May 5, 2011

Scoreboard Project: Exterior Design

I once made a joke that I should build a scoreboard to keep score of the pick-up basketball games that a few of my friends play since I would be more useful there than on the court. Eventually I began to feel that building a scoreboard could be a really interesting project because it would require more sophisticated designs than I had previously attempted.

That was all about 4 months ago and I have been thinking about this project off and on ever since. Today, I decided to post my vision for the exterior design that I put together in Google SketchUp. There is nothing really unique about the look of it – pretty much the same as any scoreboard anywhere. 

 Figure 1. 3D Picture of the Scoreboard Design

Figure 2. Front View of the Scoreboard

The one thing I did want to highlight is the use of LEDs. I am going to model the control scheme for this board based on the 7-segment display, which is basically a smaller version of the orange and blue numbers you can see in the picture. The drivers for these 7-segment displays typically use logic gates to decode binary inputs and drive the individual segments off and on. I will explain this more in a future post but for now I just wanted to put something out to compare to my final board design (assuming I ever actually implement this project). 

I will periodically post updates showing my progress, or lack thereof, building this scoreboard and discuss other topics in between. If I worked on this design constantly I would probably lose interest or do a poor job because I just wanted to get it done. I have found that when I work on several things at once and do little pieces at a time I ultimately see more through to the end. My goal is to highlight some of the considerations/problems that are important to the design process and hopefully learn some new stuff along the way.

Let me know what you think of the layout. Comments are always welcome!


Joel Ryan said...

Looks good, except that I regularly make hundreds of points per game, and your scores only go up to 99. You may need one or two or three extra digits on each side.

I think that a whitish blue would look really slick for the numbers, especially on a black scoreboard. To be really picky, I wonder if you could make the words "home" and "away" a little taller, to fill the empty spaces in the top corners.

Looking good though.

Post a Comment