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The great irony of the social media revolution is that it’s not very social at all. Users browse through people’s pictures in the middle of the night while laying in bed, and tap out their approval with all the emotion of clearing their spam folder. Many boast of hundreds or thousands of “friends”, but if push came to shove, they probably couldn’t remember when they had last seen even a fraction of those people in the real world. Assuming they’ve even met them before in the first place. It’s the dystopian future we were all warned about, albeit a lot more colorful than we expected.

But what if we took social media tropes like “Likes” and “Follows”, and applied them to the real world? That’s precisely what [Tuang] set out to do with the “Social Touch Suit”, a piece of wearable technology which requires a person actually make physical contact with the wearer to perform social engagements. There’s even a hefty dose of RGB LEDs to recreate the flashy and colorful experience of today’s social media services.

Every social action requires that a specific and deliberate physical interaction be performed, which have largely been designed to mimic normal human contact. A pat on the shoulder signifies you want to follow the wearer, and adding them as a friend is as easy as giving a firm handshake. These interactions bring more weight to the decisions users make. For example, if somebody wants to remove you as a friend, they’ll need to muster up the courage to look you in the eye while they hit the button on your chest.

The jacket uses an Arduino to handle the low level functions, and a Raspberry Pi to not only provide the slick visuals of the touch screen display, but record video from the front and rear integrated cameras. That way you’ve even got video of the person who liked or disliked you. As you might expect, there’s a considerable energy requirement for this much hardware, but with a 5200 mAh LiPo battery in the pocket [Tuang] says she’s able to get a run time of 3 to 4 hours.

Considering how much gadgetry is packed into it, the whole thing looks remarkably wearable. We wouldn’t say it’s a practical piece of outerwear when fully decked out, but most of the electronic components can be removed if you feel like going low-key. [Tuang] also points out that for a garment to be functional it really needs to be washable as well, so being able to easily strip off the sensitive components was always an important part of the design in her mind.

The technology to sensors wearable and flexible is still largely in its infancy, but we’ve very excited to see where it goes. If projects like these inspire you, be sure to check out the presentation [Kitty Yeung] gave at the Hackaday Supercon where she talks about her vision for bespoke wearable technology.

Phone screens keep getting bigger. Computer screens keep getting bigger. Why not a large trackpad to use as a mouse? [MaddyMaxey] had that thought and with a few components and some sewing skills created a trackpad in a tablecloth.

The electronics in this project are right off the shelf. A Flora board for the brains and 4 capacitive touch boards. If you haven’t seen the Flora, it is a circular-shaped Arduino made for sewing into things. The real interesting part is the construction. If you haven’t worked with conductive fabric and thread, this will be a real eye-opener. [Maddy’s] blog has a lot of information about her explorations into merging fabric and electronics and also covers things like selecting conductive thread.

As an optional feature, [MaddyMaxey] added vibration motors that provide haptic feedback to her touchpad. We were hoping for a video, but there doesn’t seem to be one. The code is just the example program for the capacitive sensor boards, although you can see in a screenshot the additions for the haptic motors.

We’ve covered the Flora before, by the way. You could also make a ridiculously large touch surface using tomography, although the resolution isn’t quite good enough for mouse purposes.


Filed under: Arduino Hacks, wearable hacks

Snow skiing looks easy, right? You just stay standing, and gravity does the work. The reality is that skiing is difficult for beginners to learn. [19mkarpawich] loves to ski, but he was frustrated seeing crying kids on skis along with screaming parents trying to coach them. Inspired by wearable electronics, he took an Arduino, an old jacket, some LEDs, and created Ski Buddy.

The brains in the jacket consist of an Adafruit Flora, accelerometer, and a battery pack. Conductive thread connects to LED sequins. The jacket can help teach linking turns, parallel skiing, hockey stops, and gradual pizza stopping. In addition to the build details and some notes on where not to place sensors (doubtlessly learned the hard way), [19mkarpawich] also does a detailed explanation of the software and how to use the jacket.

You can see a very short video demonstration of Ski Buddy below. We’ve seen more wearables lately, some of them pretty creative. Maybe it is time to learn how to sew if you can’t already.


Filed under: Arduino Hacks, wearable hacks

owatch

Omkar is a special 8 years old who created a wearable device called O Watch: an Arduino Zero-based smartwatch kit for kids. The project, recently kickstarted, allows young people to learn programming, 3D printing and a bit of craft while making their own smartwatch and customizing it. The kit will be released with a series of learning tools including a kid-friendly website with easy tutorials, examples and a community to share creations.

He’s not new to DIY tech and learning as he’s been doing a few workshops to teach Arduino to other kids and likes it when they get excited about making Arduino projects. Omkar told us:

I was first interested in robots. But my dad got me started with projects that light up LEDs that were easier to learn and code myself. (ps: my dad did not let me get a robot kit at first :).

I decided to do a wearable project because there were many of them I saw in the news and I thought they were cool. I wanted to make a smartwatch so that I could wear it myself and share my project with my friends in school.

