More Information

The Sleep Study

I created a device to try to help people fall asleep faster. I found several people willing to try the device and provide me data on their sleep via a daily survey and seep tracking smartphone app. I had the users record data for 3 weeks without the Sleep Sensei, and I then sent the users the sleep coach device and had them record data for 3 weeks of sleep using the device.

An overview of the study can be viewed here.

Bargraphs Classy

Overall the results were very promising! The detailed results of the study can be found here, and the raw data from the participants can be found here.

The Repository

All of the arduino code, circuit board designs, mechanical design files, website assets, photos, and documentation are housed at my GitHub repository. The location is:

https://github.com/jerwil/SleepSensei

 

The Sleep Sensei Story

I have trouble falling asleep at night. I used to take over-the-counter remedies, and I’ve tried prescription stuff, but these either made me feel groggy the next day or had side effects that were not worth the benefits. I then stumbled upon some smartphone apps and devices that use a rising and falling pattern of light to help you get to sleep by training your breathing. I tried these with some success, but I found that they all had one major flaw: they required your eyes to be open. Who in the world tries to fall asleep with their eyes open?

Using my arduino skills, I set to create a device that will help coach my breathing to ease myself to sleep with my eyes closed. Thus the Sleep Sensei was born, with its pivoting base and 4 ultra-bright red LEDs that can shine through eyelids, it aims to fix the problems of similar apps and devices.

The Design

The Sleep Sensei is designed to shine a pattern of light through your eyelids. This pattern of light is used to coach your breathing pattern, which encourages your breaths to get longer as time progresses. To ensure that enough light is delivered, I put 4 LEDs on the device; however, the maximum brightness is adjustable to account for different tastes. In order to account for different heights of nightstands, I made the device able to pivot to encompass a wide range of scenarios. For those that sleep with a partner, I added side-shields to better concentrate the light to reduce any stray light that may annoy others.

I chose laser cutting to make the kit easy to ship and mass produce. This manufacturing method proved to be an affordable way to make a custom design.

The circuit board was designed with fritzing, and the logic and programming were done with arduino, which are both open source tools.

All aspects of the design (arduino code, circuit board designs, mechanical design files, website assets, photos, and documentation) are open source and are available on my GitHub page.