Word of the day- pokayoke


Poka-yoke (ポカヨケ?) [poka yoke] is a Japanese term that means "mistake-proofing". A poka-yoke is any mechanism in a lean manufacturing process that helps an equipment operator avoid (yokeru) mistakes (poka). Its purpose is to eliminate product defects by preventing, correcting, or drawing attention to human errors as they occur.The concept was formalised, and the term adopted, by Shigeo Shingo as part of the Toyota Production System.[2][3] It was originally described as baka-yoke, but as this means "fool-proofing" (or "idiot-proofing") the name was changed to the milder poka-yoke.

dead or alive? dead after all

the missing airplane shows that whatever futuristic things we might develop, its important to be in the present(+3 seconds to avoid maybe a dangerous cat to attack you).

we propose technologies that 'would touch lives' 50 years ahead, and forget to live in/for the present. either we're too much altruistic or just too busy the rat race of inventing a future that we don't know what will be good for. after all these inventions and industries, has world become a happier place? Not sure. Yes, we definitely have gotten many superhuman powers now, but the fact everyone has those powers keeps us pushing for inventing even more.

--- pause---

for a moment, lets be in the moment, and thank nature at times for it has conspired till this very moment-that we are.

I can't even begin to count the number of sensors/technologies, that plane had one in all, so many lives, so many stories. All have become one with the nature now. In split second.

At times have you wondered, that outside that .5 feet plastic wall is pure destruction- juxtaposed to our belief/realisation- as the beautiful airhostness asks us which wine we'd fancy and we're complaining how low resolution the LCDs are.

Right beyond that half a feet of platic/metal lies a dance of death, that'll freeze your blood, in 5 seconds. Realize?

I dont want to scare you, or myself, so I'll stop. I'll drink some green-tea now and leave for my lab. I have those inventions to do.

RIP all victims of Flight 370.  


According to the accredited mechanical flying rules
the bumble-bee can't fly,
because of its shape and its weight
compared with its wing surface.
But the bumble-bee doesn't know about that
and does fly nonetheless.

[Rolf Schneider] 


Magic is inspiring. For it can light up the eyes of the sad, make the logical person believe in things he wouldn't otherwise. Any piece of art, music, work that inspires others to me seems like magic. For its so simple yet none of us could make it, other than the creator. 

Ink harvester progress 1

That's the version 0.1 of the ink-harvester box design. I ended up designing my own enclosure, instead of using Altoids box, though they're the same size.

-The suction exhaust pulls the air containing soot particles from the surroundings.
-A syringe with 1 way valve is being used as the pump which will push the ink into the cartridge.

Next phase,

- Design the carbon separator using capacitive plates. The air comes in with a lot of dust most of which dust and other particles. The powdery black soot separated from rest is what we're interested in.
This principle is used in Chimneys to reduce the carbon particles injected into the atmosphere.

- Interfacing a small sachet that mixes Isopropyl Alcohol and Gum arabic to the powder. I am going to use this DIY pump design for the constant flow of powder to the system

Harvester setup in a box with syringe pump
DIY Pump Design

Links: http://aonomus.wordpress.com/2010/04/02/diy-syringe-pump-version-3/ 

About smudges, ink, Altoids box and love.

This is not an attempt to win over the pollution. Just a minor itch that led me to build something cool from observations arising from Nostalgia of the days back in India :)

Nostalgia 0 - Just after you're born. ( Suggested by Kunal)

If you're born in India chances are that your grandma will take some steps to protect you from wicked spirits by smudging kajal onto your eyes. The technique to make kajal is old. Its carbon deposited from burning a low fidelity oil.(mustard etc.)

Nostalgia 1- Getting around

I was once day dreaming about the awesome days we spent back in Bikaner, a small city in the west of Rajasthan. It reminded me of the heat, travelling in sweat inducing autorickshaws while we used to do our experiments with building our Multi-touch table with low tech techniques(ref. Rahul, Sudhanshu and Vivek). The month of June there was full of sweat, with unburnt smoke rising from unending tur-tur-ing of autorickshaws blackening our skin.
Kote gate

Nostalgia 2

I used to spend some of my summers in a village 30 kms from Mathura where I would wait for my grandmother to cook some delicious MaalPua (pancakes in syrup) on her earthen chulha fueled by wooden twigs.
Desi Chulha

The evenings were spent under a lamp preparing for exams that I'll have to write after the holidays at my school back in Delhi. The beautiful lamps were placed exactly at the same spot daily, and the soot from them would slowly go up and blacken the walls, creating artsy designs.

Nostalgia 3

I'd come home after travelling in DTC/BlueLine buses in Delhi. The pollution setting on the skin mixed with summer sweat would make my mother put my white shirts to wash everyday.


The above reminisces of memories -  the pollution from the bus, the soot from the lamps, and the autorickshaws that run on diesel - have one thing in common. Black marks.

I was discussing the idea with Amna, Harshit, Pragun, Rahul and Nathan, what if we could harvest the unburnt carbon from the surroundings and re-purpose it to a low tech ink.

The project is on. We're working on a layer that allows particles 2.5um-8um in size which would let soot or smoke to be captured inside a tiny harvester.  All of it sits within an Altoids mints box.

Some schematics. Not to scale. If you've got any ideas please let me know. All contributors will be properly credited.