Trico Presents: Beakerhead 2016
Trico Presents: The World of Social Entrepreneurship was a very special part of Beakerhead’s 2016 programming. It saw six different socially minded organizations come to Calgary to display their technologies and engage our city’s citizens in a meaningful conversation about how creative approaches to science can make our world a better place. One piece of programming that I don’t think I’ll ever forget was the “Mobile Emotional Intelligence Booth”, set up on Stephen Avenue for Beakerhead’s “4-6” experience. The booth was a pedicab, branded for the event, where guests could step inside and try on the Autism Glass technology and would then answer a series of questions designed to evoke a variety of emotional responses. The Autism Glass technology had been created to help children on the autism spectrum recognize and learn emotional facial cues, so our hope was that people would try on the technology and see first-hand how it could change the lives of children on the spectrum who struggle to recognize happiness or fear or confusion in the faces of their loved ones. At one point, a mother and her young son tried on the glasses. Within minutes both were looking at the other with wonder, and more than a little joy; the boy was on the spectrum, and was getting to, for the first time, understand in real time the emotions his mother was expressing. It was beautiful and incredible to witness, and by far my favourite memory from the World of Social Entrepreneurship.