For our Look, Ask, Learn, and Try assignment, we set up inside of Stauffer B asking various Digital Culture students to try playing with our prototype. We did not use our finalized prototype as we are stilling working on it, but just a smaller circuit that demonstrates the technology we are incorporating into our project.
Look: Some people find our circuit prototype that they played with a little underwhelming. Others find it really intriguing that a sensor they are used to using as a speaker for playing audio could possibly produce voltage to power a circuit without the use of a battery. The overall reaction to our entire concept is really positive and people say they’d love to see our concept replace traditional lighting and power systems in the future.
Ask: Feedback we received are incorporating more or larger capacitors into our circuit to keep our LED lit for longer periods of time and the suggestion to use sensors that require less work for a user to produce voltage. Our piezo disks require a lot of charging with human pressing for such little output of light.
Try: We’ve included a video of us trying the prototype and a photo example of people trying it out. This trying helps us gather ideas on what we can change to make producing power easier.
Link to Video:
Learn: Problems we see with our idea is how we might handle rain, wear and tear, and other conditions that could destroy our circuit/pressure panels, ultimately making our idea unsustainable. They could be too much maintenance needed if the product we made isn’t sturdy and protected from elements that could cause fires or other safety hazards. Electricity can be dangerous and our circuit could even be safety hazard for people walking on it if it wears over time.
For our mycelium mold project, we will be using the following mold to form a Mycelium Music Player. The idea is sketched out below also. We will use the mold to make a tablet shaped mycelium container than holds our screen, microcontroller, LED(s), and other parts. Other pieces we might include are buttons, especially a power switch, a speaker to output sound, and conductive material that will be used to create capacitive sense “buttons”.
We created a google doc of pictures of the different containers we plan to use as our mold.Most of our ideas included kitchen ware like food storage containers and cookie trays.
For my project, since I did not have access to velostat materials when working on it, I played with the circuit we made and class, substituting wires and alligator clips with textile type conductive materials.
I ended up replacing the two alligator clips that attached to the index card pressure sensor we made in class with conductive thread. Without velostat, I also had to replace my entire makeshift pressure sensor. I filled this part of the circuit with stretchy conductive fabric. It turned out that when this fabric was stretched, the resistance in this section would change. This became my analog fabric sensor to provide input and change the brightness of an LED.
If incorporating this idea into a large more complete project, I’d attach the Lilypad Arduino and components to a glove and sew thread from my conductive fabric sensor to the fingers of the glove. This would allow the wearer to bend their fingers to tug the sensor and therefore change the brightness of the LED on their glove.
See the video of my fabric sensor affecting the LED:
My Arduino Soft Switch uses a pair of scissors to create a connection and close the circuit like a pressed button. My circuit is coded to alternate between my two LEDs, with red lighting up when the switch is open, and green lighting up when the switch is closed. See attached video for a demonstration.
My Arduino Soft Switch uses a pair of scissors to create a connection and close the circuit like a pressed button. My circuit is coded to alternate between my two LEDs, with red lighting up when the switch is open, and green lighting up when the switch is closed. See link to video for a demonstration.