4:00 - 4:05pm: Announcements (5 minutes)


Tracy Futhey: Calls the meeting to order.  In an official announcement there is the changing of guard… Victoria Szabo of Art, Art history and Visual Studies is now back from sabbatical and is the new chair of ITAC, in the tradition of alternating ITAC Chairs every couple of years. 


Victoria Szabo:  A few quick announcements, be sure to sign the sign in sheet and also fill out a name badge.  Also, John Board has an announcement.


John Board: David Hoffman – Southeast Cyber Security Pitch competition is coming to Durham in Mid Feb.  A Duke team won last year.   If you want further details – we will circulate it.


4:05 - 4:15pm: The State of the Co-Lab - Michael Faber (10-minute overview)

  • What it is: The Innovation Co-Lab is an OIT-run resource for those in the Duke Community who are interested in learning and building with technology.
  • Why it’s relevant: Today’s hands-on activities will better educate and inform us about the types of courses, topics, and experiences that the Co-Lab offers. More in-depth knowledge and understanding of what transpires during a Co-Lab course will better equip us to explore those activities further and/or to describe/share them in more detail with others.


Minutes:    Link to Presentation


Michael Faber: Welcome to the TEC – Technology Exploration Center.   The purpose of this event is to re-introduce people to the Co-Lab if you haven’t been here or if you had been.  A lot of changes in the past few years due to COVID.  We at the core are a place to allow for faculty students, staff to explore technology, delight in technology and understand the space. 


We are going to have some activities today aka as “ITACivities”, while we will have a bunch of things for us to do.  The point is to see the space ask questions and interact with the technology.  On a little side note – AI and Machine Learning are the hottest things for talking now.


This presentation was done by “mid-journey AI” a text to image generation…  An AI engine created the images used in this presentation.


Co-Lab’s Big Guiding Principles


  • Co-Lab Roots Program – is more than workshops – it is a lab for co-curricular and experience driven learning
    • Numbers here are from Fall ’22 for context:
      • AY 21-22: ~1800 enrollments, 770 unique
      • AY 20-21: ~2300 enrollments, 1024 unique
    • ~70/30 student/staff, with faculty+ affiliates making <5% on average per year. This ratio changes a bit of the years but not significantly
    • We are building a platform called Pathways for managing co-curricular learning experiences
    • Ed-Stem – is one of the tools used to deliver these learning experiences.
    • Students can build their own pathways intermingling live experiences with self-paced ones.
    • We added close to 30 individual self-paced learning modules, ranging from short reference material to full replicas of Co-Lab Roots type courses, as well as hands on coding exercise that you can complete on your own.


  • Co-Lab Studio is an open, accessible and welcoming place for anyone to experiment with cutting edge technology, regardless of background, experience or purpose.
    • We are trying to add the social aspect back into the Co-Lab since they were lost during the pandemic. The studio sees consistent use.
    • We did 12k plus jobs across all the printers.  
    • We are addressing access to the Roots Programs by adding more entry point events – using the studio as a home for first time visitors.
    • We have had successful “First Fridays” Events in the Fall and will continue with that this spring.
  • The Co-Lab is a key collaborator with university organizations, centers, clubs and academic departments
    • We have organizations and clubs, Bass connections, pre-college, all the “+” plus programs.   We have FTE’s setup with Computer science with a coding project, and cross between CCT+, Co-Lab, and this is an expansion of Pathways.
    • Other Duke Organizations we support are Femmes+.
    • Additional course support and learning modules for CAD Mastery, CS, Fuqua Classes, Cultural Anthropology, Occupational Therapy, MFA, MEMS.
    • Office hours exist to support academic support… and you need help with your python homework.


  • The Co-lab Supports high end research and medical exploration with professional fabrication and design services.
    • Blue Smith is our professional fabrication service – experts can produce prints on our high-end medical/research caliber equipment.
    • Design Hub
      • Student labor to help with something if you don’t know CAD and need help with CAD




4:15 – 5:05pm: ITACtivities

  • Laser Cutting (Garage area): For this activity, you’ll have the option to draw a design (no need to be an artist, even doodles lead to fun results) and load them into the laser that traces the design, etching away the color from a pre-anodized keychain blank. There will also be a demo on the Epilog laser cutters. 
  • Arduino (Conference Room): Learn some simple programming by editing a program that controls a blinking LED on a self-assembled breadboard circuit.
  • Coding (Conference Room): Learn a little bit of JavaScript by building a game in kaboom.js. This activity will not only give you a hands-on coding experience, but it’s a glimpse into the Co-Lab's strategy of building asynchronous learning experiences 
  • 3d Printing (Main Studio): Here, you’ll learn submit a 3D model you’ve created, plus search for, modify, and submit models that others have created. We’ll also demo our doodle pens which 3D-print small objects using hand-held filament extruders.
  • Blue smith Updates (Hallway + Blue smith Room): This experience allows participants who are not familiar with our Blue smith service to see the state-of-the-art 3D printing equipment in action alongside various past and current projects on display, as well as engage with the employees who keep the space running.

Minutes:   Description of “ITACivity Time” 


There is a table with list of activities like:

  • 3-D printer activity
  • Laser Cutting Demo in the garage
  • In this room there will be education lessons
    • Arduino blinky light
    • Java scripting


There will be general info all around…  get out get busy have fun.


Link to Pictures


 5:05 – 5:15pm: Circling Back - What Did You Learn Today? (10-minute discussion)


Minutes:  Q&A:


Tracy Futhey: How do we get more people in the Co-lab?


Quincy Garbutt: I recall some time ago pre-Covid, maybe 2019 having a Tec Art Fair/TechFair at the Ruby.  I was discussing this with a few people and what I recall most was seeing existing researchers, with some of their work showcased alongside things that had been or could be done in the Co-Lab.  Maybe holding something like that again as an open house and it being interdisciplinary across schools / departments.


Lindsay Glickfeld:  We are pretty aware of the laser printing stuff…  If people got a flyer people may come up.


Michael Faber:  Having seen Bluesmith, now that you see what can it be done for


Paul Jaskot: Do you have classes coming in


Michael Faber: Yes, we do have classes – we do have more explicit things that you are trying to design in the space.


Stefan Bass: – One thing that would be useful is providing skills as a pre-requisite before higher level courses. So, is the Co-lab being utilized that way?


Tracy Futhey: Yes both for pre-requisites and skills enhancements or specific training within the context of the semester


Evan Levine: We would be thrilled to be busier.


Michael Faber: Yes, that is why we need more adding of bigger classes like Asynchronous class – Linux, Python, git lab.


Evan Levine: If things we offer don’t meet your needs – we need to hear from you.


Colin Rundel: To build on this some people don’t know about the Roots program so target the Master’s Program Directors.


Evan Levine: Are events like this helpful?  Would you in Department Meetings see value to it.

Having some of those earlier tech classes is good


Zoe Tischaev: “Is the Co-Lab for me flyers?” Can we build upon that model – “What’s new at the Co-Lab?” Flyers on digital board..  “Want to try a laser engraver?”  Arts annex is a maker space…  / how did they go about building that representation?