Top 5 Constraints

My Top 5 constraints for the main project go as follows:

  1. Know How- I am limited by my knowledge and experience with Arduino and building circuits. For my project I plan on using an Arduino to control neopixel strips that are located all over the jacket in the shape of hearts. The neopixels will pulse with the analog input from a heartbeat sensor; faster beating meaning faster pulsing of the neopixels. This is a daring project because of how complex it will be so I need to be wary of the technical difficulties and other obstacles I will face.
  2. Time- I am definitely constrained by time because it usually takes weeks or months for people to build wearable tech and it often come with many re-iterations and scrapping and starting all over. I cannot do that. I will have limited resources and time to work on just this project. I have four other time consuming classes that I am also working on multiple projects for so, time will probably be the biggest constraint for me.
  3. Cost- I need to do more research into the actual price of the materials, however I do know that an Arduino alone costs about $20-if not more- and that is just one part. I also have to figure out how much a heartbeat sensor would cost because that is also another important piece of my project. Also in order to achieve the aesthetic I’m going for I need a looooooooong strip of neopixels and 1 meter costs about $17. So, I will have to figure out a solution to this dilemma either by switching the neopixels to just some lame LEDs and making smaller less cool hearts or…..
  4. Wearability- Because I want to make my project an actual wearable piece I need to consider how to include all the hardware in a way that is comfortable for someone to wear. This worries me for a number of reasons- mainly because I need to have an Arduino connected to the piece along with a heart beat sensor which is all somehow connected to a bunch of neopixel strips all over the jacket. I will definitely need to sketch out plans before I start making any concrete moves.
  5. Aesthetic constraint- The aesthetic I am drawing inspiration from is the neon aesthetic or neon sign aesthetic. I really love neon signs especially when all the lights are off because the glow from the light is so fascinating and calming for me. So I would like my jacket to have this same effect when all the lights are turned off and all you can see is the luminescence from the hearts.  This means I need a power source big enough to power a bunch of neopixels, an Arduino, and a heartbeat sensor. The most important task for me will be to make the neopixels as bright and colorful as possible.
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2 Comments. Leave new

  • Max Armstrong
    March 8, 2020 3:53 pm

    While I know that the LED strips are not your preferred lighting source, they are really cheap and very easy to control with an arduino. You can get 16 ft for around $15 and could still get the range of colors that you want by using PWM from the arduno. You would just need a battery pack and some mosfets ( to run your lights. The biggest downside is that the strips would be a uniform color unless you cut them and hooked them up seperately.

  • Jackson Hootman
    March 7, 2020 9:58 pm

    Hi Victoria! I’m really excited to see this project come to life. If you’re having trouble finding electronics, I would take a look at (pulse sensor) and possibly for the heart light. While it’s not in the shape a heart, it provides all the hardware you would need at a reasonable size (this may require a more substantial power supply though). Have you started any prototyping. If so, how is it going?


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