Exploration Journals 1-4

Exploration Journal 1 –

Adafruit CPX sound and Sound Sensors

I tried playing around with the CPX sounds to see what are the possibilities. I have never worked with CPX or anything similar, hence I thought that exploring the sound aspect of the CPX will help me develop knowledge and skills that would further aid me in this class.

For the first exploration, I toyed around with the ‘play tone’ feature of makeCode to make various sounds. I made a few tunes with the ‘play melody’ function on the makeCode. Finally after some tries I was able to code simple tunes like happy birthday, twinkle twinkle that etc. on the ‘play tone’ function. I incorporated these tunes, with the ‘on button click’ functions. When button A is pressed the CPX plays happy birthday, when button B is pressed the CPX plays Mary had a little lamb and when both buttons A and B are pressed together twinkle twinkle little star is played.

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For the next exploration, I played around with the sound sensor. In the class we briefly explored the sound sensors, so I was very interested in how they can be maneuvered; therefore, I did some research and I landed on a video where the creator uses sound sensors to blow out the LEDs on the CPX, as if they were candles on a birthday cake. I found it very interesting and I tried to mimic the tutorial but instead of blowing candles/LEDs, I tried to make a clap light. When any loud sound/clap is detected by the sensors on the CPX the LEDs light up.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yezuHwdjlqg (Links to an external site.)


Exploration Journal 2 – Capacitive Touch: Hand Drawn Circuits

Hello Everyone,

While browsing through numerous tutorials and links about capacitive touch, I landed upon this tutorial.  (Links to an external site.)The artist explores capacitive touch using arduino and a hand drawn circuit. Graphite being a good conductor, powers the circuit and the fan begins to move.

For this exploration I decided to use the aforementioned concept with the CPX, and initiate the capacitive touch to light up the CPX. I used a 6B pencil to draw out the shapes. I realized that the lines have to be really thick and in layers, and vertical strokes of the pencil allow for better conductivity. The graphite is a really good substitute for the expensive conductive paint and is a great way to create interactive art on a budget.

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Exploration Journal 3 – Thermometer Using CPX

For the third exploration, I wanted to try out the sensors on the Circuit Playground as that is something I would like to use in my final project. CPX is a great tool for trying out various inputs as it comes built-in with many different sensors. I was very intrigued by a few tutorials online revolving around temperature and thermal sensing.

I followed the following tutorial to create a thermometer for my room using the CPX.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JFSegDhs46E&ab_channel=CoreElectronics (Links to an external site.)




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The thermometer worked very well. My room was very cold at the time of the test hence I received a more analog result. The LEDs on the CPX lit up forming a gradient with shades of blue. As I hovered my finger over the temperature sensor of the Circuit Playground, the heat from my fingers caused the LEDs to light up warmer tones like orange, yellow.

I did a few modifications and the CPX gave me a digital result. When close to the heat the LEDs were red and on moving closer to an open window, the CPX lit up in blue.


I intend to use this sensor in my final project. I really like the nature of the inputs, as it provides both analog and digital output if coded adequately. Additionally, the temperature sensor can be used with the capacitive touch and can be used to create a well-functioning thermometer for anything.

Exploration Journals 4 – Technique Exploration: Stitching

Last Journal Entry!

I have zero experience with textiles, and stitching. This semester I have really struggled with putting fabrics together and making them into functional objects. So for the final exploration, I decided to explore stitching techniques, which will help me not only in the final project but also in future. I have learned that basic stitching is a important life skill and everyone should know how to do it. Professor Prior directed me to this website:  https://makezine.com/2016/03/22/5-basic-stitches-you-need-know-plus-textile-tips/ (Links to an external site.).

This website presents 5 stitches that are very important and relatively easy to master. The stitches explored Cross-stitch, whip stitch, running stitch, back stitch and ladder stitch.

Cross Stitch

Cross Stitch is typically used in embroidery and embellishments. It can also be used in putting 2 fabrics together, and leave a nice cross pattern to the joint.

I followed this tutorial:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c1_ijpQizzs (Links to an external site.)


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Whip Stitch    

Whip Stitches are often used to bind 2 fabrics together, hemming edges, and crochet. I referred to the following link:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pG86hhrDdzQ (Links to an external site.)



Running Stitch

Running Stitches are typically used in tailoring, and sewing basic seams, and it also may come in handy while doing patchwork. The tutorial I followed:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i1-B01FB56s (Links to an external site.)


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Ladder Stitch

Ladder Stitch is also known as invisible stitch and can be used to sew/complete a project with an open seam for stuffing or turning. It is often used in pillows, stuffed toys and/or lined hems. The tutorial I followed was:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uqrTtitjdnY (Links to an external site.)



Back Stitch

Back Stitches are often used in embroidery, typically to outline the sketch. It is also a very strong way to attach 2 fabrics together. The tutorial I referred to is as follows:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rZ_wVC84UmM (Links to an external site.)


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These stitches were very easy and helpful. I hope to use them in my final project and later in life. Overall I think that these techniques are very beginner friendly and are a great way to grasp knowledge and explore materials and textiles.

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