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Record your baby's first year FOR SCIENCE. Keep data and photos in a lab-style memory book designed by children's artist Tiffany Ard
Record your baby's first year FOR SCIENCE. Keep data and photos in a lab-style memory book designed by children's artist Tiffany Ard
318 backers pledged $13,872 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

Science baby memory book - THE HUMAN INFANT PROJECT project video thumbnail
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The goal of this project is to produce a 1000-copy print run of my hardbound baby keepsake book for science-loving parents.

Science is all about seeking answers to life's big questions. Babies raise a million questions just by existing: Do you have a name picked out? Boy or girl? Where did those gorgeous eyes come from? Is he sleeping through the night? How much did she weigh? Is he walking/talking/solving for X yet?

Besides, raising a child is truly one big experiment. It's okay to feel like you're using trial and error to get your baby to go to sleep. So is everyone else.

And more than that, I love science. I love babies. I wish something like this had been available when my kids were born, so I made it.

The Human Infant Project includes all of the sections you'd expect from any baby book. But instead of traditional headings like "Before you were born" and "The delivery" etc, you will find sections like:
ABSTRACT, results summary
TEAM BIO/ BACKGROUND, prior works -- open ended, not gender specific
METHODOLOGY -- families can be built in so many ways
DATA -- all those little details
OBSERVATIONS -- milestones and notes about your baby's first year
CONCLUSIONS -- letters of love, photos, lock of hair...

Take a peek at some of the concepts and works in progress for this version. Bolder colors, cleaner layout, more muchness!

ABSTRACT, results summary

Title page
Title page

TEAM bio and prior works -- this section has been worded so that it will gracefully work for any type of family situation. Single parent, same-sex parents, one mom and one dad, it takes a village, whatever works for you will work for this book. It would even work for Ed and H.I.
It's your story, and I took great care to avoid getting in the way of it.

**senior advisors and background**
**senior advisors and background**

METHODOLOGY -- pages for all of the events and decisions that lead up to the arrival:

  • the pregnancy or adoption process
  • names considered
  • details about baby's arrival
  • current events/popular culture trends
** How it's Made **
** How it's Made **
**Project anticipation phase**
**Project anticipation phase**
**Whether it took 9 months or years to welcome your child, the waiting is the hardest part. Other than the 17 years that follow.**
**Whether it took 9 months or years to welcome your child, the waiting is the hardest part. Other than the 17 years that follow.**

DATA
This section is all about the earliest days.

  • First day home, first visitors, about your first home, gifts, what that first week was like
  • Notes about contemporary life -- news stories, recent scientific breakthroughs, current debates
  • Firsts -- like bath, outing, babysitter, illness, toys, nicknames, smile, laugh, solid food, tooth, haircut, early physics experiments (which can include standing/walking/etc)
  • Favorite things/least favorite things
  • first major holiday
Early physics experiments!
Early physics experiments!

CONCLUSIONS
The final section offers space for...

  • Letters to your young human
  • Details about the first few birthdays
  • Handprints and footprints
  • Photos
  • Medical records
  • Other fun stuff
Reflex milestone bingo! - jot dates in each square
Reflex milestone bingo! - jot dates in each square

A few years ago I designed a science-themed baby book called The Story of You As Told by Nerds. I printed 50 of them and found a local archival bindery to bind them. The books quickly sold out, so I did it again. Since 2009 I've sold hundreds of these books in small batches through Etsy, NerdyBaby.com and Think Geek.

**2010 version**
**2010 version**
**embossed cover, early version**
**embossed cover, early version**

But there are serious bummers of small batch production. Our high cost per book has forced us to keep the retail price at around $45, much pricier than the average baby book. The production time is also long and unpredictable depending on the bindery's workload, so it currently takes anywhere from 4-10 weeks for a batch of books to go from the printer to the bindery to here. This unpredictability has caused us to miss out on retail opportunities because we couldn't fulfill purchase orders in time. Someday, I said, staring wistfully out the window at the night sky, we will print a lot of these on a real press so we will always have them in stock.

It's time to go bigger!
I have found a printer/bindery that will produce a press-run, professionally bound hardback book with minimums of only 1000. With your pre-orders and support we can take advantage of bulk buying power to lower the cost per book to approximately $28.

Backer demanded, mom approved. Add these amounts to your pledge for some cool bonus rewards:

Additional copy of The Human Infant Project book -- $20.00
Coloring book -- $11
Add a signed art print (you will have a choice of prints at the end) -- $15.00
Add an adult T-shirt -- $18
Sterling silver limited edition pendant -- $50.00
Baby's first little physics book, Pat Schrodinger's Kitty. -
- $24

Risks and challenges

The two biggest concerns are always quality and on-time delivery.

To make sure the quality is up to my standards, I am anticipating the additional cost and time to receive a printed proof vs a simple digital proof so we can catch any possible issues before the books are produced. I will also stay in constant -- some may say annoying -- communication with the company.

