Final Project

Final Project Idea #1

My first final project idea is to design a train set that will start when someone is within close proximity to the train set. Another student in the class had a similar idea though, so I will brainstorm a different idea.

Final Project Idea #2

My second final project idea is to make a physical patent map of everyday items, such as toaster and crustless toast, or of Formlabs printer. The purpose of this project would be create an interactive way for people to learn about intellectual property. What I have found is that most people are aware of the patents, but do not know what can be patented. This would be a fun way to educate people on IP.

The big bulk of my project will come from the last few weeks, specifically input devices, networking and communications, and interface and app programming, but here is a brainstorm of what I want to create!

Week 1: Vinyl and Laser Cutting

Since I want to use copper pads for capacitance touch, I will likely use vinyl to decorate my final project by placing it on top of the copper pads. I tested my capacitance touch to ensure that there will still be a change in voltage through the vinyl. It does!

Week 2: Electronics Production

This week is very much integral to my final project as I need to mill and solder circuitboards to run the electronics.

Week 3: 3D Printing and Scanning

To make objects with great precision, I will use 3D printing. This will mainly be for the dog, since I found it difficult to get details through molding and casting or through composites.


Week 4: Electronics Design

Like Week 2, this week will be critical to my final project as Eagle is used everytime I want to design a circuitboard.

Week 7: Molding and Casting

I first wanted to fabricate these everyday items. This came up initially in Week 7 when I made toast through molding and casting.

The toast was simple enough to make, though I imagine complications in inserting a button within the toast.

Now that I have capacitance touch working and inspired by Shivaei, I tried inserting copper pads within casts at varying thicknesses. Since I was pouring in the plaster, it was hard to perform this experiment with accuracy, but I attempted to make plasters at 4 different thicknesses.

What I found though was that the copper pads likely moved as I was pouring in the plaster and were too close together. Even without me touching the plaste, the voltage was high.

It seems like the best bet will be to simply put copper pads on top of objects.

Week 8: Output Devices

This week I will figure out how wire external buttons to PCB and how to program multiple buttons to communicate with the same 2 LEDs. These external buttons can be placed inside these everyday items, such as toast. Success!

The next step will be to put the button boards into a toast.

After learning networking and capacitance touch, I realize now that putting copper pads on top of objects will be easier than trying to place buttons within objects. However, I may still try and incorporate LEDs, though this will not be my priority.

Now that I have learnt networking, I may forgo having multiple wires connected to one motherboard as this looks messy.

Week 10: Input Devices

This week I learnt how to do capacitance touch. This is a nice upgrade from buttons!

Week 11: Interface and Application Programming

This week I learnt basic python. Now, I can use python canvases to communicate whether something is patented or not when the voltage is above a certain threshold! I just need to figure out how to edit the canvas to make it look better and to get more content on it.

Week 12: Networking and Communications

I further built upon my C and python knowledge by learning how to send serial from circuitboards to the computer when voltage is above a certain threshold, and programming python to read the serial and make canvases depending on serial sent. This will be much easier than connecting multiple circuitboards to different usb ports.