The pandemic has affected all of us really badly. It has resulted in a country-wide lockdown, meaning people can’t get out of their houses. Obviously staying home all day is no fun. I mean how many more series or movies can you watch? The boredom is real. As a result, people have started to explore various ideas that will get them through this lockdown. Among the countless experiments that are going on around the globe during this pandemic, one has been creating a lot of buzz on the internet. Tyler Glaiel, a game designer by profession, has created a custom COVID-19 face mask that contains a voice-activated LED panel.
Glaiel’s main motivation behind this custom COVID-19 face mask was that he was finding it frustrating to communicate while wearing a face mask. Thus, he has developed this new face mask of his own with an integrated LED panel. And it is designed in a way such that it simulated the opening and closing of mouth when the person speaks.
His custom face mask includes an array of 16 LED lights. Furthermore, it also contains a voice recognition system. The whole system is built using an Arduino Nano microcomputer and is powered by a nine-volt battery. This LED panel seamlessly fits into a face mask and is removable. Other than simulating the opening and closing of the mouth, the system is also capable of making a smiley shape.
Tyler claims that this idea of creating a custom COVID-19 face mask came to him randomly. He looked up for a few similar projects online but couldn’t find any. Thus, he set out on doing this task alone and completed it within a month. All the parts of this face mask are things you can buy right off from a hardware or electronics shop at a cost of around $50. Furthermore, Tyler is not planning on selling these masks. So anyone who wants it will have to make their own. However, he has made the task somewhat easier by creating a step-by-step breakdown of the process in his blog post. Moreover, he has also shared the required codes in his Github account. Thus anyone can have a go at it.
However, there are some drawbacks of this face mask. The LED panel tends to warm up and might not be suitable for children. Furthermore, this mask is not ideal if it has to be worn for a prolonged period of time. Again due to the heating issue.
Tyler Glaiel creating a custom COVID-19 face mask is just one of the examples of how one can make this lockdown more productive. You can try exploring ideas that you might have been putting off for some time now. Or you can use the vast resources that are available online to be more productive. However, having said that everyone can’t make proper use of this lockdown due to their circumstances. But for those who can do it, this is a great opportunity to explore your skills.