All participating students will Invent, Design and Make an animated object. On the right are two example projects, which were designed by the instructors. They are slightly tacky, but you get the idea. The top one is a 3D printed Zoetrope, where the USF Bulls logo does a happy spin. The bottom one is a model of the principal mechanics of an airplane "star motor", which was popular at the beginning of the last century. In both models a stepper motor is controlled by the Arduino, which is 'hidden' in the enclosure. All moving parts were designed and simulated with Autodesk Inventor and printed with 3D printers at the Advanced Visualization Center (AVC) at USF. When we built them we did not have the Arduino kits yet, i.e. we did not use the fancy sensors that come with it. We fully expect that you make use of this kit and endow your designs with displays, LEDs, remote control, RFID tag activation or whatever else comes to your creative minds! You are encouraged to purchase additional components for your project to give them an additional 'awesome factor'...;-)
The star motor was inspired by the artist Brad Litwin, who makes "Mechanicards". These are postcards that have a mechanical component, which unfolds when the recipient cranks a small crank. Check out his web site here. This website has many quirky and cool items giving you an idea what could be done as Make Course projects.
In general you are encouraged to be creative with your project designs. Usefulness is no concern for the final grade for the project. This is a practice run for the 'real thing'. However, all projects must be creative, unique and fulfill the following criteria:
1) The object must be completely designed and simulated in Inventor before it is built.
2) It must contain 3D printed moving components that interact with the electronic control circuit.
3) It must be controlled by or interact via the Arduino and kit components (use of additional components is encouraged) in some creative way.
4) It must have a creative (i.e no simple switch) on/off mechanism (remote control, touch sensor etc...)
5) The standard enclosure must be used.
6) The final design must work, be neatly manufactured with precision, and be original.
The projects will be graded for their functionality and originality, but not their usefulness. Students can Make something artsy, musical, crazy, silly, whimsical, or (yes!) even useful. But all we care about is a well-designed object, precisely executed, and fulfilling its task.