Loomio
Thu 20 Aug 2020

NIOP Phase III - Produce Footage for NIOP Video Series, Q-C Adapters & Continued NIOP R&D

NM
Nate Munro Public Seen by 102

# Description of Proposed Project:

During our execution of the NIOP Phase II scope, we were blindsided by the coronavirus pandemic, causing us to have to initially postpone, and ultimately cancel the original NIOP assembly video shoot this spring.  All the monies that were used for deposits for travel and expenses were returned in full to the Enable Fund.

The $2500 originally allocated to shooting the NIOP video series in Phase II, will now be used towards me running a skeleton crew to produce the raw video footage for the following NIOP videos:

  1. Introduction to the NIOP System (Suitability, Potential Candidates, etc)

  2. Selection of Devices for Specific Recipient Anatomies

  3. Using OpenSCAD Menus for Customizing NIOP Devices

  4. Terminal Devices (Kwawu hand, Gripper hand, NIOP Hook, and Quick-Change Wrist Pin)

  5. TR Assembly Video - Printing and Assembly for Long and Medium Length Transradial Cases  (Below/Elbow)

  6. TR-S Assembly Video - Printing and Assembly for Short Transradial Cases  (Below/Elbow)

  7. TH Assembly Video - Printing and Assembly for Long Transhumeral Cases  (Above/Elbow)

  8. TH-S Assembly Video - Printing and Assembly for Short Transhumeral Cases  (Above/Elbow)

  9. Tips for Building Devices with only One Hand

The original shoot was planned to be done over the span of just a few days with a very intense shooting schedule that was prone to upsets with so much planned in such a short time frame.  The new plan will take longer and have a more methodical approach, with me personally doing the set up and camera work, but is still very feasible and our best alternative given the situation with the pandemic. 

Additionally, as featured in the winter 2019/20 e-NABLE newsletter, the Quick-Change (Q-C) Wrist Pin is already available for printing, and allows the NIOP arm system to be able to quickly exchange terminal devices so the wearer can easily switch their hand for task specific adapters and then back again. 

The NIOP design team will now concentrate on making a selection of adapters for sports and activities that can work with the Q-C Wrist Pin, as well as an Assembly Manual for it that will be added to the NIOP Guide app.

 

# Expected results/impact:

In addition to the video series outlined above, with Phase III of the NIOP development the greater e-NABLE community can also expect to gain:

  1. Expanded NIOP Guide documentation 

    1. Assembly Manuals for the 

      1. Q-C Wrist Pin

      2. Humeral Conductor 

      3. Radial Conductor 

    2. Detailed Printing Instructions for all modules included in the NIOP TR, TR-S, TH, and TH-S Arm Configs.

  2. Sports & Rec Adapters to fit the Q-C Wrist Pin

    1. Pool Shark adapter (variation of a bridge for playing pool)

    2. Power Rope adapter (for heavier-duty activities like pulling and two-handed tools)

    3. RoadRunner bike adapter (variation of the RoadRunner adaptive device for riding a bike)

    4. Violin/Cello Bow Holder adapter (variation of Shea’s bow holder)

    5. Yoga Hand adapter (mushroom-shaped for push-ups, gymnastics, and yoga)

    6. more in development

  3. Continued Prosthetic & Orthotic Development 

    1. Continued R&D and improvement of existing NIOP product line including several versions of the Kwawu Bionic arm with improved controls

    2. Seeking to create Bionic versions of all key modules, to be able to create a modular bionic arm system similar to the current body-powered NIOP Arm Configs 

    3. R&D for Prosthetic Leg Devices

  4. Formation of the e-NABLE Grant Writing Team to help target funds and strategize bringing in more grant money for the Enable Fund to empower the community.

 

# Estimate of work effort involved:

As has been the case with the prior NIOP proposals, it is understood that these requested funds do not accurately represent the number of hours required or additional efforts involved in the stated goals for Phase III but will allow the NIOP design team to continue its valuable work throughout the rest of 2020.

It should also be understood that the work represented here is a ridiculous understatement of the sum of the NIOP design team’s efforts within the community, but the focus of this proposal was narrowed down to only a few points to keep it brief.   

