In the first three days of this week, I had a very hurry and collapse.
First of all, on Saturday, our team members put all the parts of the product together. Jianing of our group is responsible for the test tube part, which uses Unity to make images of different frequency music. The frequency of the sound is not successfully associated with the sound playback function. At present, the sound frequency displayed when playing audio is made by Unity, but the music uses python to execute the recording and playback commands. During the operation, we need to Input the file path of the recorded sound and the file path of the mixed music into Unity. We have spent a long time and consulted many online tutorials, but there is still no link between the unity function and the Python function.
Then, the second difficulty I encountered was that the wires were too short. Because the breadboard and the development board were not put into the box before, the length of the wire will not be long enough, which makes the user unable to operate. I removed all wires from the parts I made and added extension cords. But in the process of connection, because of some mistakes, the final result is that whenever a computer is used to link the development board, the circuit of the development board will be automatically disconnected. Python programs also display errors. I thought I broke the development board, so I replaced a development board, but the result was the same. I rechecked the code and found that there is no problem with the code. So I removed the cable on the breadboard and reconnected, but I never saw a solution to the problem. This makes me very sad. Everything was working before, but the day before the show, the product was broken. So, I decided to remove all the sensors. When I touched the RGB light in the flask, my hand was scalded by high temperature, which made me realize that the RGB connection may have a short circuit. So I reconnected the RGB circuit, and my product was repaired again.
However, on the afternoon of the exhibition, new problems appeared again. The two interactive controllers I made cannot work correctly. I had to remove the handle I made back, check the wiring, and found that the wires in the handle made poor contact. Fortunately, I repaired the entire product 15 minutes before the exhibition started.
The video shows the part I made, which includes mixing function, pause function, delete function, and interact with friend function. As shown in the video, after the user pours the sound materials in the test tube and jar of his choice into the flask, the user shakes the flask, the mixed Sound will be played, and the flask will shine with multiple colors of light. If the user wants to stop playing music, they need to cap the cap of the flask. After the cap is closed, the light in the flask dims. If the user's friends like this mix sound, they can shake the handle with a smiling face, and the user can hear applause. If the user's friends do not like the mix, they can shake the handle with a crying face, and the mix will be deleted, and a piece of sorrowful music will be played as a reminder when deleted. After the sound is deleted, all lights in the flask are turn off.
- The basic functions of the product have been completed, but some additional functions, visual effects and sound effects have not been completed well. According to user feedback, the operation of the product is easy to learn, but the product still has many possibilities for improvement.
- Technical aspect: I originally planned to use the screen to display the frequency of the mix, but because I did not successfully integrate Unity and Python, I could not achieve this in the end.
- Visual effect: The appearance of the product is relatively simple, and some wires are not covered, which makes the product look immature and lacks appeal to users. Too many wires bring trouble to the user's operation, they need to pay attention to the safety of the wires. Regarding the smoke function, I did not buy the ideal smoke machine, so I gave up the smoke effect.
- Sound effect: The sound effect is not as expected. The volume of the melody is so high that the user cannot clearly hear the daily sound. Also, when more than three sounds are added to the flask, the quality of the music played will become worse and a lot of noise will be generated. I will study how to reduce the noise in the next step.
Compared with the ideal product, I did not find a way to install a small screen on the glass flask. This problem also needs to be overcome in future work.
For the entire project, there is some gap between our final product and the ideal product. In the final exhibition, we obtained some user feedback. Some suggestions from users are similar to our ideal products, but because of time, technical level and cooperation methods, we have not successfully achieved the ideal product. Listed below are my reflections on the product.
- The product has limited space for use: In our ideal product, users cannot see any wires, they can hold each part to move freely, but in actual products, a large number of wires are used to connect sensors. These wires limit the user's moving space.
- Product quality: Many sensors and lights are used in our products, and they will have poor contact after frequent use.
- Not all product functions are successful: due to the limited technical level, many functions have not yet been completed. For example, the frequency of the sound is not successfully associated with the sound playback function. At present, the sound frequency displayed when playing sound is made by Unity, but the sound uses python to execute the recording and playback commands. During the operation, we need to input the file path of the recorded sound and the file path of the mixed sound into unity.
- Interactive mode: In an ideal product, many ideal interactive modes are different from the actual mode. Our ideal way of interaction is exactly the same as that of chemistry experiments. Because we have not purchased a suitable sensor, some interaction methods are replaced by others.
- Because of our limited time, we originally planned to use the Raspberry Pi instead of the computer to run the program, but in the end there was not enough time to achieve this goal.
- Product make-up: The products mainly use containers used in chemical experiments, but they do not look beautiful, because these containers are glass products and small in size, so we did not hide the wires very well. If there is enough time, we should customize better-looking containers.
I also made a website. I was also confused during the process of making the website. Regarding the assessment requirements, the requirements first emphasized that we need to describe the concept in detail, but said that there should not be too many words. I also read the websites of many other students. I found that some classmates had a lot of text on their websites, and some classmates had very little text. This makes me feel confused. If there is short text, it is difficult to describe my design ideas and design process. I also communicated this issue with many classmates. Later, when I was about to hand in my homework, a friend told me that the teacher's request should be that we try to explain the idea with pictures. However, at that time, I did not have enough time to draw pictures.
This course is over. I feel that I made a product that is much more complicated than the digital prototyping course, but the methods and tools used are similar to the digital prototype course. The final display uses video. It's a pity not to let users operate and experience my products. As well as the final portfolio webpage, I also handed it in without fully understanding the job requirements.