Thursday, August 13, 2009

Sensor Actuator Project

The sensor actuator project was a group project. I thought the group's idea was cool and funny: when someone flushed the toilet a fountain would go off. In terms of the final outcome, I think it was a great prototype.

I also think the concept might be worth taking beyond a prototype. We had the fountain sitting at the class table. And if someone went to the restroom the fountain would start going. And each time, I found it humorous (as well as several others in the class); and it never seemed to lose the appeal. The "flush" was brought to mind every time the water started (though I am sure that if I sat next to every day I could become desensitized). I guess, one critique would be--if a future fountain was created, it would be worth giving some more thought to how the message of water "waste" could be emphasized more.

As far as the group project went there were a few things worth commenting on:
1. one we had troubles getting everyone together. Finally a group of us were able to get together on Sunday at my work's offices. Which was convenient. And on Monday I believe only Roy and I showed up to finish things off.

2. The work needed "management" if we were to be able to really share the workload. Without it, Loren and I often just felt like "observers" and didn't have a role. At one point I had put together the physical components so that we could use to test on code; and those working on the code just ignored this and went ahead and created their own. Some of this was just out of pure logistics. People wanted to go their own ways, use their own stuff, etc.

Video of the project in action:

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