Home Engineering: Physical Gmail Notifier

Posted on February 29, 2008  Comments (3)

photo of Gmail Cube

How to make a Physical Gmail Notifier

Every so often, the computer checks for new emails in your Gmail account, and then tells the electronics board whether any have arrived. If they have, the board turns on the output device (the cube). Simple.

The hardware itself is the popular Arduino board, the tinkerer’s dream device. I’m actually using a Boarduino, but any variant should work (subject to a small but important detail, see below). This might be particularly interesting with a Bluetooth Arduino..

The Arduino talks with your computer over a serial connection, which runs over the normal USB cable you use to communicate with your Arduino.

What is Arduino?: Arduino is an open-source electronics prototyping platform based on flexible, easy-to-use hardware and software. It’s intended for artists, designers, hobbyists, and anyone interested in creating interactive objects or environments. Arduino can sense the environment by receiving input from a variety of sensors and can affect its surroundings by controlling lights, motors, and other actuators.

Related: Awesome Cat CamWindmill for Electricity in MalawiLego UAVRubick’s Cube Solving Lego Mindstorms Robot

3 Responses to “Home Engineering: Physical Gmail Notifier”

  1. Curious Cat: An Illustrated Guide to Every Stupid Cable You Need
    August 10th, 2008 @ 8:09 pm

    “There are at least four different kinds of USB plugs, two kinds of FireWire and like a million different ways to connect something to TV or monitor…”

  2. Anonymous
    December 16th, 2009 @ 11:16 am

    That is cool looking but boy, I would hate to be a slave to that. Email is already distracting enough, I doubt a glowing cube would help me stay focused on some of the boring law books I’m required to read. Now if it flashed when their was a DUI in the area of Pennsylvania I cover, that would be excellent. Like a DUI batman sign? Anyhow, I’m distracted enough when my blackberry blinks that I have email.

    Thanks!

  3. Curious Cat Science and Engineering Blog » Arduino: Open Source Programmable Hardware
    January 7th, 2010 @ 8:52 am

    [...] Home Engineering: Physical Gmail Notifier – Self Re-assembling Robots – Lego Mindstorms Robots Solving: Sudoku and Rubik’s Cube [...]

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