Week 11/12 Development: The Improved Spine


After discussions with Fabrizio and Ker Siang we decided to create a joint that fits the form of the bones and at the same time act as a pivot to rotate each bone. We realised that with a fixed position and shape of the spine it will be a problem if the sculpture were to move places, and with some degree of flexibility the sculpture will be able to adapt to its environment when it is placed in a new venue.

With that, the new sculpture is able to rotate up to 15 degrees and if every bone is rotated, it will form a C-shape.

We decided not to do a full circle (30 degrees) because it will compromise the size of each bone and the size of the bones will have to increase. This is not what we want because each and every size of the bone has been already calculated and it is the maximum size that it can go for a bench that people will be comfortable with sitting on.

After designing the joints and how they fit into the bones, we decided to test print one pair of bones to see if the joints fit.

Test 1

Although the joints work perfectly, we realised that the bones touch each other when they are both rotated to the same side. The part of the joint that is connected to the bone can also be seen through the side.

We then decided to elongate the joint so that the bones will not touch each other when they are rotated to the same side and also hopefully this will hide the part of the joint that is connected to the bone.

Test 2

However we felt that we might have lengthened the joint too much as now the spacing between each bone is a bit too far and it still did not solve the problem of the joint being hidden as circled (in purple) on the image above.

We might reduce the length of the joint a little so that the change is not as drastic but just enough for the bones to not touch each other when tilted to the same side.

We also did some renderings of our improved form just to see how the sculpture will look like with people interacting with it.

This is how it looks like when they form a rounded shape:

Week 5: Form exploration

The concept that we have chosen to do is the connectivity of the spine. We were intrigued by the way the bones are connected together therefore we would like to focus on this aspect.

The bones are ‘stacked’ together through the spinal cord and connected by the facet joints. This makes an area of the bones overlap each other and we thought that this would be a good characteristic to include it into our final sculpture.

However, this week, we wanted to brainstorm for more ideas of the form (before we settle on the overall form) of the spine so we did a bit of form exploration. We tried different forms to expand our limitations because we do not want to be conformed to the exact form of the spine.

Giving ‘Form’ to a Product

In Lecture 2 we learned that there are 3 nodes that influence the aesthetics or forms of product designs- function, human factors and emotion.

To help illustrate this, I have found 3 product designs that have a dominance of each of the factors.

The Sweeper & Dustpan by Jan Kochanski is an example of a function-dominant product. It is a simple and easy to use product, as it is more convenient for users to empty the dustpan by using the dustpan handle as a funnel. The handle of the sweeper also fits perfectly into the handle of the dustpan, which allows the product to be kept neatly and at the same time minimise the space used to keep it.

A ‘smart’ spoon has been designed by LiftLabs, a San Francisco based company and this is one example of a human factor-dominant product. It was made solely for patients with Parkinson’s disease, and it has a function in the spoon to counter the vibrating motion of the patient’s hands when they are eating.

Lastly, Cacti Coasters by Clive Roddy is an example of an emotion-dominant product. Although one creative way to store the coasters is by interlocking and stacking them up, its purpose is only for cups to rest on it, and prevent your tables from getting dirty. However this fun and interactive way of keeping them brings out curiosity in the user, therefore it is an emotion-dominant product.