Assignment 2 — Night Light


You can’t breathe. It’s dark. Your heart is pounding through your skull. You’re sweaty. It felt so real. You know it was a nightmare. It was not real. Yet it was. You’re alone. You stare into the abyss. You try to calm down. You hope the darkness helps. But it doesn’t.

A lot of people struggle with daily nightmares, whether due to underlying anxieties, PTSD, sleeping issues or anything of the sort.

Having nightly nightmares can have large effects on your mood and health. Artwork: Kuevda©


We already have Fitbits and Smart Devices that track our heart rate and track our sleep and REM cycles. Theoretically, the data is all there, so the device could tell when you’re having a nightmare. Imagine a device that emits soothing sounds and lights up with calm colors, helping soothe you after a nightmare. It feeds on the sleep data and reacts accordingly, creating a better sleeping experience.

How Would it Work?

Data flow of Nightlight from watch to new Light Device

As you sleep, your smartwatch collects data as usual, and when your heart rate elevates drastically and it realizes you are having a nightmare, it signals the night light to turn on. When the night light is on, it uses the combination of smell, sound and sight to help soothe you back into sleep.


Sample product prototype sketch

In terms of Ardiuno and Fritzing sketches, I am not entirely sure on the process of reading live data using Bluetooth, but I imagine it would be uploaded on the cloud and Ardiuno would have to read the stream of data and certain functions would be called upon when they are needed.

Input is the online updating dataset (I am unsure of how this part works). Outputs are the LED, Speaker and a toggle mechanism for mist sequence.

i.e. if heart rate is above 120 bpm, then execute A, B and C.

A- release mist

B- play tune

C- turn LED to on and change color of LED from warmer to cooler red to slow down heartbeat.

Here, I used a Bluetooth micro-controller as a way to communicate between the fitbit and the nightlight.
Sample animation of how night light would adapt with your sleep.

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