The name of our team is "HIGHLANDER" and it is the shortened form of "HIGHLANDs Extra-terrestrial Robot". All of us are currently residing in Cameron Highlands in Malaysia. Malaysia has a multi-racial and multi-cultural population, hence our team consists of members from different races and diverse cultural backgrounds.
Although we are different in colour, race, gender and religion, we have come with one heart and one mind to work together harmoniously to achieve the goals set in the 2015 MOONBOTS competition. Our primary mission in this competition is to achieve all the objectives of the competition as a showcase of technical skills. Our secondary objective in this competition is to let the team experience 21st Century soft-skills such as project management and presentation skills using multimedia as well as old-school soft-skills such as teamwork and collaboration. Our mission statement is "to achieve 2015 MOONBOTS objectives through continuous learning and improvement through the development of technical and soft-skills with a collaborative, multi-racial and cross-cultural team." STEM (Science Technology Engineering Maths) education plays an important role in Malaysia's pursuit of being a developed nation. The Ministry of Education in Malaysia aims to promote STEM education through the National Robotics Competition with LEGO Mindstorms. While major Malaysian cities have optic fiber broadband access, the Cameron Highlands communities struggle with 1-2 Mbps access. Furthermore, the local economy is agricultural based. Our team aims, through the Community Outreach segment in Phase Two of 2015 MOONBOTS, that the local community will be exposed to elements of STEM through robotics. Our team's vision is "to promote STEM education through robotics throughout Malaysia, especially in the rural areas, so no one is left behind." The challenge that we chose is not to participate and win for the sake of competition, but we want to help Malaysia to progress into a developed nation by 2020 by playing our part in Malaysia's STEM education drive. We have a two-fold strategy in achieving this. The first strategy is to collaborate with our sister team, "ZUHAL". Collaboration is rarely seen in our competitive world but cooperation and collaboration in the field of exploration (for example Moon exploration) can mean mission success or failure and even life or death of some or even all of the explorers. Competition just for the sake of it is plain selfishness. We aim to go on a collaborative Robotics Tag-Team Roadshow in Phase Two of 2015 MOONBOTS together with our sister team "ZUHAL", where both robots can cooperate to complete a joint mission where a single robot would not be able to perform, around the district together to bring greater STEM education awareness through Robotics to the rural communities. We strongly feel everyone should have equal opportunities and that no one should be left behind in education. The second strategy is to choose high-performing individuals to be in our team. Our team captain is Mr. Koh Meng Fei, an inventor with multiple Patents in USA and Taiwan in the semiconductor and software industry. Sharvin Saravanan, aged 12, is the local school's spokesperson for its Science Environment Awareness & Learning center which was setup to help its rural community understand environmental issues like deforestation and illegal land clearing for farming through science. Sharvin is also a Boy Scout. Abbass Afkar Sulaiman, aged 10 and Ahmad Nurhadi Mohd Hayazi, aged 9 are school chess players as well as Boy Scouts. Ahmad Nurhadi is currently the 2015 Cameron Highlands District chess champion as well as a Malaysian National Robotics Competition participant. He will also be taking part in the coming Australian Mathematics Competition 2015. Bethany Phang, aged 8, has been awarded for national-level Art contests and she shows good manual dexterity and perhaps this is why she likes playing with LEGO, the piano, drawing, painting and the Rainbow Loom. This selection of individuals show not just STEM education but STEAM where "A" stands for the Arts. Therefore, we believe we have what it takes to hear "MISSION ACCOMPLISHED" from all of you in GOOGLE XPRIZE California. We would like to use the LEGO Mindstorms EV3 #31313 set for the challenge in Phase Two of the 2015 MOONBOTS challenge because we have experience in using them at our local school, the Convent Primary School Tanah Rata, Robotics club. We aim to collaborate with our sister team "ZUHAL" in making a small step for LEGO Mindstorms but a giant leap for Malaysia's STEM education efforts through the 2015 MOONBOTS challenge. Thank you very much!
I thoroughly enjoyed HIGHLANDER's 3 minute MOON TALES video. At first I wondered what message the team could deliver in 3 short minutes. But after watching it, I was truly impressed. As a school principal, I have been called upon to judge short videos made by students on numerous occasions. Hence, I would like to base my testimonial on HIGHLANDER's video on the following criteria:
1. Achieves the desired theme/objective: as in delivering the intended message, following the plot.
2. Technical proficiency: video making skill, audio employed, editing, film speed, synchronizing audio/video, within time limits.
3. Creativity/Originality: a video must stand out from the rest in order to captivate audiences so that they never forget what they saw.
4. Proper use of medium: whether appropriate, polished, professional
5. Clear and detailed content: content must be solid and coherent, presence of a story line
On the first point, HIGHLANDER's MOON TALES has clearly achieved their objective in telling the viewer myths from various cultures, both multi-racial (Indian, Chinese, Malay, European) and national (Malaysia) and international (British and global "skepticism about actual moon landings"), and alternating with real facts that debunk the myths. They described how awestruck humans were and still are with the moon in that there is still the thirst to know more about the moon. In their conclusion, they were about to describe the link between lunar exploration and robots (which is your theme!).
Second, on technical proficiency. The team were able to put together a video that is clear, to the point with a catchy soundtrack. The synchronizing between the audio beats and video caption is excellent and it helps in making the video essay interesting. The point that catches my eye is the use of LEGO people in the video. Very unique because it is rarely seen. The video is within the 3 minute limit which considering the amount of information delivered, is again excellent. The transition between frames are nice and smooth.
Third, on creativity and originality. The script is creative and original. The story line is innovative in that the team's mission and vision are introduced last, as against convention. Yet it does not spoil the show. Again, the use of LEGO people scores high marks for me in creativity.
Fourth, on the use of medium. The English is polished and the team was able to deliver the content in a clear manner. There is no ambiguity in what they were trying to say. No need to second guess what they were trying to differentiate between a myth or a fact, which is very important.
Lastly, on the content. The team displayed very interesting content. In alternating between myths and fact, the story about the moon was told systematically and logically. The transition to the team and the conclusion with the link between lunar exploration and robots was seamless.
I totally enjoyed the PHASE ONE video made by the HIGHLANDER team. It is of high quality and I look forward to another good video essay too should they progress into PHASE TWO of the 2015 MOONBOTS.
Encik Norzihan bin Rijaludin
Convent Primary School Tanah Rata
Cameron Highlands, Pahang