If you are a kid and are new to making, O Watch could be a great starting point as you’ll learn about coding, 3d printing, craft and also sharing. The Arduino IDE will be your  primary programming tool for the watch, the case can be 3D printed in a color of your choice and you’ll experiment on how to knot yourself a cool band to wear it.

owatch2

What are you waiting for? You have just a few days to back the project on Kickstarter and have an O Watch delivered to your home!

Giu
16

Get up, Stand up. With a Little Help from the Mindfulness Bracelet

adafruit, arduino hacks, becky stern, bracelet, GEMMA, wearable, wearable hacks Commenti disabilitati su Get up, Stand up. With a Little Help from the Mindfulness Bracelet 

[Becky Stern] has created the mindfulness bracelet, a wearable which looks great and serves an important purpose. The bracelet buzzes every hour to remind you to stand up and take a break from work, soldering, gaming, or whatever it is you may be doing. The bracelet is made up of interlinked figure 8 shapes of leather, though [Becky] says rubber from a bicycle inner tube works great as well. The final shape reminds us of the link belts sometimes found on lathes or other industrial equipment. The links are the perfect size to slip an Arduino Gemma in, along with a battery and vibrating motor. A NPN transistor, diode, and resistor round out the entire bill of materials for this design. This bracelet is a heck of a lot cheaper than the Apple watch feature which inspired it!

The time interval is set in the code to 1 hour, and can be adjusted by the user. Although the times are stored in milliseconds, the design does use the ATtiny85’s Watchdog Timer (WDT) to conserve power. This means the time can drift up to 30 seconds per hour, which is fine in this application.

Click past the break to see the bracelet in action!


Filed under: Arduino Hacks, wearable hacks
Img_0055When working in extreme temperatures it is important to monitor your body temperature. In freezing weather, your fingers and toes get numb and you can develop frostbite without even noticing it. Likewise, if your core body temperature drops too low, you can start to start to suffer the effects of […]

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3d_printing_cyberpunk-spikes-gemma-adafruit-hairflip3D-print these soft, flexible spikes and light them up with full-color programmable LEDs

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Feb
19

Arduino Tour 2014: le nuove tappe di Rimini e Pula #Italy

arduino, arduino tour, events, Pula, Rimini, wearable, Workshops Commenti disabilitati su Arduino Tour 2014: le nuove tappe di Rimini e Pula #Italy 

Wearables Rimini

 

L‘Arduino Tour torna nel 2014 con due tappe  ’on the beach‘: Rimini e Pula. Le due location ospiteranno nelle prossime settimane due workshop dedicati all’alfabeto di Arduino e alle wearable technologies.

  • L’appuntamento di Rimini si terrà sabato 22 febbraio negli spazi del nuovissimo MakerRn Lab di Rimini, dove Zoe Romano e Riccardo Marchesi di Plug&Wear introdurranno in otto ore di workshop il mondo dei wearables. Nella prima parte della giornata ci si avvicinerà a livello teorico alle applicazioni wearable, mentre nella seconda i parteciperanno produrranno un piccolo progetto con un sensore tessile. Appassionati di moda, design e smanettoni sono benvenuti, non è infatti richiesta alcuna conoscenza di programmazione o di taglio e cucito.  Qui trovi i dettagli per prenotare uno degli ultimi posti ancora disponibili!
  • La tappa sarda dell’Arduino Tour toccherà mercoledì 26 febbraio la sede dello IED di Cagliari (Viale Trento 39, h. 17) con un’introduzione alla scheda Arduino curata da Mirco Piccin e aperta a tutti. Tra giovedì 27 e venerdì 28 febbraio, il team Arduino si sposterà invece con Davide Gomba a Pula negli spazi del Parco Tecnologico della Sardegna, dove il Fablab di Sardegna Ricerche ospiterà le 16 ore di workshop vero e proprio. Al termine del percorso, i partecipanti avranno per competenze per mettere a punto mini-progetti, da implementare poi in autonomia a casa.  Prenota la tua partecipazione  qui!

 

 

 

HackPhx 2014

The HackPhx Winter 2014 hackathon was held at Heatsync Labs hackerspace in Mesa, Arizona, USA. The advertised theme was “Arduino Wearables”. Participating attendees were randomly placed on teams evenly distributed by their disclosed skills across all teams. There were 10 teams with 4 to 5 members per team competing for two winning spots.

Each team had to build an amazing wearable project utilizing the secret ingredient which was Seedstudio’s Arduino-compatible Xadow wearable platform and add-ons. The Xadow is similar to the Arduino Leonardo and participants used an Arduino cross compatibility and pin mapping chart to assist in development.

Top prize was the Judges’ prizes for the best completed and documented Xadow wearable team project. The second prize was the Jury’s prize given to the team project that the other teams liked the most regardless of event criteria.

Read more about the winning teams and watch their presentations after the break.

I was already planning on attending the hackathon. When I mentioned this to the Hackaday team they also put me on assignment to film and write about the winning teams. Full disclosure: I couldn’t resist signing up as a team member for some hacking fun.

