Fun Gadgets

A collection of fun and playful physical computing projects

Swing Lamp  |  October, 2012

Swing Lamp is a sensual lamp that reacts to sound. The goal of this project was to create a physical audio visualizer that uses subtle movements and color fades to enable greater bonds between music and emotions. Swing Lamp detects the volume, pitch, and the beat range of music. These are mapped to three different motors and LEDs. The LED case is made of white acrylic and the stand is made of MDF wood. The LEDs are hanging using interfaced conductive thread. Tubes were cut out in trapezoidal forms to create swing visualization. Arduino and openFrameworks were used for this project.

Arduino Uno. openFrameworks. Conductive thread. Servo motors. LEDs. 

Moduled  |  December 2011

Moduled is a multipurpose lamp for people who are in need of different functions, forms, and colors of lighting. Moduled is a portmanteau word that is a combination of the words “module” and “LED (Light Emitting Diode).” The key concept of Moduled is its complete modularity that enables many different shape combinations and its use of LEDs instead of incandescent light bulbs. Moduled was demoed at Maker Faire 2012 New York.

Arduino Uno. BlinkM & Luxeon Rebel LEDs. Potentiometer. Switch. Laser cutting. 

maker faire

Allele Patterns: A Genigame  |  October, 2012

The main purpose of this game is to get the different combinations and results of mixing alleles. For example, if the parent alleles are Rr x Rr, then people have to come up with all resulting combinations of RR, Rr, Rr, rr. If people get the answer correct, the box is outlined green and if the people get the answer incorrect, the box is outlined with red. The software, coded with processing, gives random parent alleles for players to solve. There is a time limit in which people have to find the combination.

The two sticks (a potentiometer and an LED in each stick) are used as controllers that represent chromosomes. By rotating the potentiometer, people can control the allele in the chromosome. If the LED is on, then the stick carries a dominant allele. If the LED is off, the stick is carrying a recessive allele. One stick has a reed switch marked with colorful tape. People can use the one stick to click on the other stick and make an “allele cross.” The X form of combining the two sticks was inspired by the shape of actual chromosomes. People can have fun rotating the potentiometers, seeing the LED react, and tapping two sticks together.

User tests for Allele Patterns were held at Maker Faire 2012 New York.

Arduino Uno. Processing. Reed switch. Potentiometer. LEDs. 

maker faire

Circuit Card  |  February, 2012

In the shape of a light bulb, on the back side contains all the information about me (email address, phone number, portfolio). On the front side is an LED that is lit through a 3V battery and conductive ink. People can apply pressure to the velostat to increase / decrease the intensity of light emitted from the LED. This can be attached to your keys or a bag to provide emergency light when needed.

Surface mount LED. Silver conductive ink. Conductive copper tape. Velostat. 3V Battery. Laser cutter.

Pulsey  |  November, 2011

Pulsey is a playful toy that experiments with how people can measure their pulse. With two blink M RGB LEDs as its eyes and a servo motor as its hair, it reacts to your heart rate via a pulse sensor attached to your earlobe or finger. Once a pulse is detected, the RGB LEDs fade to a shade of green and the servo motor starts spinning. Two potentiometers are used to control the HSV and brightness of the LEDS therefore enabling you to create many different colors.

Arduino Uno. Pulse sensor. Servo motor. Potentiometer.

Lonely Pumpkin  |  November, 2011

Lonely pumpkin is a cute circuit toy and decoration for Halloween. Servo motor that represents pumpkins hair, RGB LEDs representing pumpkin eyes, blue LEDs for pumpkin tears, shift register & superbright LEDs for mouth, superbright blue LED for nose. No breadboards used. The components are all installed with circuit boards and the Arduino Uno is run by a 9V battery pack. When the pumpkin is hit from the right, the motor turns clockwise, the pumpkin starts to cry and make a sad face. If the pumpkin is in a dark room, it doesn’t stop crying.

Arduino Uno. Shift Register. RGB LEDs. Photocell. Tilt sensors. Servo motor.