Squishy Earrings by Grace Yuan

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material-list instructions instructions-1 instructions-2

Arduino Code

https://github.com/graceyuanjq/Squishy-Earrings/blob/main/Arduino%20Code

Circuit Diagram

circuit-diagram

References

https://www.intelligentliving.co/continuity-earring-monitors-glucose-levels-diabetics/
https://applysci.com/smart-earring-monitors-heart-rate-calories-activity/
https://twitter.com/wualeds/status/1337069945306435585
https://www.instructables.com/Flexible-Fabric-Pressure-Sensor/

 

My LED Basket Handbag

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My Prototype 3: Digital Switches for Embodied Interactions My LED Basket Bag

I decided to use a basket bag to experiment the prototype of three switchers which are activated through the use of LEDs. There are two body environment switches such when someone hold the basket bag handles and fairy lights become activated, and when the bag is opened a switch located at the bottom of the bag activate LEDs place inside the bag. The other category I can call clothing gesture because the bag has a button that helps to lock up safely through a loop, then when bag is close with the loop LED’s light are activate by a switch
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Circuit Diagram

We have three circuits for the digital switches –red, blue and yellow, each of them representing a set of lights, the yellow representing a set of fairy lights– and three circuits to power the LED lights. Pins D2, D3 and D4 are used for the digital switches and ports D11, D12 and D13 are used to power the LED lights. Of course, this diagram is a simplified version, because the wiring inside the handbag depended on space and positions of switches and LED lights (we use sets of light for every switch and the wiring had to satisfy these requirements).
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Here detailed hand made diagram of the wiring for each switch.
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Arduino Source Code
Code can be found in GitHub (see here).

Description

A. Handle: Body/Environmental Switch

When a person holds the handbag by the handle, the handle will be illuminated with a strip of fairy lights. When the user releases the handle, the light will go off.
The switch was made using copper adhesive tape, which is wired to an board mounted on a using flexible wire. To make the bridge I used copper tape and a red cloth where I adhered the tape and when I hold the handle with this cloth the bridge activated the circuit and switch then lights were on. The Arduino card and all the connection were place inside the basket bag.

Discussion

Overall, all the switches worked well, although there are some reflections which are applicable to all three switches because they use similar materials and have similar connectivity. First, I do not like the connections are so visible, I would like to something more subtle, but I am still learning and prefer to be more comfortable with connections that the appearance for now, but this look bother me
About the wiring and switches can be further refined, copper tape is easy to manipulate plus its flexibility helped me to attach to a surface such the basket which is hard but not enough to keep stick in place, sometimes the tape didn’t stick well and if I moved the basket so much the connectivity could get lost and stop working, maybe using conductive fabric could be a better option.
Another point perhaps is the use of a full-size breadboard and the Arduino Nano 33 IOT
This bord is large and with the battery connected are heavy to place inside the bag. Maybe using the Adafruit’s Circuit Playground Express would have been better, but I think using the Arduino Nano to make this prototype is probably fine, but it is good I can realize about what I like and what I do not like to make better choices for my final work.

Material used in this prototype

Arduino Nano 33 IOT
Breadboard
Adhesive copper tape
fJumpers
Fairy Lights
Rechargeable 5V battery
Stranded wire cover with silicone
Basket Bag
Piece of red cloth

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See full video here.

B. Button Up: Clothing/Gestures Switch

The handbag is “locked” with a loop and a button. When a person closes and locks the handbag by placing the loop around the button, two LEDs at the centre exterior surface of the handbag will go on. When a person opens the handbag by releasing the loop around the button, the exterior light will go off. The connections were using copper tape and stranded wire cover with silicone because was very thin and flexible. The switch was located along the loop then when the bag was button up the contact between the button and loop activated the switch and LEDs were on.

