Key Note Speakers: Dave & Christine Vernier

Dave and Christine shared their roots in teaching and the inspiration for and gradual start of their company. The Verniers began writing software for Physics teachers years ago and eventually partnered with Pasco to write their software. Both companies grew and eventually Vernier began creating their own part kits. Vernier partnered with Texas Instruments to create software for their CBL calculator program and eventually created their own interfaces. The Verniers also shared stories and information about their company, employees and plans for growth. They also shared new sensors, program updates, etc. coming soon.

Dave is also experimenting with the Arduino systems. More information about their endeavors are here on their website. He demonstrated a program using a motion detector that allows a laser pointer to move based on the motion of a hand above the motion detector. The program should be available on their website.

Share ‘n Tell Spring 2014 meeting

Below are notes (pictures are available here) of those that shared this morning. Any additions or corrections can be emailed to Secretary@NCNAAPT.org. Read more »

You want tech in your classroom? We have both flavors…

Today’s workshop on technology and equipment combined the best educational tech/software/equipment companies, PASCO and Vernier. About twenty educators gathered at St. Ignatius High School in San Francisco to see the best of the new as well as some classic demonstrations.

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In memoriam: Bill Papke

One of our longtime members passed away recently, Bill Papke. Read more »

Lick Observatory on budget chopping block

Lick ObservatoryLast month something near and dear to many of us — Lick Observatory perched atop Mt. Hamilton in hills of east San Jose — was placed on the UC’s chopping block. From the KQED article (linked below):

On top of Mount Hamilton, east of San Jose, the Lick Observatory is home to the oldest professional telescope in California. Read more »

Talk on Science and Turmoil at Lick Observatory Wednesday, Feb 26, at Foothill College

This Wednesday, February 26, at 7 pm, Alex Filippenko will give a free, richly illustrated, nontechnical talk on “Exploding Stars, New Planets, Black Holes, and the Crisis at Lick Observatory” in the Smithwick Theater at Foothill College, in Los Altos. Members of our section remember fondly his outstanding talk at our Section Meeting several years ago. Alex will also address the recent fiscal crisis at Lick Observatory that threatens its future.

Traffic gets somewhat heavy near campus around that time, so you might want to arrive early.
For more information about the lecture, see
http://www.foothill.edu/news/newsfmt.php?sr=2&rec_id=3270 .

Foothill College is just off the El Monte Road exit from Freeway 280 in Los Altos. For directions and parking information, see
http://www.foothill.edu/news/transportation.php .

For a campus map, see
http://www.foothill.edu/news/maps.php .

Note that parking costs $3.

Come to Our Spring Meeting! April 11 & 12, 2014

Registration is now open here. We encourage advanced registration; you can now pay online (including membership dues if you own them). With our new registration system, you can add one to three events to your “cart,” then check out in one step (yes, you need to add the free events in order to register for them–we need to know how many are coming).

We are polishing the details on our upcoming April Meeting.  We will have events on Friday the 11th and Saturday the 12th.  Friday will see a workshop by the two biggest names in the business plus a hotdog social, and Saturday will feature top-notch speakers David & Christine Vernier, Pascal Lee and Douglas Stone, all at the brand-new Exploratorium! Read more »

“What is color?” The 2014 Flame Challenge

The Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University is challenging scientists to take part in the 2014 Flame Challenge and answer a vibrant question asked by 11-year-olds from around the country:

What is Color?

The Flame Challenge is an international contest started by Alan Alda that asks scientists to communicate complex science in ways that would interest and enlighten an 11-year-old.

If you are a scientist, or a teacher of 11 year olds, join the fun!

The Flame Challenge

Forces and Interactions: NGSS for Physics and Physical Science Teachers

This is not exactly in our backyard, but worth two weeks if  you can make it.

June 16-27, 2014        M-F         9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

The Physics department at the University of Wisconsin – River Falls and the American Association of Physics Teachers’ PTRA program have provided in service teachers with high quality, in depth, and useful educational experiences for nearly 30 years.  Read more »

Fall 2013 Group Photo

Click on the photo to see it full size.Group photo, Fall 2013

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