Assignment 2: Expect the Unexpected


I read through a number articles and lists of problems people with disabilities face, and was intrigued by one I found that mentions that deaf people are often jumpy because they are regularly surprised by people coming up behind them.


If deaf people could be discreetly be alerted of people approaching them from behind they would be startled less often.

Proof of Concept

An Arduino (in this case a Sparkfun RedBoard Edge) connected to a human sensor to detect humans, a motion sensor to know when the person wearing the device is moving (to ignore humans while in motion to prevent false positives), and a vibration motor to silently alert the wearer of the device that someone is coming. By putting this all in a small case that clips to the back of someone’s belt, it should provide some warning of approaching humans.

Basic system diagram for Haptic Human Sensor
Basic system diagram for Haptic Human Sensor
Haptic Human Sensor Physical Layout
Haptic Human Sensor Physical Layout

Arduino sketch of how the logic would flow.

Author: Matt Franklin

I'm a recovering engineer + sales guy... BSEE from UMD 2004, and then 15 years of working with signal processing, AV, control systems, networking, and other gadgetry (mostly B2B). Now I'm in the Master of Human-Computer Interaction program, graduating in August 2020. I have pretty solid experience with: - Linux - audio - video - rs232/422/485/midi/dmx protocols - sketchup and other cad tools - soldering - music (mostly guitar, but others too) - general troubleshooting - networking (wired + wireless) - signal processing - streaming video/audio - python I have some experience with or am mediocre at: - woodworking - welding - laser cutting - sewing - reverse engineering - ML (none really but I'm currently in a class) - some javascript - rusty with C++ and Java, but used to be decent - tube amplifiers - RF

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