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Discussion

These reflections are almost the same I stated above on the handle switch, all the switchers used similar materials and have similar connections. First, I do not like the connections are so visible, I would have preferred something more subtle, but I am still learning and prefer to be more comfortable with connections than the appearance for now, but the look still bothers me.
About the wiring and switches, they can be further refined. Copper tape is easy to manipulate and its flexibility helped when attaching to the basket surface. However, the continuous movement of the bag caused the tape to move and, in some cases, detach from the basket surface, which caused loose connectivity. Again, definitely using conductive fabric could be a better option.
Another point perhaps is the use of a full-size breadboard and the Arduino Nano 33 IOT. That plus the battery was large and heavy to place inside the bag. Maybe using Adafruit’s Circuit Playground Express would have been a better alternative. I also need to do more research about the wireless options available in the Arduino Nano, which may help reduce some wiring. I am happy with the outcome, but not so much with the visible connections.
In terms of usability, I think it would be better to reverse this switch. The idea is that if a handbag is unattended and somebody opens it, a LED light will go on as some kind of alert. I would also like to add a sound, but that required to a speaker to the configuration which I still do not have. Another option would be to send a message to a device (a phone), but that would require an application listening.

Material used in this prototype

Arduino Nano 33 IOT
Breadboard
Adhesive copper tape
Jumpers
LED lights
Rechargeable 5V battery
Stranded wire cover with silicone
Basket Bag
I use practically the same material for all the three switches, but here instead of fairy light I used LEDs

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luzsola2

See full video here

C. LED’s Inside Basket Bag: Clothing Gestures

When a person opens the handbag, a set of lights will go on to illuminate the interior of the handbag. When the handbag is closed, the set of lights inside will go off.
It is always handy to have light inside a handbag if the owner is looking for something inside. The circuit in this prototype was build in a similar way than the other two switchers. Here the switch is placed at the bottom of the handbag, then when the handbag opens the upper and bottom part of the handbag activates the switcher. The copper tape makes contact and LEDs go on.

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Discussion

Overall, the switch worked well, similar reflections that I made for the previous prototypes applied here too. There is also room for improvement, my big take here is to use conductive fabric and a smaller board like Adafruit’s Circuit Playground Express.

Material used in this prototype

Arduino Nano 33 IOT
Breadboard
Adhesive copper tape
Jumpers
LED lights
Rechargeable 5V battery
Stranded wire cover with silicone
Basket Bag

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See full video here

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botonyasa2

See full video here

Light Signals

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LEDs are versatile and can be used for a variety of purposes. For some, LEDs help illuminate their surroundings and for others, this could be used as a visual indicator to alert others of their presence. These three prototypes all explore the latter use of the LEDs and explores how different types of gestures can be used to indicate visual feedback through the LEDs.

1. LED Biker Jacket

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Description

For this prototype, I created an LED Biker jacket. The idea behind this was for the LEDs to act as an indicator to alert all vehicles and road users to see bike riders at night. Since the jacket zip was conductive, I cut up two pieces of aluminum foil and pinned them each to two sides of the jacket. The two pieces of aluminum foil will come into contact with each other when the jacket is zipped up and touching both sides of the aluminum. When this happens, the LEDs light up indicating the presence of the biker. This prototype made use of clothing gestures.

Parts and Materials

LED bulbs

Alligator clips

Arduino microcontroller

Aluminum foil

Power bank

Jumper wires

Biker jacket

Full-sized breadboard

Detailed Photos
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Circuit
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Circuit on Jacket
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Jacket on hanger
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All Zipped Up
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Lights On

 

Discussion

Currently, the prototype makes use of LED bulbs which are simply taped to the jacket. For future iterations, I would make use of LED strips to have them more integrated as part of the jacket. Also, I believe a conductive thread would have worked better to help with the overall presentation of the prototype. Moving forward, I might need to get the Lilypad microcontroller to help with a more seamless design.

Code

Github

Circuit diagram

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2. Biker Signal Gloves

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Description

These LED light signal gloves are designed for cyclists to wear for their safety on the road. These arrow LED strips are controlled when the person wearing the gloves presses his/her index finger and thumb against each other. This activates the LEDs depending on which of the gloves is used. The left glove indicates a left turn signal, while the right glove indicates a right turn signal. This is used to show other commuters on the road when you want to turn left or right. To make this connection happen, I sewed on aluminum foil to the thumb and index finger portion of the glove and then made the connection from the breadboard through the use of alligator clips. This prototype makes use of body gestures, with the movement of the thumb and index finger to create the connection.

Parts and Materials

LED strips

Alligator clips

Arduino microcontroller

Aluminum foil

Power bank

Jumper wires

Gloves

Full-sized breadboard

 Detailed Photos
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Circuit
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Stitching up LED Strips
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Connecting circuit to LED strips
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LEDs off
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LEDs on; Left signal + Right signal
Discussion

I believe this was a successful prototype in terms of execution and how I intended it to work. However, the gloves are still too bulky and uncomfortable to wear due to it having to be connected to a power bank and breadboard in order to work. For future iterations, I think the use of a coin battery, as well as a Lilypad microcontroller, will make this prototype easily wearable and more functional as a final prototype. In addition, having the LEDs blink for some time after the signal will also be helpful and will make it easier for the cyclist who is having to ride and make the signal at the same time.

Code

Github

Circuit diagram

led_gloves

3. LED Footmat

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Description

The LED Footmat is a doormat that uses aluminum foil as a conductive material to light up an LED as a signal when someone arrives home. This prototype is an environment gesture that is activated when a person steps on the pressure point of the doormat. This pressure point is created by two pieces of aluminum foil that are connected to two sides of a piece of handkerchief and folded over each other. The two pieces of foil are separated by a piece of foam. This connection is a simple setup and can be used simply as a visual indicator for someone who arrives home late.

Parts and Materials

LED bulbs

Alligator clips

Arduino microcontroller

Aluminum foil

Power bank

Jumper wires

Handkerchief

Doormat

Foam

Full-sized breadboard

Detailed Photos
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Setting up tools
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Laying down conductive material; aluminum foil
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Connecting circuit to LEDs and aluminium foil
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Final Prototype: Outside
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Final Prototype: Inside
Discussion

This prototype was fairly simple to make and did not require a lot of materials or complex connections. However, I feel that there are some things I could have done better. I could have used conductive fabric and LED strips to sew into the doormat and this would have made for a more aesthetically pleasing experience and helped to hide some of the loose wires hanging. A future iteration to consider will be how to integrate sound into the experience. When the user steps on the mat, they will receive light and sound feedback as well.

Code

Github

Circuit Diagram

Same as LED Biker Jacket

Image Attribution

<div>Icons made by <a href=”https://www.freepik.com” title=”Freepik”>Freepik</a> from <a href=”https://www.flaticon.com/” title=”Flaticon”>www.flaticon.com</a></div>

Body Gesture Signal-By Jessy

 

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  1. Visible Pulse

 

 

 

 

 

Description

Visible Pulse is an installation that combines the finger and the wrist as a trigger to switch on. The wrists are the more flexible part of our body and the place where we can feel the pulse. Whenever the finger touches the wrist, the LED on the switch starts to blink, which can be considered as a simulation of the pulse. The working principle is based on a touch sensor (Adafruit MPR121) and using a skin surface that is conductive, as a basic switch.

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Code link:

Prototype 3-1: https://github.com/xinzhang-jessy/bodygesturesignal.git

 

2.Idea Bracelet

Description

Idea Bracelet is also based on a touch sensor (Adafruit MPR121), there are normal material and conductive material that covered the third finger. When snap fingers (usually using the third finger), the LEDs embedded on the bracelet will be sequential light up. Whenever we get a new idea, we may snap our fingers involuntarily. The emotion brought by this action is dynamic and happy, so I use this action as a switch to trigger the LEDs.

2-1 2-2Code link:

Prototype 3-2: https://github.com/xinzhang-jessy/bodygesturesignal.git

3. Running signal

 

 

 

 

 

 

Description

This is a wearable installation that being triggered by running and the working principle is also realized by the touch sensor (Adafruit MPR121). Running is an ordinary activity and people usually swing their arms during running. Basing on this regulation, I use running gesture as a trigger of this wearable insulation. Firstly, sew the conductive fabric onto ordinary clothes, and installed an LED matrix as signal output. Whenever taking action of swing arms, the LED matrix will be light up.

