Hot & Cold





Hot & Cold is a notification device in a form of a headband that is triggered according to the surrounding temperature. The hairband includes a temperature sensor and a Neopixel LED that colors vary from dark blue to bright red according to the surrounding temperature.

Hot & Cold was what we decided to work on remaking from the first prototype of “SMARTER THAN ME” which was a piece of accessory in the form of a ring bracelet that also used a Neopixel LED in exactly the same way to show a range of colors depending on the temperature.

We are both into fashion and wanted to explore designing a piece that met our criteria in order for us to be able to wear it on fancy occasions.

Looking at our common interests, aesthetics played a big part in what we personally thought would make a valuable piece of accessory.

We also wanted it to be lightweight, comfortable, and contained.

Materials Used:

Wire Flower Petals
Arduino Micro
Coin Cell Batteries
Coin Cell Battery Holders
Prototype Board
Silicon Wires
Temperature Sensor
Neo Pixel LED
Electric Tape

Link to CODE



We redesigned it in the form of a headband because we thought it was interesting to experiment with as a headpiece that we wanted to be able to wear in the future.


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In the above left picture showing the prototype of “SMARTER THAN ME”, the ring was extended in a braided chain that acted as a bracelet and also connected to the breadboard which holds the Arduino, sensor, and portable power supply.

Similarly, in the “HOT AND COLD” headband the flower which is the newer version of the ring is also extended with a braided chain that is connected to the prototype board which holds the rest of the components needed for it to work.


We hooked up all the wiring that was needed on to the prototype board and securely soldered it on.

We then connected 2 coin cell batteries to the prototype board in series in order for us to add the Voltage so we can have a sum of 6V.

We then contained everything in a pouch that we stitched using grey felt and thread.
The silicon wires that connected the Neo Pixel to the prototype came out through the edge of the pouch.

We covered them again by braiding three colored threads over the wires.

We chose silicon wires because they are flexible and light and can resist any bends better than other types of wires.

We attached Pink, Blue wired petals around the Neo Pixel that created our flower which was the main visual part of our accessory.

We chose Blue, Red, and Grey as our color scheme. Blue and red are to represent the warm and cool colors that we used to appear in the Neo Pixel. We decided to use grey as a complementary color that would blend in.

The reason we chose wired flowers was to be able to position them in any way on our hair and close the flower if we wanted to dim the light.

On the pouch we cut out a square of the felt that exposed the batteries for easily exchanging them later if they wear out. We covered that area with a piece of felt and attached it using velcro for easy access.

This whole pouch went into a black cotton head band. Again, the flower and extended silicon wire were left out to attach to our hair using bobby pins.

We secured the pouch inside the head band with black buttons.



Below are videos showing how we braided the silicon wires.


We are very proud of the piece that we think is beautiful, unique and meets our criteria.

We actually planned out a way that we could both share it so that we can both enjoy wearing it at occasions that were special to us. In the future we plan on making more for our loved ones as gifts! 



Illuminated Couture

Social Signal

Social Signal
 is a low-tech wearable, that can be manually adjusted to
tell others how receptive one is to conversation. Reading others can often
be hard, and this device takes some of the load off of social interactions.

Red light? They’re busy and you leave them alone.
Yellow light? They can talk, but only if it’s important.
Green light? Good to go! Let’s have a chat about whatever.


The following gallery shows both early conceptual sketches emerging
from an in class brainstorm, as well as both faulty and correct circuits.

This project was very rewarding, in that it was the first time I used
proto-board to make something somewhat finished. Going to Creatron
and collecting parts (like the dip-switch) was something I hadn’t done
in this kind of context, and seeing it all come together was exciting.

One valuable lesson I learned, is to be SURE the circuit is correct before
soldering everything together. I did an initial test and made and assumption,
and ended up having to tear it all apart and resolver everything. (see close up image below)


THE Laser Hat

THE Laser Hat

by Bijun Chen


The laser hat is a hat that can fire laser beam. It is activated by a special resistor ring. The idea came from miner hats, and the laser remotes used for presentations. It could be used as a cool cat toy, or a pointer to presentation, or a Halloween custom.

This video meant to be a gif. It gives an idea of how it works and how powerful it is! Inside the hat, I have a carefully hidden circuit, including a laser moudle, a tiny battery pack, and an open switch which can be turned on and off by the ring. No wire can be seen from outside of the hat, the only thing shows is the front of the laser.


The hat is simple but it has much potentials. It’s the first project I have made that requested by many people telling me “I WANT ONE”! For next generation, I’ll make the on and off switch controlled by Bluetooth over the phone.

Some Reference:

VJ Glasses


I came up with this idea of vj glasses What separates my glasses from the others out there, is that mine use an external mic which make my glasses sound reactive  This project uses cheap and easy to gain parts to allow you to create a one of a kind fancy dress party piece. These glasses do not obstruct your vision any more than the original shutter shades. Even with the glasses on turned on, no glare from the LEDs can be seen as LEDs are on the outer layer.








for this i use neopixel LED Ring which is an addressable ring. i make it animate in a sound reactive way so that when ever it get some sound it create some patterns on it.




2221-04 2221-07



Cycle Signals

Marcelo and I both like to cycle quite a bit but in a city like Toronto that can be quite dangerous at times. There’s traffic coming from all directions and the hand signals can be misleading and also for a novice biker like myself hard to actually do.


We instead created a bike helmet that would indicate where we would like to turn as well as when we would be stopping by simply nodding your head in the direction you’d like to turn. We used the NeoPixel ring as our means of communication and an accelerometer mounted on top of a helmet as the input.



Background Research:

According to the Toronto Police, over 500 cyclists were involved in collisions between June and September of this year alone, which is about 4-5 collisions a day.The assumption we do make is that most accidents might happen at night or during low visibility. We wanted to try and understand this problem a bit better and suggest a simple solution. After a bit of digging around, we found a Kickstarter project which is looking into the same problem called “Lumos“.




img_7039 img_7035 img_7038 img_7036










We created a simple code which uses the NeoPixel library to indicate left and right in green, red for stop and blue for on and we even did a quick test of it outside.


By Leon Lu and Marcelo Luft



Smarter Than Me

by Sara Gazzaz and Mahsa Karimi

Link to Device One:

Link to Device Two:

Smarter Than Me are two notification devices that are triggered according to specific sensors.
First device is a ring that is attached to a temperature sensor and according to the surrounding temperature it’s colors vary from dark blue to bright red.
Second device is a jewelry attached to winter gloves. This smart device is a notification system which triggers if it enters a previously set location by the wearer.


Device one includes a Neopixel light that is attached to an Arduino and a temperature sensor. Temperature sensor acts as an input and according to the value captured the color of the Neo pixel light changes. The device is coded in such that it maps low temperature to a darker blue light, high temperature to a bright red, and the in-between values are mapped accordingly to different hues of red or blue.

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INSPIRATION: 12 cb18398d7ec6ccbc4a28dea20d4c63a8


Device two includes a Neopixel ring that is attached to a photon. Connected to IFTTT, if the current location of the device matches the previously set location by the wearer, the Neopixel turns on. Such action works as a notification system.









Heartthrob Ring

Accessories and jewelry is an integral part of human décor. It’s been an identity cornerstone, a defining factor, something that we treasure and recognize ourselves with. Traditional precious metals such as gold, silver and platinum adorn our day to day lives in many fine ways.

But what makes something precious to us? What is of value to us? What do we treasure?


As an exploration into the future world of personal accessories, I worked on constructing a ring, that would have personal value to the wearer which is born out of though rather than what it is made of, its monetary value or traditional aesthetics.

I think that all these aspects, namely, aesthetics, monetary value concerned with materials and their use will be challenged in the coming years.

What goes into making something a wearable?

A few questions addressed during the development process were, what interface is easy in a basic wearable, what should it do, how to create value from minimal interaction with a wearable electronic device?




Exploration using a pulse sensor (input) and LED (output)

For this accessory, I used the pulse sensor as input and LED as output.

A few questions that were addressed during this process were. How personal or intimate are body bio indications (i.e. heart rate, pulse rate, breathing patterns)? Can these be shared with friends and family? What do they convey?

The initial idea was a design for a couple band , where the pulse rate of the wearer was sent through a Adafruit Feather HUZZAH ESP8266 to the Huzzah set in their partners ring. This would trigger the LEDs in the ring and make them blink to the pulse rate of their partner.



The initial exploration with hardware was very basic and was meant to evolve the idea from paper to physical working components, this was done using a Arduino UNO, Pulse sensor and LEDs/Neo Pixels setup.

Arduino UNO + Pulse sensor + LEDs/Neo Pixels

The pulse sensor was set up using an Arduino UNO board the output was in the form of two LEDs. One LED was set to blink to the pulse reading of the sensor and the other was set to fade. This gave a lasting hue to the light produced within the ring.

