Introduction: Ah-Ma Cushion


The product that I have made is called Ah ma Cushion. This detects when she is lying on her bed and transmit that information over the radio frequency to the receiver board, which will then upload the data to the internet to display a chart for easier visualisation. The reason I came up with this product is that, I wanted a way to monitor my grandmother while I was away or sleeping.


I realised that my grandmother has a fixed sleeping pattern. For example, in the morning she would wake up at 7am. Next in the late afternoon about 3-4pm, she would lie in her bed and watch shows from her TV to about 6pm where she would eat dinner and watch TV in the living room till 10 pm where it is time for her to sleep. However about 12-1 am she would wake up to go to the toilet and back to sleep to the next day 7am, where her process repeats again. From there, I decided to make a pillow that able to detect when she is lying on the pillow. So, if any of her behaviour is out of the norm I will know something is wrong with her.


The FSR sensor is hidden in the pillow. So when grandma is lying her head on the pillow it sense that and sent information to the receiver.

Plug in the receiver to a computer with python, the script will allow communication between the Arduino tiny and the computer, this allow the receiver module to access to internet using the computer or laptop medium allowing posting of the information to a server known as ThingSpeak which will plot the graph for better visualisation as shown in the diagram below.You can see that data that states ‘0’ means that she is not Tranresting her head while any data above ‘0’ means she is resting on it.

Basically, I am working on the pattern detection using classificationtechniques. So, if my grandma do not repeat the process, something might be wrong with her. However, to do pattern detection, I require Microsoft azure, which I am currently looking and experimenting on it.

In the next prototype, I plan to notify user by sending text message when grandma starts to do something out of the norm. However, I think that currently displaying chart in thingspeak is good for nursing home, as it allows them to analyse their behaviour.


Currently, the prototype is legit and working. But, I believe that this system can be used in other places such as nursing homes, where there would be many transmitters each place in each elderly pillow. Therefore, allowing the nurse to monitor the elderly whether they are in bed or not making it much easier as compared to running back and forth to check on them.

Furthermore, this system can be applied in food courts, to show customer available seats, therefore saving their time in trying to find seats in the food court.

Step 1: Components

You are required to have:

  1. RF transmitter and reciever
  2. FSR Sensor
  3. ATTINY85
  4. CP2012

Step 2: Connection

Step 3: Arduino Coding

Download the Arduino Tiny transmitter code here

Download the Arduino Tiny Receiver code here

Step 4: Python Coding

Python is use to communicate the pc with the arduino reciever and can be downloaded here. For tutorial on how to install python you can go to this link.

The Python coding can be downloaded here

Step 5: Thingspeak

Create an account from the Thingspeak website. After, creating an account create a channel and change the arduino coding channel API to your channel API.

Step 6: