Amon Millner is an Assistant Professor of Computing and Innovation at the Olin College of Engineering. He directs the Extending Access to STEM Empowerment (EASE) Lab. He teaches courses, engages in research, and releases products that are guided by his mantra: make things; make a difference; make your way. Millner Develops systems that lower the barrier for entry into computing, electronics, and digital fabrication activities, which can that help people become more empowered as contributors to their communities. See Scratch and Fab Labs as example efforts for which Millner has served on the core team.
Millner creates engaging environments and tools that support learners of all ages increasing their capacity to innovate - leveraging a hands-on approach. Dr. Millner especially enjoys designing, developing, and deploying technological systems that allow novices to invent their own interactions between the physical world and the digital world. An example hardware interface is the PicoBoard (selling at sparkfun.com), a sensor board that Dr. Millner co-created while helping to invent the Scratch programming language. An example software interface comes from a startup that Millner co-founded, Modkit - producer of the graphical programming interface to the VexIQ robotics system. His personal work currently involves launching a startup out of his Lab called Unruly Studios, to get products like the Unruly Splats programmable light-up floor tiles into the world. This new platform helps leaners be physically active while learning how to program.
Dr. Millner has established local and international hubs for learning and digital fabrication, shaping the ways in which networks such as Computer Clubhouses and Fab Labs have evolved. His international recognition includes a designation as a Fulbright Specialist/Grantee. Millner, a champion in the Maker Movement, has authored computing curricula for K-12 classrooms. He is a co-Principal Investigator on an NSF project focusing on Integrating Computational Making Practices in STEM Teaching: An Expansive Model for Professional Development (NSF DRL \#1742091).
Millner contributes to multiple research communities, particularly conferences that focus on: tangible user interface design, interaction design and children, and connected learning. Dr. Millner, a patent holder, earned a Ph.D. in Media Arts and Sciences from MIT; a M.S. in Human Computer Interactions from Georgia Institute of Technology; and a B.S. in Computer Science from the University of Southern California. Hear about his background before his college career in his TEDx talk: Finding what you Love and Leaving Behind Labels.
Affiliates and Alumni
Bryanne is an alumna of the MBA program at Babson College focused on entrepreneurship and has been working with Amon since the summer of 2015. She is currently Founder and CEO of Unruly Studios, an educational technology product focused on fostering creativity and physical activity - bringing interactive games to life using Unruly Splats: programmable light-up floor tiles. Her undergraduate degree was from McGill University where she studied Cognitive Science with a minor in Art History. Bryanne has always been drawn to places where art and science meet. Her career spans from product development at a luxury watch brand, to project management and account management at an advertising technology startup.
Jiaying Wei '17
Mikhaela Dietch '18
Lindsey Andrade, Mechanical Engineer '17
Lindsey worked on creating devices that charge phones when attached to a kick scooter - the EnGen project, a collaboration with Makeosity.
Myles Cooper, Mechanical Engineer '16
Myles worked on hosting Make-it Markets.
Gabrielle Ewall, Computing and Neuroscience '17
Gabrielle worked on designing curricula and designing custom-bits to support explorations in neuroscience.
Liani Lye, Robotics '17
Liani worked on creating devices that charge phones when attached to a kick scooter - the EnGen project, a collaboration with Makeosity.