Assignment 8

input devices: make something that measures things

This week, we worked on input devices. I decided to use step response to make a capacitive sensing piano. It was a cool project to combine a lot of different skills we've learned over the past week. The first part of this week was milling a basic board where I could make sure I had things right and test out a demo to see how it worked. This part went really smoothly -

I milled the board on the site, and was easily able to flash it and test the board with the python visualization. Here are some pictures of that board!
And here's a video of it in action-

Next, I thought I'd take on Matt Keeter's multitouch board and adapt it for my project. I'm in awe that he found such a clean way to lay it out symmetrically- I tried laying it out from scratch and found that I needed to reference his board to find ways to make it route feasibly. Milling took a while this week since the board is bigger and denser with traces. I was scared going into this because I knew there was no 2x3 ISP header but I proceeded anyways- this page showed a method to resolve that, which I decided to go with(however janky it was).
I found a sneaky trace that did not cut through so I adjusted that with a blade. Next was stuffing.
I attached the 2x3 header on next (this took a long time - highly recommend not doing this)
Finally, programming. I was able to make fuse but had issues with flashing the firmware onto the board. I found that changing the baud rate fixed the timing problems so writing ended up working.
Next, testing out the visualization. I found a consistent error that the port was busy and so I could not collect data from it. I tried consulting a lot of different resources online but to no avail. Once this part works, the Processing script I wrote should function easily- I have recognition on keypresses signaling a frequency to be played from my laptop (or alternatively, playing clips of pianos at certain notes so the sound is right).

Here's the assembly in progress! (using laser cutting, laser engraving, vinyl cutting, and thermoforming)
And the finished project...