- SparkFun Triple Axis Accelerometer Board
- Adafruit Neopixel Ring
- Adafruit Gemma
- Lithium Ion Battery
- 1/8 in black acrylic
- 1/4 in clear acrylic
- Solder Neopixel’s “Data Input” pin to Gemma’s “D0” pin
- Solder Neopixel’s GND to Gemma’s GND
- Solder Gemma’s VOut pin to Neopixel’s 5V DC Power pin
- Connect the GND pin on the accelerometer to the GND on the Neopixel Ring, and the VCC accelerometer pin to the 3V pin on Gemma
- Connect Accelerometer’s X pin to A1
- Roll the components together and connect the battery to the Gemma
- Place in laser cut enclosure
In the scheme of things, I would say the challenge I encountered this round is a relatively small one. I don’t know how I managed to mess up the file for the laser cutter, but it ended up being half the size it needed to be. I unfortunately had to push out my original laser cutting date, and then fried another project completely in the middle of the night before, and couldn’t manage to get it recut the morning of. I was really disappointed with how it turned out, but felt this was better than having the circuit fail as has been the case in the past.
I would consider my piece a marketable product, at least in the way I conceived it originally. I wanted this to be an object that would function as a nonverbal identifier of a student’s progress/feeling in class. Rather than having to tell a teacher they were falling behind and potentially embarrass themselves, or have a professor call on them while they were still working through a problem, the loading wheel shows whether a student is ready or struggling or not without any words. It was also relatively cheap to make – just about $20 total, so a mass produced object could probably be reproduced for less. I picture it sold in office stores or mass markets like Amazon, so that they’re accessible to classrooms full of students. It’s important because a lot of students have anxiety or don’t like to be forced to speak while they’re still working through a problem, and for some students, it’s so severe these kinds of experiences can sincerely negatively impact their school careers.