JESSE T. GONZALEZ
Electronics • Digital Fabrication

Hi, I'm Jesse! I work with artists and entrepreneurs to create rapid prototypes, interactive experiences, and products that bridge the digital and physical realms.

I'm an engineer by training, with a background in mechatronics.

Here are a few projects that I'm proud to have been a part of:

Older articles and project blogs:

Games and animation:

above: PROTOTYPING / LASER CUTTING
prototype window installation and demo 2D-plotter

prototype for section of Cartier window installation at Midnight Commercial

PROTOTYPING & FABRICATION SERVICES

If you have a product you'd like to prototype, or a neat project you'd like to bring to reality, I offer electronics design and basic fabrication services. I'm based in New York City, USA.

Examples of some of my work are below.

Submit a design file, a sketch, or just say hello at jesse@finestbean.cc

USB camera module (3D-printed) for a Midnight Commercial + Samsung prototype
custom LED control board for development of Project Ara tardigrade module
motorized spools (laser-cut) for a 2D plotter demonstration
custom-designed synthesizer for a musical instrument at Andy Cavatorta Studio

A NEW MUSICAL INSTRUMENT FROM GALLIUM PHOSPHATE CRYSTALS

The Irvine Mark 7 is a new musical instrument by Andy Cavatorta, commissioned by the AVL Cultural Foundation. It debuted in Graz, Austria, at a performance in October 2017.

At the core of the instrument are six gallium phosphate crytsals — quartz-like structures which do not occur in nature. When playing the instrument, the crystals are made resonate at different frequencies in the ultrasonic range, and their interference patterns create audible tones.

I was brought on to develop both analog and digital circuitry for the Irvine, Cavatorta's first electronic musical instrument. As part of this effort, I designed and fabricated the electronic circuits that produce sound from the vibrations of gallium phosphate crystals. I also developed interfaces for many of the sensors embedded in the instrument.

See article and video from Radio Styria. More videos to come!

TARDIGRADES THAT LIVE IN YOUR SMARTPHONE

Tardigrades are micro-animals that live in extreme environments. They've been discovered in the ocean abyss (thousands of meters below sea level), the highest slopes of the Himalayas, and many habitats in between. Some species can survive both cosmic radiation and the vacuum of space. They are also know as water bears.

Project Ara was a smartphone by Google, which users could customize by attaching modules into the phone's empty shell. One of these modules — designed by Midnight Commercial — held a tiny aquarium with a state-of-the-art digital microscope. Adding this module would insert a community of tardigrades into the body of the phone, and make them visible onscreen.

As an engineer on the Midnight Commercial team, I prototyped electronics and built test equiptment at multiple stages of the module's development. I also devised experiments to quantify both lighting and thermal effects on the tardigrade biome.

Meet the team! Noah Feehan, Matt Borgatti, David Nuñez, Jennifer Bernstein, Sam Posner, Rebecca Lieberman, Bailey Meadows, Vinyata Pany, and Cody Daniel.

Read more about the project on VentureBeat.

milled circuit board used for toggling between different types of light in the biome
testing the effectiveness of a micropeltier element in cooling a biome stand-in
experiments in 3D-printed light pipes, on a milled circuit board
one of the sensors to be used for lenless on-chip imaging of the tardigrade biome
diagnostic print to determine minimum feature sizes of our SLA 3D printer
custom LED control board for development of Project Ara tardigrade module
an alternate breakout board for controlling lights in the tardigrade module
blown-up diagram of a 3D-printed prototype used for testing samples
timelapse of activity in the tardigrade biome, from an early prototype
one of many experimental setups, from early lensless imaging tests
side-by-side white and infrared LEDs, for a biome experiment

STICKY MODULAR CAMERA SYSTEM

During the prototyping process for a Samsung product at Midnight Commercial, I created a series of camera modules with microsuction backing. These cameras were later involved in a proof-of-concept for a more complex Samsung appliance.

Some of the modules were wifi-enabled, and periodically sent images to a central server for post-processing. Other variations communicated via USB. Captures could be triggered with an external, physical button. All enclosures were 3D-printed using SLA techniques.

© 2017 Jesse T. Gonzalez | Finest Bean