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Amorphous zirconium oxide thin films were prepared by reactive magnetron sputtering. The dielectric films were characterized by impedance spectroscopy with temperature. The effect of annealing on capacitor performance was studied. Annealing gold electroded thin films at 250°C greatly reduced the losses with little changes in crystallinity. Space charge relaxation started to appear at 190°C. The activation energy for the relaxation was 0.84 eV with a very low relaxation frequency at room temperature (0.23μHz). Electrode effects dominated at very low frequencies at all temperatures. AC conductivity followed the universality behavior for the AC charge transport showing that the films are highly disordered. No DC conductivity regime was observed indicating that DC conductivity is very low. DC conductivity of the films was of the order of 10−13 S/m, which is lesser than the comparable thickness high quality gate oxides.
Tangible interaction is an emerging field of human–computer interaction that links the digital and the physical worlds by embedding computation in physical artifacts and environments. This paper shares our experience teaching tangible interaction over the past 4 years in an interdisciplinary, project-based laboratory course at Tufts University. Although the course is offered through the Computer Science Department, it reflects the multidisciplinary nature of the field, merging product engineering practices with a design studio approach. With a diverse mix of students, this approach has fostered creativity and hands-on learning. Throughout the course students have created innovative interfaces that not only capture fundamental concepts of tangible interaction but also contribute novel techniques for supporting collaborative design. We discuss examples of student-created interfaces and illustrate the relationship between the methods employed in the course and the artifacts created. We also share our recommendations for implementing such a course in institutions with constraints similar to ours including a limited budget and minimal laboratory space.
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