Asking your boss for a raise when they are in a bad mood is not ideal, and this is what prompted Mark from element14 Presents to create a stress level indicating project that could show this mood to everyone else so they could avoid this awkward situation.
Mark started this project by laser cutting several panels from acrylic, including the base, four walls, and a special top cover with cutouts for the stress level lights, speaker holes, and a place for the selection button. After gluing these pieces together, he designed a circuit based on the Arduino Nano board that would let the user set their stress level and display it by illuminating a corresponding compartment within the “dial” portion. In addition to the visual aspect, a unique sound would also play to indicate the change.
In order to make his circuit more compact, Mark designed and fabricated his own PCB that not only contained the required headers for the Arduino, but also pads for the SD card slot, headers for the LEDs and buzzer, and custom power management circuitry to make everything power efficient so that a battery could be used. The end result was a compact box that illuminated one of the five possible compartments in colors ranging from green (relaxed), all the way to bright red (mad).
More information about Mark’s project can be found in the video below!
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