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Code link:

Prototype 3-3: https://github.com/xinzhang-jessy/bodygesturesignal.git

Discussion

In this series of prototypes, I found the body as an interesting switch, and I began to pay attention to movements that are often overlooked, especially gestures, like when we tap our fingers, that is probably we are waiting for something, or we seldom feel the change of facial expressions. These actions sometimes can be an indication of the internal change which may be missed by ourselves. In my work, I want to use a simple action or gesture as a switch to trigger the installation and I think there should be more sensors being applied, such as pulse detection. More specifically, in the first work, the Visible Pulse, at present, the signal can not be exactly a real one without pulse detection. So for further modification, I need a pulse detection sensor to obtain real data and convert it into the visible LED signal. When each finger touches the wrist, it will reflect a real pulse signal.

Hello: The Social Distance Greetings by Trish

‘Social Distance’ has become the new buzz word of the decade not being able to hug, shake hands or even stand too close. For this prototype I have tried to redefine how people can say hello to each other in interesting ways borrowing ideas from the Black Panther movie and the pandemic greetings.

1.The Wakanda Hello

Interactive GIF

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Description

The Wakanda Hello is a pair of gloves that uses conductive materials to light an LED to signal that someone is gesturing hello. This prototype is a body gesture of one crossing hands on the chest, it has two coins attached to a pair of gym gloves that when they come into contact an LED lights up.

As we have changed the way in which we now say hello due to the pandemic the Wakanda Hello makes for a fun way for people to greet each other. The connection is simple and straightforward and could also be an interesting way to say hello to people even over video calls.

Materials and Parts
Gym Gloves
Double Sided Tape
Alligator Clips
Full Size Breadboard
Arduino Nano 33 IoT
Jumper Wires
LilyPad Tri-Color LED
Wires
USB cable
Coins

Discussion

This prototype was quite interesting to work on, some of the challenges I faced was finding materials I could work with but managed to improvise with what I have. As a future iteration I would hope to make the connection less bulky and with less wires which would get tangled up during testing, as well as add different light modes to indicate someone’s mood. Some of the things that worked was the gesture was quite seamless and the idea of using coins as the conductive material was fun to work with.

Detail Images

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Circuit Diagram

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2.The Elbow Hello

Interactive GIF

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Description

The elbow greeting has become the new normal in an effort to help reduce the spread of the Coronavirus. The Elbow Hello is a prototype I made using a pair of old socks for the stretch material, its worn just below the elbow and has a social switch. I used aluminum foil as the conductive material that lights up an LED when someone’s elbow bumps with someone else to complete the circuit.

Materials and Parts
Masking Tape
Socks
Felt
Double Sided Tape
Alligator Clips
Full Size Breadboard
Arduino Nano 33 IoT
Jumper Wires
White LEDs
Wires
USB cable
Aluminum foil  

Discussion

This prototype was a bit difficult to work with especially when making the prototype it required some improvisation with materials and alot of try and error. The finishing wasn’t very clean but it worked well in terms of interactivity, I would like to further explore a less bulky iteration with no wires hanging loosely.

Detail Images 

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Circuit Diagram

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3.The Mask Hello

Interactive GIF

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Description

For this third prototype I used a mask as it has now become a part of our daily outfits whenever we go outside. The idea for this was to have LEDs create a smiley face at the front of someone’s mask to signal a hello when the LEDs light up. I made a button switch in between the masks lining using felt and aluminum foil so when the two pads of the button come into contact the LEDs light up.

