I decided to revisit my coffee mug project for the final. I feel I could spend a lot more time exploring this idea of using an integrated microcontroller in a mug coaster. I left off with the circuit making noise when the mug is down too long. Since time was short, I committed myself to programming the Circuit Playground Express with no additional sensors again.
My revised idea is to have a visual indicator giving you a sense of how long you have been holding or drinking your coffee. Before I go further into the project describe what I’ve programmed the microcontroller to do.
When it is turned on, it begins to count and the neopixels on board turn from green to orange to red. Once it turns red it will stay that way until the user intervenes. Also note that I only enabled half the pixels because it would otherwise interfere with my light sensor.
So the pixels are red, so what? The only way to reset back to the initial state with the lights off is to either make a loud enough noise or block enough light from reaching the device.
What does this have to do with my coffee?
I’ve run into a lot of articles about how Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, has been adapting to royal etiquette. Also in general living in an international city, I’ve seen a lot of students unsure about some social norms here. I thought it would be fun to explore this concept with devices. Being that drinking beverages in a social setting is a universal norm.
This training device encourages your sips to be purposeful and quick. You don’t want to offend your companion with blinding red lights when they are mid-sentence. Enter the Flow Pause. The Flow Pause is a device that not only controls the speed of your beverage consumption to a polite level, but it also makes sure your free to talk when you are expected to.