Small board - great value (Or how a little Arduino Nano is improving our Toastmasters meetings)

For those who are still wondering what Toastmasters (http://www.toastmasters.org/) means, this is as non-profit organization which helps people develop their communication and leadership skills. Take a look, you'll probably find a club near you that you can visit to learn a little more.

Anyway, one of the things we learn at Toastmasters is to deliver speeches and, on top of other evaluation criteria, we have a person controlling the time of your speech, as we have to keep it between specified thresholds.

This timing process often is manual, error-prone and a little boring. That's when I decided to find a nice project to my Arduino Nano.

Toastmasters Timer is basically a timer-controlled traffic light with some presets for specific tasks which are time-bound at any Toastmasters meeting. For instance a Standard Speech should be between 5 and 7 minutes: you get a green light when you reach the 5 minute mark, a yellow light at 6 minute and red one after 7 minutes. This project automates this process of turning lights on and off for the most common tasks.

I added a LCD screen to show the type of preset being used, and also a custom/manual timer for any specific need not covered by the presets.

Step 1: What Will You Need:

1 x Arduino Nano https://store-usa.arduino.cc/collections/products-atheart/products/a000005

1 x Adafruit blue LCD I got as part of ADABOX 2 https://www.adafruit.com/products/1447

8 x Generic Buttons (Uxcell 10 x Momentary SPST NO Red Push Button Switch AC 250V/1.5A 125V/3A)

1 x 330R resistor.

2 x 15 pin female header (to hold the Arduino nano)

1 x Snappable PC BreadBoard for all the wire soldering an to hold the Arduino Header

18 LEDs: 6 Red, 6 yellow and 6 green for both the panel and the traffic light that goes on top of the device so people speaking can see it.

2 pieces: 1/8" X 12" X 12" (3 X 300 x 300 mm) Baltic Birch Plywood

5V power supply for the Arduino

<p>Hi. Good enough for the purpose. I would add a function here: Use a &quot;fade in the next lifght to be and fade out the actual light, in a way that they &quot;owerlap&quot; each other. This results in a &quot;graceful&quot; reminder to the speaker, instead of &quot;Oooh... it's Yellow allready... How much time do I have left? &quot; </p>
<p>Hi, this is such a GREAT idea. Thank you for sharing. Thanks to the Arduino Nano I have in the timer, reprogramming it to do what you just said should be easy. Will work on that. </p>

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