The Bonded Brothers

See the Instructable!

My project is a pair of brothers that can sense and reciprocate each other’s feelings, no matter how far they are apart.

If one of the brothers is touched, he expresses his feelings in the form of a light or a vibrate. Because the bond between siblings is so strong, however, those feelings get reci-procated on the other doll. In this way, whatever you do to one doll is felt by the other.

These little guys can be shared between any pair of people who share a bond like the brothers do, that way, no matter how near or far, you can always let them know you’re still bonded.


  • single-strand insulated wiring (get different colors)
  • 100-1K Ohm resistor
  • NPN transistor (PN2222)
  • heat shrink tubing
  • breadboard prototyping wires
  • solderless breadboard
  • perma-proto board
  • lipoly battery
  • usb cable
  • adafruit feather huzzah
  • flesh-colored felt (at least 1 yard)
  • cotton jersey fabric (at least 1 yard)
  • cotton twill fabric (at least 1 yard)
  • thread
  • sewing needle(s)
  • eye-colored buttons
  • hair-colored yarn


  • pencil
  • compass
  • ruler
  • cutting mat
  • wire strippers
  • scissors
  • sewing machine
  • flush wire snips
  • solder
  • soldering iron
  • adjustable desk lamp
  • third hand tool
  • heat gun or lighter
  • tape














































IMG_5939 2

Voodoo Doll Twins: Tutorial Outline


This tutorial will teach you how to construct a pair of Arduino-powered “voodoo twin dolls” that reflect actions done to one doll on its twin. For instance, if you touch Doll A’s left hand, Doll B’s left hand will light up. If you pick up Doll B, Doll A will vibrate, and so on.

These dolls will be set up with a modified Arduino code and be wifi enabled. This way, they can communicate in different rooms, different buildings, and even different states.

See More Below:


First, I loaded the WiFi code onto Arduino and installed the drivers for the Feather Huzzah.

Next, I opened the sketch end edited the variables to account for the PoD Studio WiFi and password. I then uploaded it to the board and got this blinking light.

Screen Shot 2017-11-13 at 4.22.43 PM.png

After, I think I connected the device through WiFI. At some point during this process my LED momentarily lit up. I think this was while the code was loading onto the device. I couldn’t manage to get the LED to turn on by the button though.

Then, I opened serial monitor and watched the readouts it was giving me. I’m not sure what it meant. I think it showed that it was trying to connect to the internet but couldn’t.Screen Shot 2017-11-13 at 4.19.33 PM.png

Finally, I’ve left the board on and every few seconds it flashes a blue light from the Huzzah itself. I’m not sure what this means.

Andre’s Final Project Brainstorm

I’m going to make a real-life voodoo doll.


In my earlier project where I made a doll for little boys, the interaction was a simple pulsing heart. I really like that concept, and I want to see if I can push it further. What I have in mind is to make my original doll a twin, give them both the red LED beating heart (with the “beating” heart shape this time instead of just a static red orb), and make it so that if you touch or hold one, that action is indicated on the other.


For instance, I want you to be able to touch Doll A’s left hand, and have the left hand on Doll B light up. Maybe I would have independent lights for each hand and foot, the red heart light for when you pick one up, and maybe something on his head when you speak to indicate the doll “listening”.

It would be called Voodoo Children

I have no clue how I will pull this off.


For my second idea, I think it would be cool to put a pressure sensor on my desk and connect it to a speaker so that when I’m gone, if anyone puts their crap on my clean desk, the sensor will trigger a threatening recording of my voice telling people to move their stuff.

I’m also thinking about having it send me an email or some sort of notification to my phone whenever the sensor is activated so I know exactly when crap was put onto my desk.

I call it The Tattle Tell.


For my third idea, I think it would be cool to create a device that indicated the fire threat levels in California at any given times.

Each day, the National Park Service indicated the fire threat level in a series of colors, green for low, yellow for slight, orange for moderate, and red for severe. These colors change depending on time of year, location, weather, and other environmental factors. I think it’d be cool if I made a laser cutout of California, placed neopixels or multicolor LEDs behind different regions or simply behind notable cities and areas, and connected each to the Park Service’s daily feed of fire threat levels.

If an area is actually on fire, I would have all the LEDs in that region pulse red.

It would be called California Is Burning.

Plush Nightlight: Doll In Love

For the latest iteration of this project, I wanted to make a doll that was both male and had nothing to do with warfare. My reasoning was that boys ought to have toys that enable them to explore being sensitive and nurturing without feeling like doing so compromises their masculinity. This is a doll, and not an action figure or superhero. It’s a little boy, like them, and has a light up red “heart” to underscore his anthropomorphic, feeling nature.


  • tan felt
  • light blue twill
  • white jersey
  • brown buttons
  • fiber fill
  • thread
  • 1 red LED
  • AA battery pack
  • 2 AA batteries

I began by tracing and cutting out patterns for the doll’s body, hands, feet, and head from the felt:




I fortunately bought extra materials, since it took me several attempts to get the body parts and head in the right proportions.

