Screen Shot 2015-08-12 at 12.00.57 amFinally, you’ve made it!  Your summer choose-your-own-adventure is coming to an end!  We’ll be seeing you soon landside at SR1 and SR1 Lobby next Wednesday with your A1 poster in tow.  Mission Control reports the all-clear for your reentry back to NUS, Singapore!  We’ll have a final, three-hour evening session, where all of you are required to participate (this is the very last milestone), in the form of a final Splashdown showcase!

Splashdown is structured as two back-to-back poster sessions with a final oral session and awards section; see the schedule below.  Orbital teams are assigned to one of two sessions to present their work.  During each of the two poster sessions, each team will be presenting their work via a A1 sized poster that you will have to prepare and print (but we will pre-pay for you at SoC Technical Services).

18:00-18:55 Poster Session 1
18:55-19:05 Changeover
19:05-20:00 Poster Session 2
20:00-20:30 Invited Talks 
20:30-21:00 Awards Ceremony

Splashdown will also feature peer voting for best projects.  During the poster sessions, take note of which other teams you think did the best projects and vote for their project electronically using your smart phone or tablet. We’ll tally your votes and announce the winner at the end of Splashdown at the awards ceremony.  Guests (first years, and seniors) are also welcomed to attend and will need to register for the event to be given voting privileges; see the Splashdown page soon, when that information is updated.  Google has kindly sponsored some prizes for the very best projects, as voted by all of you and our observers

Details for Splashdown (such as the final schedule and team allocations) are still ongoing, but you can check on the latest details on the Splashdown page on the Orbital site (

For those who cannot attend due to conflicts, you must let the instruction staff know ahead of time via emailBoth team members must attend the event.  Post-event application for leniency will not be permitted.


Image courtesy Bernard Oh @ Flickr

You’re almost there!  Congrats on making it all the way here.  Yes, we know you still have so many features and refinements to do (and we hope you will do them), but it’s now time to set things aside and make sure you have all of your current work documented for your peers to review this coming week.  Yes, we also know you are doing so many other projects as the summer is coming to an end now.

In the week ahead, you will be judging the final outcome of your peers’ projects too.  Importantly, we need you to turn in your peer evaluations on time.  We need these evaluations on time, as we need to wrap up the Orbital grading, so as to meet the deadlines for assigning the 4 S/U credits for the course (CP3108B).

Look to the recent post by Prof. Lee for the Evaluation 3 milestone criteria for which your project will be graded by.  In the week following your peer review, do keep in mind you will have to do one final evaluation of your peers’ reviews on your project, so that you can give credit and thanks to all of those reviews that were helpful (including your own advisors and mentors).

Good luck!  Stay strong — you’ve come all this way.  Give each other encouragement to stay the course!  There’s only the ultra-fun Splashdown to go!

Artwork courtesy

As we come to the end of the summer and the beginning of Sem 1, many of you may be feeling the pressure to complete Orbital.  Especially those of you participating in summer camps, O Week or other semester-start activities, please do plan your schedule with your partner well, as the last milestone is notorious for causing teams to drop who do not plan ahead.

Well, we’re here to help too.  To help keep the milestones well-spaced, we’re extending the deadline for Milestone 3 back one additional week.  For those who don’t need it, no worries — get it done as planned.  But for those who are feeling the heat of re-entry as we head towards Splashdown, you now have a bit more time before the goalpost.  So to summarise:

Evaluation Milestone 3 is now due on 3 Aug 23:59 SGT.
Peer feedback on Milestone 3 is now due on 10 Aug 23:59 SGT.

(The deadlines on the Orbital calendar on Google Calendar have already been updated, please take note)

Having trouble navigating the payments landscape?  Or perhaps just interested to learn about payments for your next big thing? Well, this lecture will clear whatever doubts you have about payments in general.

It’s one you don’t want to miss.  Why?  1) It’ll be at a special venue at Paypal, thanks to our mentor alumnus Laurence!  Cool digs!  2) Orbital Alumus and tutor, Yos Riady, will be guest starring in this MC. 3) saving the very best for last — food (Pizza!) will be served.    See you there!

