Study Cap

Introduction: Study Cap

Ever have trouble staying on task for an assignment? Do your breaks tend to go on too long?

What do you do if you've got required reading due the next day, and the power goes out?

I made this Study Cap as an answer to these problems.

The way it works is that when the sensor senses low light, the LEDs on the brim turn on to light up your work.

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Step 1: What You Need

The materials you'll need for this project include:

  1. 4 NeoPixels
  2. Adafruit Gemma 8MHZ (Lilly pad would also work, but it's much bigger, and the design would need to be modified)
  3. Light sensor
  4. lithium battery (one that will attach to the Gemma)
  5. conductive thread
  6. Felt
  7. Cap with a brim
  8. Velcro (or a way to attach the felt to the brim)

Step 2: Step 1: Make a Plan

You wouldn't want to start sewing or cutting if you didn't have a plan ready, right? especially since we're dealing with electricity here...

I drew my diagram here by tracing the brim of the hat, and adding a little peninsula for the sensor, so the NeoPixels wouldn't deactivate the sensor.

It's important that you press down on the brim when tracing, so that you get the proper shape, or else the design will not be wide enough to fit the hat.

Try to estimate where the sweat band will be. We don't want current running through that!

You're going to need 3 pathways for current to travel. The data wire, the positive wire, and the negative wire.

The Positive wire is red. the negative wire is blue, and the data wire is green. I should note that while the positive and negative wires can be continuous, the data wire should be cut and tied between each chip.

after it's drawn, it's important to cut out your design and make sure it fits, and that your lines don't cross or touch the sweatband (the flap on the inside). Don't forget the tab for the sensor!

Step 3: Step 2: Trace and Cut!

While you can use your design to trace onto the felt, i suggest you trace the hat itself, just in case. Remember to flatten the brim to get the right size! again, i can't stress this enough... leave a little bit extra on the side for the light sensor.

Cut out your tracing, and match it to the design you drew, so you can cut out the spot where it touches the sweat band.

before the next step, match your felt to the hat, and trim it to fit as necessary, leaving the extra bit i mentioned before. this extra bit should be long enough to fold up and rest on top of the brim.

Step 4: Step 3: Sew!

It's time to get out the needle and thread! I suggest starting by arranging each chip on the felt, to make sure it fits. Make sure the Gemma is within the curvature of the rim, so that it doesn't overlap with the sweatband or the brim. We will be folding that little tab!

Start with the positive thread, as it will be closest to the sweatband, and will determine the safety of the device. (sweat will short out the thread).

Remember to cut the data line between each chip. the data is supposed to enter and leave each chip, and a continuous line will confuse the input and output data.

Step 5: Step 4: Velcro! (Sew, Glue, Whatever)

You can attach the felt to the brim anyway you like, but i used Velcro, just to make sure i didn't pick a glue that would mess with the current.

for the purposes of the instructable, i'm going to assume you're using Velcro like me.

cut a strip and place one side on the inside of your hat. I got lazy and just did one continuous strip, but you can use multiple pieces if you like.

You will however, need an extra piece for the tab. place one side on the tab, and the other on the top of the brim.

attach the Velcro together, and the crafting portion is done! You can sew an extra bit of felt on to hold the battery, just make sure you use regular thread and don't cross any of your wires!

Step 6: Step 5: Program!

we're done crafting, but without the program, all you have is a very odd looking cap.

The code shown here is in arduino, but for some reason it only works in Codebender.

I can get the lights to change and hold as a color, but my plans for the future is to learn how to use a timer function to prompt the colors to change as time passes. white for 45 minutes, blue for 13, and red for 2.

all of this would be dependent on if the sensor detects light.

Currently the code will detect a decrease in light, and start up the sequence. for the sake of testing, i shortened the time to ten seconds each for testing purposes. if the light sensor detects a bright enough light, the sequence should stop after a while.

Once you've uploaded the code to your Gemma, you're done! happy studying!

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    5 years ago on Introduction

    Such a cool idea for studying! I love that it's removeable and reprogramable!