maandag 1 februari 2010

The NoDuino alarm clock

A few years ago I got myself a Philips Wake-up light, nice.., but not ideal.The biggest problem for me was that I could not disable the alarm for the weekend. And when I manually disable the alarm on a Saturday morning, well.., then next Monday I would be late for work because I forgot to set the thing again. :)
A other little bug in the system is that I could seem to find the snooze butting in my sleep.., uhum. -_-

Sow, after I found the problem I needed to come up with a solution. And being a little geeky I needed to have a geeky solution. Luckily I hade a PCB leftover from a old project, its equipped with a small PIC16f690 and necessary voltage regulators, etc.


First I wrote some test code to check of a small microchip with internal crystal can manage to keep track of time. Well.., uuuuh.., the result was I lost three minutes a hour, not great.
Not having any crystals and it being Sunday I search for other ways of getting a decent timing signal. After some brainstorming I pulled a old alarm clock and search for a usable signal, I struck gold with a nice 1Hz signal

Now, with the new code timed by the 1Hz input it all worked fine! Here you can see the two PCB’s and the 4x20 character LCD running some tests.

Now for making this alarm clock better than a Wake-up light I needed to have some sort of way of configuring the alarm. I went for a simple three button menu interface, left is for back and decrease values, right for next en increase and the middle button to select or cancel.
Here you can see the almost final code, the text layout is done and the menu function seem to work ok.

Finally having the hard work finished I could start doing the fun stuff, that’s fabricating a nice wooden housing for my clock.

Why was thats fun you ask.., well.., it gave me a nice excuses to dust of my old trusty CNC machine. :)

And before I could say “CNC, I love you!” my front face was ready, great! :)

After slapping on some paint it looked like this. :D

And some more electronics….. :P
Not wanting to lose the great Wakeup light feature I also added a light bulb to my clock.
5 minutes before the alarm will go of the lamp will turn on, that way it will wake me up gently.

Woohoo…, the solid-state relais is working. : )

And here is a picture of the finished alarm clock.

3 opmerkingen:

  1. Leuk idee. Ik loop hier sinds vanochtend ook mee te spelen. In plaats van een gloeilamp ga ik een RGB ledstrip gebruiken, en in plaats van een eigengebakken Microchip PIC project, wordt het een Arduino project. Ik zit er ook aan te denken om een IR LED toe te voegen en dan de radio ook aan te zetten, of als alternatief een radiomoduletje te nemen en een 'electronische potmeter'.

  2. Proper! Ik zou hem willen uitvoeren met leds en een iets langere wake-up tijd. Geeft u de code ook beschikbaar?

  3. I am doing research for my university thesis, thanks for your great points, now I am acting on a sudden impulse.