Week 7 Slides & Homework

Arduino Class Lesson 4

For homework this week, complete the Arduino Class Lesson 4 (and blog about your NeoPixels as you have done for previous exercises), and start brainstorming ideas for your 3rd project, the Innovative Switch. This is a group project! Working in groups will facilitate problem solving while maximizing creative energy, and create more time for project presentations/discussion on Nov 7 (presentations have been pushed back so you don’t have homework over the weekend of your field trip).


Micah, Xuan, Hannah, Rhea

Wei, Carly, Ellen, Ben

Eugenia, John, Evie, Yanying

Antya, Sophie, Zihan, Gustav

Tzu Ching, André, Oomung, PA

Get together with your group in person or online to brainstorm (can be asynchronous/email) about situations you’d like to try to sense, for example:

  • someone opens the kitchen cabinet and takes your snacks
  • tall grass sways in the wind
  • you squeeze the brakes on your bicycle

Research switches that may be applicable to your situation. More than one may apply, and if so, weigh the pros/cons of each. Please read the Switches chapter of the Instructables Electronics Class to learn more about switches, and the Variable Resistors/Potentiometers section of the Resistors lesson. Many analog sensors are some kind of variable resistor. You should start acquiring materials/parts for your prototyping/work session next class.

Some ideas to get you started:

Some sensors are more complex and may contain their own circuitry that communicates with your Arduino in a way more like serial communication than the previous inputs/outputs you’ve learned so far (accelerometers, digital temp/humidity sensors, etc.). While these more complex sensors are not strictly forbidden, their use is discouraged in this project in favor of more creative problem solving that will ultimately result in deeper understanding of the subject material. Rule of thumb: if you need to install a library to use the sensor, consider a simpler solution this time around.

In addition to your individual Arduino Lesson 4 NeoPixel blog post, your group posts (one per group) are due Wednesday 10/25 by 8pm, and should include:

  • your group name and constituent members
  • your top three favorite themes/situations from the brainstorm
  • what switches/sensors you could use to intervene in each
  • what potential outputs you’d like to go along with those interventions

In addition to your blog post, you should start acquiring materials/parts for your prototyping/work session next class.

Don’t forget that your midterm dossiers are due on Thursday, 10/26!

Author: Becky Stern

Making and sharing are my two biggest passions! I'm a Content Creator at Autodesk and part-time faculty at SVA. Check out all my Instructables and find me as @bekathwia on YouTube, Twitter, and Instagram.