Monthly Archives: May 2015

A Look at the Code – Xan

As my blog posts near their end, I thought that it might be nice to take some time to explain a bit about how the hand electronics and code work. This post should give the reader a fair bit of information about what the code actually does, and may briefly touch on how the electronics work with the code. I want this post to be pretty thorough, so if you have any questions or want anything clarified by the end, feel free to ask in the comments!

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Purification Oasis Pools: An Equally Valuable Mistake, an Interesting Journey

Finally. My last blog post. This project has been an interesting journey for sure. Balancing the responsibility of an independent project with: getting into college, memorizing lines for a play, memorizing for another play, rehearsals for the first play, yet even memorizing for a third play (are you sensing a theme here?), working on scholarships, trying desperately to be interested in my statistics class, and finishing out the year at Westtown – making the most out of these last couple of weeks with my boarding school family; that balancing act sure has been tough. Continue reading

Purification Oasis Pools: This Ghat or that Ghat?

My first exposure to ghats was last summer in Pushkar, India. A ghat is a series of steps which lead down into a body of water, and the holy lake at Pushkar had more than a few. It was explained to me by a local Brahman that the lake is surrounded by 52 separate ghats, which are often used in religious rites. Continue reading

Purification Oasis Pools: Love is Blind

So to continue putting into perspective the absolute dire and catastrophic scale of the holy river’s pollution, consider the following: 50 or 500 fecal coliform per 100 ml of water is unsafe for drinking, and 5000 per 100 ml is the agricultural limit; the average count of the Ganges is 1-2 million per ml of water.

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Purification Oasis Pools: Bacteria, Viruses, Chemicals Oh My

Raw sewage, industrial chemicals, bacteria, and viruses would all have to be removed to create the kind of oasis I am envisioning. The purification system would have to be cheap, easily replaceable, and unobtrusive. I am hoping to create a space where people can safely worship, clean their clothes, swim, bath, and maybe even brush their teeth. That last bit might be tricky do to the sheer amount of pollutants. Continue reading

Evolution of the Helicopter

It happened! I rode in a helicopter for the second time in my entire life with my friend Claudia at the American Helicopter Museum this past weekend! I flew in an R-44 Robinson helicopter piloted by an older man with over 1000 hours of flight time logged in every war since Vietnam. Continue reading


This blog will be my last post and the probably the shortest one. With AP exams, service day, and a field trip, I didn’t get to shoot any sequences this week. However, I did solve the technological issues and put together my final video as the presentation date has been moved to this Friday, May 15th. I will post the link to the video here after Friday because I don’t want to spoil it.  😛

(Here is the link:

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A Functioning Test Platform and New Code – Xan

It’s been two weeks since my last post, and a great deal has happened since then. Most notably, the second version of the handstand has been constructed and set up. Take a look at the video below for a quick demonstration of that and the new and improved debug program (The thing graphing data on my laptop). In the video I demonstrate the new debug program screen, the hand opening and closing with the EMG system, and all of the hand functions that are currently loaded: pinch, peace sign, rock sign, and two types of finger wave. Most of the functions are placeholders, but they’re still fun to see.

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