Week 20: Project Development

This week's tasks:

  • Define the scope of my final project and Develop a project plan for it:
    • What is the deadline? How much time do I have left?
    • What tasks have been completed, and what tasks remain?
    • How will I complete the remaining tasks in time?
    • What has worked? And what hasn't?
    • What questions still need to be resolved?
    • What have you learned?

What is the deadline? How much time do I have left?

The deadline is 20th of June, which means I have almost 2 weeks to get my final project done. I have a very tight schedule as I planned in Applications and Implication’s week assignment to stick to. And I need to stick to the plan and keep on with it to be able to accomplish my goal. And I should and will do so since graduating on time is a high priority for me :-)

What tasks have been completed, and what tasks remain?

  • Major electronics design is done:
    • Designing of the main board
    • Designing the flower board
  • Electronics design for VCC distribution among flower boards is still remained.
  • Major electronics production is done:
    • Production of the main board
    • Production of 2 flower boards
  • Electronics production of 2 flower boards and VCC board is remained.
  • 3D design and print of the physical interface (the background frame of the “Maker Garden” is remained.
  • Laser cutting of some elements for the physical interface of the “Maker Garden” such as the sun and the grass is remained.
  • Application programming is done. It needs some moderations.
  • Embedded programming should be modified.
  • The integration of the product would be done at the end.

How will I complete the remaining tasks in time?

I have divided the remained task based on their priorities. I have lots of features and I could still make a proof of the concept with some of them (for example with only 2 flower boards), which means as Neil suggested to me I could skip some features if I face short of time and mainly concentrate on the integration of the project and packaging.

I believe that prioritization of the remained tasks and sticking to the considered schedule is a safe strategy to get the project done in time.

What has worked? And what hasn't?

Although I faced some difficulties and errors in electronics design, electronics production and application programming, eventually all worked as I had planned and wished.
I am optimistic for the remained tasks to get done smoothly since I already am experienced in those areas and I hope I would manage to accomplish them without facing any major dilemma.

What questions still need to be resolved?

Currently, the major question is how to 3D design the physical interface for the "Maker Garden" in a way that NeoPixels would integrate with it and fits well. I already have some thoughts and would start designing with those ideas that I have and simulate the design in the 3D program and enhance it if needed.

Another question that needs to be addressed is how to design the board for VCC distribution among flower boards. If I face time limitation I could skip it and use only 2 flower boards, which could be supplied by VCC from the main board.

What have you learned?

On a one hand, I found Fab Academy an exploratory opportunity to familiarize myself with the process of digital fabrication and making. My PHD research theme is “Digital Fabrication and Making for Children”. Since I had no prior experience of digital fabrication and making, I could not imagine whether I could achieve success in my research or not. But considering experiencing this process by myself, I am optimistic regarding the brightness of my future research. I FEEL EMPOWERED AND CONFIDENT.

On the other hand, I experienced lots of skills that I might never could be able to do without fab academy. Some skills such as 3D designing, 3D printing, Electronics, Embedded Programming and other making expertise that we had gone through during the fab academy, could be pointed out. Through experiencing these expertise and the process of digital fabrication and making, I learned that when you imagine something, you always have the possibility to make it. IMAGINE IT AND BUILD IT.

Moreover, although it was a long journey with lots of both joys and frustrations, I learned to make a balance between these different emotions and do not let my frustrations lead me to a dark side. It was indeed a very good lesson that no matter how much you fail, you should stand again and continue. THESE FAILURES GURANTEE YOUR SUCCESS.

Enhancing my documentation skills, time management skills and empowering my creativity abilities could also be mentioned as my gains from this academy.

Last but not least, worth to mention that in the Fab Lab Oulu, there are lots of amazing and skillful people, who eagerly shared their experiences with us and we learned a lot from them. And hereby, I truly appreciate their efforts and guidance.