Blinky was my first attempt at creating a freeform electronics sculpture.
I designed Blinky to be minimal.
The sculpture is split into 2 main sections, the ‘head’ and ‘body’, joined by a small wire neck. Another wire runs from the base and into the Arduino microcontroller to provide power.
Blinky has 2 states - sleeping, and awake. An MPU6050 module detects changes in force on the sculpture, and when it detects a bump, Blinky will ‘wake up’. It will ‘fall asleep’ again if it’s ignored for a bit.
When he’s awake, Blinky cycles through different expressions. These include blinking, looking around, or whirling his mouth. When he falls asleep, Blinky chooses between a static sleeping expression and a snoring animation.
A moving mean average filters the output from the MPG 6050.
A 75 sample mean determines a rolling average, and then the program takes 2 samples from this.
There is a micro-USB port powering this sculpture, at the back of the wooden base.
The full source code for this project is available here - blinky source code.
Key components of the sculpture are -
- Arduino Pro Mini + FTDI USB Programmer.
- 7 segment display.
- MPU6050 Gyroscope and Accelerometer.
- Wooden base (a recycled candle lid).
- Enameled copper wire (bad idea. avoid enamel).
Thanks for reading!
If you have something to say, i’d love to hear from you.
You can reach me here -