Vibe Check is a wearable device that allows us to perceive other people's hidden emotions wirelessly.

What can humans not observe but wish to perceive?

Our goal was to augment human senses and demonstrate symbiosis with wearable technology.

The phone is an example of technology that expands the potential of the human mind, enabling instant communication, better memory, and instant access to information. When people forget their phones, they feel uncomfortable, like a part of them is missing. Another example is writing. Writing allows us to express auditory perception in the form of visual perception.


Our primary inspiration for Vibe Check was North Sense and EQRadio. Both of these companies work on expanding human perception through hardware. You can read more about them here and here.

What it does

Vibe Check utilizes a pulsed coherent radar module to measure chest movements that derive respiratory rate and heart rate. This is then attached to a wearable that is able to measure changes in distance to perceive someone else's values and displays them to a graph. The device relays haptic feedback to the wearer.

How I built it

Vibe Check utilizes a Teensy 4.0 to handle all computing in real-time. We have an Xm112 radar module that can measure relative distance with micrometer resolution. At 10 Ghz this is sufficient to detect both heartbeat and respiratory.

Challenges we ran into

It was really challenging to package all our hardware in a small wearable package. We had to integrate and wire a 2000 Mah rechargeable battery, battery charge circuit, LED strip, Bluetooth module, radar module, IMU, and main microcontroller, and haptic motors. We designed and 3D printed the enclosure during the event.

Accomplishments that we are proud of

We were able to get visual output from a complex radar sensor that we had no prior experience working with. We were able to design and build a compact, respectable design within 24 hours. We were able to experiment with haptic feedback and other unique human-machine interfaces and explore the potential long term effects of such technology. We didn't give up and worked together throughout the 24 hours.

What I learned:

We learned several ways to improve embedded computing performance and the challenges of prototyping a wearable device in 24 hours. We learned how to implement Fast Fourier Transforms on an ARM-based processor.

What's next for Vibe Check:

We plan to eliminate other sources of interference and isolate the wearer's movements from our sensor readings with an IMU.

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