Wearing Lights




The bicycle glove is designed for urban cyclists who rides for long distances with their group. The main purpose of designing this glove is to help the night riders to indicate directions to the other riders behind them in the dark. This glove will also help to communicate turning intentions to other vehicles on the road.

The bright LED lights on the back of the gloves makes it easier for cyclists to locate their group members and clearly understand the directions that are being instructed. The ON/OFF feature of the glove is coded in such a way that the glove is off when the cyclist has his hands on the handle, so that he doesn’t get distracted with the bright light. But as soon as the cyclist moves his hand away from the handle to direct others, the LED lights turn on.

I’m a cyclist myself and I have experienced that at night and during winters when it’s very foggy  with minimum visibility , it gets very difficult to indicate directions to the car behind or to instruct the fellow cyclists as well. Therefore this product enhances the safety of a cyclist.

In this project, I have soldered about 11 LED’s together in a frame according to the design on the glove. All the LED’s connect together to a single positive and negative wire on the breadboard. I’m using the gyroscope sensor to record the moment  so that the LED’s can turn on accordingly.







Parts –

  1. Arduino Nano 33 IOT
  2. LED bulbs
  3. Jumper Cables
  4. Resistors
  5. Breadboard

Materals –

  1. Pair of gloves
  2. Soldering wire and Soldering iron
  3. Sewing kit
  4. USB cable
  5. Powerbank



Soldering all the LEDs in a particular shape was the most challenging part of this experiment.








Cycling is an essential mode of transportation in cities. Bicycle safety is the most critical problem, and as more riders take to the streets, cyclists are looking forward to increased road safety. Cycling, on the other hand, continues to face difficulties in terms of protection, convenience, and accessibility. There are a number of things you can do to stay safe on the road, particularly in low-light conditions.

Bicycling at night can be unsafe because cars don’t see you. Only by using lights will you remain visible. There are many products already in the market such as bike lights/reflectors that make the cyclists more visible. The LED headlight for bicycle is a very good product for the riders to see till far off distance in the front. The loud electric bell is also one products that makes it easier for cyclists to show their presence around in peak traffic hours as it is much louder than the traditional bell. Revolights system is one really good innovation made for night riders. Revolights system includes a front shining light that projects on the road in front of you, lighting your path, and the smart brake light flickers when you hit the brakes to show traffic you are slowing down ensuring a clear and safer parth for the rider.

There are a lot of cycling groups that go for bicycle hikes together. Specially during the time of the pandemic, cycling has become an activity that is enjoyed by everyone yet they are exercising at the same time. There are a lot of people who have cycling groups and go for hikes. Therefore the light indicator on the gloves can make it easier for the person following to locate his/her partner or group members even from far off distance.




Speedy Recovery by Nishu



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:


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


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


Prototype images:

1 2 3 4


Demo video:



Detail Images:

1 2 3 4 5


Circuit Diagram:



Arduino Code:



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.



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



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






Link To Code



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.



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


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 – 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 & 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.


Emote Masks



During this COVID 19 pandemic, the new normal means now that masks are very much a part of our lives. From performing day to day tasks like going for a walk or a grocery shopping run, we always have to mask up. The introduction of masks has also brought with it its own set of problems. One thing that is widely disliked by most people, is the inability to see the bottom half of a person’s face. It is difficult to tell whether someone is angry, happy, or sad. In order to counteract this, I decided to create Emote Mask.

Emote Mask is a wearable device that uses LED lights to convey the emotions of the user. It is designed to be integrated seamlessly as part of a regular face mask. There are four LED strips located inside the mask which are all used to animate the mask. There are two different animations that can be loaded into the mask one at a time. (1) Blink and (2) Fade. Once a person, puts on the mask, all he/she has to do to get the animations going is to connect the Arduino to the power bank and simply power it on.

Emote Mask is an example of a wearable technology that belongs to the visual feedback and reachability category. The Emote Mask is placed in an easy-to-reach body location which is the mouth and the LED lights which provide the visual feedback can easily be seen.


