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ROBOTICS

The San Francisco police could use robots to deploy lethal force under a policy advanced by city supervisors on Tuesday that thrust the city into the forefront of a national debate about the use of weaponized robots in American cities.

ROBOTICS

The new workers zipped around the office completing mundane tasks like fetching coffee, delivering meals and handing off packages. They did not get in anyone’s way or violate personal space. They waited unobtrusively for elevators with unfailing politeness. And, perhaps most enticingly, they did not complain.

ROBOTICS

Why do I still have a job?

ROBOTICS

Ayush Agarwal loves speech and debate. When the pandemic forced debate tournaments online during his sophomore year in high school in San Jose, Calif., he realized what it meant to live on the other side of the digital divide.

SCIENCE

Orli Snir, a biologist at the Rockefeller University in New York, couldn’t keep her ants alive. She had plucked pupae from a colony of clonal raider ants, where the sesame seed-size offspring that looked like puffed rice cereal were being fussed over by both younger larvae and older adult ants. Then she had isolated each pupa into a tiny, dry test tube. And every time, they drowned.

SCIENCE

Imagine a single dose of vaccine that prepares your body to fight every known strain of influenza — a so-called universal flu vaccine that scientists have been trying to create for decades.

SCIENCE

A study of skeletons unearthed from a medieval Jewish cemetery in Germany has revealed a surprising genetic split among Ashkenazi Jews of the Middle Ages that no longer exists.

SCIENCE

In an experiment that ticks most of the mystery boxes in modern physics, a group of researchers announced on Wednesday that they had simulated a pair of black holes in a quantum computer and sent a message between them through a shortcut in space-time called a wormhole.

TECHNOLOGY

Frederick P. Brooks Jr., whose innovative work in computer design and software engineering helped shape the field of computer science, died on Thursday at his home in Chapel Hill, N.C. He was 91.

TECHNOLOGY

Elon Musk was sleeping at the office. He dismissed employees and executives at will. And he lamented his company was on the verge of bankruptcy.

TECHNOLOGY

In recent weeks, Microsoft has accused Sony, its chief video game rival, of misleading regulators. Its lawyers have showed off game consoles, including an Xbox, to British officials. And the president of a major union that Microsoft wooed has spoken up on the company’s behalf to the Federal Trade Commission.

TECHNOLOGY

The time has come — or will come, in 2035 — to abandon the leap second.

ENGINEERING

New York University will announce Wednesday that it is investing $1 billion in its flagship engineering school in Downtown Brooklyn, in a bid to improve its ranking among competitors and raise New York City’s profile in the technology sector.

ENGINEERING

Robert D. Kern, a mechanical engineer who in the mid-1950s started a company in a garage making portable backup power generators and then transformed the business into an industry leader known as Generac, selling it in 2006 for an estimated $1 billion, died on Nov. 8 in Waukesha, Wis. He was 96.

ENGINEERING

The resignations of more than 1,000 Twitter employees this week included many people who kept the site running smoothly and protected it from hackers. Their departures set off a wave of hand-wringing about whether the site will continue to operate well.

ENGINEERING

Elon Musk sent a flurry of emails to Twitter employees on Friday morning with a plea.

ART

Alongside Art Basel, now celebrating its 20th anniversary in Miami Beach, the South Florida network of museums, private collections, art spaces and satellite fairs has proliferated and matured in tandem. These institutions always serve up their shiniest offerings for the annual movable feast, and high-speed train service on the Brightline now makes it all the easier to sample shows as far north as West Palm Beach. Here’s a selection from the buffet.

ART

LONDON — For Hans-Peter Wipplinger, the director of Vienna’s Leopold Museum, the last few weeks have been challenging. As climate protesters across Europe stepped up their attacks against art, Wipplinger took measures to protect his storied collection, which includes famous paintings by Gustav Klimt and Egon Schiele. Bags were banned; coats, too. The museum hired extra guards to patrol its five floors.

ART

In July 2021, a portrait of a woman with frumpy hair, purple lipstick and a mole on her right cheek entered the collections of Miami’s Institute of Contemporary Art. The work was not a centuries-old oil on canvas. It did not once hang on a wall. The artwork was a nonfungible token, or NFT — one of 10,000 unique, algorithm-generated 24-by-24 pixel digital images — created in 2017 by the Larva Labs collective.

ART

They left with just a couple of hours to spare.

MATH

“Mathematics, I now see, is important because it expands the world,” Alec Wilkinson writes in a recent guest essay. “It is a point of entry into larger concerns. It teaches reverence. It insists one be receptive to wonder. It requires that a person pay close attention.”

MATH

Most students would agree that learning how to do arithmetic — how to add and multiply, subtract and even use fractions and percentages — is a useful skill. How else can we keep track of money, budgets and such? But what about higher-level math, like algebra, geometry and calculus? Do you see the value in learning these math topics that are such a core part of middle and high school curriculums?

MATH

Have you ever dreamed of becoming an astronaut or working for NASA?

MATH

Featured Article: “How Many Languages Could a Child Speak?” by Randall Munroe. (This article is also available in Spanish.)