20161124_035150   20161124_132048

Product Design

Two designs were explored for the ring product. The first was a two LED set where the LEDs were wrapped and shaped with the help of masking tape. The second was a single Neo Pixel ring where the electrodes were made of brass wire and were an extension of the ring band, the connecting wires were soldered on to the brass electrodes.

In the case of the Neo Pixel, a separate library had to be added to the code.

Code :






During this stage, all the hardware was made hands free. The electronic components were taped to the wrist. The pulse sensor was attached to the back of the Arduino UNO board, this was then strapped to the wrist with tape. The placement of the pulse sensor on the wrist at a certain position was a critical factor for it to function properly.

A pack of 3*1.5V battery pack was used power this system. The battery pack was also taped to the wrist.





At Stage II, the hardware and electronics components were large in size. To reduce the size of the components, the board used at Stage III was the Arduino Lilipad. This is a relatively flat slim and small board often used with textile wearables.

The adjustable wrist strap that was constructed out of Neoprene fabric, where all the electronic components were embedded.

The power source for this wearable version is a 3.7V LiPo battery.

The visual impact of the LEDs in the ring were toned down, so that they were only viewable by the wearer mostly or someone standing in close proximity to the wearer.

arudino-lilipad-with-ftdi led-and-pulse-sensor-setup



Components used in the construction of the adjustable wristband.



Making Process



The Connection Box


The connection box is a quirky tool meant for lovers, encouraging commitment to conversation during arguments through mandatory open, mirrored body language and a fun ‘penalty’ for breaking this commitment.

The box requires that both parties face each other and hold down a button with each hand, aligning their shoulders and preventing them from fidgeting with phones or other distractions. When all four buttons are pressed, the device is silent, allowing a conversation to take place. If any of the four buttons are released, one of four cheesy love songs are triggered, featuring generic lyrics like “Please Don’t Go”, “Don’t Walk Away”, “Stay With Me” etc.


Connection Box



Conceptual Project Development Overview

This idea emerged only at the very end of the project cycle, after having to re-route from my original plan to implement a Kinect tracking application to play super hero music when a power pose was registered. After days and days of troubleshooting Kinect applications, versions, compatibility etc, eventually I had to admit the technical challenges involved in Kinect coding were beyond my abilities and the time constraints of the assignment.

After a brainstorming session, I started working with the idea of meetings, cell phones, distractions, and attention spans. I considered a round table where every person held down a button to symbolize their attention, but realized a free hand would still allow phone interaction. After settling on two hands for full engagement, a face to face set up seemed like a good fit and that was how the romantic component emerged. The next step was mining the internet for songs with appropriate lyrics, downloading / formatting / editing and curating said songs.




Technical Project Development Overview

The initial idea of using Kinect saw a serious investment of time, and I’m happy to say I made some great progress. I managed to get the Kinect SDK working on multiple systems, and for the first time experienced low latency skeletal tracking. The Kinect is used in many coding frameworks (including Processing & P5.js), but trying to figure which ones supported skeletal tracking, and how to code it sent me down many, many habit holes of research. Despite investing too much time in something that didn’t come to fruition, it was a powerful learning period that helped me get closer to something I’ve wanted to explore for a long time.   Getting a feel for the gesture input / tracking has inspired me to use this technology in the near future (with more time and help).

In terms of the end  project, the brain of the Connection box is an Adafruit ‘Audio Fx’, 16 meg micro controller. The board provides an elegant solution for audio triggering, without the use of an Arduino or bridge, and features a number of different trigger modes simply by renaming file types. Once a concept was solidified, I ran some early tests with two buttons, to see if the button matrix would work. When the proof of concept was a go, I then began the song search / reformatting / editing stage.

When it came time to copy the files to the board, a number of technical challenges emerged. Trigger logic changes when using multiple songs on one pin vs more pins, and this cut the usable list of songs to four (while originally I had reformatted and edited more than 10). Additionally, the board is excruciatingly slow to copy files too, with a reformat taking 40 minutes and the 15 megabytes of data taking half an hour.

Eventually, the circuit logic was settled, files were all on the board and all that was left was to build a box and solder the circuit.  The next day in the maker shop I was unable to build the box as someone was cutting acrylic on the table saw, and therefore went with a shoe box as a faster solution.


Video Link

The video is a bit long, and was hard to edit down without loosing context. Please feel free to take a look here:

Password: Ocadu




p.s. although the Connection Box uses a NewBalance box for its prototype, it does not endorse Trump in any way!