Inspiration πŸ‘¦πŸ‘¦πŸ‘¦πŸ‘¦πŸŽ₯

I really like the comic book-based show The Boys. It’s dark, it’s gritty, it’s about superheroes, it’s just an overall really cool show.

In one episode, two of the characters come across a baby superhero who has laser eyes.

Affectionately named β€œLaser Baby” by the fans, Amazon Prime Video actually made Laser Baby dolls, but there were two problems.

Firstly, they used LEDs for the eyes, not actual lasers.

And secondly, there was a switch you had to use for Laser Baby’s eyes to glow, which is just not realistic. In the show, to use Laser Baby, the guy shakes him to activate him.

What it does β“πŸ‘€πŸ”¦πŸ‘Ά

You can shake the Laser Baby to activate his eye lasers. That's literally it.

How we built it πŸ”§πŸ”¨

I used an Arduino Uno connected to two KY-008 Laser Diodes and an ADXL-345 Accelerometer. The accelerometer takes readings in set intervals, and if it's accelerating, it sends a signal to the Arduino. Then, the Arduino, receiving that signal, sends another signal to the two laser diodes, activating them.

Challenges we ran into πŸƒβ€β™‚οΈπŸƒβ€β™‚οΈ

The biggest challenge was my spaghetti code that didn't work. I defined some variables in the setup() method which didn't work in the loop() method which was very frustrating. Then the accelerometer would often print 0.00, 0.00, 0.00 as the values. I had a bunch of weird coding problems which led me to read the Arduino Documentation, which still didn't help. I ended up asking people on the Arduino Discord server for some help, and after a couple of hours, we fixed the code and made it more modular.

Accomplishments that we're proud of πŸ†πŸ…

Debugging my code was very hard and I'm very proud that I was able to untangle that mess.

Also, I am really happy that I managed to combine so many parts without using a breadboard to keep the build relatively small.

What we learned 🧠

This was my first time using the ADXL 345 accelerometer and the KY-008 laser diodes so the libraries and syntax for all was quite frightening at first, but I ended up learning a lot.

Additionally, I always have used the void setup() and void loop() built-in functions but this time, I tried to make more functions and make my code more readable, which I learned a lot about.

What's next for Laser Baby ⏭

Three words: more powerful lasers.

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