huangsexiaoshuoFollow my journey as I walk towards developing a product aimed towards children who chew on their shirts.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

What Happens Now?

This past week, I presented my final "product" in my anatomy and physiology class. In the end, I didn't really have a final product that was put together, but I had most of the separate parts all thought out and developed. I didn't really get to what I had initially planned to do at the beginning of the project. A lot of the reason for this was because I had a hard time learning to do some things, and some other parts took longer that I had expected. I wasn't able to reach my goals because I did not know what to expect as I went through the process. Although I didn't reach my initial goal, I learned a lot about myself. I thought I was better at managing time, but I really wasn't. I'm also not as patient as I originally thought I was. Through experimenting with Tinkercad, it proved more difficult than expected. After going through this process, questions arose. It made me wonder how long it takes for other people to invent and develop things for them to be used. We see so many new products out there, but we don't really know how much time and effort it took to come up with that idea and make it sell-able. If I were to do this again, I would probably reach out to more people for help. I think there are so many more resources out there that I could have utilized, but didn't. I also would have spent more time thinking of how to work Tinkercad and try to print out a couple designs to see how to make them better. If I did that, I might have been able to have a product in hand to show the class.

During the TED Talk presentation, I was really nervous. Ever since I was younger, I always hated talking in front of the class. The night before, I was rehearsing, but couldn't think of the right words to use for a lot of what I wanted to express. I didn't want to include too many words on my power point so people don't get distracted from what I am saying, but that meant I had to remember everything that I needed to say. I was kind of disappointed with my performance because I had forgotten to mention a few things that I had planned to. Up until right before the actual presentation, I was anxious and stressing out about the presentation, however, when I went up there, I just went with the flow and it didn't seem as bad as I had anticipated. I was so relieved when the whole thing was over.

Overall, I thought that this was a good experience. I didn't really like the fact that there wasn't really any structure to the 20 Time. I understand that this is a big part of 20 Time, but it was a little difficult for me to keep myself on track and in the direction I wanted to go. If we had the whole year to do this, I think a lot of the other students, me included, would have been able to more easily reach their goals, and maybe even exceed them.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Making Progress in Tinkercad

After several hours of playing around with Tinkercad, I finally sort of figured out how to use it. There were lots of struggles accidents when I was using it. I accidentally deleted some things sometimes, and other times I would move things to places that they aren't supposed to be going. I managed to make something that may work for the final product. The knobs on the piece need to be fixed and straightened up, but at the moment, this is not  the main problem. However, up to this point, this is the main part of the prototype that I have been developing and trying to design.
I feel like this project has made a little turn, since I initially thought that I would have physical prototypes starting from the beginning, but I realized that making the designs for the prototypes take much longer than expected.

In the coming weeks, I am considering possibly printing the object out depending on circumstances and working from there.    

Monday, April 20, 2015

Struggling to use Tinkercad

These couple of weeks, I have been working ongetting the Tinkercad to work. It is really hard for me to navigate and I amtrying to learn to create a simple design, but it is proving difficult. Evenwatching several tutorials, I am having difficulty even making a simplepattern. However, I have figured out which type of material to use for the mainpart of the mouthpiece to use: silicone. I have yet to find out if I am allowedto use the 3D printer that is on campus, but I plan on finding out. Even if Iam able to use the 3D printer, I don’t know if I will be able to learn todesign quickly enough. Trying to use this program has been taking up most of mygenius hour time, and I am still finding it difficult.

I would like to find someone that can help me designthis chew. I feel like I need to spend more time on the other components of thechew rather than the just the plastic part. For the absorbent layer, I willprobably use some microfiber cloth to absorb the saliva instead of some sponge.I realize that any sort of reusable cloth is not sanitary, so I am still havingtrouble figuring that part out.           

Monday, March 30, 2015

Learning to Use 3D Design Platform

Tinkercad Design Platform
I have started to work on the specific components of the chew,but I have come across many obstacles that I have yet to overcome. First of all, I have to design my own outside covering of the chew. This is really difficult for me because I need to learn to design objects on a 3D platform, which I have never been exposed to before. The website I found was Tinkercad. It had a lot of tutorials to teach how to design things, but I am really struggling to make anything look even similar to what I have been imagining. Learning to use this is still currently my biggest problem. Following that, I will have to figure out a way to print out the 3D image. I have found a couple local places that print custom designs, but I still have to figure out the details regarding those places. 