The other issue is time.
We are on an aggressive timeline, hoping to be able to deliver at least some of the books in time for the holidays. Most of the design work is complete, however with feedback and changes this could take another two weeks to complete. As soon as we reach our funding goal, we will work with the printer/bindery to nail down an exact delivery date. Watch for updates!

I have worked with this company on smaller projects before, and while I do feel confident that they can deliver as promised, this portion of production is admittedly outside of my control.
Any project can encounter delays, particularly when we are shipping across states. Freak snowstorms, damage in shipping, unprecidented grasshopper swarming, etc. I will stay in touch with my backers throughout the project and will update everyone about any possible delays.

As for shipment of backer rewards, there's always the possibility of illness striking me down. I have family and friends who can help but the reality is that if my kids start throwing up, the world slows to a crawl. If this happens, I will hire folks to get everything out the door in a timely manner. I would rather lose money on the project than have backers feeling empty handed.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    ACQUAINTANCE.

    Hi! We don't really know each other but I like you already. I will hug you if we ever meet in person, or offer a friendly wave if you prefer that I respect your personal space. You will also receive all of the updates from Kickstarter about this project.

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    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    INTERNET FRIEND.
    You will receive a thank you email plus a PDF of three adorable printable sciencey coloring and activity pages. Print them! Color them! Print them again!

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    Pledge $22 or more About $22

    I LIKE YOU LET'S HANG OUT.
    Your very own physical copy of The Human Infant Project at a heck of a nice price, plus the printable coloring pages mentioned above.

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    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    TOTALLY FRIENDS IRL.
    In time for Christmas! Signed copy of The Human Infant Project, 2 signed art prints

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    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    ***MORE ADDED*** TOTALLY FRIENDS IRL.
    In time for Christmas! 1 signed copy of The Human Infant Project, 2 signed art prints

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    Reward no longer available 25 backers
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $45 or more About $45

    IMAGINARY FRIENDS 4EVER -- KID PACK! this is for people who have kids but don't need a baby book. At this level you will receive a fabulous Nerdy Baby coloring book, two signed art prints (you'll have a chance to choose from several prints when the event is over), and a super adorable youth T-shirt (XS, S, M or L). There's a chance I will also draw stuff all over the package so your kiddos will be excited when it comes in the mail.

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    Pledge $65 or more About $65

    <3 <3 LYLAS <3 <3 New reward!
    TWO copies of the book, set of four signed 5x7" prints (Darwin's adorable finches or Fantastic Flasks)

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    18 backers
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $80 or more About $80

    I AM YOUR BFF. You will receive all of the above PLUS 1 ridiculously adorable infant onesie and 1 coloring book. Also, seriously I will hug the heck out of you should we ever meet.

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    Pledge $80 or more About $80

    OTHERS ARE SO JEALOUS OF OUR LITTLE CLIQUE. **new child-free reward level!** One handmade, Sterling silver limited-edition pendant + a way cool adult size t-shirt

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    Pledge $125 or more About $125

    SIT BY ME SIT BY ME **New reward!** At this level you will receive THREE copies of the baby book plus 1 coloring book and two 8x10" prints (we will try to deliver in time for Christmas!)

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    IF I WASN'T ALREADY MARRIED...
    (Boom, your holiday shopping is done!)
    At this level you will receive THREE copies of the baby book, TWO coloring books, THREE 11x17 prints of my internet-famous "Every Baby Knows the Scientific Method", one signed copy of "Pat Schrodinger's Kitty", as well as 1 organic infant onesie w/microscope design annnnnnnd 1 toddler or child's Tshirt w/"A is for ATOM" design. Basically you will get a flat rate box full of awesome.

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    IF I WASN'T ALREADY MARRIED -- CHILD-FREE OPTION
    Like the project in theory but don't have a need for baby stuff? This is the reward level for you! You will receive a hand-painted, signed pen and ink sketch of a microscope, your choice of color scheme, the set of three Darwin's Finches art prints, and a limited edition art pendant based on my microscope drawing. The pendant will be Sterling Silver, the design will be developed during this project. We will make your pendant by hand, no two exactly alike.

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    Pledge $2,202 or more About $2,202

    IF YOU LOVE THIS PROJECT SO MUCH WHY DON'T YOU MARRY IT.
    It's crazy. You're crazy! If you back at this level, well heck. Let's do this:
    TEN signed copies of The Human Infant Project, because a nice person like you probably has a lot of friends. But that's only the beginning. Backers at this level will receive an amazing, totally unique creative energy package. You choose any scientific concept. Based on that concept, I will create three things: ((1)) a custom one-of-a-kind art piece in watercolor, acrylic, digital print, or mixed media. ((2)) An original, one-of-a-kind piece of sterling silver art jewelry (cufflinks, belt buckle, earrings, bracelet, or necklace). You will have input on the design process, and the final piece will come with a signed and dated card telling the story of the piece, including your name. And (((3))) I will come up with a creative, awesome way to explain your favorite scientific concept to children.

    Additionally, I will tell everyone I meet how awesome you are. By name. FOREVER.

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Funding period

- (25 days)