#HackHalloween Augmented Reality Skull

by RonDagdag

Published on October 28, 2015

What if we can control an Arduino Bit with Augmented Reality App? What if we can combine both worlds? That's what made me look into this, since I want to make a film and want to use special effects. What if the special effects is part of the project.

Here's my Halloween Augmented Reality Project using Littlebits. The creepiness level just went thru the roof by adding #AugmentedReality to an #Arduino. