On November 14th Design Museum Boston's Designing a Difference team got together with the Smallbean team for our second workshop. This time we were joined by Jason Gifford (design director) and Tony Quartarone (industrial designer) from Samsonite. We are very excited about the opportunity to collaborate with Samsonite and look forward to learn from their expertise, integrate their products and utilize their resources. It's a perfect time for them to join our team as we are working towards refining our design direction and quickly begin to move into prototyping. Samsonite will play an integral role in our prototyping development, we are very thankful for their involvement and sponsorship of our project.
The day started with a recap of our first workshop, a reminder about the the conditions in Tanzania and issues with the current system. Together the team then reviewed the journey map that identifies user touch points and continued by reviewing the concepts from early brainstorm sketches to final concept directions. After a brief discussion around the concepts we stopped for a quick lunch break.
Samsonite then kicked off the afternoon session with an introduction about Samsonite and their work and how they see it integrating into the Smallbean project. From there the team dove straight into brainstorming around the concept directions presented. The team spent the afternoon collaborating; sketching and drawing on the whiteboard. With some new information from Sean and Ross regarding the opportunity to create and utilize a launch pad facility it soon became apparent that the right direction would be a system approach with several parts included. The solar panels will be mounted on the launch pad facility near the school, all the laptops and additional parts will be charged and stored safely at the launch pad as well. Every day the charged laptops with back up batteries and a projector will be transported to the school. A portable carrying case for multiple laptops will have to be designed for this purpose. The team will also have to design a portable carrying case that can be used by students to bring batteries home. These batteries will allow them to use electricity in their homes at night for lights, cooking or charging devices. The batteries will be charged using excess electricity from the solar panels.
With everyone aligned on one clear direction the team felt really good about the day's work and excited about moving forward! We look forward to our 3rd workshop and in the meantime will be hard at work refining our chosen concept direction. Please stay tuned for more photos and a video from our productive day!
Designing-A-Difference is Design Museum Boston’s campaign to educate the public on the transformative power of design by helping nonprofits find innovative solutions to economic, social, and environmental problems. Design Museum Boston will document the design process from beginning to end and post the team’s progress online. Each project will then culminate in an online and onsite exhibit showcasing the nonprofit and the team’s design work with the ultimate goal of educating the public through the practical application of design.
Small Bean is a non profit organization working to close the technology gap with their Citizen Archivist Project.
They teach technology skills and document community life around the world. Their initiatives are enabled by solar
power and the in-kind donation of personal electronics. Their first project was launched in Kwala, Tanzania, where solar panels were set up on the roof of a school, the energy was converted into electricity using their "solar suitcase" and then used to power personal computers to teach high school students who had virtually no previous exposure to computers.
To see more photos from the charette visit our flickr album. And stay tuned for our video which will be posted on our website designmuseumboston.org . Read more about the Designing-A-Difference campaign here
For more information about Small Bean visit their website and blog.
For more information on Samsonite visit their website.