Wednesday, March 2, 2011



Today I would like to share an idea that I had some time ago. Since I came to Tsukuba I've met  a lot of nice people, one of them is my good friend Rob Howland. You see, he is a skater. And he loves going around in his skate, sometimes even late at night.

The problem is that the area where we live is kind of dark at night and sometimes you don't even see the road. Not to mention the potential danger of cars not being able to see you.

So, that is why I designed the prototype board for the "Arduino Night Rider":

It will have 30 LEDs, 24 of which will be blue, they will be placed surrounding the skate and used to make cool effects. There will be a white one in the front (I sketched it as a single white LED, but it will be a group of white leds so it can light up the way in front of you), this led will be always on. 

There will be a red LED at the back that will continously blink (like in F1 cars) so you will be easily noticed from behind. There will be 4 yellow leds, one on each corner of the skate and will be used as "direction lights".

3 Tilt sensors will be placed along the skate, two of them will sense which direction you are turning when you turn (left or right) and if you turn left then the 2 yellow leds placed on the left side will blink. The same for the right side when you turn right. 

The last tilt sensor will sense when you raise up the skate and triggers some cool stuff with the blue leds.

The electronics is quite simple and program the arduino would take me a couple of afternoons but I think the most difficult part will be to make it "look professional" 

I don't know if we will have the time, but it would be very cool if we finally do this :)