SWAT Lights

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A fun project to build a Do not Disturb desktop light!

It's sort of a semaphore with a Red/Green led to communicate to your colleagues if they can bother you while you sit at your desk or not. Inspired by the "Pomodoro technique".

We built this as part of a team-building initiative at my company.

You need a clothespin, a Red/Green LED, a suitable resistor, a SPDT microswitch and a USB cable!

Step 1: Prepare USB Cable

Cut the USB connector from the cable, making sure to leave the one that connects to you laptop still attached to it, and expose the inner wires for around 2cm.

Cutoff every wire except the red and black ones.

Step 2: Prepare Clothespin

Disassemble the clothespin.

  • Cut felt to measure
  • Apply glue on the tip
  • Attach the felt

Step 3: Add the LED

  • Drill a hole in the clothespin
  • Insert the LED in the hole
  • Bend the legs around
  • apply glue to lock it in place

Step 4: Solder the Switch

After bending the legs of the LED to the correct angle

  • Glue the switch just under the LED
  • Solder the two outer legs to the outer switch pins

Step 5: Solder the Resistor

Bend the middle leg of the LED towards the top of the clothespin

Cut the resistor to length and solder it to the leg

Use some glue to lock it in place

Step 6: Solder the Cable Wires

Solder the black wire to the resistor

solder the red wire to the center pin of the switch

Step 7: Finishing Touches

Add tape to lock cable in place

Add stickers

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    7 Discussions

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    CapnChkn

    2 years ago

    What the heck is this for? What is a "Do not disturb Desktop light?"

    4 replies
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    MarcoS199CapnChkn

    Reply 2 years ago

    It's sort of a semaphore with a Red/Green led to communicate to your colleagues if they can bother you while you sit at your desk or not. Inspired by the "Pomodoro technique".

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    rafununuMarcoS199

    Reply 2 years ago

    You can also put a "busy" or "free" sign. Free to waste time at work.

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    rafununuMarcoS199

    Reply 2 years ago

    Free to waste time at work. Not fun for your boss, for sure.

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    Swansong

    2 years ago

    Neat idea! Would this work for spouses and kids? XD

    1 reply
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    MarcoS199Swansong

    Reply 2 years ago

    You need a much bigger LED for those I guess! =)