Process

Christopher Kitchen
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Knowing what the weather will be like is an important part of every day, however this process is tedious uninteresting, and quite inefficient. Our solution for this problem is a flower that will wilt when the weather is bad(cloudy, rainy, and so on) and bloom when the weather is good(sunny, or partially cloudy). We accomplished this by creating wood pieces connected via nuts and bolts, with a spring at the connection making a wilted position as default, additionally, there is a string going along the back of this "arm" so that it straightens when the string is pulled. The flower uses a servo to rotate a center piece, which is connected to multiple independently moving arms. These arms are then attached to the pedals, which are mounted to the base of the flower, this allows the pedals to open and close based on the servo's position. Eventually we also incorporated LEDs to further represent the weather condition. All of these are connected to an arduino/linux board, that downloads the local weather forecast and converts it to the servos and LEDs. Probably the biggest challenge was when the first flower was printed, without enough compensation for the expansion of the 3D printing material, causing all the measurements to be wrong, forcing a complete redo.

Iterations:

The first iteration was a cardboard version of the arm, which excluded the springs, and strings lacking the ability to move it up and down in any automated way. In the second iteration we made another cardboard arm, with a way of incorporating springs, however, the cardboard couldn't handle the stress of the springs, and we quickly moved on to wood. Third iteration, in this iteration we made the transition to wood incorporating the springs and string, as well as adding a very primitive base made of cardboard. The base was comprised only of two circles with holes to put the arm in, and 4 more to put in small supports for holding it up. Iteration 4, this time we made a really big base out of wood, using separate square pieces going around the cylinder, creating a slightly scaly look. Fifth iteration(sort of) with this iteration we designed the flower, which was redone due to the original calculations being wrong, we also added LEDs, and made the base smaller to accentuate the flower. Iteration number six(final iteration!) for the final iteration, we put a cylindrical casing around each segment of the arm, as well as incorporating the arduino/linux board, and created a working flower.