Materials and Parts
Masking Tape
Surgical Mask
Felt
Double Sided Tape
Alligator Clips
Full Size Breadboard
Arduino Nano 33 IoT
Jumper Wires
Green LEDs
Wires
USB cable
Aluminum foil  

Discussion

Some of the challenges I face in this prototype was figuring out what would be the best connection for the switch, initially I had thought of a contact switch but the design didn’t quite work out when it came to execution. The second challenge I faced especially not having conductive thread was connecting the LEDs but I managed to improvise with a conductive wire. Overall the prototype came out well and it was a great learning experience seeing what worked and what needed to be improved.

Detail Images 

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Circuit Diagram

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Code hosted on Github

https://github.com/kananamwenda/Hello-The-Social-Distance-Greetings

Speedy Recovery by Nishu

 

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Project Description:

While we can never account for injuries, we are always prepared with solutions and remedies to heal ourselves in case of one. We often get injured when we push the limits of our bodies and when we do, the only responsibility of ours is to follow protocol and give me the injury time to heal. Being an athlete my whole life, I have been physically injured one to many times. But there seemed to be a pattern to my injuries as they kept reappearing at the same spots time and again. So I wondered why this happens?

During my final project in my undergraduate programme, research pointed out that these injuries often reoccur in places where the rehabilitation process has not carried out completely and properly. In the case of my sprains, I often wore a crepe bandage to limit movement to my injury and stop it from aggravating. But in such situations during the rehabilitation period, I was unaware of how much I should or should move. This resulted in the healing process to be incomplete, leading to future injuries.  

So my intervention is called Speedy Recovery. A motion based product that helps guide you during your recovery. The crepe bandage or in this case the arm sling, is fitted with a red and green LED which is programmed to light up based on the right and wrong posture. Every time your arm moves out of the range it should be moving, the red LED blinks, guiding you back to the right posture. While you are in the right posture the green LED stays on. This helps strictly implement body control during your injuries and carry out your healing process properly.

The two things considered while designing this were movement sensing as the product needed to be applicable to any physical injury that would need to restrict movement. And the second element contingent on its success was visible feedback, so the person could visually be guided back to the right posture.

As this product specifically is motion oriented, what I learnt a lot through this process was the ability to seamlessly introduce a piece of technology on the body without any obstruction. The second thing I learnt was to identify parts of the body based on the kind of data that needed to be fed into the product,

 

Parts & Materials:

Parts

  1. Arduino Nano 33 IOT
  2. Red LED
  3. Green LED
  4. USB charger
  5. Breadboard
  6. Jumper wires

Materials

  1. Arm sling
  2. Sewing thread and needle
  3. Black cloth band

 

Prototype images:

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Demo video:

https://ocadu.techsmithrelay.com/4xoH

 

Detail Images:

1 2 3 4 5

 

Circuit Diagram:

circuit-diagram

 

Arduino Code:

https://github.com/AbhishekNishu16/Prototype2-Body-Centric-Tech.git

 

Project context:

While the use of wearable technology for healthcare purposes is rapidly growing. I have chosen to draw inspiration from designs that intervene at early stages of a problem or even act as a preventive measure. Speedy recovery is an effort to completely rehabilitate an injury in its first recovery process in order to avoid future injuries. Similarly the designs I have referenced follow a similar trend.

The first one is an example for something that is beautiful. The Ouro ring is a wearable technology that helps measure and track body temperature, heart rate and the quality of sleep. Their underlying philosophy is that good sleep is the magic ingredient to living a healthy life. Every night while you sleep your body performs what they call “health miracles” sending out waves of signals through the body. This could be from improving your memory to producing cancer killing T cells. What Oura does, is decode these signals and communicate how your body prepares itself for the next day. Through this interpretation it provides insights you need to take on the next day. By masking such advice through an aesthetically beautiful ring, it has created an opportunity for people to care more about their sleep and prevent future health conditions.

