A somersaulting mini cheetah robot and a project dubbed the Thinking Cap were among the highlights of Explore: The Student Experience, an exposition of projects that transformed the student street area of the Stata Center into a computing fairground on Day 1 of the MIT Stephen A. Schwarzman College of Computing celebration.

The showcase demonstrated many of the pioneering ways MIT students are harnessing the power of artificial intelligence and machine learning to solve real-world problems.

The robotic cheetah, for example, could one day carry out tasks in environments that would be dangerous or inaccessible for humans. The Thinking Cap, a wearable device that detects brain activity and provides feedback, is envisioned as a way to build self-esteem and improve academic performance.

“Computing tools and infrastructure have gotten to a place where students can outperform professional researchers,” said Hal Abelson PhD ’73, the Class of 1922 Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, who attended the exposition. “It’s just an amazing time.”

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