Beach lab

14 June 2013

Robots and computers of all shape’s and sizes will be at this year’s Technocamps Beach Lab.
Robots and computers of all shape’s and sizes will be at this year’s Technocamps Beach Lab.

Young people and their families from across Wales will get the chance to experience computing in the outdoors at Beach Lab, a Technocamps event held at Aberystwyth Bandstand, Promenade and beach from 11am to 3pm, Saturday 22 June 2013.

This event is being held as part of Aberystwyth University's community open day, Access All Areas which runs from 10a.m. until 3p.m. on 22 June 2013. Further information is available online at http://www.aber.ac.uk/access-all-areas.

Beach Lab 2013 is the second free public event run by the Technocamps team based at the Computer Science Department at Aberystwyth University, with the aim of giving young people aged between 11-19 years old a chance to develop their computing skills beyond the usual screen and keyboard.

The one-day event is open to all who are keen to experience technology in the open air with flying kites (with on-board cameras), land and sea robots, wearable technology, Raspberry Pis, Arduinos, 3D printing, mobile apps and much more.

Some of the demos will be using programmes and applications designed by young people from Ceredigion and surrounding counties who have been involved in Technocamps through school and holiday workshops.

Dr Mark Neal, Senior Lecturer in Computer Science at Aberystwyth University and one of the academics involved in Technocamps, will be on-hand at Beach Lab.

Dr Neal is keen to get as many people involved in the day, he says “Last year’s Beach Lab was a run-away success with over 600 visitors to the Bandstand and Promenade. We also had robots drawing on the beach alongside kites with on-aboard cameras. This second event will again interest local young people (some of whom will have been to Technocamps), teachers, educators, families, prospective students, tourists, geeks and the uninitiated - you really don’t need to know anything about technology to enjoy yourself at Beach Lab.

“Many people think computing is something done indoors in front of a screen and keyboard but there's so many ways to get involved in computer programming and electronics that makes computing really fun and creative.”

There will be other academics and students from Aberystwyth University’s Computer Science Department who will be giving demos and engaging with the public and others from the University’s Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) disciplines.

Director of Technocamps, Professor Faron Moller of Swansea University, said: “We want to get young people across Wales excited about computing and what better way to do this than by bringing it to life in the big outdoors.

“We hope everyone who comes along and takes part in this ‘fun-packed’ day will leave wanting to learn and do more of the fascinating things you can do with computers.”

For more details on the Technocamps Beach Lab go to: http://www.beachlab2013.eventbrite.com/ or contact Lisa Fisher on 01970 622454 / lisa.fisher@technocamps.com.

Technocamps is led by Swansea University in partnership with the Universities of, Aberystwyth, Bangor and Glamorgan, Technocamps is backed by the European Social Fund through the Welsh Government and will focus on a range of topics including robotics, games and software development; as well as animation and digital forensics.

Technocamps will establish a pan Wales programme of activities and workshops designed to raise awareness amongst pupils (11-19) of potential career opportunities available in a range of computer science, technology and engineering disciplines and encourage them to study STEM with a view to pursuing such opportunities.  Visit: www.technocamps.com or www.itwales.com for more information.

The £3.2bn Structural Funds programmes 2007-2013 in Wales include the Convergence programmes for West Wales and the Valleys (the successor to Objective 1), and the Regional Competitiveness and Employment programmes for East Wales. The programmes are delivered through the Welsh Assembly Government and are aimed at creating employment opportunities and boosting economic growth.

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Contacts

Dr Emma Posey, Technocamps, Department of Computer Science, 01970 622454 / 07971 405057 / emma.posey@technocamps.com
Siân Jones, Communications Manager, Technocamps, 01792 606652 / communications@technocamps.com

Arthur Dafis, Communications and Public Affairs, Aberystwyth University, 01970 621763 / 07841 979 452 / aid@aber.ac.uk