In the second category of useful wearable technologies I was inspired by a wearable sweat sensor that informs athletes on water or electrolyte loss. This product is currently being developed by a team at Northwestern University and they believe that even though sweat contains salts, sugars, hormones and other valuable data. Very little research has gone into harnessing this data to measure bodily conditions. The patch contains fine tiny pores on its underside that allows the sweat to penetrate the device. Each holes contains a different sweat analysis technology. The patch bears similarities to a bandage and is just 1.5inches in diameter and can be worn on any part of the body. With changes in water or electrolyte levels, the patch changes its colour. By just taking a picture of the patch on the app connected to it, the app tells the athlete the exact amount of water they should be having. This prevents athletes from over-hydrating developing hyponatremia(condition of swelling of cells due to diluted salt levels) and also dehydration leading to many other physical conditions. 

For the third category the product is extremely useful but based on its aesthetics and placement I consider the design to be terrible. It is a self powered knee sensor that could allow doctors to remotely monitor a patients recovery. While the product has multiple pros, the reason I categorize this to be bad design is because the product sits on top of the brace that the patient needs to wear post surgery. As the knee is already an extruding part of the body, even more while sitting. There is a possibility for the sensor to be knocked off  or even damaged if the patient’s knee were to come in contact with any surface. The positives of this product are that it is constantly collecting data and conveying it to the physician or physiotherapist and it is powered by electricity generated when bent or twisted. This is beneficial as the product needs no replacement of batteries and always stays on.

 

References:

Reference 1: Beautiful

The Oura ring: https://ouraring.com/

Reference 2: Useful

Jack Carfagno. “Wearable Sweat-Sensor Informs Athletes of Water and Electrolyte Loss” https://www.docwirenews.com/docwire-pick/future-of-medicine-picks/wearable-sweat-sensor-informs-athletes-of-water-and-electrolyte-loss/

Reference 3: Important but terrible

Enaie Azambuja. “Flexible self-powered knee sensor for rehab monitoring.https://www.electronicspecifier.com/products/test-and-measurement/flexible-self-powered-knee-sensor-for-rehab-monitoring

 

Traffic Control Wristband

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Description

Traffic Control is a very necessary but difficult job, especially due to the harsh weather conditions, anywhere in the world. Lack of integrated lighting systems and heavy gears add on to the professional hazard for traffic controllers everyday. While reflective clothing is very effective in such circumstances, an additional lighting mechanism could improve their signalling and visibility to vehicles on the road. Designing an integrated wrist accessory for easy traffic control was the initial concept behind conceiving this project.

The wearable is a simple wristband with 2 finger attachments. The wristband holds the LEDs, which can change patterns depending upon the signal the controller wants to display. Currently, the wearer can only display 2 signals – ‘Blink’ (Stop) and ‘Direction’. The device has an auto turn on/off. It functions only in the absence of sunlight, hence conserving energy.

The device runs on Arduino Nano 33 iot. A touch sensor and photo resistor are also added to the circuit. The touch sensor help detect the wearer’s haptics, and change the lighting patterns accordingly. The photo resistor which sits right on top of the wristband, helps detect the sunlight, allowing the device to turn on/off without any physical stimuli.

While the idea was to design a product which could be extremely lightweight and sleek, integrating well with the wearer’s uniform, currently the primary prototype is bulky and wired. More research and development will be required to make a more compact version of the device so that it could be easily worn everyday.

Experience Video

Idea and Process

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Link To Code

https://github.com/Krishnokoli/Body-Centric-Technologies/blob/main/Traffic_Control_Wristband.ino

Context

The primary idea behind the project came from a small road trip to the outskirts of my city. While travelling back home, at night, the traffic controllers  in the crossings wielded red and green traffic control batons. Hence, I thought of integrating the lights onto the arm through a small LED lit wristband that would not involve holding an added accessory for long hours.

After coming up with an initial concept I decided to do some research on wrist wearables so that I could find some inspirations to carry out my project.

  • FingerTrack – useful

The first project that seemed very interesting was ‘FingerTrack’. It was developed by researchers from Cornell and the University of Wisconsin, Madison. They designed a wrist-mounted device that continuously tracks the entire human hand in 3D. The bracelet, called FingerTrak, can sense and translate the many positions of the human hand, including 20 finger joint positions, using three or four miniature, low-resolution thermal cameras that read contours on the wrist. The researchers added that the device could be used in sign language translation, virtual reality, mobile health, human-robot interaction and other areas. I find that the finger tracking technology could be really useful for my idea of developing the ‘Traffic Control Wristband’ without the use of touch sensors.

