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This is it!  Wednesday’s the big event — Splashdown — the capstone to your project!

Splashdown is separated into poster sessions, held back to back, in SR1 (Seminar Room 1) and lobby.  Roughly half of the teams will be presenting in the first session and half in the second session.  When your team is not presenting, it’s your chance, privilege and responsibility to go scout out the other projects and talk with your peers about their experience.  After all, you’d like to share (complain?) about how much time you wasted trying to figure out that small bug that was actually absurdly simple, so perhaps you’d like to hear your peers other stories?

We hope you have had an epiphany during your summer self-study and found Computing really the right choice for you and your life path.  Perhaps you’re really fired up about your project and want to know more about how to take it further, or have an even better idea for your next project? During Splashdown, there will be a few short talks by NUS Overseas Colleges, and the Entrepreneurship unit of our school, that are on relevant “where to go from here, life after Orbital” topics.  Oh, yeah – did we mention there are like a ton of ongoing hackathons that you could also participate in?

Some tips for a good re-entry and Splashdown (your results may vary):

– Make sure you eat a good evening meal and have a water bottle for drinking.  It gets noisy and chaotic with 200+ people all talking in one place!

– Do print out your posters early.  It will be busy and you should try to get your posters done early.  If you do them today, you can drop them off at the “poster locker” in the Undergraduate Office (COM1 #02-19).  Ask Ms Rachel Lim, or Mrs Kwek to help you place the posters in the right area for pickup.  We will deliver all of the posters we receive to SR1 on Wednesday afternoon around 17:30 (yes, the whole 30m away from the UG office — you’re welcome!)

– Do check the layout of the session right before Splashdown.  We are still shifting poster slots around due to last-minute changes.  Consult the printed posters as they will be the definitive version — we may not have time to update the website on Wednesday.

– Make sure to practice your pitch and presentation, even having a way to show your off your products — small leaflets or QR codes with reminders (with project IDs) can be helpful.  Also, no one looked bad by dressing up a bit for these types of events (we will be taking pictures!  Hope you’ll put your selfies on Facebook and link them back to the Splashdown FB page — we have one, didn’t you know?).  There will be some first year students coming to Splashdown (Aaron advertised it to CS1231), so you can also chat with them to tell them about your lessons learned — and tell them to take Orbital

– You will be receiving your voter ID tomorrow either by email (most likely) or at the registration desk.  You will need to take note of this for tomorrow’s best project voting.  Keep an eye out for it.  You will need your smartphone (or stop by the registration desk) to do the voting.  Please do it to keep our event lively!   Note down the projects you think are worthy of being crowned best of Vostok, Project Gemini or Apollo 11.  There will be public voting to determine the best project for each of the three levels of achievement.  Public voting is done by you, your peers, any guests (you can and should invite some friends to come boost for your project) and staff.  Staff and staff guests’ votes figure a bit more in the final tally, but much of the prize determination is done by all of you!  So get ready to sell your project to guests — it’s also a chance for you to make good on your communication skills (after all it’s got a bit in common with a job interview).  We’ll be sending you a voter ID on the day of Splashdown so that you can weigh in on which teams projects are the best in class.  Google Singapore will be supplying the prizes and is subsidizing the poster printing, so please go thank them when you see them in person at Splashdown!

– Do reciprocate that effort — take the session you’re not in to look around and to see what your other teams have been able to do.  Say “Hi” to your peer teams that you may have only known virtually and give them a boost too for this final run.

– By default, your name, level of achievement, and project team and the link for your final project video will be captured and made public on the Skylab web app, but if you don’t want it to be captured up there, please send Min (‘knmnyn’ on Slack) a DM; we’ll be happy to take it down.  If you have a LinkedIn or other social media account and would like to be endorsed for specific skills — by default it would be Google App Engine and Python — also send an invitation to us so that we can eventually (in a few weeks after Splashdown) do this for you.

That is all.  Houston, out.

splashdownPosterSplashdown now has been scheduled with preparations and logistics for all of Sem I’s classes now settled.  at SR1 and SR1 Lobby in Week 3 of Sem I, August 2016.

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 will be 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).

SPLASHDOWN SCHEDULE (Draft)
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 (http://orbital.comp.nus.edu.sg/?page_id=1548).

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.

 

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 (no later than tonight 27 Jun 11:59pm SGT).  The only difference from Milestone 1 is that you can make a new video of up to three minutes in length.  Hopefully your team has made some progress on prototyping, but even if you haven’t, just explain how your project is going.

Remember, at the end of Orbital you’ll be evaluated on your finished project — it doesn’t really matter how you get there (i.e., whether you’re behind where you want to be now).

Thanks to the groups who have at least put in a preliminary or final project README and log into Skylab.  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 4 Jul 11:59pm (exactly 1 week later).

STS-133_Discovery_Lift_Off_Launch_Pad_39A_KSCHope your exams have gone well!   It’s time to start to look forward to Liftoff, the mandatory 2 day workshop on 9 and 10 May.  Join your 300+ 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 will be held in the I3 Seminar Room and some activities down the hall in NUS Enterprise’s fully loaded Hangar.

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

The schedule has been updated on the Orbital calendar (available on the website and through Google’s public calendar service), so check it out.  We’ll post some more details about it soon, as well as some of the prerequisite things you may / will need to do before attending on Monday.

If you can’t make it to Liftoff, please let your evaluation group leader know if you are part of a team (use Slack!); if you are a singleton a.k.a. “partner challenged”, just let Min know by email <kanmy@comp.nus.edu.sg> or Slack <@knmnyn>.  Groups must have at least one member present to do the duties during the workshop (yes, you have to do some work!).  Exceptions to these two conditions will be approved on a case-by-case basis.

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 Shindelrock.com

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)

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).

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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:

https://github.com/nusskylab/nusskylab/issues

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 bit.ly/nusorbital2015vids, 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: http://bit.ly/1GG2NTB.  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!