(1) Arduino Nano 33 IOT

(4) LED Strips

(2) Alligator clips

(1) Full-sized breadboard

Jumper wires

Cotton sewn face mask

Soldering Iron



Demo Video


Parts & Materials
Parts & Materials
Soldered LED Strips
Soldered LED Strips
Arduino + LED Strips
Arduino + LED Strips
Mask + LED Strips
Mask + LED Strips


Development Video


Mask LED Light Off
Mask LED Light On
Final Prototype Off
Final Prototype On







Many designs have started popping up as a way to showcase people’s emotions behind the mask. Be it a mask with an actual picture of you or someone else’s mouth printed on the fabric or a transparent fabric to allow visual access. Some even have the LED lights light up matching the user’s mouth movements. Jabbermask can be mentioned as an example of such a product. The Jabbermask is an interactive voice-controlled facemask that allows users to express themselves. The mask is made up primarily of RGB LEDs, either AAA batteries or rechargeable batteries (depending on the model), and a voice-activated mic. The LED lights change based on how the mouth is moving, with simple physical commands like popping the lips displaying simple words, emojis, or smiles. Most authentically though, the mouth can also move in time with the mouth of the user, emulating the physical action of the lips underneath. In addition, users can pick from a selection of emojis, words, letters, and symbols to display on their face masks. Similar to this, the Emote Mask also makes use of LED strips for its lighting. However, it does not utilize the voice control aspect of the Jabbermask.

Another related example is a facemask with LED animations from a Youtube channel called Nerdforge. This prototype is made up of addressable LED strips, an Arduino, an SD card reader, a power bank, along with a face mask. The LED light animations are triggered when the Arduino is connected to the power bank. The animations are first created using a custom Webapp built by Nerdforge, then loaded onto an SD card connected to the Arduino. The Arduino then reads the built-in animations from the SD Card and outputs them through the LED lights. The Webapp allows the user to customize their own animations in any way they want. The Emote mask was based directly on this particular example, with the way it uses the blink and fade as animations.

The last example which I found is an example of a good concept which I feel was not well constructed. While parsing through the internet for examples, I found this LED face mask prototype which was created by a Bengal man. This prototype makes use of LED bulbs as a decoration around the mask and acts as a sign for people not wearing masks. Although the use of LEDs is a creative way to encourage the wearing of masks, I feel that this mask does not offer the same level of creativity and usefulness compared to the other examples mentioned previously.


Coggan, Georgia. “Incredible New Face Mask Displays Your Emotions.” Creative Bloq, September 7, 2020. https://www.creativebloq.com/news/led-face-mask.
Ghosh, Raya. “Bengal Man Makes LED Face Mask to Protect Himself from Coronavirus. Watch Video.” India Today, July 20, 2020. https://www.indiatoday.in/trending-news/story/bengal-man-makes-led-face-mask-to-protect-himself-from-coronavirus-watch-video-1702381-2020-07-20.
Nerdforge. Making a Face Mask with ANIMATIONS!!, 2020. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MNogUc4_8GM.
Zeagler, Clint. “Where to Wear It.” Proceedings of the 2017 ACM International Symposium on Wearable Computers, 2017, doi:10.1145/3123021.3123042.

Music Festival Headband by Trish


During these uncertain times of the pandemic we find ourselves looking back and longing to go out for social gatherings. For my prototype I decided to design a headband that lights up to the beat of the music. Its use is not limited to music festivals can be worn at house parties and other events that involve music.

The music festival headband is a wearable device that is designed to light up the world of the user the idea is to capture the attention of the people that surround the user. The headband has a sound sensor that captures the beats of the music to light up the LEDs insync with the music, when the music is off the headband doesn’t light up.

The device consists of 8 different colour LEDs connected to an arduino nano on a breadboard and also has a  microphone sound sensor module that detects the sound of the music. The wires are wrapped around the frame of the headband and covered with ribbons so as not to be visible. As we are limited to make use of the supplies we have at home I covered up the long hanging wires with black ribbon so as to mimic or give the illusion of someone’s hair as a next iteration I would like to explore less bulky electronics so as to keep the design compact.

Some of the challenges I faced while designing the headband was figuring out how to place the LEDs especially because I didn’t have any conductive thread but eventually improvised with wires. The full sized breadboard was also very bulky so I packed it in my fanny pack so that its not seen for when someone is moving around although it is not a long term solution but for a prototype it worked well. From Clint Zeagler work “Where to wear it” he mentions that a wearable for sensing can be worn on the head.


