Blog - Sketching with Hardware

Practical Course on Physical Computing

Team 9 – Feline Cuisine

Published on: September 12, 2018 | Author: Sarah Muser | Categories: 2018b, Projects


Imagine you own two cats. One of them is rather thin, let’s call her Minnie. The other one, his name is Garfield, well obviously he’s pretty fat. You want to give Minnie special food so that she gains some weight. But Garfield always eats her food! To make sure that each cat only eats its own food you would have to stand next to them the whole time they are eating. So you think: “Wouldn’t it be great if there was a cat food dispenser which makes sure that each cat gets his own special food?”

Great news! We built one!


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Team 8 – What’s the Story Morning Glory

Published on: September 11, 2018 | Author: Elena Rudolph | Categories: 2018b, Projects

Wake up to your perfect breakfast everyday using our innovative litte Naught-o-mate!


Naught-o-mation (eng.) describes a combination between “automation” and “naughtiness” and is often associated with home-automation-gadgets that seem to have evolved an evil characer.
Not compulsary, but indeed in a lot of cases this turns the helping functions of your home-automtion-tool into rather undesirable events.

What’s the Story Morning Glory is an extremely innovative tool that serves you your breakfast every morning with best intentions. After a dish is placed inside the automat, it will automatically be filled with cornflakes and milk. Also, a spoon will be provided. Last but not least, and especially usefull for all our food-bloggers out there, a picture of your dish will be taken.
Unluckily, the portioning can sometimes be a bit to generous…

This video will give you an small insight:


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Team 1- An Episode of A Naughty Dirt Cleaner

Published on: September 11, 2018 | Author: Yanfei Hu Fleischhauer | Categories: 2018b, Projects

Previously in A Naughty Dirt Cleaner…ehhh…zero knowledge!


    It was at the end of the second day of this class, after we were introduced into the world of electronics, that we started to rack our brains to look for idea for this semester’s theme, Naught-O-mation. We came up with a bunch of ideas and one of them made us laugh – naughtily! It is about a machine that is supposed to clean all sorts of dirt on clothes. This machine fulfills its job in a very NEAT way: instead of washing the dirt away, it covers the dirty spot with color or, even more efficiently, cuts the dirty part off.


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Team 3- Dish Devil

Published on: September 10, 2018 | Author: Jonas Safranek | Categories: 2018b, Projects

The Dish Devil

After some introductory lessons and a lot of suspense the topic was finally revealed to us: home NAUGHT-omation. Our reaction? Awesome!

During our initial brainstorming phase we tried to go from room to room and find a good household-item to improve. Only brilliant ideas came to mind. Flamethrower toaster? Genius. Electrified door knob if you forgot your keys? Negative reinforcement for the whole family! A postbox that separates and ( immediately shredders) advertisement from real mail? Sounds great! Yep, but it will also destroy your mail if you don’t empty it frequently.

You can already see the direction this is taking. Punishing undesired behavior… Way to drastically…

But you know what’s even better? A nice place to store your dirty dishes. Keep them out of the way on a little platform at the side of your sink. Just place and forget! Well maybe Not… The device registers if there are dishes on the platform and starts an internal timer. After the timer runs out, the device will tilt the surface and vibrate until all your beloved china crashes in to the sink (ready to finally be cleaned)  


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Team 4 – Snack2Go

Published on: September 10, 2018 | Author: Anna Kyas | Categories: 2018b, Projects


For our very own naughty robot Sakina and I decided to build the Snack-2-Go. A little snack bowl that doesn‘t want you near it, thus drives away the moment you approach the table.

The general idea behind it is easy to execute: motion sensors pick up an object from a certain distance which then lead a signal to the motor moving the bowl, positioning it away from the active sensors. The question was how the bowl was supposed to move – for that we had two options: either make the Snack-2-Go a makeshift car with wheels, motor, sensors and bowl in one or create a table that uses a hidden mechanism and magnets to achieve our goal.

Image 1: Car idea vs. table construct.

After our tutor Bernhard gave input we decided on the table. While a compact vehicle could have been an option, prior experience proofed it to be a messier process. Heavier builds require a stronger motor which need more batteries thus needing even stronger motors, creating a vicious cycle of no results. The table on the other hand gave us a safety net. Via a technique called CoreXY a machinery is build that allows us to move an object to X- and Y-coordinates. If that was working out then we had solid ground to refine our project… more on that later.

Having the technique in mind, a pool of resources at hand and determination in our hearts we were ready to tackle this task.


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Team 7- iClean

Published on: September 10, 2018 | Author: Elisabeth Mayer | Categories: 2018b, Best Projects, Projects


After brainstorming, there were a couple ideas we had for the topic “Naught-o-mation”. We shared a couple ideas with some other teams and our last was a smartphone cleaner. With the topic being “Naught-o-mation” we thought the latter would make the most sense seeing as nowadays smartphones have become integrated in everyone’s daily lives and through that a part of the household.

iClean: an all-around smartphone washing station

“Wash away your millennial sins with the iClean. This machine doesn’t only clean away the materialistic dirt on your phone but also your social media trash. “


Team 6 – The Naughty Weighn

Published on: September 10, 2018 | Author: Julia Vehns | Categories: 2018b, Projects

The Idea

There are many approaches and suggestions to lose or not to pick up more weight. Let me guess, none of these approaches have helped you? We would like to introduce you to a completely different method: The Naughty Weighn 😈

The Naughty Weighn is a smart scale that recognizes when you’ve gained or lost weight. And well… it will let you know…but in a naughty way and everyone around you will see it. Have a look at our video to get a first impression:


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Team 5 – “In-Your-Face”

Published on: September 10, 2018 | Author: Franziska Haaf | Categories: 2018b, Best Projects, Projects

UPDATE: Our machine got shown in “Kiki’s Beautychannel”! A great beautyshow on youtube 🙂 see the video here:


Team 2 – The Smart Mouse House

Published on: September 9, 2018 | Author: Mengyi Zhang | Categories: 2018b, Projects


The first idea of this project is designing a mousetrap, that can catch a mouse without harm. The basic features of this mousetrap are: closing the door after a mouse enters the trap, playing music, and rotating a disco ball with fancy light. Additionally there is a web camera observing the inside of the trap. My team partner Diana has drawn a wonderful picture showing below for the first draft. This sketching was also used as poster on the presentation day.

The Sketching of Smart Mouse House

The following video shows the final prototype that we finished. All basic features work well and we also added the web camera.


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Topic for the summer of 2018

Published on: September 4, 2018 | Author: Bernhard Slawik | Categories: 2018b, Projects

This term’s topic is *drumroll*


Naughty Gadgets and Sh!tty Robots

Goal for each team is to create a potentially useful device, which has that certain twist to it: Tragic Comedy. Minimum Viable Parody. Smart… in a bad way 🙂

As usual, most participants arrive at the course knowing nothing about electronics, soldering, laser cutting etc., but nonetheless they all have only one week to learn, tinker and deliver.

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