Inspiration

This was not our first idea for a locked box. This is our final product stripped of all the things that went wrong in its production. Our first envision of our wonderful toothbox, was to be a box that only opened when a prompted riddle from a google mini or other google assistant was solved. We ran into multiple difficulties(which we will talk about later), so we decided to simplify the problem to just a box opening with a google command just to break the problem apart and... again ran into some difficulty for some time. The after revisioning our whole project we had the box opening on Bluetooth but couldn't learn how to get google to work with it fast enough so we opted to make a secure box that is also fun to have at your desk.

What it does

It uses a servo to keep the lid of the box open or closed. The LCD screen and backlight Color displays the current state of the box:

Green Backlight:

BT Connected Connected to Bluetooth and Unlocked UNLOCKED


Blue Backlight:

BT Connected Initial Connection to Bluetooth


Red Backlight:

No Connection LOCKED

BT Disconnected Disconnected from Bluetooth and Automatically Locked AUTOLOCKED

BT Connected Connected to Bluetooth and Locked LOCKED


Purple Backlight:

Game Throw Ball In! Alternate back and forth during Game Mode Game Button=End


ALL FEATURES: Lock/Unlock Bluetooth Feature

  • You can unlock and lock the box by using a Bluetooth Low Energy Terminal App like nRF Connect AutoLock
  • Will automatically lock when disconnected from bluetooth Game Mode
  • Can be accessed by pressing the button when the box is unlocked
  • During Game Mode, the box will open and close repeatedly. You can try to throw small items into the box.
  • To end the game, press the button again

How we built it

Alfredo designed the box, Rob tried to get some google code to work ( I did not, much to my dismay), and Aiden worked the Arduino in the Arduino ide to move with a Bluetooth terminal on his phone. As a group, we worked on design.

Challenges we ran into

Learning how to use Gradle to get google SDK to as well as learning how to work with google assistant. We also ran into the problem of getting the Arduino to respond to outside input like wifi or Bluetooth.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

Finishing the project without quitting even though or original goal kept getting further out of sight. We are also proud of attending the event as going to the rather informative workshops and talks, which have inspired us to learn more outside of the hackathon. I, Rob, am particularly interested in actually learning how to code for google assistant as well as learning git. Aiden is interested in learning raspberry pi works, and Alfredo has expressed interest in furthering java skills and programming in general.

What we learned

We learned the importance of judging the scope of a problem/project and managing the time needed for the said project. On the technical side, we learned a little more about Arduino as well as Google assistant, and git and that often simple projects using massive tools like google are sometimes more challenging than originally thought.

What's next for ToothBox - Tiny Box That Locks

This Tiny Box hopes to be one day a big box that will work with google assistant to raise a happy family of riddle/game boxes on desks around the world, helping the bored executive, the procrastinating student or the over-tired developer divert their attention even further.

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