(4) red LEDs, (2) blue LEDs, (2) green LEDs

(1) Arduino Nano 33 IoT

(20) M-F Dupont Jumper Cables

(1) Solderless Breadboard

(2)Standard Insulated pointed wire

(1)Microphone sound sensor module

Red and Black ribbon

Glue gun

USB cable


img_6045img_6048img_6054img_6052                          img_6064img_6074











ORPHE ONE are a pair of shoes that emits lights and sounds in sync with the wearer’s every foot movement whether a step or a jump. Equipped with full-color LED soles and high-precision motion sensor technology, the revolutionary performance of this smart shoes is sure to capture the eye of the audience. The shoes can be linked, customized and controlled using an app. The shoes are interesting because they can literally help someone communicate their feelings without having to say a word.


As my projects is an accessory I’ll mention the Joule it is made as a piece of jewelry.  Joule has a heart rate monitor that helps one to achieve the best result for their workout, by providing the heart rate information while they are working out. It also tracks the calories burnt not only when one is exercising, but also accounts for the missing 90% daily caloric expenditure. Even though it doesn’t light up it is still. a very useful wearable and a compact and discreet on at that.

Having gone hiking with the Energizer headlamp I must say in terms of convenience of having a headlamp is great but in terms of comfort it wasn’t the best experience. Some of the features include. VisionGuard protects vision by gradually increasing light intensity. Low battery indicator. IPX4 water resistant and shatterproof lens construction. Latest LED technology and patented optics, delivering exceptional vision, up to 15X brighter than standard LED technology. 6 Modes High, Low, Flood, Red, Red Flashing, Green. Features LED Technology.


B. (2016). Joule Smart Earring Backs to track fitness! Joule. https://shopjoule.com/

LED Headlamps and Headlights. (2021). Energizer. https://www.energizer.com/lighting/headlights

no new folk studio. (2020, July 22). ORPHE ONE|ORPHE. ORPHE| https://orphe.shoes/en/one/

Emotional Apron By Jessy


  • Description and Discussion

The emotional apron is a wearable led matrix and its color will change according to the environment. There is a sound sensor attached to the apron and connected to the Arduino board. Technically, the sound sensor is an input port and triggering the led matrix to make changes. There are totally three states of this led matrix(see image 1.1-1.3), specifically, the led matrix will show a blue state to indicate the out space is sort of quiet, and change to red-state when in a pretty noisy environment like a crowded street, or a busy public space. As we are rarely in an environment without any sound, so when there is some external sound that is not enough to reach a level of annoyance, the led matrix will show the green state.

Wearables are sort of electronic devices that can be worn as accessories. They could be embedded in clothing, implanted in the user’s body, and tightly attached to the physical body like the sports watch that be worn on the wrist and will not affect the movement of the human body. Wearable technology should be basically placed in the area that will not disturb people’s movement, so in this project, I chose the apron as a basic wearable framework and embedded the sensor and device inside. In the process of testing, I firstly chose a hoody as a frame, but it turned out that the apron was more wearable which can be taken off or put on rapidly. Although the current apron needs to support by a laptop( the battery container is still being shipped)and the wire connections also need to totally replaced by the conductive sewing thread, but from the perspective of the overall operation, it is highly wearable. Additionally, according to the Body Map- Body Locations for Wearable Technology, it shows the upper whole body(the dark green area in the body map) is a better area to place the device, so I placed the LED Matrix around this area.

For most wearable devices, like smartwatches or fitness trackers, their goal is to use sensors to get users’ information, in other words, our internal information. My thinking is, the external or environmental information could also be considered to be integrated into the wearable devices, in other words, the wearable is not only to track our bodies but also from the external space. So the emotional apron is firstly sensing the external situation and delivering this information to people. The LED matrix is sort of a signal output that can reflect the external sound condition.


prototypeimage detail1 detail2 detail3

  • Code Link


  • Sensor List

4*5 RGB LEDs

Arduino Nano IoT

Jump line

Sound Sensor


Ordinary sewing thread & conductive sewing thread

  • Context

When doing the research, I found three wearable light projects that I want to share. The first one is called Turn Signal Biking Jacket, which is a useful wearable light application. The device is attached to the back of a jacket. People can wear it when doing some sports, especially when riding a bicycle. The controllers are embedded on the cuff, which is easy to click and other people will see the signal directly. Besides, this project is realized by Lily Pad with its related components, so technically the jacket could be washable without the battery. So I think this project is really practical and useful for many activities.  More making details could be found from  https://www.instructables.com/turn-signal-biking-jacket/


Image is from ‘https://www.theverge.com/2018/4/14/17233430/wearable-media-fashion-tech-nyc-ceres-jumpsuit-interactive’

The second project is a wearable prototype called Ceres(image above), it is designed by the studio called wearable media, a fashion tech studio based in New York City. There is an embedded microcontroller in Ceres programmed to work with NASA’s Asteroid Neo-Ws RESTful API, which collects and catalogs real-time data sets of near-Earth asteroids surrounding our orbit. So the suits will vibrate timely. This project is really beautiful, as it is not just a fashion design, but also a wearable design. The material of the suit is also soft and light, but at the same time, it will also help the user to be aware of the vibration. This project is also a combination of technology and aesthetics.

