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Gadget Freak Case #237: Dishwasher Indicator Eases Unloading
4/9/2013

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Jitendra Tailor's gadget uses a proximity sensor and a flashing LED to alert his family members when to unload clean dishes from the dishwasher or load it with dirty dishes.
Jitendra Tailor's gadget uses a proximity sensor and a flashing LED to alert his family members when to unload clean dishes from the dishwasher or load it with dirty dishes.

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Larry M
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Re: All the dishes?
Larry M   5/1/2013 3:32:36 PM
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You don't want sensors in the wash chamber; that's a hostile environment. How about a strain guage on one of the legs?

JimT@Future-Product-Innovations
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Re: All the dishes?
JimT@Future-Product-Innovations   4/21/2013 10:44:55 PM
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Mrdon - I guess a mechanical engineer thinks "Pressure-sensor" while (perhaps) an Optics Engineer thinks "vision sensor"-?  Vision is probably a more waterproof solution ,,, I honestly don't have direct experience with either type sensor – Just thinking out loud.

mrdon
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Re: Usually
mrdon   4/21/2013 5:03:36 PM
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Cadman-LT, Sometimes our world can get really busy and we tend to forget the little household chores for example unloading the dishwasher. A little electronic reminder sometimes help to keep us on task and orderly.

mrdon
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Re: All the dishes?
mrdon   4/21/2013 4:44:37 PM
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JimT, The pressure sensor is a cool way to detect when the dishwasher is full or empty because of the absence or presence of weight from the dishes. I guess the only concerns in using the device are to ensure the sensor is tolerant to water while being in the dishwasher and not voiding the product's warranty by the install of the sensing unit. Nice idea though!

mrdon
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Re: Solves the Nightly Dishwasher Drama
mrdon   4/21/2013 4:41:29 PM
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Nancy, I agree. The audible and visual indicators on consumer appliances reminds me of Tom's Igoe Make book, Making Things Talk. The book describes through Maker projects how to add sensors, microcontrollers, LEDs, speakers, and other audible/visual indicators to present information. This Dishwater Indicator is just an example of making things talk or communicate information: in this case when the diswasher needs to be unloaded. Cool Gadget Freak device!!!.

Charles Murray
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Re: Solves the Nightly Dishwasher Drama
Charles Murray   4/11/2013 8:25:48 PM
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I definitely agree, Nancy. It's a good idea for big families. When five or six or seven or more people use the dishwasher, it's almost impossible to keep everyone on the same page, especially when you have people running it late at night.

Rob Spiegel
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Re: Solves the Nightly Dishwasher Drama
Rob Spiegel   4/11/2013 3:30:18 PM
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Nancy, I know what you mean about taking the kids to task when you could make the same mistake. There are a whole slew of mistakes my kids make that I'm likely to make next. So I have to be careful. 

JimT@Future-Product-Innovations
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Re: All the dishes?
JimT@Future-Product-Innovations   4/11/2013 2:22:11 PM
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In reading the article, that was also my immediate first question.  My mind went to a pressure sensor on the rack rails, to gauge the extra weight of the dishes.  But I like the vision sensor idea too --

Nancy Golden
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Re: Usually
Nancy Golden   4/10/2013 10:00:06 PM
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Cadman, we raise our kids with a very strong work ethic and laziness is not tolerated in our home (although relaxing is and there is a difference). That said, busy families can have hectic schedules which means running the dishwasher and going on to other things - or asking the kids not to run it because its too late at night or I am trying to work on something at the kitchen table and need quiet. I see your point, but for some families it really does make sense to have some type of indicator without encouraging laziness...the wash cycle can take quite awhile so its not a case of just doing the dishes and putting them away...

Nancy Golden
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Platinum
Re: Solves the Nightly Dishwasher Drama
Nancy Golden   4/10/2013 9:54:19 PM
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My kids would forget to flip the magnet, Rob - but I couldn't really get upset with them. More times than not, I forgot too and it's not getting any better the older I get! My son made me some coffee earlier today and I forgot to pour some out of the coffee maker when it was ready until I heard the beep announcing the auto-shutoff two hours later! I think we need these types of gadgets on all of our appliances, especially for folks like me who get easily distracted...

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