From Singapore to the USA and all around Europe, Edible Innovations profiles food makers that engage in improving the global food system at every stage, from production to distribution to eating and shopping. Join us as we explore the main trends in the industry from a maker perspective. Chiara Cecchini of Future Food Institute — an ecosystem with a strong educational core that promotes food innovation as a key tool to tackle the great challenges of the future — introduces you to the faces, stories, and experiences of food makers around the globe. Check back on Tuesdays and Thursdays for new installments.
We got a chance to sit down and have a conversation with the owner of Mixartista, Dante D. Cruz, a Bolivian who fell in love with Italian culture after he did an cultural exchange in Sicily. Having an educational background in both industrial and mechanical engineering, he founded Mixartista to produce a cool machine that would make perfect cocktails.
Dante, can you explain to us what Mixartista is?
Mixartista is a innovative robotic bartender designed for the world of luxury. It’s made with noble materials such as crystal and 24k gold to amaze, and designed to give your customers or guests a unique experience.
Woah, sounds so cool! Where did this idea come from?
One afternoon two years ago, Leonardo, my fellow co-founder, and I saw an unfinished project of a machine that made cocktails in a very linear manner. At that moment, Leonardo and I said that we’d be able to do so much better with an Arduino board and a 3D printer. We created our team in that precise moment, and dedicated ourselves to studying electronic programming, Arduino components, mechanical design, and 3D printing. We took what we learned and put it into practice to create our first cocktail machine prototype. Its design was both completely different and innovative from designs that came before.
Can you tell our readers how they can design their first prototype?
Yes, of course! I will talk about it like it was recipe.
- Never give up!!
- Define specifications.
- Define the limits and compromises of the project.
- Study the necessary components, as well as where to buy them and shipping times.
- With the chosen components, start designing the mechanics and electronics, and divide tasks and
responsibilities in the team. Always communicate your progress of the work.
- Start the proto fabrication process.
- Assemble manufactured components.
- Start with the first tests and design changes.
- Make small necessary changes.
- Test the prototype.
- Do a small presentation of your prototype for your friends and relatives.
- Study the product patent process.
- Patent your product.
- Start to show it around and collect feedback from people you do not know in order to improve your
- Improve your prototype.
- Enjoy your first prototype :D
What motivated you to start this project and continue working on it when you felt like giving up?
My main motivation to start this project was the desire to start a project that we could do ourselves and practice the basic knowledge we had gained at the university.
At the end of the prototyping process, we realized that we had created something new and understood that our invention had potential. We decided to invest our money and patent our invention. From that moment on, we were more than makers. We were entrepreneurs.
Every time we had difficulties we said, “We can not let it go now. We’ve worked too hard on this project, so DO NOT GIVE UP!”
Speaking of not giving up, what do you think inspired you to succeed?
The desire to finish the prototype so we could show it to people, and collect constructive criticism. Working on a team also helped with solving problems.
What 3 things did you learn from doing this project?
1) Talk to people about your idea and accept all of the advice and constructive criticism about it.
2) Believe in what you do and believe in the people you’re working with, otherwise you’re just wasting time.
3) It’s important to work with your heart, but more so to work with your mind. Just remember that all the efforts you make will pay off sooner or later.