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The design of the Pill Dispenser is out and I can’t wait to print the parts of it using 3D printer.

Today, thanks to Miss Selyn, I get an appointment opportunity with Mr Ong, the Assistant Director of NIEO and who is in charge of the Open Innovation Labs. He is a very friendly and kind guy who helped me to reassess my project idea. He pointed out some key things that are very useful during an innovation process. Although these are the things that are very general (and heard about them everywhere) but they are really an essential part of innovation. I think this method can be applied to any idea generation process too.

  1. Identify the pain points – what exactly is the problem that you are trying to solve.
  2. Give a real life scenario to better relate the pain points to “audience”.
  3. Come up with a solution to address each of those pain points identified.
  4. Consider different aspects and possibilities.
  5. Research on the existing solutions.
  6. Compare and contrast how my solution works better than the existing one (in terms of cost saved, time saved, resources saved, efficiency improvement, etc)
  7. Build a prototype from really simple material to get a feel of how the mechanism would work. Things seem perfect in mind and computer but not in real life.

For the pill dispenser, there is some interlinked issues that I have to solve in order to make it a marketable product. The backbone of the issue is that what is the exact pain point to solve, which in turns determines the application of the pill dispenser (in hospital or home usage). Other considerations include the additional features that can be added onto the pill dispenser (such as multiple notches on a disk), how fast can the dispenser dispense, can the pills be dispensed concurrently, contamination and storage issues, humanistic design, and so on.

I would say it was a very fruitful discussion as I gain a lot of old and new inspirations (old because I thought about it before but I have forgotten about it) and motivations. I’ve gain access to the labs and facilities inside. Mr Ong also showed me the 3D Printer, MakerBot Replicator 2, and brief me on how 3D printing works. It seems very interesting and I can’t wait to try it.


I took this MakerBot Replicator2 photo a few months back in Singapore Polytechnic but it’s the same one as the one in the lab.

I also received the servo motors and force resistors from SGBotics today. 😀
2014-01-17 15.46.21

Got to work really hard for my FYP! >:)