Introduction: Nevma: Gesture Control for the Masses

Working at Delphi (soon Aptiv) allows me the luxury of being immersed in a high-tech and innovative environment that provides constant inspiration for creating new and exciting gadgets. One day, some colleagues mentioned gesture control being one of the recent trends in automotive. This got me thinking of ways to bring gesture control to the broader audience in an affordable and easy to use package. And thus, Nevma was born.

Nevma (Greek for "gesture") is a simple to build, program and utilize device that translates your hand gestures into keyboard and mouse input. Just plug it in your USB port and magically wave through your presentations, documents, pictures, songs and the like.

If you want to learn more about the story behind the project, take a look at my article on

Keep reading on to find out how you can make a Nevma for yourself!

Step 1: Get All Three Components

This is a very simple project. You need just the three following components!

  • Mini SS Micro - An Arduino Micro compatible breakout board for the ATMega32U4 microcontroller
  • GY-9960LLC module - An APDS-9960 sensor module. Get the one on the picture. Has 5 pins and a power regulator.
  • Nevma PCB - You can order it from At 0.6mm thick, they do a great job and they are the cheapest and fastest I have found.

The total cost per Nevma is something like 7$! I ordered myself many to give them as gifts during Christmas.

That was all! Optionally you can also print out a hand-shaped case for it. You will find it on TinkcerCAD.

Step 2: Solder the Boards Together

This step should be pretty straight forward. Solder the boards together and cut the excess pins that stick out. All the important pins are labeled so it is obvious how the boards should sit together. If you think it is not, have a look at the attached photos that should explain a bit more.

You do not even need to acquire extra heade

Step 3: Program Nevma to Translate Your Gestures

  • Download the Arduino IDE.
  • Select Arduino Micro as your board from Tools > Board (see attached picture)
  • Select correct Serial Port from Tools > Port
  • Get the Sparkfun APDS-9960 library
    • Go to Sketch > Include Library > Manager Libraries
    • Type "Sparkfun APDS-9960" (see attached picture)
    • Click Install
  • Get the software I am using or write your own
    • Or write your own, the code is very straight forward
  • Upload to the board by clicking the upload (right arrow) button

Wasn't too hard, was it? That was all!

Now that you have a cool gesture sensor, how will you use your Nevma? Let me know in the comments!