Homework #2: Project proposal
Jeramy Barrett, Justin Spotts, Charles Watson and Tongxin Zheng
ECE411, Fall 2011
1) Form a team with three other members of the class. Choose your teammates not only on the
basis of friendship or familiar but also to ensure a diversity of skills on the team.
The team we have chosen consists of:
Jeramy Barrett: EE, Digital design. Analog, Embedded Systems (Atmel), and C
Justin Spotts: CE, Embedded systems. Microprocessor system design, Verilog, C++,
C, ARM and ATT(Intel) assembly.
Charles Watson: EE, Analog design. Experience with FPGAs, schematic capture and
board layout, some C programing, some AVR assembly language
Tongxin Zheng: EE, Digital design. Experience with C++ programming, assembly
language, Verilog , having interest in CMOS design
2) After forming teams of four, come up with four ideas for a term project that conforms to the
project guidelines. Document each idea with a brief paragraph
a. A “reflex tester” game that follows along the lines of “slaps” or “fast hands.” The user
puts their hands in the device. The device senses the users hands presence and after
a short random amount of time the device releases a “trap” in an attempt to hit the
b. An alarm clock with voice recording: Many times parents have to leave their
children while they are on a business trip, or if they are serving in the military.
Waking up to the sound of that parents voice is not a luxury those children have.
This device would allow a user to record a voice message that would be played as an
c. A washer machine unbalanced load detection device: everyone’s experienced the
inconvenience of washing heavy fabrics. If you don’t get it balanced just right the
thing goes crazy during the spin cycle. This device would detect copious amounts of
vibrations and shut off the washer to prevent damage to the machine, and perhaps a
broken leg from someone falling down a flight of stairs in their haste to shut the
d. Jeopardy style buzzer game: a multiplayer game with all the fun of the Jeopardy
buzzers minus the difficult questions and Alec Trebek. A signal is presented to the
players at the same time, such as an LED. The first person to ‘buzz in’ gains a point.
Buzz in early and you lose a point.
3) Create a decision matrix showing the four potential project ideas and criteria you used for
selecting the project you’ll actually undertake along with their scores. Document your
criteria, your weights, and rationale for them. Describe the method you used to assign
Criteria Weight Rational
Fun to build/use 10 We would like something that is fun to use, and
fun to build. If it is boring it will probably end up
in the trash at the end of the quarter. Something
that we can keep and play with occasionally
would be nice
Multidisciplinary 7 Something that has a more than just
programming and circuit design/layout is
important. We feel in the real world most
products have a mix of mechanical, electrical
and software subsystems.
Ease of design, build, 5 Choosing something that is too hard is going to
software be miserable for everyone. We would rather
choose something too easy and get it done than
something to hard and not finish it, but it is not
as important as having something fun.
Something boring but easy is going to be harder
to keep interest in than something slightly
harder but fun.
Element of danger! 3 We wanted something that had some element of
danger. We wanted an exciting project. This is
also partially covered by fun to build/use, which
is why it only gets a weight of 3.
Usefulness 2 Something that we can use to solve a problem is
nice, but possibly boring
Reflex Tester Alarm Wshr dtct Buzzer
Fun 10 5 3 2 5
Multidisiplinary 7 4 1 3 1
Ease of design 5 2 4 2 4
Element of 3 5 0 3 0
Usefulness 2 0 3 5 0
Score 103 63 70 77
Numerical values were chosen by choosing on a scale of 0-5 how well each project
fit the description of the category. Zero being not at all and five being 100%.
4) Project Proposal:
The chosen project was the reflex tester. The idea of the game that the project is
described by the Wikipedia article at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_Hands:
Red Hands, also known as hot hands, slapsies, slaps, or simply the hand-slap
game, is a children's game which can be played by two players.
One player (the slappee) places his hands palm down, hovering above the
other player's (slapper) hands. The other player hovers his hands below the
first, palms up. The two players' hands should be barely touching each other,
and all the hands should be around mid-torso height.
The slapper is on offense, and attempts to bring his hands over to slap the
backsides of his opponent's hands. This must be done with sufficient speed,
because the slappee's goal is to pull his hand away, and out of the area where
the hands overlap, to avoid the slap. If the slappee completely avoids all hand
contact with the slapper during the slap, then the roles switch. However, the
slappee cannot flinch too much. If slapper acts as if slapping (but does not ever
bring his hand over) and the slappee flinches and moves his hands far enough
from the slapper's hands so that their hands are no longer overlapping, then
the slapper gets a free hit at one of the slappee's hands. If the slapper slaps the
slappee's hands once his hands have left the overlapping area, the slappee gets
a free hit at one of the slapper's hands, and the roles switch as if the slapper
Clearly this is a complex game that would be very hard to implement. We simply
desire a device that will sense the user has placed their hands in the device. After a
pseudorandom amount of time the device will trigger, releasing a “hand” that will
attempt to slap the player. There will be no feedback to inform the device of a hit or
miss, and therefore no score keeping.
5) The project wiki can be found at: