Device of the Week #3 – Palette Gear

Palette Gear is a device that would normally accompany a software such as Photoshop or Illustrator. The modular design of Palette Gear allows the user to customize their very own workspace that suits their needs and habit. Each and every cube is connected using magnets and either ‘male’ or ‘female’ connectors on its side, only the ‘male’ is able to connect to the ‘female’. The cube with the screen act as the ‘base’ as it serves as a port for all other cubes to get their power.

Component – Sliders, Knobs, Buttons, Resistor, Female and male connectors, magnet, USB cable

Palette Gear is a product that benefits professional that was in the design industry. It allowed a more efficient workflow and workspace that could integrate the habit of the professional with the software such as Photoshop and Illustrator.

The product was complex to make. Knobs, sliders, and button would give input and create a shortcut for the users. However, the software or driver would be extremely complex to mimic as it allows the user to customise and change the layout of the Palette Gear. I believed that such product should be seen more often in the future as it would further enhance our working habits.

Device of the Week #2 – Nike Mag

Nike Mag or Nike Air Mag is a product by Nike, promoting Michael J. Fox Foundation and help find the cure for Parkinson disease. It is a self-tying shoe that would activate when a button is pressed. It resolves the problem and complexity of tying a shoe and the wearer do not have to worry about the shoelace untying itself during an activity.

Component -Shoe, Button, Motor, LED Light

It was inspired by the movie “Back to the Future” and it showed the futuristic vision of the product in our future. It was a simple idea that was executed well and had a functional use for people with a disadvantage.

One could imagine the mechanics of the self-tying shoe. When button number 1 is pressed, it would register an input and change the variables from the value of 0 to 1, and the motor will start turning clockwise, tying the shoe in the process. When button number 2 is pressed, it would register an input as well, but change the variables from 1 to 2, and the motor will start to turn anti-clockwise, untying the shoe. When no button is pressed, no input would be registered and the values of the variables would go back to 0, putting the devices in a neutral mode.

In conclusion, I really like how simplistic and functional a device can get.


Device of the Week #1 – Theremin

Theremin is a musical instrument that was created in 1928 by a Russian inventor Leon Theremin. It is played without touching any of the components and the device was able to determine the pitch and volume of the sound by calculating the distance between your hand and the two antennas. The vertical antenna changes the pitch while the horizontal antenna changes the volume of the sound. It was an unusual and strange instrument that was unknown to the majority of the public.

Component – Infrared Obstacle Avoidance Sensor, Sound module

Theremin had a simple idea of creating sound by judging the distance of your hand, stripping away all the complex gesture in order for a person to play a musical instrument, removing all the agility that was required from the player. It provides an easy control that allows even people with disability to play music.