GEOFF – the key reminder

So the key reminder is here. It combines the function of reed switch, distance sensor, speaker and IO provided by Adafruit. It simply reminds you when you open the door but forget to take the keys. More details can be found in the Instructables link above.

It’s a box (and Allan doesn’t like it) where you can put your keys on it. No it’s definitely not the best looking thing I have ever made, but hey, it means I have a lot of space to improve in the future. And giving more time (two weeks I spent on this project, one and half of them spent waiting for parts being delivered. Good job UPS!)

On Time Intelligent Light Switch

Presenting the final for my On Time Intelligent Light Switch. The process was a pretty fun ride with a few twists, turns, and mishaps along the way. The Code was more complex than I expected going in. I AM happy with how its functioning, but I am learning so many different ways of getting to the same result, that I believe this code could be written in a few different ways which would leave it more open to easier modifications and distinct separate states of operation.

The final cluster of components is also larger than I originally envisioned. A little too large to cleanly fit into the wall as an at home switch replacement. Have already been looking into some alternative boards to do the dimming which I hope will drive the next update to the concepts to actually find a home within the walls of my home.

My very first Instructable post can be found below.  :

Some Photos from the construction process. :

Wiring Diagram.jpeg



3b-Wired Breadboard.jpg

5-AC in Wallbox.jpg

6a-All Wired.jpg

6b-All Wired.jpg




Final project: Fridge Guard

Sometimes when I take a lot of things out of the fridge, I have no free hand to close the door and then the door is just left open for a long time. Sometimes when I use too much strength to close the fridge door, it bounces off but I can’t notice it. When I realize it is still open, several hours or maybe the whole night has passed by. The food went bad and a large amount of electricity was wasted.


The Fridge Guard is a close door reminder designed for people who do not notice the fridge door is still slightly open or may forget to close the fridge door. The reminder can stick on the door and one of the polar bear’s hand will stick on the frame of the door, detecting whether the door is being left open and no one notices it.

It uses the Force sensor, IFTTT and Adafruit IO to gather the information from your fridge and sends a reminder to you through the message and piezo buzzer.


Here is the link of Instructables tutorial.

Here is the video:

The whole process to making Fridge Guard was challenging and also interesting and I really enjoyed that. At the very beginning, I used temperature sensor to detect whether the door is open or closed. After I built the circuit and test it at fridge, it didn’t change the temperature when the fridge door was slightly open. So I changed to force sensor, I also met some problem here. Because the sensor is too thin, when the door is closed, there is no pressure on the sensor. Finally I found that I need to make it thicker so that the sensor can detect the pressure when door is closed.

For the shape of Fridge Guard, I made the design and shape to fit the context. Polar bears live in cold area, so I chose this shape. I used to put them outside the fridge at the side of door, but it not quite fit well. So I chose to put it inside the fridge.

For the future, I think I want to change the material of Polar bear to soft rubber which is more fit for the environment inside the fridge.

Final Project: Hey Pillow


For the final project, I have decided to design a pillow that you can give to that special someone that constantly struggle to get out of bed and is late to classes, meetings, and dates.

Introducing the HEY Pillow.


It uses the ESP8266 Board to connect to the Wi-fi so that you can receive a notification that someone is still on the pillow and also send a trigger back to the pillow to initiate the Buzzer that will wake that person up.

Screen Shot 2018-12-02 at 3.41.43 PM

Screen Shot 2018-12-02 at 3.41.21 PM

Here is the link to the Instructables of the steps it took to building the HEY Pillow Prototype


Here is the Video

Overall I throughly enjoyed the whole process of building HEY Pillow. Definitely there were a lot of moment where I almost wanted to give up because the code just would not work the way I wanted it to. This project has taught me to be more confident in tackling in brand new areas such as Arduino and better problem solving techniques. I can confidently say that I can make a light blink and buzzer make noise and create a Hey Pillow. It was a lot of fun.

Going forward I want to make the branding and packaging more refined and through the story can bring out interest of the Pillow more.



Final project requirements and presentation schedule

Please post up your final project to the blog by 5pm the night before your presentation date. Please include:

  • A link to your published Instructable
  • Your video embedded/linked
  • Some photos
  • A brief description of your project’s purpose, function, form, construction, and future projections

Presentations (~20mins each) should include a live demo of your project, a video screening, tour through your process and final images by presenting your published Instructable, an explanation of what you learned from the experience, and how you could see the idea grow/change if it were taken further. There will be time for feedback, so please ask a few questions of the audience to direct the discussion.

December 5
–10 min break–

December 12
Felix & Ted
Shin Young
–10 min break–

As a reminder, your final class dossiers are due on 12/19 (one week after our last class). They can be built around your Halloween costume or final project, it’s up to you. Don’t forget to email Alisha and me with the shareable (not private) dropbox link!

Aquaponic Farm

Felix and I have planned our aquaponic system. We are using a steel wire rack as the base. We will have a 20 gallon fish tank with two 10 gallon (36″x18″x6″) grow beds for a 1:1 fish tank to plant bed ratio. We will use a Four outlet power relay module to control the pump, grow light and fish food. This relay module will the control center of the operation. With this we can control remotely when the plants are watered, receive light and when the fish are fed. We are currently in the process of procuring everything we need for the project.

Here is our working Instructables tutorial 


Final project progress (Pomodoro Lamp)


I started drafting instructible instruction.

Here’s the starting paragraph about my project.

Pomodoro Lamp uses movement and light of a light bulb to increase your productivity. When you start a task, the light bulb rises up as the light turns on for 40 minutes. After 40 minutes, the light bulb falls back down and turns itself off for 20 minutes. The lamp repeats this on and off process until after the task is completed. You can also track how many 40-minute sessions it took to complete the task.


Step1  – Parts, Tools, Supplies

Step 2 – Circuit Diagram and codes


I was able to get the micro servo motor (where the light bulb would go) to go one way for 40 mins and then the other way for 20 mins to display the Pomodoro effect.

Step 3 would be about construction. I am working on connecting the shaft to the servo motor and I would include the process in this step. Moreover, I would include the CNC cut file and any adjustments I would make to keep the circuits in place.

Step 4 would include using Power Relay to turn the light on and off along with connecting with IoT for task tracking. For the IoT, I would like to create a work flow like this:

  1. Google Calendar Applet ‘If any new event added on Homework, then send data to create a task feed’.
  2. This turns on the light and raises the bulb.
  3. When you complete the event or task, turn off the light.

I am still exploring different applets to get this to work smoothly, as I found out that there are no such applets that end an event. So I am planning to look into ios reminders applet.


The following are the next obstacles that  I need to tackle:

1) Attaching the shaft to the motor

2) Making the power relay to work with IoT integration