I then set to work cutting patterns for and sewing together his shorts and t-shirt. This easily took the longest, and was especially tricky since his clothes were very small and hard to stitch.


The thing I wasn’t able to execute that well was shaping the red light for his heart. The LED light diffused somewhat okay under the white jersey, but still appeared in the round shape of the LED bulb. I experimented with placing it behind a transpired silicon heart, cutting a heart shape out of a piece of felt and mounting the LED behind it, and even stitching a heart with red thread onto his shirt and mounting the LED behind it like before, but none of these worked.

To give you an idea of the look I was going for, I photoshopped this version below:


I’d like to continue working on this little guy. I want to get the light to be a perfect heart shape like above, I want to use a mini Arduino board and mini battery pack to make the heart pulse slowly like a heartbeat, mount everything inside his body, and add hair and a smile.

Plush Nightlight Prototype: Beating Heart

Once I get a bit better with Arduino, I want to make a boy doll that has a red beating heart. That might be a bit creepy though, so to start, I want to simply make a red heart that pulses red when you turn it on.

Here’s my circuit sketch:

FullSizeRender 2.jpg

When I first drew this, I realized that the LEDs and resistors didn’t have a positive line connecting them, so it looked like this before I went back and drew what’s above:


I made my heart in class using 1 piece of red felt, 1 piece of grey fleece, some stuffing, and a needle and thread.


I drew a heart pattern on a piece of paper, cut it out, and then used a pen to lightly trace she shape onto both pieces of material.

After carefully cutting out the shapes, I began stitching them both together about 1/4in from the edge. I wanted the fluffy side of the fleece to be exposed, so I stitched it facing in.

Once the heart was nearly sewn all the way around, I flipped it outside in and stuffed the inside with polyester stuffing.

Finally, I sewed the last remaining bit with a new piece of thread.

Plush Nightlight: Brainstorm

Idea #1: Charizard


  • There’s an old-school Pokemon called Charizard who’s basically a giant orange dragon with a tail that’s perpetually flaming at the tip. It’s sort of his life force.
  • For the nightlight, I think it’d be cool if it a a light sensor, and when it was light in the room, his tail would glow a bright orange, but when the light went out, it changed to a dim blue.
  • I could switch out the felt-tip tail for a thin colored jersey (more transparent), and mount multi-color LEDs inside.

Idea #2: Starry Dress


  • I’ve seen little girl’s dolls have polka dot dresses, but I think it’d be cool if the dress was midnight blue, and instead of polka dots, there were little white twinkling stars.
  • I could mount a series of white LEDs under or inside white polka dots, and when you turned the light out, it would activate a random slow twinkling series of LEDs.

Idea #3: Heartbeat


  • I’d like to try a slightly anthropomorphic idea with a doll. Usually human dolls are little girls, but my brother and I liked stuffed animals when we were little and I think it would have been nice to have little boy dolls who looked like us to love as well.
  • For this nightlight, you’d have an ordinary-looking doll dressed in a thin jersey t-shirt and pants, but when you turned the lights out in the room, a little red heart would slowly pulse from underneath his t-shirt.

Fun w/Arduino Buttons

Today I learned how to make a light with a button! Check it out:


I also managed to code a one button to brighten an LED, and another button to shut off the same led..

Here’s the code:

// constants won’t change. They’re used here to
// set pin numbers:
const int buttonPin[] = {2,3}; // the number of the pushbutton pins
const int ledPin = 13; // the number of the LED pin

// variables will change:
int buttonState = 0; // variable for reading the pushbutton status

void setup() {
// initialize the LED pin as an output:
pinMode(ledPin, OUTPUT);
// initialize the pushbutton pin as an input:
for(int x=0; x<2; x++)
pinMode(buttonPin[x], INPUT);

void loop(){
// read the state of the pushbutton value:
for(int x=0; x<2; x++)
buttonState = digitalRead(buttonPin[x]);

// check if the pushbutton is pressed.
// if it is, the buttonState is HIGH:
if (buttonState == HIGH && buttonPin[x] == 2) {
// turn LED on:
digitalWrite(ledPin, HIGH);
if (buttonState == HIGH && buttonPin[x] == 3) {
// turn LED off:
digitalWrite(ledPin, LOW);

Teardown: The Audi R8 V10+

Now in it’s second generation, the new Audi R8 regains its mantle atop Audi’s storied performance car portfolio. Of the several models offered, I’ve chosen the flagship R8 V10 Plus. But since I couldn’t get my hands on a real R8, I’ve chosen the next best thing: an RC car.

logic board

The teardown took about 45 minutes in real time (20 of that was spent driving the car around the studio), and it was very simple aside from the odd glued and taped bits.