Do your Research!
Researching is extremely crucial for any scientist or engineer! From my experience working in the 3M Young Scientist Challenge I have learned that without a solid knowledge base and understanding about subjects related to your problem and solution, it is difficult to make improvements in solving the problem. For example, I had a problem, the blind had difficulty in anticipating objects at a close to medium range, and an idea for a solution, converting depth data into audio cues. I could not have gone forth with my idea if I did not have experience coding with python or have implemented my idea of spatial audio if I did not know how the human auditory system perceived pitch, amplitude, and position of sound.
This relationship of research and solving a problem also works vice versa as well. Knowing exactly what to research is incredibly difficult if you do not understand or have a well thought out problem. When I first began researching, I had an exact problem in my mind which made researching concepts and searching for materials much more straightforward
Something that helped me greatly during the research process was writing out my ideas for my solution. Once my ideas were worded to perfection, then I could clearly visualize what my solution would look like. Then, having a clear idea of my solution helped me to expedite the research process
To conclude, I first had to know my problem and have a clear idea for a possible solution. Then I was able to start researching subjects related to my problem. And then, with my newfound knowledge from my research, I was able to start working towards the solution that I had envisioned before.