The last one is a little bit terrible called Bling Bra, even this project is mainly to make fun, but it is indeed a negative example of a wearable light project. Firstly, the way of attachment is too simple, which is only to install on the surface of the bra. The bra is a sort of private suit, which requires some biometric consideration when embedding the devices. So this project is incomplete as I could not find any meaning from the aesthetically and practically.


1.’Where to Wear it: Functional, Technical, and Social Considerations in On-Body Location for Wearable Technology 20 Years of Designing for Wearability,’ Clint Zeagler

2. ‘What is Wearable Technology, How it Works?’ Kela Casery, ’https://codersera.com/blog/what-is-wearable-technology-how-it-works/’

3.’What is wearable tech? Everything you need to know’,’ ChrisSmith’, August 17, 2019

Wristband by Wanqing Liu



Description and Discussion

Smart wristbands are popular in smart device market. They can provide testing and statistics of step counting, sleep, heart rate, and exercise data to users. In this assignment, I would like to build up a lo-fi prototype of a smart band, using the functions of circuit playground express.

The prototype is consisting of a band and a circuit playground express. The band is made by straps and cotton cloth. And the circuit playground express can be placed into the little cloth pocket, as well as remove from it. Methods used is sewing and coding.

This wristband is designed to monitor temperature and wake up user in the morning.

(1)By pressing the button A, user can switch on its colorful lights whose amount shows how high the temperature is (More lights represents higher temperature). If the temperature becomes higher than 36℃, all the lights will turn red, to remind user of paying attention to take measure from getting sunstroke.

(2)When the wristband prototype detect sunlight, it will play music to wake up user.

Why is twist? According to Clint Zeagler, wearable devices should avoid obstructing body movement. Twist, as is usually a place for watch, is ideal for light-weighted wearable devices and not stop people from moving.

I am new to coding, so I used MakeCode to make things easier. Codes were written by selecting and moving different modules. I have experienced some confused moment but finally I made it. What I learned from this assignment is basic knowledge of how to control my circuit playground express by code, and code logic.

Demo Video


Detail Image

I used a power bank to work as battery for powering the circuit.





Parts and materials

(2) Straps

(1) Cotton cloth

(1) Buckle

(1) Circuit playground express

(1) Power bank




The first one is the beautiful one. Second skin watch, designed by Svetlana Blum, is made in PU, LED and metal. There are two rows of LED lights in the watch, one displaying hours and the other minutes, to shows the exact time every five minutes. All the user need to do is touch the display to awaken the lights. Its shape has a sense of line, is full of classy vibe. The combination of the position of LEDs and the overall shape is just right, thus brings out the best for each other. My prototype is inspired by its use of LEDs.


The second one is not a light device but I like its inclusive function. People who visually impaired may have difficulty using common watch to look at the time. And Dot watch is a solution for this situation. It is a braille smartwatch and its users can read the time by touching its surface. It can also be connected to smartphone via an app. When someone call in, the Dot watch will display the name of the caller, then users can receive messages with ease by touching it. In my opinion, this is a useful and inclusive design, because it has well addressed the problem and is concise in appearance and simple to use.


The last one is a fitness tracker, the Atlas Wristband. The Atlas Wristband is made to monitor exercises, reps, calculates calories burned and evaluates form. What makes it different is users can see how each movement affects their body, and this wristband can track body on the x-, y- and z-axes. I also like the way that it align one edge of the rectangle to the strap’s, but I think its display interface is lack of aesthetic and a bit too large for a person who is doing exercise to carry.



Design Buzz. LED Display Turns the ‘Second Skin’ Wristwatch Into a Fashion Accessory[Blog post]. Retrived fom https://www.aminimalstudio.com/second-skin-watch

Dot Incorporation(2018). Dot Watch. Retrived from https://buy.dotincorp.com/product/dot-watch/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIiqTs9JG77gIVVTizAB2Vyw-5EAYYASABEgIWNPD_BwE

Peter Li(2014). The Atlas Wristband. Retrived from https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-atlas-wristband#/

another work

Just make for fun! I sewed a seven-color led to a glove, and it can be powered by a button battery.

