Eye contact

Making it personal is a good way to harness people's will to work.  With strangers, we trade.  With fellow human beings, we give.  A handful of Rice engineering students took on a freshman-year project to make a robotic arm for a wheelchair bound teenager with brittle-bone disease.  They found some of the engineering problems unexpectedly tough to crack:
And there was an even bigger problem.  The arm wasn't nearly finished, but the engineering course was ending.  But the team members say the idea of not finishing the project never entered their minds. 
"We had someone who came and sat down in front of us, and asked for our help," says Najoomi.
It took them till the end of their sophomore year, but they finally presented a working gadget to their client.

H/t:  for this and other posts to come this morning, "Not Exactly Rocket Science."

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