 

# Estimated timeline for completion:

  1. Video footage end of Sept 2020

  2. Q-C Task Specific Adapters listed end of Nov 2020

  3. Additional NIOP work continued through 2020, on-going

 

# Names of individuals responsible for deliverables:

Nate Munro

 

# Amount of funding being requested:

$6500 total

This amount includes and addresses the unused $2500 allocated with the funds from NIOP Phase II to create assembly videos for the NIOP arm configs that were derailed from the onset of the pandemic.  These funds would be collected upon approval of the Phase III proposal to subsidize my disability and cover my minimal living expenses while I film the assembly videos.

Additional $4,000 would then be deferred so it could be collected after the EnableFund is replenished, which is pending now.  This prevents straining the cash flow for the Fund in the short-term, leaving it open for others to still get funding when they need it. 

 

# A brief overview of my background with e-NABLE:

e-NABLE welcomed me with open arms in 2018 after having my arm amputated in 2017.  My career as a CAD Designer in my past life made me a key player for design and development within the community.  

I created and manage the NIOP (No Insurance Optimized Prosthetics) design team, who have been awarded both the NIOP Phase I and Phase II Loomio proposals with overwhelming community support and have provided unprecedented gains for the open source prosthetic community globally.  As a result, I was honored to be invited to sit on e-NABLE’s Strategic Planning Committee (SPC).  My story and the NIOP system were featured in the winter 2019/20 e-NABLE newsletter.

With that community support, the NIOP platform has given e-NABLE the ability to finally be able to have a single catalog to address most transhumeral and transradial situations, and now the NIOP Guide has easy step-by-step instructions and assembly manuals with very clear pictures for each step.

 

Thank you for taking the time to read my proposal!  I value your support and feedback so I can earn your vote and continue to make the best possible products for the community.  It’s a pleasure and a privilege to be a part of such a fantastic organization.


NM

Nate Munro started a proposal Thu 20 Aug 2020

NIOP Phase III - Produce Footage for NIOP Video Series, Q-C Adapters & Continued NIOP R&D Closed Thu 27 Aug 2020

Outcome
by Jon Schull Wed 2 Sep 2020

The Proposal passes!

See above thread

Agree - 28
Abstain - 3
Disagree - 1
Block - 0
32 people have voted (19%)
LW

Lyndsey Wells
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

TS

Teri Sanor
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

Nate pours his energy and heart into the devices. He is incredibly prolific and his talents immense! His values match his goals which are very high and he is energized by knowing he helps so many people! I am hopeful he will be able to manage on this support until we get more grants and income so he can afford to remain active for years to come.

KB

Ken Bice
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

The NIOP system is a vital step towards more functional prosthetics than our current offerings. Nate’s dedication to this will make it happen.

AG

Agi Gonda
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

SM

Shawn Mathiesen
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

MB

Madison Bondoc
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

AR

Anthony Rork
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

B

Ben
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

Nate's efforts are focused on sparking interest through videos and creative specific-use devices that improve quality-of-life for people with limb difference beyond what any current models can do. Now anyone can contribute additions. This is super! My only suggestions: add community engagement into the mix. How could a contest or webinar event encourage other designers to become involved? It may be worthwhile to consider a fundraiser as well to help replenish the fund.

SM

Skip Meetze
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

The community needs the amazing work that Nate continues to contribute!

MB

Michael Bowman
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

EP

eNable Polska
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

WM

Will McCaffrey
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

AN

Alberto Navatta
Agree
Fri 21 Aug 2020

NIOP System has a great potential, in order to fully exploit it, the solution need to be well documented and described to make simple its adoption and obviously to make it even more flexible and useful new capabilities are welcomed, Nate is doing an excellent work in this direction, definitely in my opinion phase III is a fundamental step in the development of the system.

MV

Marco Vaquera
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

AAM

Ahmad Alhaj Moussa
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

JS

Jon Schull
Abstain
Thu 20 Aug 2020

BR

Bob Rieger
Disagree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

JB

Jacquin Buchanan
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

While i think there are too many ideas here. Getting half of it done for the price is worth it to me. Please just get it done in order listed.

