What is it?
The topic of the current “sketching with hardware” course were toys used in a uncommon situation. We designed a teddy bear which supports relationships over far distance. Couples which can’t be together in their daily life often miss their significant other. With TOGEBEAR it’s more easy to tell the beloved person that he or she is on your mind. You simply have to push a button and TOGEBEAR sends an email to your partner. Both have one and when the email arrives a blinking heart and the smell of his or her perfume signalizes the incoming email.
The toy we used was a teddy bear. At the beginning we thought about various toys but we always came bake to the traditional plush toy. The normal usage of a teddy is to cuddle it or to play role games. We liked the sweet look of the common teddy and tried to expand the possible features. TOGEBEAR is able to exude the smell of the loved person. Moreover the toy can send random emails over a button in the ear and signalizes incoming emails via a big blinking heart. We wanted to make something real special, so we didn’t buy a teddy bear, no, we made one right from the beginning out of 5 bags of wool. So no teddy will be like TOGEBEAR.
We wanted TOGEBEAR to involve all senses. In the final concept we decided to add a fragrance which sprays when you get an email from your partner. And a heart, which is held by the bear, that should make a light-signal. We created a step-by-step concept, which made it possible to see how fast the transformation of our ideas works. Referring to that we thought about more possible features, but in that short time it wasn’t possible to realize them all. The possible additional features were the favorite song of the couple played by TOGEBEAR, and also the possibility to send a voice mail to your partner.
How does it work/Problems?
- to spray fragrance
At the beginning we had a lot of problems with this feature. First we thought we could simply press the button with a „servo“, but this wasn’t the solution. We then came to the idea that it would be easier to exchange the smell of an “AIRWICK” with our perfume. That was really difficult but after a some “smashed” ones we finally found the solution.
- to send an mail
We just put an button in the ear of the bear and wrote a program that sends an random email to a previous named person.
- blinking heart
We made a chain out of LED’s and connected it with an ARDUINO.
The most important thing: We solved every problem, even it was sometimes hard
I already mentioned the possible sound feature. Now TOGEBEAR needs a connection via USB. In the future it would be nice to integrate BLUETOOTH.