Computer Science

Computer science is taught by Ms. Taricco. In the class, we learn how to design and code our personal websites with HTML and CSS. Afterwards, we learn the basics of Java through many different labs and exercises.

One aspect of Java that we learned was using the AWT Graphics class to draw images. In this lab, we were tasked to use the class and applet to draw 5 objects: a cube, a sphere, a pac-man flower, a triangle with an inscribed and circumscribed circle, and block letters spelling MAMS. For bonus points, you could also place a sphere inside the cube. The most challenging one for me was the circles and triangle as there was a lot of math involved to get the shapes to fit right. Overall, I enjoyed this lab and using the applet. You can see my code and an image of the final product below:

Applet result

Another aspect of Java that we learned was iterations or loops. One of the exercises for iterations was really cool. It involved inverting the color of each pixel of an image to create an inverted image of the original. For this exercise, we used loops, to make sure the code could cycle through each pixel of the image, and the Picture class (linked here: Java Picture Class). This was one of my favorite exercises and it was fun to play around with. You can see my code and what it did to an image of Kermit below:

Kermit before Kermit after

Apps for Good

During D term, our class split into groups of three or four to develop an app in Android Studio. This project was part of Apps for Good, an organization that brings education and access to students interested in coding all over the world.

Problem Statement

Recycling is an important process for the conservation of energy and resources. However, many recyclable items end up in landfills, where they have a difficult time decomposing. Furthermore, other items which should not be recycled, such as Styrofoam, end up getting recycled, destroying the entire cycle. This problem primarily stems from people not knowing what should and should not be recycled.

The goal of this project is to create a system that will educate users as to why recycling is important and will highlight whether an item is recyclable with additional information such as how to recycle it. The app’s next most-prominent feature will be a camera system that can determine whether something is recyclable to help people sort their materials appropriately.

Target Audience

The target audience is the general public. More specifically, anyone who handles the recycling in their family.

Minimum Viable Product

The minimum viable product (MVP) that we developed was an app that educates the user on recycling through interactive pictures and a list of what items are recyclable. Some addition features that have been developed include a camera feature to take a picture of an object for the machine learning model, a map to showcase different recycling locations in the local county, and a settings page to ask for the user's permission to use camera and location services.

Machine Learning Algorithm

In order to create our camera feature, which would identify whether an item was recyclable from a photo, our team had to develop our own machine learning model. The model was trained using images of materials and objects in online databases. Currently, the model determines whether the object is recyclable or not with a good accuracy.