LG

Leland Green
Abstain
Thu 20 Aug 2020

LG

Leland Green
Agree
Wed 26 Aug 2020

Nate's arguments changed my mind. I wasn't considering the number of people on his team, either. I was thinking "this was Nate". (Sorry, everyone, I'll either read the whole thing or not vote next time... and I won't vote before at least two coffees!🤓)

Honestly, I hadn't read the entire proposal, either. (I sometimes read the first page then jumped to the comments, just FYI @Nate Munro. 🖖😎)

QM

Quinn Morley
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

SD

Sandra Dermisek
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

NM

Nate Munro
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

I have to say this guy really knows what he's talking about! 😎👍

MM

Michelle Massie
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

NRW

Nelson Reynolds Walsh
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

DZ

Donna Zimmerman
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

Nate has delivered great designs and shared them with the community. I have made several of his designs and he has helped me navigate through the many choices. We need more of Nate's work.

SS

Saiph Savage
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

Much needed!

E

ebubar
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

I've read the threads and agree with Jack's assessment that this should be funded as long as its done in the order listed. I still find it overambitious, but if the first task is documentation then that will definitely be completed and is worth the cost.

ME

Maria Esquela
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

RB

Rich B
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

JS

Jeremy Simon
Abstain
Thu 20 Aug 2020

I agree with the comments from Jon, Bob and others. Nate does wonderful and important work, but I would have liked to see some changes in the proposal. Unfortunately, despite quite a few calls for revisions to make it more focused, it appears that it is being left as is because there are already enough votes to pass. This may be a shortcoming in our voting process. It would have been nice to see more discussion and community input into the proposal before the voting process was started.

CL

Chang Liu
Agree
Thu 20 Aug 2020

KR

Kyle Reeser
Abstain
Thu 20 Aug 2020

I agree with @Bob Rieger with regard to a new proposal for video-work only. It seems like most are in agreement that it would be a fantastic contribution to highlight all the great work up to this point. It's mentioned in the proposal that the other $4k would be deferred anyway, so it may be best to put up that proposal now, get it passed, and consider revising the Phase III proposal.

JS

Jon Schull Tue 25 Aug 2020


Hi all,

I’ve voted abstain for now

I explained my Abstention to Nate today, and we agreed that I would share my concerns here, and also extend the poll's closing until Friday.  This should allow time for discussion, and if the discussion warrants it, give Nate a chance to revise the proposal to win more of us over.  (I hope to be one of those!)

TLDR:  Nate is not asking for a lot of money here, but he's promising to do too many things.  To validate our past investment and justify future investments, we need a demonstrably functional and buildable NIOP arm with articulated hand.  That's  what we should fund.  Committing to more than that will reduce our chances of getting the one thing we really need right now. 

Here's how I see it. Thanks to Nate's fine work to date, the NIOP project is potentially transformative, both for e-NABLE and for the prosthetic community in general.  The promise of an open-source, modular cosmetic, 3D-printable arm system is immense.  

But the project is risky, too.  The e-NABLE community has invested a (for us)  significant amount of money in the project so far, and while the design and documentation are stupendous, the functionality of the system is still unclear.  

Can a user of the NIOP system wear it comfortably and use it to adequately accomplish basic manual tasks?  We don't know yet.  Until we do know, I don't think we should fund work on a Bionic NIOP system, nor on lower limb systems, nor on pool cue adapters and the like.  Rather, we should make sure Nate is able to focus on using feedback from actual "test-pilots" to refine the NIOP design and documentation to demonstrate a basic system--with an articulated hand--that is useful to users, and buildable by mortals

I hope and believe this can be done, but only if it is Indispensable Nate's Number One Priority.  If we learn that it can't be done, I'll probably argue that the next phase of NIOP development should be the last phase of NIOP development, even as I will remain in awe of the NIOP achievement and proud that we gave it a go!

So I think Nate should simplify and focus the proposal.  

Remove Item 3 (which deals with vaguely-defined bionic and leg devices).  Instead, work with one or two test pilots using a NIOP-with-articulated-hand for real manual activity.  (Nate might be one of those test pilots!). 

I'd also be happy to see Nate remove the commitments to the various Sports and Rec Adapters.  If the Q-C is as versatile and good as we hope, others can do that work.  

I'm confident that Nate can make this work, but if a good faith effort shows that it can't, we'll have learned what we need to learn. 

BR

Bob Rieger Tue 25 Aug 2020

  • I agree completely with Jon's comments, and after much reflection I have decided to disagree with the proposal. Here are my reasons.

