Toddlers are curious young explorers whose antennas are always open and sensitive to the environment surrounds them. They are hungry for learning and playing with different things, ironically which sometimes becomes a problem for parents in completing daily tasks such as feeding them. When it comes to the meal time, it is quite difficult to keep their attention on the food. Most probably and as usual they start looking for other things after the first bites.
Having observed these little discoverers, one of the insights of the designer Berk Ilhan was that there is a missing element of fun in this interaction. The question regarding the potential opportunities was “How a more enjoyable, incentive and encouraging experience might be created so that toddlers would enjoy eating their food even by themselves”. Generating many concept ideas , designer came up with an interactive smart spoon idea that is called “De-Lightful spoon”. De-Lightful Spoon is aiming to give toddlers an enjoyable and interactive eating experience. Every time the toddler dips the spoon into the food or put into his/her mouth the spoon lights up. Thus, the boring compulsory eating task becomes an exciting play for the toddlers thanks to the De-Lightful spoon.
By the help of the capacitive touch sensor inside of the spoon, De-Lightful spoon is able to sense all kind of conductives such as human skin and lips, many kind of food including milk and banana. Using the capacitive touch sensor also makes it possible to hide all the elements of the circuit inside of the spoon since there is no need of direct contact to activate the sensor. The sensor underneath of the thin walls of the spoon shell senses the capacitive touch on the top surface of the plastic. By placing the capacitive touch sensor only inside of the concave part of the spoon -not the handle part- designer sets the rule of the play: “dip into the food and put into mouth”.
As an important part of this project, designer Berk Ilhan captured all steps of making the prototype of the De-Lightful interactive toddler spoon to share on online creative common (non-commercial) platforms. These steps are CAD modeling, circuit wiring and soldering, 3D printing and assembling. Making the process available for curious makers around the world, designer invites them to try and build the De-Lightful spoon.