Evolve Changelog

POSTED BY DANNY CHOO On Sat 2023/02/25 18:04 JST

Hey there! Danny here.

The Evolve skeletal frame for Smart Doll completely changes the user experience making it feel like a completely different product than before. While I hope that you've taken the time to review the "What is Evolve" article to learn all the reasons to avoid purchasing a Smart Doll, I understand that some of you may still decide to buy ;-) 

If you're among those who have made that choice, you may be curious to know which version of the Evolve frame your Smart Doll will come with. However, it's important to note that if you're new to Smart Doll Land, this information may not be of interest because no matter which version of the frame your Smart Doll comes with, we always ensure that all versions are safe and durable for the market.

The name for the Evolve frame was chosen for a reason - it was designed to facilitate modifications to the molds, making it (somewhat!) easier for us to incorporate continuous improvements based on previous versions.

To keep track of the versions, Evolve employs a versioning system commonly used in software development known as Semantic Versioning, which I adopted due to my background in software development. As a former Website Manager at Amazon, I oversaw website development before jumping the corporate ship that eventually led to the creation of Smart Doll.

Today, I continue to work on website development with my team for the Smart Doll website's backend systems and tools. Although semantic versioning (SemVer) is not typical for physical products, it works well for Evolve, which is constantly updated and patched. This versioning system and changelog will provide transparency into our product development.

However, unlike software that can be easily updated through a download, Smart Doll owners can only benefit from the latest version when we confirm that we are all living in a simulation. We aim to keep our product evolving continuously, even if it means sacrificing potential sales from customers who will feel unhappy if a new version is released shortly after they purchase the previous version.

As a reminder, we do not offer any replacement of upgraded parts, nor do we offer trade-in programs like Apple does when upgrading an iPhone to the next generation. Nor will we release 3D data for folks to print their own - which won't work anyway because of the material properties.

By embracing this approach, we can ensure that our product continues to evolve while offering a compelling reason for folks to avoid purchasing a Smart Doll altogether ;-)

The photo above depicts an injection molding flow analysis, which we perform each time we modify the mold. This analysis helps us simulate how the mold cavity fills up based on factors such as the temperature, pressure, and speed of the molten plastic.

Since even minor modifications to the mold can impact the final outcome of the molded component, we devote weeks to testing and making adjustments before incorporating any changes into the next version. This is necessary to ensure that our products meet our standards of quality and performance.

Major, Minor, and Patch

The SemVer system comprises three parts divided by 3 numbers in the following order - Major, Minor, and Patch, indicating the type and scope of changes made. For example, the first-gen frame in 2014 would be 1.0.0, while the launch candidate for Evolve cocoa is 5.0.1.

"Major" reflect major design changes incompatible with previous frame versions.

"Minor" represent minor injection mold modifications that keep the overall design backward compatible.

"Patch" refers to extra components added to fix areas that may hinder the user experience.

The silicone and sponge tubing for the previous frame are considered patches. We do not consider patched versions inferior - in fact, they require much more manual labor, so if anything, more time is spent on bringing the product to the optimum levels that are required for release. 
Patches for the previous frame were implemented and rolled out without any announcements. However, with the pace of evolution planned for the new frame, I feel it's important for customers to understand why and what has changed to prevent confusion when they purchase a new Smart Doll and notice slight differences.

We now typically make smaller batches of frames so that we are not stuck with thousands of sets that require manual patching.

"Until the next production run" means that the stated color tone will remain on that version until the next injection molded batch. We do not have any ETA for the next batch, which depends on the consumption speed of the current batch.


We will update this section as we implement changes to Evolve for different skin tones. Given that consumption rates vary across skin tones, we deploy these updates at different times and not necessarily in new versions simultaneously. The changelog below this section outlines the changes.
Note that gray is still version 2 (gen 2) until further notice.

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v5.0.1 (patch) (2023-03-03)

  • The first release of cocoa and tea is patched with silicone spacers in the shoulder sockets that improve haptics for the Y-axis.
  • Cocoa and tea will be on the 5.0.1 version until the next production run.

v5.1.0 (minor) (2023-03-03)

  • The first release of cinnamon has a minor mold update that adds 2 extra ribs to the shoulder, eliminating the need for the silicone spacer. The result is slightly more auditory and haptic feedback, but tuning down the extra ribs to fit the shoulder gear requires more manual work.
  • Cinnamon will be on the 5.1.0 version until the next production run.

v5.2.0 (minor) (2023-04-15)

  • Gray and Tea are now on 5.2.0 as of 2023/04/15 JST.
  • Cocoa and Tea will have the following upgrades in addition to v5.1.0. 
  • Extra 4 ribs added to the springboard on the arm socket to improve audio, haptics, and torque. This removes the need for the silicone spacers in 5.0.1.
  • Brake padding added to the thighs to dampen sound waves and increase torque resistance.
  • Extra 4 ribs added to knees to increase haptics and torque resistance.
  • Sharp edges removed from foot, eliminating the need to manually cut them off during assembly.
  • Gate shape is now recessed on the elbow eliminating the need to clean the flash during assembly. The new gate shape also improves molten plastic flow to the area, eliminating wrinkles that previously appeared on the surface.

v5.3.0 (minor) (2023-05-09)

  • The rib on the arm socket has been extended by 2.5mm on the top and 2.5mm on the bottom to minimize the chances of the arm popping off when arms are in a "banzai" (arms up in the air) position. This was due to the shoulders on the bust occasionally pushing out the arms.

v5.4.0 (minor) (2023-06-14)

  • The ball joints on the spine have slightly improved haptics on the vertical axis.

v5.5.0 (minor) (2023-08-04)

  • The shoulder sockets now have an additional adjustment rib which allows us to control the tightness during assembly better. This rib will be cut off if we find that the shoulders are too difficult to remove for that particular body.
  • This change was to also accommodate for the pear body and new guys body (in development) where vinyl thickness could push the arm out of the socket.