Let the Prototyping Begin!—Eliza Martin & SEAS Design Group

The SEAS Design Group has been extremely busy the past few weeks finishing up our SEAS Design Proposal. Our Design Proposal took a lot of time, thought, and commitment in order to truly create a proposal we were proud of. The design proposal was difficult to write because we had to take a step back from our day-to-day tasks and think of our future design. You can read more about the trials and tribulations of writing the design proposal here. Sofia and I have not regularly been in class since the beginning of the year, so I know that I struggled with writing my sections of the proposal, as I felt that I did not have enough information to do so. Stephanie and Andrea have done an amazing job keeping us up to date on the happenings in class, but it’s not the same experience as attending class. Volleyball is now over, so I’m extremely thankful that I will be able to attend class and be more involved in the design process.

This upcoming six weeks the SEAS Design Group will finally be building! After spending what seems like years (but what was really twelve weeks) conceptualizing our design and writing pages and pages of technical research, we’ve finally began to schedule our prototyping. While our prototype is part of our final grade and we (of course) want to receive a good grade, we are more concerned with the prototype itself and whether it is a solid representation of our mission statement and relieves plantar fasciitis foot pain.

Today in class, we began to schedule the next six weeks. Ms. Meisner and Ms. Jo kindly contributed a class overview schedule of the events for the next six weeks, but as a group we have to split up tasks and plan our time effectively. A few highlights of the events and deliverables we must produce this six weeks include: a 3-D model of our prototype with annotations, biomedical and anatomical research, and of course, our prototype.

Original photo of SEAS Design Team planning out due dates and schedule for the upcoming six weeks
Original photo of SEAS Design Team planning out due dates and schedule for the upcoming six weeks

Stephanie and Sofia, the two engineering girls in our group, will be using AutoCad and Google SketchUp to design our prototype. Stephanie feels more comfortable using AutoCad, while Sofia will be using Google SketchUp.

Original photo of Stephanie beginning to work on her AutoCad model.
Original photo of Stephanie beginning to work on her AutoCad model.

After the two have sketched their design of the insole, we will compare the two and chose our favorite or combine the two into one design. Andrea and I will be spending the next week researching design materials and conducting and reading research on the more complex biomedical effects of insoles on plantar fasciitis, the feet, nerves, bones, muscles, and the body.

IMG_5003
Original photo of researching yoga mat materials

Today, Andrea and I began to research materials for our prototype. While other groups discussed the idea of creating a prototype from the 3D printer, we did not feel that a prototype made of plastic from the 3D printer was appropriate due to the necessary function of our final product. SEAS Design Group feels that we need to create a prototype made from the materials to measure their effectiveness. The prototype is necessary to measure the effectiveness of the materials in relieving foot pain. You can read more about our design here. Andrea and I spent today researching yoga mat materials and gel beads. We are struggling to find products that meet our budget of $88, as we feel that we will need to create multiple prototypes as we will more than likely fail a few times. Andrea and I are confident that after continuing our research, we will be able to succeed in finding diverse materials that meet our budget.

Stay tuned for upcoming updates about our prototyping and designing!

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