Video link: https://youtu.be/2ZYz3WpLMAQ

img20210126215746 img20210126215756img20210126215833img20210126215849

Squat Mate by Grace Yuan

Squat Mate

Project Description

As we spend most of the time at home during the Coivd-19 pandemic, the idea of home fitness and indoor workout tends to become more popular. Squatting is one of the exercises that I found extremely beneficial and can easily be done anywhere. Personally, I do squat every day for exercising and keeping myself motivated. Doing squats helps to strengthen the core and the muscles of the lower body.

Squat Mate is a wearable device that monitors the user’s posture when squat to exercise. It is designed to be worn on the top of the user’s thigh, to detect leg movement. There are three LED lights on the device to represent three modes of the signals. (1)When standing still, the yellow LED lights up to indicate that the device is turned on and the user is not moving. (2)As the user squat, the orange LED lights up, indicating the user is squatting at a proper depth. (3)If the user squats and bends their knees beyond 90 degrees, the red LED lights up and warns the user. Going below a 90-degree bend puts lots of weight on the knees and can cause injury. The goal of the device is to help the user maximize the squatting exercises safely and correctly.

The device mainly consists of a circuit and a pouch with adjustable straps. The pouch is made of acrylic felt to hold the circuit board and wires. Three LED lights are sewed on the pouch with conductive threads for connecting to the circuit with alligator clips. The adjustable straps are made of sturdy ribbons with velcro tapes sewing at both ends, allowing the user to put on the device according to their thigh circumference. The detection of the leg movements is based on the accelerometer data of the Arduino IMU sensor. It reads the bending angle of the leg and triggers the corresponding LEDs to light up. Squat Mate is a wearable device that belongs to the movement sensing category. According to Clint Zeagler, “placing the sensor on the thigh or just above ankle would be appropriate.” The visible feedback of LEDs is also easy to read because of the placement of the device.

Parts & Materials

(1) Arduino Nano 33 IOT
(1)Yellow LED
(1)Red LED
(1)USB charger
(1)Orange LED
(6)Aligator clips
(1)Half breadboard
Jumper wires
Velcro tapes
Black ribbon
Conductive thread
Black acrylic felt

Prototype Images

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Demo Video


Detail Images

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Circuit Diagram


Arduino Code


Project Context

Using the wearable device for tracking body movement or fitness has been quite popular. Notch Wearable Sensors can serve as a practical example. The notch is a motion capture system with up to 18 IMU sensors for detecting an athlete’s movement. You can purchase it as a kit and each kit comes with 6 sensors. Its LED lights system is designed to identify different sensors and where they are supposed to be worn. Each sensor unit contains 6 different colored lights. As the user selects a configuration for Notch on the phone app, it automatically assigns one color for each sensor. Similar to the Notch, Squat Mate also detects body movement and uses a velcro hook for fixing the device on the user’s body part.

Another related example would be the Heart Rate Monitor by Dmitry Dziuba from the MIT lab. This device is designed in the form of a watch, for the user to wear on their wrist. I found the design beautiful and well-integrated. The most eye-catching feature of its the bright and colorful Adafruit NeoPixel Ring that lights up or changes color as the user’s heartbeat changes. The concept of the Heart Rate Monitor and Squat Mate aligns – track body movement with IMU sensor and display them as visual feedbacks using LED lights.

There is another example with a really interesting concept and mechanism but very poorly constructed. This is a prototype from a youtube channel called Ultimate Robotics. The prototype integrates muscle controlled Electromyography (EMG) to control LED lights with the movement of fingers. Although the use of EMG is super creative and interesting, the prototype itself provides discomfort to the arm and the LEDs are not integrated into the design.


Chua, Julian. “Notch Wearable Sensor Review.” Sports Technology Blog, 29 Apr. 2019, sportstechnologyblog.com/2019/04/28/notch-wearable-sensor-review/.

Dziuba, Dmitry. “Heart Rate Monitor (Wearable and Wireless Using ECG).” Hackster.io, 6 Dec. 2020, www.hackster.io/aka3d6/heart-rate-monitor-wearable-and-wireless-using-ecg-e96dce.

Zeagler, Clint. “Where to Wear It.” Proceedings of the 2017 ACM International Symposium on Wearable Computers, 2017, doi:10.1145/3123021.3123042.