19. Project development

Time Management

I did not use any specific time management system, and my time management skills could definitely have been better for this project. During this project, and throughout Fabacademy, thinking in terms of spiral development was extremely helpful. So I went in to working on the final project with this basic plan, or first sprial, in mind:

  1. Get the electronics working: display, connected to esp32, with some form of outside input
  2. 3D print a case that holds all of these components

As soon as I completed 1 in some form, I should have moved on to 2, and had a complete working product before trying to implement anything else. However, I got the electronics working with built in touch pins as the input 2 weeks before the presentation date, so i figured I had time to try and implement an accelerometer before moving on to the final design. This was a mistake! The accelerometer itself took over a week of trial and error before I had to abandon it completely, and then of copurse, casing design and building took longer than I expected. Once I had everything in the case, pressure on the wires from the enclosure also disrupted normal functioning of the electronics, which was an unexpected delay.

what tasks have been completed, and what tasks remain?

I completed one working version of the project which was sufficient for the final project. However, I would love to remake this with different display sizes in the future.

what’s working? what’s not?

Not working from original plans:

-accelerometer -slim case (had to deepen the design for electronics to run properly) -Same project in different sizes (no time to build a second display)


-e-ink display connected to esp32 -powered on rechargeable battery -can be interfaced with human input (touch pins) -electronics hidden

what questions need to be resolved?

I want to know why the slim case did not work. Was it the cables I was using? The battery? My soldering? Everything fit in the slim case, but it seemed like the more space the wires had, the more consistently it worked.

I am fine with losing the accelerometer as this actually saves a lot of power. Ideally, however, I could definitely make the same project slimmer with likely only minor hardware tweaks.

what will happen when?

We presented our final projects on July 1st.

what have you learned?

I learned the importance of spiral development. Always have the most basic, complete prototype working as soon as possible. No extra features until there is already one complete working version! I also learned that design always takes way longer than expected.