THE ROBOT ZOO (2,500 sf) Interactives
1. Keep an Eye on You
The robot model of a chameleon’s head shows how the real reptile views the world: through eyes that work independently. As visitors move each of the robot’s eyes with a joystick, they can see on two color monitors the separate images the robot’s eyes “see.”
2. Tongue Gun
Triggering the Tongue Gun demonstrates how a real chameleon shoots out its long, sticky-tipped tongue to reel in a meal. Sharpshooters use a joystick to aim the head of a robot chameleon, then press a button to fire its long tongue at one of several insect targets.
3. Hide and Seek
Visitors can blend in like a chameleon. Wearing a coat that matches a wall in the background, visitors can watch themselves appear and disappear on a video monitor as they move back and forth in front of the wall.
4. Mister Platypus
Visitors of all ages can build a platypus or their own whimsical creature by adding different animal parts, such as an alligator’s tail or an elephant’s trunk, to the model of a platypus’ body.
5. Robot Body Shop
Drum mounted machine parts allow visitors to manipulate some of the mechanical devices used to construct the robots, such as hinges, pumps, springs and shock absorbers.
6. Eye to Eye
Visitors can stand behind a 5-foot-tall cutout of a housefly and get a fly’s-eye view through two 19-inch compound eyes. A real housefly can’t see fine details unless it’s up close, but its eyes (each with about 4,000 six-sided lenses) can detect even the slightest movement in all directions.
7. Swat the Fly
This activity tests participants’ reaction time (about one-twelfth as fast as a housefly’s). Visitors use their hands to “swat” the backlit image of each fly as it randomly flashes.
8. Sticky Feet
Visitors wearing special hand and kneepads can try to stick like flies to a sloping surface.