A more intuitive radio.
This fully-functioning radio’s physical state reflects its electronic state. When the volume changes, so does the size of the radio, and the amount of visible speaker grill. Tuning is controlled by rotating the top of the radio, and the user turns off the radio by collapsing it completely.
All controls are managed by analog circuitry. The volume is controlled by a linear potentiometer, and the tuning is controlled by a rotational potentiometer. A momentary lever switch is activated when the radio is closed, to power off the device.
The entire radio was modeled in Solidworks, including the internal mechanisms. The body was 3D printed, while the internals were laser cut from acrylic.
On the left is an interactive, cutaway view of the CAD model.
What if the antenna is the interface?
This early prototype is built from a hacked analog pocket radio. The user turns on the radio by extending the antenna, and moves the antenna along one axis to control volume, and along another axis to control tuning.
The interaction was inspired by the trope of aiming “rabbit ear” TV antennae around to find a station.
This form study also serves as a mock-up of sensors. The combination of a linear potentiometer and a rotational potentiometer allows for both telescoping and rotating movement.