Eve Weinberg

Javascript Font controlled by People and Sensors

PComp midterm vimeo play

After 7 weeks of learning sensors, digital inputs and outputs, serial communication, and interactive design, we were put into pairs and basically asked to make whatever we wanted. I had already begin making a font completely out of javascript, so I thought this would be a great starting point. I wanted to make a typographic art piece that would be fun for people to create their own images with. I spent the first few days finishing off the online version so I could understand what the most engaging sliders would be. We decided on scale, left and right, and ‘save’ability. We chose an accelerometer for our Left Right sensor, ¬†an ‘echo’ distance sensor for scale, and a button for save.

Fail Fast:
Although this video might indicate that everything went off without a hitch and it was fun and rewarding for the user, it actually did not work during the presentation at all. Did it work the night before? Yes! Did we change some of the code late at night without having time to recallibrate before class? Yes! Did we learn from this? Yes.

What I learned
We succesfully got an echo distance sensor working, but it was still very jumpy and unreliable. At first we thought it was just noisy, but we smoothed it out by averaging 10 readings at at time, then 5 readings at a time, and it was still unreliable. Then we switched to the plug-n-play ‘pixy’ camera and that was a fun process bc it comes with it’s own software. The accelerometer did not work at first because we had no soldered it to the pins, then it was working, then the next day it stopped working. We spent 3 hours resting all of the hardware, tracing it with a multi-meter, and re-reading all of our code. It was too late at night to seek help from teachers or residents so we had to abandon it all together. I would have liked to know what went wrong, but there were too many variables – even with it being the only thing on the breadboard at the time. I’m still on a hunt for a sensor that i’m comfortable with. For my next project I would like to keep my scope smaller and manageable for just me to understand.



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