Although l am still on the beginnings of learning to use Tinkercad, I have learned that learning something completely from scratch is difficult. I realize that everything I am learning now is based off of previous classes and years of being a student. But now, I am learning something I have never learned elsewhere. 

As I continue learning Tinkercad, I will continue researching materials for the internal components of the product. I still need to find something absorbent to soak up the saliva. I have been considering making the absorbent part removable and replaceable because it is unsanitary to repeatedly use a sponge. Also continuing from my last post, I am thinking about attaching plastic/waterproof material to the absorbent layer, making it removable, as well. 

I think learning to use Tinkercad is good for me now for this project, but will also come in handy later on, either for personal projects or for classes. I am excited to see where this chew will lead me in terms of producing this as well as inspiration for new projects.  

Monday, March 16, 2015

New Design

Top: initial design/structure.
Bottom: possible design cross section. 
As I research about the materials that I could possibly use for the chew, I have learned a lot of things. I have looked for different materials for connecting it to clothing. It is kind of hard to have an adhesive that doesn't need something permanently attached to clothing.

The different materials I have looked into includes Velcro, buttons, and suspender clips. All three of these materials all have cons to them. Velcro would have to have one side of the Velcro attached to the shirt.This may work later on but would require more work to put Velcro on every shirt. Buttons would also have to have something attached to the piece of clothing. Suspender clips would not need that, but it would require a metal piece near the child's face, and that is typically not safe. Also, if the child accidentally chews on the clip, it would not be good for their teeth either. 

I also have been looking for absorbent cloths and waterproof materials for the product as well. I need absorbent cloths because chewing typically produces a lot of saliva, and usually, kids' clothes soak that up. But in case the absorbent layer doesn't soak up everything I would have a protective layer of plastic or something to prevent their actual clothes get wet. 

I plan on continuing to look for different adhesives and absorbent materials that would be better for the product. Lots of work still needs to be done before I can start making that actual product in real life. I never realized how difficult and how much work needs to be put in a product. I will appreciate products more and more, as I see how much work needs to be put into anything. 

Monday, March 2, 2015

20% Time: what is it and what is my idea?

20% time is a concept where people take 20% of their own time to develop their own projects and work towards a goal. When Mr. Orre, my high school Anatomy and Physiology teacher, posed this idea, I was really skeptical. I had no idea what to do and really had no ideas in what direction to go. Up until the last week, I had a completely blank slate. From the very beginning, Mr. Orre continuously asked us what we were passionate about. This is when I thought of the hundreds of hours I spent volunteering and working with children with special needs. 

At the volunteer organization, I noticed early on that many of the children there chewed on the collar and the cuffs of their shirts. Almost none of them had an alternative to chewing on their clothes, and the few that did had a chew toy of sorts hanging around their neck. Initially, I didn't think much about it, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized that wasn't the best solution. Parents of autistic children want their children to not stand out as different, but with the chew toy, it makes the children more noticeable. From there, my question for myself was "What is a better alternative that would save parents money from replacing ripped clothing and not add to the stigma that children with special needs have?" 

My 20% project stemmed from this inquiry. It seems like a good idea for me to try to develop and produce a product that would essentially be the problem solver for this issue. Parents who want to wean their children off of chewing on their clothes will benefit also. They can apply bitter or spicy sprays or products to the prototype without the destruction of any more pieces of clothing. 

My goal for this project is to make a prototype of a product as described that would be low cost to produce and buy, applicable to most clothing, and be durable enough to withstand several uses. I will start with designs and drawings that I believe will work, then from there, I will tweak it little by little. As I change the parts, I can see which requirements I meet, and slowly work towards the perfect product. 

If I eventually reach a product that I am satisfied with, I may create a couple more and see where that takes me. I might be able to ask the organization if some of the children would want to try my product, and if things are looking up, I might go further and try to make it a product on the market.