Presenter: PayPal Staff
Date: Wednesday, 8 July 2015
Venue: 5 Temasek Blvd, #07-01 Suntec Tower Five, S(038985)

Time: 18.00 – 20.00

Photo Credits: Philipp Pohle @ Flickr
Photo Credits: Philipp Pohle @ Flickr

Dear all:

Your second Orbital hurdle is here!  Please make sure to put up your project’ revised README and log into Skylab (see Slack later for details on what to put, no later than 29 Jun 11:59pm SGT, but preferably as soon as possible).

Thanks to the groups who have at least put in a preliminary or final project README and log into their EG group.  Note that you need to inform your EG adviser in advance of the deadline if for some reason you cannot make the deadline.  You must inform your advisers in advance, or lateness may count against your eligibility for getting credit for Orbital.

In the following week, you’ll also need to do the peer evaluations of your three peer teams in your evaluation group. These evaluations are due in Skylab no later than 6 Jul 11:59pm (exactly 1 week later).

Screen Shot 2014-06-01 at 7.48.56 am
Photo Credits: James M @ Flickr

Dear all:

Your first Orbital hurdle is here!  Please make sure to put up your project’s README and log into Skylab no later than 1 Jun 2015 11:59pm SGT, but preferably as soon as possible).   N.B. – The Skylab link is available from the main Orbital website in the left nav menu. A template README and Project Log will be posted in Slack, and you should view the 2015 peer evaluation process video on YouTube if you haven’t already.  This evaluation

Note that since Skylab is in beta and the registration information for Orbital is still not finalized, there will be problems with many team’s registration.  Please be patient and try your best to report problems to our FYP developer through the github Issues link here:

In the next week, you’ll also need to do the peer evaluations of your three peer teams in your evaluation group to be listed in Skylab. These evaluations are due to be submitting in Skylab no later than 8 Jun 2015 11:59pm (exactly 1 week later).

Stay in touch with your advisor and ask if you need help on Slack!

Photo credits: Shareski @ Flickr

Yeah, so you missed part of Liftoff.  You’re partner had to cover for you (we heard a lot of partner trashing during Ignition…).  Or you wanted to be in both the T1 and T2 tracks at the same time.  Or perhaps you really really liked it (thanks!)

In any case, we have the solution for you.  We have recorded some of the Orbital sessions on to YouTube for your ease of reference and need for webcast.

Just follow the link to, or go to the Liftoff webpage to find it.  Videos are in reverse chronological order on the playlist.

Other sessions may have notes posted to our Slack team.

Greetings Orbitees:

It’s now time to suit up and get ready for your Orbital adventure.  Log in on Slack and be at Orbital’s first and only mandatory kickoff workshop, Liftoff, in T-1 (Monday 11 May 2015) at 0900 hours sharp.

Follow the calendar of events here:  You will see some announcements in Slack, so make sure you follow them to maximize your enjoyment of this event.

Oh, yes, give your mum a hug.  It’s Happy Mother’s Day!

481126091_b751463fd6_zAs you know, we’ll be having 300+ students in Orbital Liftoff, and dealing with all your peers may be a bit difficult logistically.

1) Just in case you weren’t sure, lunch is on your own.  And we’re all breaking for lunch at the same time.  As such you may find that that the trek back and forth from I3 to Biz / Arts canteen or other places nearby for the short, 1 hour lunch break is really too short.  For those who can pack a lunch to bring, this might be a better alternative (I know I will).

2) If all of us whip out your laptop and plug them in, the building will go dark (just kidding).  Bring freshly charged laptops to the venue and alternate with your partner so you both can just use one (You heard of pair programming, right?  Now try paired down programming…)  Power banks are good if you are using a mobile device too.

3) Wi-fi: same here.  Wi-fi is know to be spotty in COM1 and last year in i3 we didn’t have any problems with Wi-fi, but if we can all be considerate and turn off the ‘net on devices that you don’t need it for, we’ll all have a better chance of trying some of the hands-on online.

STS-133_Discovery_Lift_Off_Launch_Pad_39A_KSCHope your exams have gone off with a good bang!  It’s time to start to look forward to Liftoff, the mandatory 2 day workshop on the 11 and 12th of May.  Join your 250+ other Orbitees on our unified summer quest to learn something new and interesting for yourselves.

The venue for our workshop will be at I3, down past SoC and Biz.  We’ll be in primarily in the I3 Auditorium although an alternate track may be held in the I3 Seminar Room (just next door, don’t worry; more about this later if it does materialize.

If you’re not sure how to get there, please check out the instructions here, or better yet, give a shout out on Slack.