Humans of TU Delft: Igo Boerrigter and Thomas Zwart

Who are the people who study and work at TU Delft? We meet them in Humans of TU Delft where they talk about their work or other activities. Igo Boerrigter’s personal struggle with back pain gave him an idea. He told his roommate, Thomas Zwart, about it and now the two industrial engineering master’s students are developing a product idea they call Riggid.

Thomas Zwart (left) and Igo Boerrigter. (Photo: Heather Montague)

Igo: “I had to stop studying full time for half a year because of my back issues. I noticed that one of the problems, because I’m quite tall, is hunching over my laptop so I always had this idea that I should work in a different way. I created a special setup at home, but I was not able to take it with me to the university. So I looked into some other solutions, but nothing fit. Then I thought, there’s an opportunity here. Thomas was my roommate and I shared my idea with him. We started doing some research and discovered that the problem is actually a lot bigger than we thought.

75% of students say they have physical discomfort from the way they work ’

Thomas: “When you look around the university you see that nobody sits correctly when they’re working and they work for long hours like this. We did a survey with about 230 people and 75% of students say they have physical discomfort from the way they work. Our research shows that students do not feel they work ergonomically, but at the same time they find it really important. We’ve looked at products that are already on the market and they mostly function to lift the laptop. But you also need a mouse and an external keyboard, you need a lot of stuff to work ergonomically. We are focusing on creating an integrated laptop sleeve that is a complete package. What we’re aiming for is something that keeps the flexibility of a laptop but still allows you to work ergonomically.

Igo: “Our goal is to bring this to a point where we could actually launch a business, we could sell our product and be profitable. We’re doing our design and research and now we have to build up this entire business aspect which is really fascinating for us. We have also talked to the faculty about this and they are interested in our research. The university is also looking for ways to improve the facilities to make a better working environment.”

Heather Montague / Freelance writer

Editor Redactie

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