PComp Midterm: An Exercise in Disaster/Failure

So first off I want to thank Nate for being an awesome partner and understanding, He pretty much figured everything out while I sat there staring like Moss from IT Crowd while everything is all on fire, like so:

Summing up my Midterm Project Experience in a nutshell.

First off my photos were corrupted so no photos of my breadboard but thankfully I have a Fritzing schematic for it. Following the style of a FSR setup.


(They didn’t have the stretch sensor/conductive rubber cord we have so I had to supplement.)

Now I want to share it DID work…once. Then after last Thursday when the alligator clips snapped it in two it stopped reading well (however the half Nate had taken worked just fine! But after Thursday I made my board over several times following the same schematic. Swapped out resistors to see if because to the size change, perhaps it needed smaller resistor (SPOILER ALERT: nothing worked), and even had swapped out funky jumper cables. Let me clear– I DID get readings, just never the same each time we tested.

Furthermore, my code was piggybacking off the serial code from class and was working off three readings…and it only took me until this morning to realize a stretch sensor only gives out one value, hence why my code on my p5 end was acting wonky. (We’re not so sure if we should call me Arduino serial broken or not since my sensor has been wholly unreliable!

I even swapped out my stretch sensor for an FSR, which worked like a charm! So if it’s not the board, not the circuit, or the code…I can only think my problem lies in the sensor itself. ¬†I shared my troubles with Nate, and we troubleshooted another time with minimal success, even talked to two others on this matter and they all agreed that it was likely my sensor acting up. Well thank goodness I’m not in this alone!

Speaking of, ¬†here’s Nate’s setup:

nate_breadboard nate_schematic

(Oddly enough Fritzing really wanted me to add a ground for that LED, but working on it with him today it seemed fine, still just noting for troubleshooting purposes later.)

And his code… it was definitely better than mine, and really great. ¬†Everything on the Arduino end is all working and now we’re just trying to get a little fancy with the p5 end. But with nothing on my end really working out? It’s making me feel like I’ve contributed nothing to this project. It wasn’t for lack of trying– I’ve been stressing over this for the last three days straight with no avail. I honestly tried my utmost and wasn’t able to get anywhere.

So Nate has insisted since his sensor works, he’d work on the hardware and letting me duplicate his code to try to refine it. In other words I’m making it look pretty.


(He also showed me you can make your editor dark– which I wish I knew weeks ago. Eyestrain is not as much as a problem now.)

So we made the splat a semi-transparent png that should appear when the sensor hits a certain range, otherwise nothing should be there. We also added a brick wall image in lieu of making one– he was digging the cartoony look of p5, I suggest this direction. It saves us a bit of coding too and personally overall looks nicer. But as you can see, I’m not sure if I ¬†should go with the¬†or or¬†and statement with the code…as this post will be posted all at once you won’t see, but at this point of writing, I am saving my draft and tomorrow I will set up his circuit to replicate our setup, and in lieu of the stretch sensor, use the FSR since I know it is working just fine.

Tried the setup with the FSR…which was just as successful as anything else I’ve done in this blasted project. Sensor works in the ¬†Adruino serial monitor, I can’t get it to talk to the p5 sketch. The error I got was this vague “Something went wrong with the serial port. ¬†undefined”. Very helpful there, p5. So I have just decided I would work on the code, send it over to Nate via chat, and when he has a moment to sit down, test it a few times and give me feedback.

So after a very hectic Tuesday, we managed to meet Wednesday and feeling the crunch.

Our hardware is looking snazzy at least! Here it stands as we try to figure out some things with the code.

 20161026_175222sm 20161026_175244sm

As we had to part our ways for the day, we felt pretty confident. It works, but Nate is trying to be fancy. So hopefully everything will be fine for tomorrow…

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