Spider Top (Spider Dress):
A dress? Out of LEGO? Why that, you will ask!
It's all Anouk Wipprecht's fault! And again, you will ask, Who is Anouk Wipprecht? Let me tell you about her, with her own words:
"What does fashion lack? "Microcontrollers" according to Dutch based fashiontech designer and innovator Anouk Wipprecht. As she is working in the emerging field of "fashion-tech"; a rare combination of fashion design combined with engineering, science and interaction/user experience design, she created an impressive body of tech-enhanced designs bringing together fashion and technology in an unusual way. She creates technological couture; with systems around the body that tend towards artificial intelligence; projected as 'host' systems on the human body, her designs move, breath, and react to the environment around them."
One of the best known projects of Anouk is her Spider Dress!
I always have been a fan of that dress ... so why not build something like that with LEGO bricks?
The original Spider Dress is a 3D printed "mechatronic dress with an Intel Edison chip that uses biosignals and learned threat detection to defend the wearer’s personal space."
In other words, when the wearer of the dress feels stressed or someone comes too near, the attached spider legs will attack!
So ... I started this project asking Isabella, a young member of my LUG (LGOe, LEGO Gemeinschaft Österreichs) if she is willing to wear that dress in public at our annual spring exhibition in Vienna, Austria ... and she was interested and thrilled ... thanks again, Isabella!
The next step was to build the top of the dress out of LEGO Technic beams ... boy, that was hard!
You have to know about me, I'm a hard core technician, give me any technical goal and I will build your dream machine ... but organic shapes, with LEGO bricks ... me? never ever!
So it took some time to realize, that this is impossible for me to build out of thin air. Help arrived in the shape of a dress form, donated by my daughter Teresa.
Now it was a bit easier modeling those gentle hills with those edged beams.
As a distraction during the assembling of the dress I quickly built the mechanical part ... an EV3 brain is attached to the back of the dress, together with four small EV3 motors and four worm gear boxes. The output axles of these gears boxes are connected to four spider legs. Each leg consists of leg tips from the old NXT kit, Technic beams and one 32 long axle, which guarantees a smooth movement of the leg.
On the front are two infrared distance sensors attached, those react to the "intruders".
The program (EV3-G) is simple!
If no one is nearer than 100 cm then nothing happens ... easy!
If some one enters the space in front of the dress/the wearer from 100 cm to 20 cm then the legs on the shoulder starts moving ... gentle movements ... just be careful!
But if someone comes closer than 20 cm, the spider legs attack ... without warning!
I named my dress "SPID3R TOP", because I had not enough grey Technic beams to build the whole dress, but me thinks, that doesn't matter at all! ;)