Will o'the Wind Home

Birita í Dali - Fab Academy 2018

More about the creator Final Project Page

Project Breakdown

Weekly tasks and progress

Week 1: Website creation

During the first week, I've created the website and narrowed down my final project proposals.

Week 2: Project Management

This week, I created a more solid idea of what I want my final project to be like, named it, researched existing alternatives and used the course structure to create a plan for the process of creating the final project. I also made issue cards in GitLab to have a more intuitive project management area.

Week 3: Computer-Aided Design

This week we're meant to "model (raster, vector, 2D, 3D, render, animate, simulate, ...) a possible final project, and post it on your class page". As a group, our lab decided to focus primarily on Fusion 360. I created and "animated" a four-part model of my Will o'the Wind.

Week 4: Computer-controlled Cutting

I am very familiar with the vinyl cutter, so my plan is to create a Logo and QR-code that links to my website. For the parametric laser cut design, I will recreate my Bunobe units in Fusion 360. They are not related to the lamp, but they are kerf-aligned units that can be assembled in all the same ways you can assemble sonobe origami units.

Week 5: Electronics Production

We are meant to make an in-circuit programmer by milling the PCB, Perhaps I could make one that controls the model? I am fairly certain they will have us make the echo board, which I've done once before.

Week 6:3D scanning and printing

I will design and print some of the parts for my lamp. We need to 3D scan an object. Perhaps I can 3D scan some of the electrical components, to more accurately account for them in my 3D design, or sculpt (using traditional materials) details for the lamp to scan.

Week 7: Electronics Design

Redraw the echo hello-world board, add buttons and LEDs with resistors. Check, make, test, measure and simulate. This assignment will be a good opportunity to gain skills that I can apply to my final project.

Week 8: Computer Controlled Machining

make something big: Create the base and post for the lamp. It needs to withstand harsh weather conditions and be deployable, while still stand firmly, so it doesn't fall over at high windspeeds. Perfect opportunity to mill design into fencepost?

Week 9: Embedded Programming

I look forward to reading a microcontroller data sheet, to get to know more about them. I intend to program my board to generate multiple types of light using rgb leds. I will try Arduino programming and other languages. I hope to try the same program with a vinyl cut flexible circuitry.

Week 10: Mechanical Design

This week we will focus on a group assignment, which is to design a machine (mechanism+automation), including the end effector. We need to build the parts and operate them manually and document the project as well as our individual contribution

Week 11: Machine Design

As a continuation from the previous week, we work in our groups to plan and make a machine. We need to document the group project and our individual contribution.

Week 12: Output Devices

After a refreshing break from the final project, I expect it will be a great relief to return to it with renewed vigor. During this weeks assignment, I will add several RGB leds to a microcontroller board I'll design, and program them to change color in a coded sequence.

Week 13: Molding and Casting

This part is going to be a lot of fun, since I haven't worked with the materials available in the lab before. I would like to create molds for some of my parts, to make it easier to recreate them the future. This also grants access to other materials that the 3D printer or laser cutter can offer, which might be a way to make the lamp more weather-proof. Together with the rest of my group, we will review the safety data sheets for each of our molding and casting materials, make and compare tests with each of them. This will give us a great foundation for future experimentation.

Week 14: Input Devices

I think I will use a phototransistor as my primary input device, but it will be interesting to experiment with adding pentometers to customize the type of light (multiple colors, perhaps a looping sequence) the device outputs. That way, the color and mode of light can be controlled via a remote from indoors, which is a good project to continue in week 16: Network and communications.

Week 15: Wildcard Week

This week is a wildcard week, which I take to mean that we can do whatever our hearts desire. That's perfect, since it gives us a chance to polish parts of the project which could be better, or prepare some of the groundwork for the coming weeks. Either way, it will be excellent.

Week 16: Networking and Communications

The dream is to connect the pentometers from the assignment about "input devices" to the lamp remotely so that we can adjust the style of lighting from a remote control unit inside. This would require bluetooth connected devices that network with one another. Ultimately, it should be possible to connect multiple lamps to the same control unit. In addition, I migh tbe able to have the lamp send a signal to the remote when the battery is full, when it is empty and when it is charging.

Week 17: Interface and Application Programming

I could have my app connect to the control unit, essentially bypassing the need for the pentometers. Another option is to include a barometer and an accelerometer to the turbine and lamp housing, to gather data on weather conditions which would be logged and read through an application.

Week 18: Applications and Implications

By the time this class arrives, we need to propose a final project that integrates the range of units covered, answering: what will it do? who's done what beforehand? what materials and components will be required? where will they come from? how much will it cost? what parts and systems will be made? what processes will be used? what tasks need to be completed? what questions need to be answered? what is the schedule? how will it be evaluated? projects can be separate or joint, but need to show individual mastery of the range of skills covered where possible, you should make rather than buy the parts of your project.At this point, I will have more realistic and concrete ideas of how to implement my ideas."

Week 19: Invention, Intellectual Property and Income

We are meant to develop a plan for dissemination of our final project. Most likely I will want to make the design and production files free and open, so that other makers can replicate the process themselves. I might also create a microbusiness that makes batches of lamps for small scale, local retail. Finally, it might be interesting to contact Icewind, a company that develops and sells wind turbines in Iceland, to see if they are interested in my product. We will need to prepare a summary slide (presentation.png, 1280x1024) and video clip (presentation.mp4, 1080p HTML5, less than a minute ~minute, less than ~10 MB) in our root directory"

Week 20: Project Development

I will use this time to finalize my project and prepare the presentation.

Week 21: Project Presentation

This is where the presentation will go.

Fab Academy lets me expand on my skills!

My name is Birita í Dali. With an education in teaching business at an upper-secondary level, I love using Fab Lab to empower my students to bring their ideas to life.

A bit about me

Who I am

A viking, innovator, teacher nerd-mom.

collage of pictures of me

My history in a nutshell.

I was born in Denmark to Faroese parents. We moved back to the Faroe Islands when I was still a toddler. When I was 16, I was granted a scholarship to go to the Nordic United World College in Norway. There, I met my, now, husband, who is Icelandic. One of his childhood friends was greatly involved with the Westman Island Fab Lab while it was being established. Through him, I learned about the various machines, and fell in love with the ideology. Fast forward 10 years, a Bachelor's degree, a son, a whole bunch of historical reenactment and a Master's degree and here I am. I am currently working at the high school on the small island my husband grew up on, teaching innovation, fablab, cultural studies and more.

A bit about my skillset

My skills

What I've done before


From a young age, my mom tought me all I know about weaving, sewing, knitting, crochet, felting, leatherwork and more.


While I'm no artist, I know the basics of sketching my ideas so I can continue working on them.


My dad is a carpenter. He taught me a lot about the basics of treating wood.


In the past few months I have become very familiar with Inkscape, enabling me to tackle most design related challenges.

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