Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Arduino + Altoids Tin

Small easy, and awfully unorigional. But, useful and free. Now I can bring my arduino with me in my laptop bag and goof around with it at lunch time at work or wherever. I am thinking I would put a breadboard in another tin of some sort and put a battery pack inside to run any projects I might feel inclined to proto.

I wonder how many altoids have sold just for the tin.

Your basic Altoids tin.

Crudely drill holes to accept 4-40 screws. Line with electrical tape, I liked blue.

Drill holes to allow the use of a sheetmetal nibbler (I got mine at radio shack) The cover interferes a little with the connections but they still connect, and I think I will usually use the arduino with the cover open.

Arduino screwed in with 2 4-40 screws and hex nuts.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Polar Heart Rate Monitor

I have been off my projects for a while. I have been itching to get back onto some projects, one of which as been to make something to take in the signal from my polar fitness heart rate monitor and put out some sort of visual or sound indicator of my heart rate. Maybe a led meter across my head. Something interesting but also data log my heart rate and associate it with some other data like that from a GPS. There are products out there that do this but I already have a lot of the components to do this.

One element that I had just started thinking about is how would I read the signal from the heart rate monitor. Sparkfun just began offering a OEM polar fitness receiver module. How easy does that get? It is $14.95 which is in my price range so I am ordering one. It does require a addtional 32khz crystal.

Another item that caught my interest is they are carrying UV leds. There are warnings about using eye protection. Also interesting is that the stated applications are for insecticide. At $.95 each, a few won't break the bank.