One of my favorite projects in MAKE: Soft Robotics is the Kousa. It’s a soft sensor that uses water power to turn a simple force sensing resistor into a versatile sensor that can pick up squeezing, tapping, and pressing from any angle.
The project relies on a set of 3d printed molds that interlock to create a hollow silicone bulb. When the bulb is filled with water and connected into a printed enclosure along with a FSR circuit, it converts any pressure it receives into a clear signal that can be picked up by an Arduino.
Although this is one of the more complex projects in the book, it’s also one of the most rewarding. Kousa sensors can be strung together into a chain using magnets to form musical instruments, haptic keyboards, VR interfaces, and more.
So, if you happen to be in the market for a cool book on emerging robotics, one that features approachable projects, bioinspired designs, digital fabrication, and the history of spacesuit design, I recommend you check out MAKE: Soft Robotics.