Jonathan Author of Robopenguins

A Few Small Baby Projects

While I don’t have much time to make things, I have managed to do a few small projects involving my daughter.

Bloodborne Inspired Umbilical Memento

Years ago, Maria got me the game Bloodborne, which I cherished dearly. One of the items in the game is a weird one called One Third of Umbilical Cord which unlocks the “good” ending.

After our daughters birth we were given a dried piece of the placenta as a memento. It was a pretty odd thing to start with, but I got Maria’s blessing to save it in a display surrounded by runes from the game.

I used the laser engraver to inscribe the runes and added some gold accents. I then added a display label to complete the display.

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She sewed a little cushion and we mounted all this in a shadow box. While I could have engraved a wooden label plack, I ordered a little brass one.

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The object in the house that seems to hold her attention more then anything else, is actually one of my previous projects: Fire Emblem Lights. My wife suggested I make a more portable LED toy.

I bought what I had thought were RGB LEDs years ago, but turned out they were something kind of weird. They were RGB, but only had a single power and ground connection. Each LED had a built in controller that would cycle through a pattern of fades and color changes. This seemed like a good chance to use them.

The LEDs were originally powered by 3 AA batteries. To reduce the weight I switched to a coin cell battery wedged into a larger battery case.

I made the body of the toy from some scraps we had lying around (a pen, some bottle tops, and a battery compartment). Here’s the result:

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Plotting Baby Noise

Our daughter makes a lot of noise at night. Certainly, shows the lie that is “sleeping like a baby”. Recently, she’s started pounding her feet in her sleep. I was interested in seeing if she was doing this as loudly/often as it felt when I was woken at 3AM, so I decided to make a recording.

I spent some time looking for an Android app that could log sensor data over a long period. It seems like there many good options for this and I eventually settled on AndroSensor. I made an initial recording of the accelerometer, sound level, and luminosity.

After looking at the data, really only the sound level seemed useful:

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The pattern across the entire run is a white noise machine that gets turned off when I fed her. The spikes are presumably her kicks.

The problem is that this app only samples at a max of 2Hz. If I really wanted to do analysis, I’d probably need to write to either just make an audio recording of the night, or write my own app.