We were supposed to be roommates at RU this fall (but covid). We wanted to create an alarm clock that would ensure we woke up for those pesky 8am classes.

What it does

It functions like a normal alarm clock, except it won't turn off until you calculate the correct product of 2 random numbers. This in theory could make sure that the user's brain is active enough to not fall asleep again unlike what would happen on a normal alarm clock where the shut off is a simple click of a button. Usage: you plug it in before you go to sleep, type in the time you want to get up, go to sleep, alarm goes off, calculate the product and alarm shuts off.

How we built it

  1. Hardware: repurposed a Raspberry Pi 3B+ and a 7 inch screen
  2. Software: burned an image of Raspbian OS Lite onto an sd card.
  3. Scripting: wrote bash scripts to automate time collection, generate random factors and process user input.

Challenges we ran into

Bash was a largely unfamiliar language and thus was difficult to syntactically adapt to. The Raspberry Pi's 3.5mm jack was severely under powered so a fix was using an external speaker that had its own power reserve.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

That this turned out to be a functional product and something that we may actually use when in person dorming resumes.

What we learned

Bash scripting, automation, and Raspberry Pi.

What's next for Math-Alarm-Clock

Hopefully create a nice gui interface. Also improve the robustness of the hardware so that it would be tamper-proof against a grumpy 8am college student.

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