  • First of all, I completely agree with the expenditure of $2500 for the films. Therefore, I encourage Nate to write a separate proposal for just this filming portion.

  • I believe the community does not need task specific adaptors and terminal devices for the NIOP system right now. The NIOP system is in it's infancy, and additional moving parts only adds to the complexity.

  • By far, the most important terminal device is a fully articulated hand that is robust. The vast majority of EWC cases, and help desk requests are for fully articulated hands.

  • The Kwawu hand, while anthropomorphically beautiful, simply is not functional as a robust device. I have personal experience, having printed and fabricated about 10 Kwawu hands, 3 Kwawu arms and 3 full NIOP trans-humeral systems with Kwawu hands. Of these, 3 were for actual donation. Feedback from my recipients indicated the Kwawu hands were totally unusable. There were other issues with the NIOP system, but these will most likely be resolved as more experience and potential modifications to existing components are made.

  • Therefore, placing priority on the development of niche task-specific devices instead of the development of a robust fully articulated hand for NIOP is simply the wrong priority.

  • Bionic systems and leg prostheses are meaningless at this point when we don't have a fully acceptable and robust NIOP system that is proven. The dissemination and adoption of standard NIOP needs to be accomplished before further innovation is funded.

JB

Jacquin Buchanan Tue 25 Aug 2020

While I agree this proposal should be more focused. I disagree with many of your reasons.
No one device will fit every function. Prosthetics should be viewed like shoes. I have ten different shoes in my closet, and they perform ten different functions; running shoes, hiking boots, dress shoes.
The Kwawu hand is about as functional as any manually operated general purpose device. There is indeed a real need for a system of different terminal devices for different functions. I like the idea of a quick release wrist. I have been unable to design a quick release that is anywhere as close to as easy to build as the Kwawu hand. So far, I have found it just as easy to make a whole arm each with a different device on the end.
So, while i think the current proposal should be about documenting the current system. A second proposal with ten different niche terminal devices is a great idea.

E

ebubar Tue 25 Aug 2020

I agree with Jon's and Bob's comments. The work being done is excellent but I would like to see some quantification of the benefits/functionality of the devices as part of any device funding proposals. All the devices we make are good for psychosocial benefits but tend to fall short for functionality. I've printed kwawu hands and arms and a couple NIOP devices and they perform about the same as all other eNable devices in testing, which is not great.

While bionic limbs are also exciting and of interest to engineering students worldwide, everyone works from scratch to get a final product that doesn't actually work in practice. I don't think bionics are the way to go for the moment. Legs are even more taboo imo. Too much expertise in fitting and load bearing for an eNable leg to warrant general adoption by us hobbyists.

I do think that the video series, however, is super valuable so lots of enablers can start printing, assembling and (most critical imo) testing them to brainstorm improvements.

I'd suggest a focus on the instructional resources is warranted and key before moving onto task specific devices, bionic expansions or legs.

JS

Jon Schull Tue 25 Aug 2020

I agree with Eric: Videos first, functional exploration second, extensions third. Grantwriting in parallel.

@ebubar you and @Bob Rieger seem to disagree on the functional competitiveness of the Kwawu. Have you guys compared notes with each other? With @Jacquin Buchanan ?

BR

Bob Rieger Tue 25 Aug 2020

I’m not sure what Eric’s opinion is.....I consider the Kwawu to be functionally useless. I did have one conversation with Jaq. He indicated he did not have the time to work on it further, and he graciously sent me the Fusion 360 files. Alas, I am not proficient with 3D modeling.

JB

Jacquin Buchanan Tue 25 Aug 2020

Well I guess I have to reply. I just posted on the e-nable hub some data we collected for functionality. I had that data for about a month and kept meaning to post it. But saw this so figured I should.

So i have lots of thoughts to this discussion. And want to be as constructive as I can.

Firstly, I am working on a Kwawu 3. It will have many improvements to it. but, i will say all of the improvements to the hand will be incremental. The vast majority of improvements will be to fit the arm socket better. Of the hundreds or more recipients I have interacted with it is the comfort and fit of the socket to the arm that needs improvement. Not surprisingly it is the socket fit that prosthetists claim is the hardest part to get right. Along those lines fitting the new kwawu 3 will be more sophisticated, not less. It will require either a scan of the arm or many circumference measurements, spaced evenly down the arm.

