Tuesday, January 04, 2005

the ece project

Ex 2 : 8 20 pm

Having decided on creating an 'intelligent' car, we set about trying to make it work. Using the parts we bought from Active, all we could do was make up some contraption that looked nothing like a car. Moreover, we lacked the most important part required to make our car 'interesting'. A sensor which apparently was not in stock in any of the sotres that we looked at, and only available through some online webstit and would take about 3 or 4 days to arrive. And 3 or 4 days we did not have. Also our other two group members seemed not to be in favor of the idea.

And thus we settled on the printer. To be perfectly honest, I had absolutely no idea how the printer would work. I could not for the life of me visualize how the printer would even after seeing some pictures from groups that had done it in the past. Even so, we went ahead with the plan and began collecting parts. So back it was to active surplus, looking specifically for gears to run both the pen and to move the paper back and forth. Another 3 or 4 hours and we had some sad excuses for parts. At this point it was thursday night and we had spent two days going back and forth with ideas and trips to active and had not achieved anything concrete other than settling on the idea.

With 407 due in another 3 days, I took the decision to take the time off for the next three days working on that while the other two worked on the project. The only problem with this plan was that for it to work, i assumed the other two would work, which of course didnt happen. At the end of monday when i got back from an allnighter, and handed in the 407 assignment (which was a different story altogether), I met at our usual hangout (BA3200) to find that the assignment had progressed to a degree of zero, during the last two days.

I was filled with panic. We had two days to demonstrate a working project and we had nothing. at that point i thought there was no way we could get the thing workin. We considered swithcing ideas and doing something simple and trying to get a lower mark rather than working on this and having nothin workin and getting a zero. So off i went again to active and bought photo resistors, to make a key pad sensitive to touch. i had decided that this would be my last day workin on the project since the 407 exam was another 2 days away. so another all nighter it was. of course no one else wanted to pull an allnighter so it was me and the half done project for one night.

I remember halfwar thru the night i gave up doin what i was doin and decided to sleep. i was half awake and could hear other students in the study room discussing how iwas sleeping and better positions to sleep. the next morning when i awoke i was in a state of panic that i had possibly never felt before. i could not think any longer and began to actually calculate my mark in the course assuming i received a zero on the project.

Mamun walked in early morning. The poor guy had an exam in an hour and was also stressed about not having anything done. Anyhow he tried to help me for a bit but then had to leave for the exam. When he got back he seemed much more relaxed and in a mood to get things working. All of a sudden ideas started flowing. We tried things and got a motor going. Next thing we know we were hooking up parts from k'nex we had bought earlier and soon the printer head was fixed and moving across. next we fixed the wheels to move the paper and within half an hour had the paper moving smoothly across. we were witnessing a miracle!

within two hours we knew exactly how to get this working. i was breathing a lot easier......

to be continued....

8 40pm


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