In this version
- New solution
- User experience
- Data logging to an SD card
When attending the Hacklab Student Developer Conference last year, one piece of entrepreneurial advice the really resonated with me was, "Don't fall in love with your solution." I originally intended for Quantus to be an internet-connected device that could be controlled via a web browser on a phone, tablet, or computer. After much deliberation I have realized that this is not the optimal solution for three reasons: first, school Wi-Fi connections tend to be very slow, use non-standard authentication protocols, and can be highly unreliable; second, wireless connectivity adds to the overall cost of the device; and third, Wi-Fi adds several layers of complexity for the user.
However, the same problem still exists: there needs to exist a simple, accurate, and cost-effective physics apparatus so students can collect meaningful data in their school labs.
Without wireless connectivity, Quantus is now controlled directly on the device and data is stored on an SD card. I believe this new solution will result in a much better product for the user.
My goal with Quantus is to make the user experience as simple as possible. By removing wireless connectivity, there must exist a new way of controlling the device.
Solution: A single button with a status LED.
Data collection is dead-simple. Push the button once to stat collecting data and pushing it again to stop. An RGB LED indicates the device's state (collecting data, standby, no SD card inserted etc.) I plan to let users edit advanced features such as adjust the data collection frequency though a simple application installed on the SD card that can be run on their computer.
Although I anticipated that not seeing a live-stream of the data being collected would make using Quantus much more challenging, this has not been my experience. Further user testing will be needed to confirm this.
Data logging to an SD card
Quantus now logs all data to an SD card as a CSV file. Given that data is collected with the push of a button (on the device) and logged on external storage, Quantus is now operates independently of a computer.