My goal with Kwawu 2 and Kwawu 3 is to make a transradial arm that is nearly as functional as what a professional prosthetist would provide at a fraction the cost and required expertise. So balancing function, cost, and ease of build is always on my mind. But, I am assuming a builder who is interested in learning the craft of building a prosthetic, even if it is as a hobbyist. So I am not interested in a device that is easy to build but not functional.

Right now my goal is to match functionality of professionally provided manual prosthetics. I do believe in the long term some electronic prosthetics will be amazing. But, right now, I am trying to meet the need for those who cannot afford any professional device, either in the USA or developing world.

I am surprised by Bob's statement that the Kwawu is functionally useless. I would love followup data for that conclusion. It is true, I have received feedback from many recipients that they do not use the device. Generally the reason falls into two categories. The first and most common is that most transradial recipients don't need any device to function well. Basically these people have abandoned any previously provided professional device as useless as well. They sometimes say the Kwawu is more useful than anything they had before because it is lighter. The second reason is because the device was improperly assembled. Usually the maker has used ShoreHardness 95 TPU or just strung the hand wrong. I will make the text BIGGER about ONLY USE SHORE HARDNESS 85 TPU or less. And I do need to make more videos about stringing the hand. I just received a great new assembly manual, that TJ made as part of his Eagle Scout project. I will replace the current PDF on thingiverse in the next few days.


So I agree with Jon's conclusions about this particular proposal. It should be kept focused. More instructional videos would be useful. But I disagree with the reasons. I think e-nable needs to be clear about its goals for any one device. I think there are several different goals that are not mutually exclusive. I think very easy to build devices, like Phoenix hand and unlimbited arm are great for raising awareness of limb differences. The eductional pedagogy of those devices is also invaluable. But to match what a professional who has a four year medical degree would build, is going to take a bit more than a one weekend commitment to learning how to make.

JS

Jon Schull Tue 25 Aug 2020

Thanks Jaq. Very constructive and informative. Looking forward to continuing the conversation!

AAM

Ahmad Alhaj Moussa Tue 25 Aug 2020

I voted to agree Mr Nate about his proposal because i tested his device and i know the feedback but if you want some photos and videos to support his proposal i can help him especially that i know how to make the NIOP System and i have a huge number of amputee so that I'll give you the feedback quickly.

What's your opinion?

JS

Jon Schull Tue 25 Aug 2020

Your input would be great. Detail should perhaps go into the NIOP space on the hub.

B

Ben Tue 25 Aug 2020

@Ahmad Alhaj Moussa Your feedback from recipient volunteers would be super! Here is the link - post whatever you have here and I can help pull some of it together:
https://hub.e-nable.org/s/niop-no-insurance-optimized-prosthetics/space/space/home

LG

Leland Green Tue 25 Aug 2020

@Ahmad Alhaj Moussa yes, please, if you can help document how the amputees like the NIOP system(s) you're familiar with, that would be great. (As Jon said, go into the NIOP space on the hub for that is best....)

I think Jon, Bob and Eric all made valid points. So @Nate Munro , buddy, I'm sorry but I will abstain for now. If you make the changes Jon suggested, I'll change my vote.

(Looks like you may win it, anyway!?!🖖😎)

Let us know, Nate.

JS

Jon Schull Tue 25 Aug 2020

@Leland Green I think you didn't Abstain. You just didn't vote. Turns out there's a difference ;-)

LG

Leland Green Wed 26 Aug 2020

I claim a senior moment. (Corrected.)

Thank you for pointing it out with humor. I laughed when I read it. ✌️🙂

NM

Nate Munro Thu 27 Aug 2020

@Bob Rieger @Jon Schull @Jacquin Buchanan @Leland Green @Ahmad Alhaj Moussa @Anthony Rork @Shawn Mathiesen

While all very insightful and thorough, the one consistent theme I’ve gathered from all the comments so far is that no one but me has any real concern for my survival here, which to be honest has become my principle concern in this now.  My back is completely up against the wall and I’m worried about being homeless in a week, so I think it’s fair to say we have completely different priorities right now.  I definitely don’t feel any sense of urgency from the crowd, which is extremely frustrating to see everyone so blase about this proposal when I’m facing such serious life changing problems in a few days.

