Portability is a core design requirement for craft-tech interactives. It enables kids to share their designs outside of the settings in which they were created – for example in schools, creches, pediatric clinics, etc., to promote learning and interest in design.
We are also looking at the portability of the host computer, to further facilitate these spreading actions. Our ‘lunchbox’ design is low-cost, robust and fits in a backpack. It can be built up in a few minutes, and isn’t dependent on a local power supply.
Velleman VMP402 HDMI-B for Raspberry Pi touchscreen is a good fit on the back of the lid. It also has mounting holes on the four corners, and displays the Scratch programming environment at a nice working size. It can be fastened to the lid with cable ties, and latex washers under the four corners provide space for the components mounted on the back of the screen.
3. Fastening Points
(left) Latex washers creating space between screen and lid. (right) Shortened ties tucked under two of the fastening points at the time of tightening. They can be clipped onto the rim of the box to stand the screen at about 45 degrees for work.
4.) Protective Padding
The foam from the original Velleman (or other screen) package can be resized to box dimensions with a cutting knife. It should be a tight fit to prevent parts moving around in transit.
Raspberry Pi single-board computer, mini portable speaker, powerbank, HDMI cable, USB cable. The Raspberry Pi OS has Scratch 1.4 (called NuScratch on the Pi) and python 3 preinstalled.
6.) Host Computer
The assembled host computer, with screen clipped to rim of box for work. The fundakit XBee coordinator is plugged into a USB port. We generally use a small wireless keyboard and mouse for presentations, to facilitate interaction with the Scratch environment and commandline. You could also try installing a virtual keyboard on the RPi, and rely exclusively on touch.
The host can be built up in a far corner of the room, away from the interactive. This allows users to become immersed in the user experience; interactions with, through and around the shared social object.