective.  This was interesting to see just how much overlap there is between the two disciplines.  We watched videos demonstrating the art of fractals and such.  The third week of the quarter focused on robotics and artificial intelligence.  A great deal of what we talked about is how much is art, such as if it should be considered artistic expression if robots dance.  Fourth week was all about medicine and the advances we have made in that field.  This past week we have reviewed all the material and tried to draw that line through all the four weeks.  In the first week there was a quote about the similarities between art and science as each one becomes more advanced, and I think that in itself is the connecting line.  Each week we have focused on an advanced aspect of science, and I feel as though we have searched for the art in that aspect of technology.  We have not really looked at art and searched for the science nearly as much, if at all.  I think another part of the line is to encourage us to look all around us for these connections, and they are most definitely there, even when we don’t expect to find them.  I think it is an art to be able to perform certain medical procedures, and there is in fact some art in robots dancing (even if the credits belong to the choreographer).  I think that I am very much understanding the point of this class, I notice art in things around me so much now than I ever did before, and I think that is really important, and I have even landed myself in a few conversations with others about where they see art in the world.  So, the other part of the fuzzy gray line connecting everything, besides being so advanced it is like art, is that it is supposed to point out all the different aspects of our lives that include art. 

            Briefly, my project for the midterm is about wind fields.  Wind energy has the potential to solve many of out country’s problems with energy, but there are many aspects of it that need to be worked on before it will be commonly accepted and completely okay, at least with more people.  Right now, one of the main complaints with the technology is that it is very noisy and when the fields are installed away from humanity, it often destroys the wildlife.  My solution is to put music boxes in the wind turbines to create more soothing sounds, such as waves crashing or birds chirping.  I will also paint the blades on the turbines to reflect the mood of the noise and set the stage for the overall experience.  This is something that can cause people to have a greater appreciation for the function of the turbines and the beauty of an outside exhibit. 

 e112_wind_turbine

Natalie Ridling

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