I don't know how to underscore the point more that the house around me is proverbially on fire, other than yesterday Jon had to pay my cable bill just so I could get back online and reply to these comments.  Otherwise I was dead in the water and completely cut off from the community, over a stinking cable bill.  Being evicted will be much harder to fix and leave me pretty sore if I get snubbed after all I’ve invested in this project.  

I'd like to lead with three points,

we all seem to be in agreement on shooting the assembly videos,

all the terms laid out in this proposal are based on my current logistical constraints,

and while I agree with both Bob and Jon’s comments that the community needs a more functional hand, I do not have the resources to dedicate to that right now, and using this as a way to force my hand to have to take a job that I can’t possibly deliver on right now is not a responsible choice for us either.

I’d like to have all your support, but I'm strong enough with my resolve that I can respect your position and still have to do what I feel is right as the one who is responsible for my team.  As I stated offline, I have to be able to implement and actualize whatever requests are brought to us, and there are big holes in changing these plans up without addressing all the other factors.

I’d like it to be noted that all these suggestions had logistical issues which I had laid out in detail offline, and will summarize here, but I had many concerns that were unanswered.

  • The tasks I presented here in Phase III were ones that I believe the team can accomplish by the dates I gave in the timetable, based on many factors, and can’t just be changed without addressing those factors, plus it is very complicated and easy to misstep when you’re not aware of all the issues that are in play.

  • As I understand it, employees get directives, volunteers work under their own choice, and that’s how I run my team.  Although money changes hands with grants, this is a volunteer position bound by the terms defined in the proposal only, not others’ desires.  Those terms presented were established through process and can’t be changed that easily although I appreciate the feedback

  • I will gladly address these new requests for an articulated (or super-simple) hand in a Phase IV proposal, presuming I don’t become homeless

  • The articulated hand project will take around 5-6 mos, cost around $10k-$12k and need clearly defined project goals with a work order, brought forward through a community-driven process.

  • You will most likely need multiple designs to accommodate all the community’s needs.  It is a very tall order to make a functional articulated hand that is also easy to print, build, and is durable.

  • IMO the new hand design(s) should be conceived in a roundtable with a small group of experts like Jacq, Bob, Ahmad, Everton, myself and others, reviewed by the community and voted on to see what they actually need.  Simple vs articulated vs professional grade.  Agreed, all are needed, but amorphous goals with moving targets makes this an impossible project to accurately estimate the work required going in, and extremely prone to changes while in design, making it impossible to finish without clearly defined goals made at the onset.  As a seasoned proj mgr, this is not a wise project for me to accept without more thought being put into the concept and delivery.

  • This would require it to be my principle project, which I do not have time for right now with all my other obligations

  • No one has addressed the constraints I have placed on me by the SSA and the Dept of Vocational Rehab (DVR), which are some of the primary factors in my decisions here.

  • A project that large will violate my terms with the SSA and DVR, will end my disability, effectively doubling the design fees for the proposal, upset the grant funding, and cost me add’l fines. I am not interested in doing projects for less than poverty wages anymore anyway, so it's not fair to just cut my pay to make the numbers work, because that doesn't work. Been there, done that, and not goin' back. 

  • DVR is matching these funds as part of my grant to start a new business, but that opens a whole new can of worms to explain, so I’m sparing you a lot of extraneous info that is critical for my NPO in regard to getting the add’l funding. If you're interested we can discuss it off this thread.

  • Changing the body or terms of the proposal now, after the fact, doesn’t seem fair to all those who have already voted and approved it as-is.  We already had over ¾ of the votes unanimously approving this before it was derailed.  IMO it would start to debase the integrity of the entire process of voting to go back now just to add riders that earmark pet projects.  That’s exactly what people hate about congress, and IMO they’re a perfect example of what not to do to gain community support.

To the points that “I’m” doing too much, or the proposal isn’t focused enough:

  • My main concern and focus for a few months is on grant writing and we are making the changes necessary within the team's workflow to accommodate that

  • I do way more than this, so put on your seatbelts. The process with DVR can't stop now that it's started so if you're faint hearted, hold on tight or get off the ride. The only way out is straight through the heart of it. I'm not scared of the game plan, but it'd be best if we all weren't distracting the driver while he's concentrating on finishing the race.