• MICA (My Intelligent Communication Accessory)

A project with a really interesting aesthetic appeal is the MICA. Developed by Intel, MICA has transitioned from the very androgynous aesthetic of ‘Fitbits’ and ‘Apple Watches’ to that of a High Fashion ‘feminine jewellery’.

•  Guardian Angel

Another example of a brilliant project with a little problematic aesthetic is ‘Guardian Angel’. This necklace has been designed by the agency – JWT Singapore. The concept for this product is very interesting and useful. A single click on the jewellery automatically triggers a call to a woman’s cell phone, so she has a convenient excuse to walk away from unwanted attention at public places. If things change from annoying to dangerous, holding down the button sends an emergency message to a friend with the victim’s exact GPS coordinates. Now, although usefulness of the device is no doubt really well thought out, the aesthetics of the jewellery makes it look like a silver insect. Also, there are mobile apps that enable the user to do fake calls to excuse themselves out of problematic situations.

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I look forward to work further on this device and develop it into a more compact and user friendly wearable.

References

The Cut. “Can Opening Ceremony Make Wearable Tech Cool?” Accessed February 2, 2021. https://www.thecut.com/2014/11/can-opening-ceremony-make-wearable-tech-cool.html.

Cornell, Information Science. FingerTrak &ndash; a Wrist-Mounted Device That Continuously Tracks the Entire Human Hand in 3D, 2020. https://vimeo.com/440359313.

Hu, Fang, Peng He, Songlin Xu, Yin Li, and Cheng Zhang. “FingerTrak: Continuous 3D Hand Pose Tracking by Deep Learning Hand Silhouettes Captured by Miniature Thermal Cameras on Wrist.” Proceedings of the ACM on Interactive, Mobile, Wearable and Ubiquitous Technologies 4, no. 2 (June 15, 2020): 1–24. https://doi.org/10.1145/3397306.

Lee, Sid. Intel &amp; Opening Ceremony | MICA Launch, 2014. https://vimeo.com/108266159.

“MIT: Wearable Tech: New Wristband Device Can Detect Emotions in Real Time – The Economic Times.” Accessed February 2, 2021. https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/magazines/panache/wearable-tech-new-wristband-device-can-detect-emotions-in-real-time/articleshow/58803657.cms?from=mdr.

 

Ergonomic Monitors by Grace Yuan

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As an Interior Designer who has spent a lot of time working with furniture and space, I have a deep understanding of the ergonomic measurements of human bodies and how our bodies interact with the environment. Therefore I built the following three ergonomic monitors to help the user keep up a good ergonomic habit, stay healthy and work efficiently. All of the three prototypes are Body/Environmental Switches that are activated by the interactions between the user’s body and their environment, using LED lights as indicators.

The inspiration also comes from my real working experience. When I used to sit in the office for the entire day, my colleagues and I always reminded each other to correct the postures every time we walked past by each other’s desk. Posture is so important and also so easy to be forgotten. I hope this prototype I made can be further developed into a real product that can help computer users to stay away from any physical pains caused by the wrong posture.

1.Sitting Posture Monitor – Back

Demo GIF

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full video: https://youtu.be/T3oyveVMJ-g

Description

Sitting Posture Monitor – Back is an ergonomic reminder that helps the user to correct their posture when sitting at a task chair. No matter it’s at home or in an office, keeping a good sitting posture is always important. There are many cases of computer users getting back pain, neck pain, and shoulder pain because of the wrong posture. Leaning against the chair back is a significant part of the correct sitting posture. By doing so, the user released the weight to the chair and gained the support of the back and the lower back. It also keeps the user’s head straight and up, preventing the user from getting neck pain. 

