Make Impact Consortium – Coffee Cookie

Make Impact Consortium – Coffee Cookie

The beginning of Coffee Cookie
was really almost a year before Coffee Cookie started. One day, we were
crafting ideas as part of another class,
2.009, and in that class you go through like 200 ideas,
and most of them get scrapped. And one of those was a
little coffee warmer that fits on the bottom of a cup. So all it is is a rechargeable,
portable coffee warmer. Or You can take it on the go. It fits in your pocket. And then once you get your
coffee, you just put it on, and then it keeps it
hot, and it actually doubles the length of time
that your coffee will stay hot. And then when
you’re done with it, when you’re done with your
coffee, you take this out. And you can recharge
it again, and you don’t have to clean it or anything. And then use it again
for your next cup of coffee or your third cup. For the product itself,
the technology behind it, it’s a single circuit
board that takes care of both the heating, which
is like a resistive heating element, and all the components
that protect the battery. It uses a lithium
battery, so it needs to protect while it’s
charging, if it’s charging. And then it’s just a
plastic outer casing and an aluminum stamped disk. Usually launching a product
takes a minimum of $300,000, a team of six, and all of
this, and a year or something. So we were trying to see if
this maker revolution that’s come out over the past
few years of desktop 3D printers, desktop machining,
WhatsApp to communicate around the world and prototyping
services online. But if you actually use
those, can you make a product? At first we thought
we wanted to– MIT has the top-of-the-line
machines for anything you want to do. But we realized that for
us, using an old machine but having access to it was more
important than using the best machine but having to have
a supervisor next to you at all times. Because we’re beginners,
so we’re making mistakes. Oftentimes, if you’re
looking for a lathe, you can’t just go
somewhere and use a lathe. You have to be trained
on that lathe first. It was helpful to
know where to go, so you could plan ahead
with the Mobius app. But for those last minute,
oh no, I need this, or I need a laser
cutter, it was perfect. Because you don’t necessarily
need to be trained on a laser cutter if you already
know how to use one. Early on, after we
completed our internship and decided to try
something on our own, we took some
entrepreneurship classes just so we’d be able to
use the correct words and know the vocab and
get a sense of what that world is like. Thanks to Sandbox,
early on we were able to figure how
our interests could align with actually creating
a profitable business after school. So we’re really thankful
that Sandbox just let us do and let us
get our hands dirty and just try something
that sounded really crazy. But it really encouraged us. It gave us that
push to actually try something that might actually
lead to another thing. The core of what we’re doing
isn’t the entrepreneurship side. It is all revolving
around the maker side. And what we’re
realizing later is that the skills that it
takes to make something are so fundamental,
that they seem– you can extrapolate them into
the business world, which we’re realizing. This new approach
to entrepreneurship that we’re realizing
is budding at MIT as we speak, which focuses on
the innovation, on the making, on connecting people with
machines and spaces and stuff that we think is
the real future of– well, then again, it’s
just our two cents. But because just the amount of
stuff we’ve learned on our own during these projects, thanks
to all these resources, we know it’s going
to go a long way, whether it’s the coffee warmer
or something down the line. [MUSIC PLAYING]

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About the Author: Oren Garnes

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