The weekend was a great exploring time. Nic, who is deeply interested in both animals and robots, built all weekend. His favorite building toy (for years now) is Zoob. But he doesn’t just build, he builds and tests and rebuilds. He’s constantly digging out new information about animal adaptations and integrating that into his zoob designs. Even though he can’t yet build full-functioning robots with this information, you can see the increasing sophistication of his designs.

Although he’s done this type of building for more than a year, this weekend was different. He was deeply thinking about specific adaptations. He would build something, then take it to the backyard and test something, then come in and do more research (either on the internet or in a book), make slight (it seemed to me) modifications and then go out and experiment again.

At various times I saw him testing climbing, flying and swimming adaptations, among many others.

Chris and I chatted about how cool it would be if he found a way to become an engineer who blended this deep interest in animals and robotics. We’ve watched shows about how engineers study, for example, birds to get better ideas about building planes. This seems to be a natural outgrowth of Nic’s interests and intellect. It will be interesting to see if this interest continues, or if it leads him down other, related paths eventually.

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