How it all began...
  • Maximum credits: 3400
  • At least 3 special components
  • Must be interactive: relationship between user and toy
  • Target shelf price no more than $50.00
Budget Limitation Memo 1

    Considering the budget I have for this toy, I have decided that my toy should be able to do two main things: talking (singing) and moving. Since my toy must represent a real mynah, the toy should not only talk on its own but should also respond to the user and learn new words. Therefore, my toy would require speakers, voice chip, voice recorder, and a memory chip. For my toy to move and flap its wings, it would require rumble motors, complex mechanics, motion sensors, sonar emitter, and sonar receiver. With my extra budget, I decided to enhance my toy by adding a voice identification that allows the toy to recognize the user's voice, an internal clock that allows the user to use the toy as an alarm clock, a computer processor that allows the toy to make decisions based on the information gathered by the sensors, a infrared detector and emitter to allow the toy to interact with other toy mynahs, and a pressure sensor to allow the toy to sense the user's touch. Assuming that the sonar emitter and receiver is similar in cost to the infrared emitter and detector, the cost for this toy (in credits) came out to be around 2550, excluding the internal clock, which I assumed will not cost more than 200 credits. The approximated cost is clearly below the budget, which is 3400, but not knowing the cost of the sonar emitter, sonar receiver, and internal clock, I left a margin of more than 800 credits. My decisions were based according to the importance of the components, hence, I considered the essential components for creating a toy bird first before considering the extra features of the toy. My toy's ability to play games, to follow the user, and to serve as an alarm clock are all extra features that will be unique to this toy. I considered adding a light sensor or temperature sensor and letting the toy react to its environment, but keeping in mind that this toy is an imitation of a parrot-like bird that talks and sings, I decided to use all of my unused credits for extra voice recorder, which will cost 5 units per 30 seconds.

Budget Limitation Memo 2

    With further planning, I realized that I should have a LCD screen that displays the time, the mode of the toy (sleep or active), and the mode of the alarm clock (on or off). My unused credit allows me to include a LCD screen that costs 100 credits. This means that the toy will have 55 minutes worth of voice recorder, instead of 65 minutes.

Final Memo

    My Mynah is the ultimate, yes, the ultimate pet bird that feeds on batteries and attention. The toy can sing, learn, talk with other mynahs, and even play hide-and-seek. Its movements, however, are limited. The toy can move its feet, head, beaks, and wings, but its overall movement is limited to the ground. It cannot fly, nor can it wiggle its tail. The first design allowed the toy to wiggle its tail, but considering the budget limitations, the mechanis in the tail were removed from the design. Planning further, the cage was removed due to the budget. It is now sold separately through mail-order only.

    The class was interesting and unique, unlike any of my other classes. I enjoyed learning visually and not from the text, but at times, I felt that the lectures weren't as effective in teaching us about Maya as it could have been if we were on the computers. I had trouble following the lectures on nurbs, which is why I did not use any nurbs on my toy design. The class definitely had a direction and purpose. Not only did I learn about graphics and web designs, I feel that I was able to take a glance inside the real world of engineers.

Budget - 3400 credits
Component Quantity Price
Clock with alarm system 1 200
Complex mechanics 1 50
Computational processor 1 500
Infrared emitter 1 50
Infrared receiver 1 50
LCD screen 1 100
Memory storage 1 500
Motion sensor 1 150
Pressure sensor 1 100
Rumble motors 1 50
Sonar emitter 1 50
Sonar receiver 1 50
Speakers 1 200
Voice chip 1 50
Voice identifier 1 500
Voice recorder 1 250
Additional Voice recorder 110 5
TOTAL 126 3400

Designing the Toy...

First design of My Mynah



Panel 1: talking mynah
My Mynah talks and sings randomly, responds to the user, and learns new phrases and songs upto certain minutes. When in a happy mood, My Mynah is willing to talk and sing cheerfully. When neglected, the toy becomes upset and refuses to talk. My Mynah can learn its name and the owner's name and voice.

Panel 2: interactive mynah
Using infrared emitter and receriver, multiple toys can interact with each other when placed within a certain distance.


Panel 3: turning its head
Among the different movements, the head has the most complicated motions. My Mynah can move its head from side to side and its beaks will open and close as the toy speaks and sings. My Mynah can also follow commands given by the user. It will flap its wings, jiggle its tail, or walk according to the command.

Panel 4: reversing direction
Using sonars, the toy can change the direction of movement, which allows the toy to walk without hitting into an object. This also allows the toy to follow its owner.


My Mynah can play hide-and-seek with the user. The user can search for the hidden toy, which if necessary, will say, "hint, hint." The user can also hide and let the toy search.


Panel 1: alarm clock system
One of the unique features of My Mynah is the alarm clock system. When set properly, the toy will act as an alarm clock, waking the user up with one of its songs. My Mynah can also tell time when asked for.

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