Since I graduated, I have been wearing shirts at work. To me, it is really annoying to iron my shirt every week. It usually takes me a whole Sunday evening (while watching TV).
As I bet that I’m not the only one having this problem, here is my thinking.
Why did the technology evolution stopped ?
Back in the days, people hand washed their clothes. This is a tedious task which has been harnessed with electric machines in 1901. This was a revolution; and I know none of us would even consider hand washing our clothes in a cold water wash house.
On the ironing part, everything is still the same. We evolved from charcoal irons to electric steam high fanciness XXX Watts irons. The human is still in the loop. What a revolution :-(
We know how to send rockets into space, automatically manufacture complicated cars requiring thousands of steps … and we can’t build something that would simplify peoples’ cleaning burden ?
So the main driver of this project is to provide a solution that:
- Fits in an apartment
- Does not require (or requires very little) maintenance
- Requires the minimal work from the user
The idea is shown in the following drawing. One only has to put his washed and dry cloth in a basket (or on a hangar in the worst case) and a « black box system » does all the work. The user gets out of the box a well ironed shirt.
How about a quick functional analysis ?
Such a system can be defined by some main functions to perform and need to respect some constraints.
MF1 – To automatically iron all the parts of a shirt
MF2 – To require absolutely no human help
C1 – Only requires an electric power source
C2 – Maintenance should be limited to adding some water (or any specific fluid)
C3 – System needs to be robust so as to be used for at least 5 years
C4 – Compact (to fit in a small apartment and to be seen as a useful tool and not a constraint)
C4 – Nice to look at (for market traction)
C4 – Innovative (for market traction)