Per Håkan Linus Persson


Project: Paper roll data collection tool
Team: Lynn Bui
Timeframe: 1 week 2010
Toolkit: Arduino, Welding, Processing


The kitchen at UID is used frequently by students. One popular activity is to dry things using paper from the paper roll. Lynn and I formed a team and formed an idea to monitor and collect data on the usage of the paper roll.


In the end we decided to build a tool that registers every swipe of paper, it’s length and time of day. We could then regularly collect this data and visualise it.


The constantly declining width f the roll posed a challenge solved by attaching a wheel to the ripping mechanism. Tiny magnets were glued to a wheel and a magnetic sensor then counted the number of passages. Quick and responsive. It gave us a resolution of about 1,5cm.


The electronic side of the tool built around an Arduino receiving each swipe and logging it into a text document on an mSD card accordingly to a certain structure. The time was kept by a clock with an on board battery, so even if the power went away, time was still correct. The tool ran stable like this for more than 3 months.


The structure in the text document allowed us to program a reader to easily plot each swipe, what length and time of day. A truly rich data set.

Tagged under: Interaction Design. Prototyping. Sandbox. Team Projects.

Team Effort

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