  • The NIOP team is capable of a lot more than my efforts alone, and although I do a lot, those results reflect the other teammates' efforts as well, allowing me to only hold a project manager’s role in many of those misc items listed. Those catch-all statements are there to gloss over many of the great things we have going on because there's too many to list without scaring everyone. As we can see, this was a completely valid concern for me to hold by what's been demonstrated in the torrent of comments just three lines created from this proposal.

  • Yes, those catch-alls are non-committal and wishy-washy by design.

Specifically about the team's impacts affecting my time invested:

  • The parts for the videos are already printed so I just set up the tripod to film Lorenzo as he puts them all together for the videos.  I’m writing music for them but other than that, the assembly videos won’t require much of my focus after we get set up.

  • Ahmad is heading up our R&D for leg devices where they need them badly in Syria.  I appreciate Eric’s reservations about hobbyists making them here, but they are needed there and being made by professionals.  I am going to have a prototype made so that my prosthetist can critique it locally.  Even though it’s not popular right now, I stand behind my decision to include Ahmad’s work under the NIOP brand and support him however I can.  I am confident that in the future, many people will look back and thank us for my conviction now. There are 7x's as many lower amps as upper amps in the US and as we can clearly see now with the pandemic we arguably have one of the worst, if not the worst health care system in the world, as far as our potential matching the patient outcomes. All the lower limb amps in the US need us to have working open-source leg designs available too, even if they're trickier designs. They're getting screwed just like I was in 2017 with no prosthetic. We can fix that, and all I have to do is stay out of Ahmad's way, let him do it, and promote his awesome work. I hope that helps explain, but there should be no issue there. BTW - a big round of applause for Ahmad and the Smarthand crew!! 👏👏👏🎉 They've been a huge asset for the NIOP team.

  • Anthony Rork in my chapter has a doctorate in Physical Therapy, and is currently in training to specialize in Lower Extremity (LE) devices.  He is making an Ankle Foot Othotic (AFO) device for an individual who runs the Nation of Makers.  That recipient Joel, has a wealth of information and contacts, so Anthony is getting him hooked up with the AFO for his final project from his training, while simultaneously crushing it for marketing.  Joel with his network of makers will be a key element in our chapter’s future, and in turn the whole e-NABLE community.  Plus this is helping Anthony learn to do design with f360, and we get to be one of the national leaders in the field, gaining instant 'market share' with open-source LE devices.  As a PT who is also a designer, Anthony will make great things for people to help train in adaptive situations.  I was one of those guys just a few years ago.  I fully support and stand behind Anthony’s efforts as well as his continued education, which will ultimately benefit us, and the rest of the world.

  • Shawn Mathisen who also has been doing all the NIOP OpenSCAD programming, created another version of the Kwawu Bionic with her husband Earl that is loaded with great new features, including a joystick to control the grip selection.  Similar to my discovery of Jacq and the Kwawu, I immediately deferred to her design for R&D, as it was further along than the one we were already working on.  I would be a fool not to fully support and include her work too.  She's a sweetheart who made the arm custom for me, and no one can complain about that hand's performance! She's a rock star in my book. I’m really blessed to get to work with such talented folks, why wouldn’t I showcase and share their contributions too? Besides, that arm is totally worth bragging about!

  • As you can see, many of the items people were taking issue with, aren't even real issues. They were just political statements to cover some of the other incidentals that we're benefiting from the team being such a prolific source of creativity and good for the world.

Comments on Adapters:

  • Adapters are simpler designs for us to crank out and in many cases only one or two printed parts.

  • The adapters are more functional for those specific tasks than our hands no matter what we do.  Hooks are more functional than hands.  Little known fact, most upper limb amp’s only use their expensive myo arms passively (turned off).  Hand function is important, but no mechanical hand is very functional compared to a real hand.  Sorry that’s not a real thing, even with professional devices.  Definitely not 3d printed open-source designs at the moment.  We need to keep our expectations realistic and understand that even a $16K myo device like mine, which I even power up and use, still is not very functional or reliable.  Hands are incredible machines that are very difficult to replicate, and the Kwawu actually does pretty good and no one can argue that it looks great.  I just showed Bob a strap system that will increase grip strength on any hand too, so the immediate solution may not even be in changing the hand design, although that certainly could help. I would defer to Jacq as the expert on this. He has put more R&D into this than about anyone, and Everton is collecting clinical data to support us from his team working with Doctors Without Borders in Brazil. 

