The motivation for this idea comes from both an interest in games and game design among the members of our group as well as from the Fun Theory Initiative by Volkswagen. Fun Theory is a gamification-styled initiative to encourage people to do good things by making the tasks more fun to perform.
We brainstormed the raw idea and came up with rough sketches and the design plan for the device and the web application for it.
The Photon micro-controller is used to govern the device’s operations as well as connect to an associated web application that may access and display the Wear-emin’s output via WiFi. The integrated accelerometer inside the IMU returns metrics detailing the user’s movement, whose values are in turn mapped to controlling the pitch of the sound to be produced by the Wear-emin. The proximity sensor takes in infrared light to gauge the distance between the user's thumb and the sensor’s lenses. The last major component is the piezoelectric speaker, a simple buzzer from which all of the sounds produced by the Wear-emin are emitted.
The web application was designed to provide visual feedback to the user about the notes being played based on the input the application gets from the proximity sensor via the Photon.
The web application contains an array of 8 blank rounded rectangles that represent each note in an octave. As the user plays the Wear-emin, whichever note the user is currently playing will be colored in.
Check out the working prototype!