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.
I’ve been having a hard time finding what to do for my final project but I’ve finally found three ideas that I actually like. If anyone reads this, feel free to comment of give me any feedback!
Keith Haring inspired wall lamp- The lamp uses an array of LEDs to portray different colors and patterns. It would include a touch sensor to shut on and off.
Emoji Thermometer- The thermometer is supposed to inform the user of the outside temperature at any time but is specially intended know the temperature as soon as you wake up.
Old Timey Arduino Camera- The camera is supposed to resemble an 1800’s camera but with a raw, simple tech twist. Users would be able to stand in front of the object, take a picture, and watch how it appears on the E-ink screen (if it’s possible).
Let me know what you guys think! for now I think I’m more inclined to the thermometer idea but I am open to any suggestion.
Shopping list for the Arduino Thermometer
Adafruit Bicolor LED Square Pixel Matrix with I2C Backpack- Not sure if I can array these to make a bigger display. Maybe its not the right one for the project. https://www.adafruit.com/product/902
Adafruit RGB Matrix HAT + RTC for Raspberry Pi Mini Kit- maybe this matrix is more suitable for the project but I don’t know whether or not I need another program to work with it. https://www.adafruit.com/product/2345
For this project, I decided to create Dr. Strange’s Eye of Agamotto. for those of you that are not familiar with this character, he is a sorcerer from the Marvel Comics Universe. He’s also appeared in the Marvel Cinematic Universe in various films, played by Benedict Cumberbatch. Also, the Eye of Agamotto is an amulet that houses one the 5 Infinity Stones, in this case, the time stone. This project has been really fun to make, specifically because I am a huge MCU fan. I had always wanted to make a prop from the movie and I finally had the opportunity to do it.
As for the process of the project, I decided to 3D print the body of the amulet. After the 3D print was done, I decided to sand it, and paint the product with acrylic paint. I usually prime and spray paint 3d prints, but since I wanted to convey an old, oxidized metal look I believe I chose the right method even though it was risky. The Neopixel LED was later added to the center of the eye and it is diffused by a regular plastic rhinestone. To get a little bit of more diffusion, I sanded the back of the rhinestone to get like a frosted effect. Finally I used a thick leather cord and braided it to create the necklace.
Chubby the ghost is the perfect toy to get your spook on this Halloween season! He’s meant to light up during the night to attract other creepy lovable ghosts in order to have the perfect mega ghost party!! In the previous post I mentioned how this toy is meant for creepy kids who like to get their spook on during Halloween and can’t wait to meet other ghosts.
For my Plush Night Light I decided to create a cute chubby ghost to get in the spirit of Halloween. When I originally thought about this idea I wanted to create something that was meant for cuddling and sleeping, so I came up with the idea of a friendly ghost that protects you from other ghosts at night. But then, I noticed that this idea was boring and I was making a knockoff version of Casper the friendly ghost. Now, instead of protecting you from other ghosts, it invites other cute ghosts for a friendly spooky party every time it turns on its chubby cheeks.
This toy is meant for those creepy fun kids who like to get their spook on during Halloween. For example:
and this one…
Furthermore, I did finish the prototype that’s due tomorrow but I forgot to take pictures and I left it in the studio, but don’t worry I’ll show you during class. The final product is going to be made out of white Sherpa and black felt. and With this being said, here are a couple of process pictures:
For this project I did a complete teardown of Apple’s Magic Mouse 2. This product, originally released in October of 2015, offered a new integrated lithium ion internal battery making it rechargeable. If you ask me, the rechargeable aspect of it is kind of dumb, due to the fact that the charging port is in the bottom, making it useless while it is charging. Six years have passed since this product came out and apple has yet to change this, so they are definitely up to something.
The teardown of the mouse was quite difficult because it was mainly glue holding the object together. It gave me the impression that they don’t want the average consumer looking into how they manufacture their products. So I started picking the plastic rails from the bottom with a box cutter in order to cut away the glue until I had enough surface to pull the whole piece out. After that I started prying open the top part with my fingers and realized that it was held by these four plastic clips that were part of the main tray that held the battery, as well as the motherboard and most of the electronics. Once I exposed the motherboard, I took apart all of the screws with a tiny screwdriver, this just mainly took apart the spring that would make the mouse click.
By the end of the teardown, the only thing I had left to do was to take out the battery. This was probably the most tricky and scary part due to the fact that it was completely glued to the plastic tray. I was kind of skeptical about taking it apart because I once poked a lithium battery and it did not go well. so I carefully went about it and managed to take it out using a flat screwdriver to pry it out of the case.