A

tray

"Laptop Tray." Rhino 3D and CNC Router. 2017.

traydetail
This Laptop Tray is the result of a semester long “Object and Spaces” project that encouraged us to investigate design opportunities within the context of dining- looking to innovate at the intersection of culture, tradition and personal experience. The intent was to examine an environment through the lens of our own memories and family interactions, and then develop a product that captures an element of this narrative.

In the research phase of this project, I began to recall the special dinners my family shared in the theater room of our house. Instead of having a formal dining room meal, every few weeks we would gather in front of the television to watch a show or movie, while we ate on TV trays. These nights were especially exciting for my younger sister and I, as it was a break in routine from our typically formal dinners.

This memory lead me to study the way I have my current college dinners: either gathering in the dining room with my friends or sitting with my laptop at my desk. I then realized I had been forming my own version of our TV dinners from home.

I decided to design a product that enhanced the experience of my “new” TV dinners, creating a tray that covers a laptop keyboard. The tray serves to give users more room on their desk or workspace when viewing content that does not require the use of a keyboard. Sliding easily over the keyboard, without obstructing ports or sound, the product functions as a secondary surface on which to work. For example, one could take notes directly in front of the screen while reading or watching a video, freeing desk space for other articles. The tray also features two removable sections that become a sort of placemat and coaster, and thus creates shallow storage recesses on the surface.

I used Rhinoceros 3D modeling software to produce the design of the Laptop Tray and a CNC Router to make a physical prototype.