  • Adapters are all being produced by others in the team, to allow me the time to concentrate on grant writing, registering our org, marketing, and creating the infrastructure to be able to accept larger grant awards.  This is time intensive and much more important than design work for the moment because we’re in process with the DVR for their grant program.  Once the business is established, and we've secured the DVR grant and matching funds we will have time and money to create new opportunities for the community to fund projects like this and the articulated hand project, and actually have time to do the work.

  • The idea with the adapters is not so much the adapters themselves as the idea of getting developers to make their own Q-C adapters for daily tasks so we can build a library of adapters for every task you can think of.  I could tell Jacq totally got it, and he’s my target audience there, so I think it just proved that it will catch designers attention and get their gears turning.

In closing:

  • We’re debating over $4k, and just the extra time added on this week is making my situation worse day by day.  I just got the money out of my change jar to buy a gallon of milk so I could push this deadline back to Fri.  If you couldn't tell I’m not having fun while this is going on. I probably live in a completely different world than most of you.  Part of my complaints offline were about the awful quality of life that goes along with this level of scant funding and the suffering and sacrifice that it creates.  That’s why I’m creating new options for funding that will hopefully address some of the shortfalls with being a grantee within this system.

  • As far as I saw, no one has considered impacts from e-NABLEcon (or the other events I’m booked for) in Oct which will make that month chaotic or a possible civil war/social unrest in Nov-Jan '21, which in the latter’s case hopefully is not going to happen, but need to be accounted for as possibilities in any contract I would be agreeing to. The Phase III proposal has addressed these points and ends before unrest would conceivably be able to stop society in Nov, when we can reassess the situation moving forward to Phase IV.

  • Debating these semantics has already forced me to find other work.

  • This is sketchy enough with everyone playing games with my livelyhood, I’m halting the NIOP activities and switching to doing CAD work for clients in the short term until there is some sort of resolution that looks like I’ll have some stability in my life.  I’ll switch back when and if the proposal is approved.  I have to look out for me now, especially if I’m the only one who’s on duty.

So you can see there’s a lot more going on than most would care to know about, but to be fair to me, no one wants to hear it all, so we’re stuck with me being the only one who really understands all the factors in play.  Please have a little faith in my abilities as an accomplished team leader and show some grace so I can get through what is arguably the worst time in our country’s history.  The idea of being homeless right now is scary as hell to me being disabled, as you might imagine.

I want to give a shout out to Jacq for how he handled himself.  Great points as always, but I can take note of what things he wanted to see done with this proposal as well as in the future, and still be able to continue living in my house.  Bravo Sir, I really appreciate your candor in being supportive of me and the team. (PS and I'm also really stoked to hear about the K3!!)

I’ve already invested too much of my time in this and it’s not feasible to spend any more without some return.  I appreciate the feedback but I’m so stocked up on problems, and short on time, I’ll just leave it in fate’s hands now.  Hopefully it all works out.  I appreciate your support, but I’ll always have a special appreciation for those that supported me first and without question, and definitely those that came to my aid when I needed it most and backed me when I stood up for what I believed was right.  I was deeply humbled to read those comments, thank you.  That’s what makes this worth doing even when it makes my life really difficult to do it.

Nate

NM

Nate Munro Thu 27 Aug 2020

@ebubar @Ben sorry I missed tagging you in my reply above

LG

Leland Green Thu 27 Aug 2020

Well, you can tell I didn't proofread my previous comment very well! LOL! (Just repeated myself.🤓

🖖😎

SM

Skip Meetze Thu 27 Aug 2020

I believe Nate has a track record for being responsive to input and feedback. I think the community will benefit most if we continue support of his work according to his own vision, his inspiration and his conscience.

TS

Teri Sanor Thu 27 Aug 2020

You are right, Skip, Nate has a great track record, is responsive and a visionary who puts his ideas and heart into devices quickly and expertly! We are lucky to have him! I will help write grants, Nate, and hope the hundreds of volunteers who are on this site will help us too!

JS

Jon Schull Thu 27 Aug 2020

I'm proud of Nate and the community, concerned about Nate, and genuinely glad this seems to be going his way, with additional thoughtful consideration and input.