Nothing is every “invented” from the chair in a cubicle. Ideas come from exploration and a culmination of unique insights. Jack Dorsey came up with the concepts of Twitter through the culmination of thoughts gathered around transportation communication. At an early age, he was fascinated with trains and maps. He took note of the way people talked on CB radios. They spoke in bursts and they were always talking about what they were doing and where they were going. Dorsey changed the world by making communication through 140 characters a norm. It’s helped revolutionaries get their message out. It’s also been the pitfall of several celebrities and politicians that got a little too tweet happy… and this gives us entertainment.
The Boombot was conceived on a bike commute and ultimately unleashed to the world for use in a number of activities. This week’s mailer is all about what we’re doing to enhance the future of your next adventure. This is the innovation edition.
The R&D of Today
This week we got our first pilot run of handlebar mounts. We kept hitting the refresh button on our Fedex tracker. We were HOPING that we’d be really close to having a dialed finished product. Unfortunately, the mounts arrived and we were only 11% away from perfection. Last time we added a vibration dampening to our mount, but we found that the rubber dampener just didn’t sit snug in the unit. It also wasn’t quite thick enough. The teeth that hold the mount closed were also not thickened to our specifications.
The photo above shows a beefed up version we cut by hand with thicker rubber. Clearly, it’s cut by hand because it looks awful. The reality with prototyping is that getting it to work well is far more important than making it look sexy. We also found that the unit was clicking a bit during vibration from the top. This was caused by the spring on the clip flopping the unit up and down. We realized we needed to add a second rubber dampener. This mount now has THREE rubber dampening areas: around the bars, inside the mount and on top. We took this newly hacked model for a ride and it rode like a champion. Curb, speedbump, cliff, drop, whatever you threw at this thing, the Boombot not only stayed in place, it didn’t even so much as rattle. We got back to the lab and quickly spec’d out our revisions and sent them back to the factory. We’re still shooting for October delivery.
THE R&D OF TOMORROW
This week, it occurred to us that almost everyone in the portable speaker market has been using a compromised design in speaker mounting. Most smaller portable speakers are glued into place which makes them a little less resilient to impact. We also found that the inconsistent mounting technique also limits speakers from reaching their full acoustic potential.
We came up with a design that would change the way our speakers are mounted in the future using a concentric ring that screws the speakers into place and seals them with significantly more pressure than ever. The design was part inspired by disassembling larger speakers to see how higher power devices were maintaining structural integrity. Much can be learned from tinkering.
Every time our fans post on Swagonomics, we see our product used in different ways. Our Swagonomics feed isn’t just another way to hook up our most hardcore fans. This is a place where we can compile data about our product used. We then hit the drawing boards to develop our gear to be even more optimized for the lifestyle of our community. This week’s most innovative feature photos from left to right, top to bottom include: Peterbakeris, Whatrick, Estiloskateboards, Fleofficiel, indigo_nico
As you can see, innovation is a very fulfilling and fun. It’s even more fun to do as a team. We are building a ton of stuff for 2014 and we’d like you to start thinking about what you want to seen in the next generation of Boombots. Hit us up on Twitter and Facebook and let us know what you want. You’re not going to know unless you get out there and push our gear to the limits. So get after it!