For my final project I sought out to make a nightstand thermostat that shows what the outside temperature is so you can wake up and properly dress for the day. The thermostat shows two different icons, a snowflake for when its cold and a flame for when its hot.
The project started by experimenting with Adafruit’s Dotstar Matrix LEDs, which I had never used before. There were little to no tutorials so the best thing I could do was to start playing with it. I tried a series of codes which helped me understand how the pixel LEDs worked. One of the most tricky things to do was to learn how to connect the matrices and align them to what the code was meant to portray.
After figuring out the right connectivity, I went into experimenting with making icons with the pixels. I learned how to turn on and off individual pixels so I created a chart to manually mark out the pixels I wanted to turn on in order to show what I wanted on the matrices. In order to draw the icons in pixels I used grid-paint.com and continued to manually mark down the individual pixels on my chart.
After the code was done I proceeded to glue the matrices together carefully, in order to have a more accurate display.
Lastly, I 3d modeled a casing for the matrices and arduino uno board. I created a separate lid with holes designed to hold magnets for easy access to the board in case something goes wrong and a hole in the back to slide the power cable through.
After that was done, I proceeded to glue the arduino uno board inside the box, and an acrylic piece on the inside of the lid. The semi translucent acrylic helped diffuse the Dotstar LEDs. The matrices were later glued to the back of the acrylic.
When Everything was in place I connected the matrix to the uno board and closed the lid.
Snowflake and 38 degrees: https://www.tinkercad.com/embed/lBe5gc2JAmS?editbtn=1
Flame and 91 degrees: https://www.tinkercad.com/embed/heDeLK3uTjb?editbtn=1