1. Potential Final Project Ideas


So many choices. So little time.

Idea #1: Xylophone 2.0


    An electronic xylophone that

  1. 1)will light up when a key is hit

2) will light up potential notes you can hit next?

3) has sensors that will modify the sound, possibly including accompaniment as well?

Prior Art:

  1. -MIDI percussion mallet controllers

  1. -Lots of precedence for homemade electric instruments. Like Adam’s electric cello from last year, or Laurel’s electric Gamelan.

  2. -Light-up instruments seem to be popular with kid’s toys or learn-to-play-piano keyboards. There is a keyboard at the Seattle Experience Music Project that light up keys in specified scales to help people improvise.

Systems and Components:

- Piezoelectric sensors that detect when and how hard a key is hit

  1. -LEDs that light up when a key is hit


  1. -How to amplify sounds?

  2. -How to calculate which other notes should light up?

Idea #2: Heads Up Earrings


    LED earrings that can detect the user’s head position and alert the user when their head is down. This is very useful for correcting posture while dancing. The LEDs are just for show.

Prior Art:

  1. -There are pre-existing earrings with embedded LEDs. I haven’t found any that detects user posture.

Systems and Components:

  1. -Embedded gyroscope

  2. -LEDs

  3. -Sound-producing chip


  1. -How to program the audio chip to emit sound based on gyroscope readings?

Idea #3: Cat Empowerment


     A cat toy that moves when it detects the cat is near.

     2.0: A cat toy that moves when the cat meows.

Systems and Components:

  1. -IR sensor + a motor to wave the cat toy around

  2. -More advanced: a microphone + voice recognition software to recognize meows.