Alex Hsieh

When you know better, you do better

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Hands-On Learning: Educational Kit For Learning About Circuit Theory

My idea:

Hands-on learning experience for learning about ciruits and electronics, which is typically a theory-heavy subject.

Details:

See www.kinesthetikits.com for more info.

Traditionally, circuit theory is taught through lectures. Hands-on experience comes only in lab courses or software simulation programs. Software simulation programs are great for learnning the theory, but really lack in practicality: it is very different from physically building a circuit. Lab courses use standard breadboards, which are tedious to use because of the small spacing between connections, including small components like resistors, capacitors, etc. Also, wiring up everything together clutters things visually, making it hard to follow from a hand-drawn circuit to a physical one.

My goal is to fix this problem. I want students to get excited about circuits and hardware and discover how fun it is, rather than get put off by it's compexity. I want students to realize they can not only understand how electronics work, but also realize they can use this knowledge to create their own products.

My solution to this is to make an easy-to-use kit that will allow students to first learn the basics (theory), and then use it to create their own designs (practicality). This will be done by making all components look almost identical to their respective schematic symbols, and making all electrical connections magnetically. Students can then easily go from schematic to circuit on their desk or on a white board for collaboration.

Why it won't work:

  • The market is relatively small - niche
  • A kit purely for the "learning phase" is too disposable
  • No clear competitive advantage or stand-out "attraction"

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