A prototype is a preliminary model of something. Projects that offer physical products need to show backers documentation of a working prototype. This gallery features photos, videos, and other visual documentation that will give backers a sense of what’s been accomplished so far and what’s left to do. Though the development process can vary for each project, these are the stages we typically see:
Proof of Concept
Explorations that test ideas and functionality.
Demonstrates the functionality of the final product, but looks different.
Looks like the final product, but is not functional.
Appearance and function match the final product, but is made with different manufacturing methods.
Appearance, function, and manufacturing methods match the final product.
We have spent 2 years perfecting custom Android software for this Android Mirror. Two years of failures. The mirrors are fraught with difficulties such as Bluetooth Limitations, mini USB limitations, camera software locks, mounting difficulties, not to mention the RF link to the cruise adaptor which we will perfect during this Kickstarter.
What looks like an off the shelf mirror is rooted and loaded with our firmware. Especially the camera software which we tweaked to run opencv and then gave the tweak to the opencv.org group.
What I am saying is, "it seems as if we are selling fuzzy-dice and including a car", but its not that. The ahaa moment occurred when the right device presented itself to us in perfecting a 10 year project.
We began with a box on the dash (see pictures). This was before Android. It had buttons and was a distraction when driving, plus it took up your cigarette lighter...
Then we used a cellphone on the dash with bluetooth to an underdash part. But who wants a cellphone on the dash for cruise...
Then Mirrors arrived, but believe it or not, they didn't have bluetooth data, only bluetooth-audio. Can you believe it! Fail.
So when I contacted China, they showed me better mirrors, and they became the perfect storm. Finally the mirrors have a complete cellphone in them but they had the camera locked to their forward camera, so we had to root it and tweak.
The app has always been open sourced on github (search for wikispeedia). We will tweak it during this Kickstarter to be more user friendly. We will also make it run as a service which we know how to do.
We have collaborators from freelancer.com who have become good friends and we go back to them for expertise. We know how to do this, we just need Kickstarter to help us spread the word on this open, safe, and calming product.
Risks and challenges
Risk 1: DIY installation.
Solution: I have installed this on about 5 different cars. Its no harder than installing a car stereo. Worse case I drive to your house and assist... That is why we are only selling 6 of them...
Risk 2: App sync.
Solution: We are simplfying the sync procedure. Sync is when the device gets reloaded with new speed limits. Worse case we can mail them an SD card.
Risk 3: Car mounts.
I have a hyundai accent. The mirror people say I need mount-7, but after it didn't fit I came to find out that I need mount-1. Soo worse case, we have to order your mount twice which is $25 extra. That is why it is very important that all donors give their Make, Model, Year and VIN if possible. There is an online VIN-to-MMY so its a good double check.
Risk 4. Kickstarter will not think we have done anything. We could sell cruise adaptors alone and let people get mirrors off ebay, but they won't work. Our business model is like Amazon giving away Kindles with a book subscription. We give away a mirror which makes our App ergonomically viable.
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