No team members had experience using the Xadow platform so the playing field was quite level. The range of Xadow add-ons was extensive, but teams could only blindly select from a bucket of donated Xadow add-on modules such as OLED display, LED arrays, motors, accelerometers, GPS, NFC and BLE. Bartering between teams was encouraged as teams developed their final project plans.

The event really began the night before the hackathon with a 4 hour meet and greet to divide into teams and finalize hardware trades. The real event started at 8 am the next morning and lasted for 12 straight hours of mad hacking using any tools and supplies available at Heatsync Labs. Heatsync Labs provided experienced volunteers to assist teams that needed to use lab equipment such as the Laser cutter, 3D printers, welders, metal lathes or any power tools.

All team code, photos and final documentation had to be uploaded to each team’s GitHub repository before judging started at 8 pm.

Morse code Jelly Friend Earrings Flashing HackPhx in Morse code Controller and Bluetooth reciever module hidden in necklace

After the smoke cleared the Judges’ winner was Team 8 with “Morse Code Earrings”. This really was an amazing wearable hack especially if you take into account they scrapped their first project and started over on the winning project halfway through the hackathon. Team 8 utilized the Xadow Bluetooth LE module to send text messages from a phone to a stealth receiving necklace containing an Xadow which modulated the message in Morse code over flashing “Jelly Friend” LED earrings. The earrings were also made by Team 8 using clear acrylic laser cut in the shape of jellyfish and having a base of LEDs and some old Christmas tree fiber-optic lighting parts. The big advantage to having such decorative communication is to send SOS requests to nearby girlfriends when you find yourself entangled in scary company. Or to scream covertly flash profanity at your boss.

Team 8 members:

  • Mattie Finney – GossamerLights
  • James Brooks – pyrobrooks
  • Nate Plamondon – meznak
  • Brett Warner – brettwarner
Experiencing a new reality The OLED display attached to the back of the head unit How the user sees the OLED display in the 2 reflecting mirrors

Team 4 with “Over 9000” won the Jury’s prize. This prize winner was picked by all the other teams and I must say my team members were amazing; yes I was on Team 4. My team members were extremely talented at learning this new hardware platform. Almost effortlessly, and with time to spare, they quickly integrated the hardware, code and bits of scrap into a wearable head mounted heads-up Google Glass style interactive and fully functioning augmented reality head unit. I say “they” because I only worked on the glove unit and cabling. The glove unit retrieves distance measurements in feet and inches from a Parallax ultrasonic ping sensor mounted on the back of the glove and is cabled into the back of the head unit.

The project name comes from the accelerometer output mounted in the head unit. Once the accelerometer’s power unit output tops 9000 all the LEDs on the side will turn red indicating max power level activity. This power unit value along with distance measurements to objects in front of the glove unit are internally reflected into the wearer’s right eye from an OLED display mounted at the back of the head unit. If the glove detects objects closer than 3 feet, a front mounted red LED also lights to warn innocent bystanders. The back of the head unit is prewired for jacking in auxiliary off board sensors and equipment to simplify integration and assimilation.

Team 4 members:

  • Chad Tech – ChadCS
  • Joe Fleming – w33ble
  • Doug Sheridan – dsherida
  • Todd Harrison – toddfun


Filed under: Arduino Hacks, Hackerspaces, iphone hacks, Virtual Reality, wearable hacks, wireless hacks
Gen
16

A Light-Up Dress for a New Year’s Dance Party

arduino hacks, FLORA, led hacks, microcontrollers, RGB, RGB LED, wearable, wearable hacks Commenti disabilitati su A Light-Up Dress for a New Year’s Dance Party 

wearableLedress

Don’t let the above picture’s lack of blinking colors fool you, the light-up dress [Sam] fashioned for his girlfriend is rather eye-catching; we’d just rather talk about it than edit the gifs he’s provided. [Sam's] been a busy guy. His last project was a Raspberry Pi digital photo frame, which we featured just over a week ago, but wearable hacks allow him to combine his favored hobbies of sewing and electronics.

If you’re looking to get started with wearable electronics, then this project provides a great entry point. The bulk of the build is what you’d expect: some individually-addressable RGB LEDs, the ever-popular FLORA board from Adafruit, and a simple battery holder. [Sam] decided to only use around 40 of the LEDs, but the strips come 60 to a meter, so he simply tucked the extra away inside the dress and set his desired limits in the software, which will allow him to preserve the entire strip for future projects. If you’ve ever attempted a wearable hack, you’re probably familiar with how delicate the connections can be and how easily the slightest bend in the wiring can leave you stranded. Most opt for a conductive thread solution, but [Sam] tried something different and used 30 AWG wire, which was thin enough to be sewn into the fabric. As an added bonus, the 30 AWG wire is insulated, which permits him to run the wires close to (or perhaps over) each other while avoiding shorts. [Sam's] guide is detailed and approachable, so head over to his project page if you think you’ve caught wearables fever, and check out his GitHub for the source code.


Filed under: Arduino Hacks, led hacks, Microcontrollers, wearable hacks


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