Spring 2013

The Problem

The internet makes finding and trying new recipes easy. BUT, it means we view recipes on devices that aren’t suited to kitchen oils, or food-holding hands. So, how do we quickly get the convenience of a smartphone recipe into disposable form?


Sous is small bluetooth-enabled printer, which works in combination with a searchable recipe database. Recipes can be found online and saved over the course of the day. Once in the kitchen, Sous connects to a phone or computer, and prints at the push of a button. Cooking and food culture are becoming increasingly popular, particularly in the 18-30 year old demographic. Internet recipe databases enable these highly tech-equipped consumers to find and explore recipes and techniques. Cooking, then, becomes a creative, enjoyable, experience. Facilitating that exploration is exciting. Touchscreens are inherently unsuited to a kitchen environment. Fingers and surfaces are all contaminated by oils or food particulate, and electronic screens tend to fall asleep or need to be scrolled. Desktop printers are cumbersome, especially since most recipes are found by phone, and 8.5x11 paper is excessive for most recipes. Sous speeds up the search-to-print time, and because our target audience views cooking as a time for exploration, each printed recipe needs only last for one cooking session-- hence the disposable nature of Sous's printouts. Sous was iteratively designed in Rhino, and then modelled for injection molding in Solidworks. We obtained molding quotes and CAD file checks through Protomold during this process. We 3-d printed the final form in order to film the promotional video.

The printer’s functionality was prototyped using Gadgeteer, however the individual components used were later sourced from electronics suppliers to arrive at accurate price and specifications for the finished product. Sous's core is a commercial receipt printer that interfaces with a bluetooth module via a Gadgedteer Spyder board.

Sous's companion website is designed to pull recipes from a number of prominent recipe databases, including Yummly and Food52, among others. Sous was developed with Jian Shen Tan and Beth Soucy.