This device is a straightforward indicator of whether the user is leaning on the back of the chair. It is a Body/Environmental Switch that is triggered by the interaction between the user’s shoulder/back and their chair. When the user’s shoulder or upper back touches the top of the chair back, releasing pressure on the device sensor switch, the red light turned off. When the user is not leaning against the back of the chair, which means there is no pressure on the switch, the red LED light turns on, reminding the user to adjust their sitting posture. The switch is made of conductive copper tapes and aluminum foil, wrapped with acrylic felt. The felt is in a grey color which blends in with the grey mesh material of the back of the chair perfectly.

Materials and Parts

Acrylic felt
Copper tapes
Velcro tapes
Regular threads
Aligator Clips
Half breadboard
Arduino Nano 33 IOT
Extension jumper wires
Red LED light
Wires
USB cable
Aluminum foil  

Detailed Photos
img_1494 img_1499 img_1505img_1562
Discussion

Currently, the circuits and wires are all exposed which becomes a tripping hazard. For future iteration, I would solder the wires to the Arduino, and hide the wires inside the mesh back of the chair. For a more advanced application, the switch can be built in a way that is completely integrated into the chair, and the LED light will be recessed on the tip of the armrest.

2.Sitting Posture Monitor – Legs

Demo GIF

demo-3-3-480_3

Description

Sitting Posture Monitor – Legs is an ergonomic reminder that helps the user to correct their leg posture when sitting in a chair. The concept is similar to the last prototype, to monitor the user’s movement and warn them once a bad posture is detected.

From a personal perspective, I often find myself sitting with my legs crossed. This is actually a bad habit because such a position usually promotes a bad posture and can cause a temporary increase in blood pressure. With this leg position, it is difficult to sit up straight.

The monitor device is a strap to wear around the user’s thigh. As soon as the user crosses their legs, the other leg puts pressure on the one leg wearing the device, the device will be activated. A red LED light will turn on to remind the user of their leg posture.

Materials and Parts

Acrylic felt
Copper tapes
Velcro tapes
Regular threads
Aligator Clips
Half breadboard
Arduino Nano 33 IOT
Extension jumper wires
Red LED light
Wires
USB cable
Aluminum foil

Detailed Photos

img_1540 img_1554

Discussion

The device is a bit too large right now. It may be too much work for the user to wear this device. For the next iteration, I would minimize the scale and improve the design to be more flexible and portable. Another potential improvement will be the pairing the device. Based on common experience, one person would cross their legs both ways – the left leg on the top or the right leg on the top. It’s necessary to consider making the device into a pair for both legs, so the user’s leg movements will be fully detected.

3.Wrist Rest Monitor

Demo GIF

demo-3-2-480

Description

Wrist Rest Monitor is an ergonomic device that reminds mouse users to place their wrist against the surface while providing cushion to reduce the wrist fatigue. Wrist rest pads are known for reducing existing wrist pain and help prevent the user from developing Carpal Tunnel.

It is a Body/Environmental Switch that is triggered by the interaction between the user’s wrist and the wrist rest. When the user’s wrist is leaning against the wrist rest, releasing pressure on the device sensor switch, the red light turned off. When the user’s wrist is not leaning against the wrist rest, which means there is no pressure on the switch, the red LED light turns on, reminding the user to relax their wrist.

Materials and Parts

Acrylic felt
Copper tapes
Velcro tapes
Regular threads
Aligator Clips
Half breadboard
Arduino Nano 33 IOT
Extension jumper wires
Red LED light
Wires
USB cable
Conductive threads
Aluminum foil

Detailed Photos

img_1513 img_1519 img_1520 img_1521

Discussion

Alligator clips are used to power the device. For future iteration, I would solder the wires to the Arduino, hide the wires inside the wrist rest, power the circuit with a coin cell, and fill the wrist rest with more cotton for cushioning.

Arduino Code 

The first and the third prototypes:

https://github.com/graceyuanjq/Ergonomic-Monitors/blob/main/Arduino%20Code%201%263

The second prototype:

https://github.com/graceyuanjq/Ergonomic-Monitors/blob/main/Arduino%20Code%202

Circuit Diagram For All Three Prototypes

circuit