This past weekend, Big Red Hacks, the largest student run hackathon at Cornell University, hosted a major hackathon in partnership with Major League Hacking. Michael and his team consisting of Maya Yu, Austin Vollweiler, and Michell Card all worked together to design and create an innovative multi-use form of assistive technology to improve independence and health in individuals with physical disabilities in our community and beyond! We essentially switch adapted a battery-operated display device and mounted it with the help of GoPro mounts, 3D printed attachments, and adhesive interlocking velcro to create a product that could be used in more ways than one to help individuals with physical disabilities participate in more everyday activities more independently.
One of these applications for our product was that of an assistive cup turner/milk pourer that works by using a switch to rotate the mounted display turner connected to a cup of liquid, or milk, and pouring this liquid into another cup or cereal. This helps the individual with the disability be more involved in an everyday process such as preparing breakfast.
The other application that we worked on for the product was that of creating an assistive art/painting station that works in a similar setup in that one mount is able to hold and rotate a blank canvas by pressing the switch and an additional display turner works by rotating the paintbrush to be able to pick up paint on the end of the paintbrush and paint images on the rotating canvas. This design can be used by individuals with disabilities to help paint on their own only with the help of switches that operate the turntables.
In the end, our project ended up winning the Major League Hacking Best Hardware Hack Prize for the Hackathon! This means we had the best hardware design and submission among the 170+ people that participated at the Hackathon! The actual prizes we won were Grove Beginner Kits, or design boards similar to Arduinos that can be used in a variety of projects, including ones involving assistive technology that we are excited to be able to use in the near future! We are looking forward to taking our endeavors further at Cornell and can't wait to see what the future holds!
To check out more about our project including some images and videos, see: