COVID-19 Arrives

COVID-19 Arrives

corona
corona

First slowly, something off in the distance, then very fast it was on us: COVID-19.

When Fab@CIC and District Hall and Cambridge Hackspace closed their doors, under the mandated quarantine, I joined a number of local Slack- and Zoom-powered COVID groups. 

But without any sewing skills, or access to a sewing machine, I couldn't help the mask cause. And monkeying around with an open source ventilator was out of my league. 

I kept my eyes open for an opportunity to help, but in the meantime I shifted my explorations to a humbler "information pain" challenge: "touchless."

Interactivity without any risk of infection. 

Fortunately I already had some experience with touchless gesture sensors -- which I used to trigger the gachapon machines. But a few of my projects, including the new Boston Matt, used capacitive touch as the user interface. 

So my first task was to go completely touchless: which meant gesture sensors, and a few technologies I was eager to try: PIR (for Passive InfaRed) proximity sensors, Time of Flight (ToF) sensors, and Ultrasonic sensors.

Nobody was going to have to touch anything.  

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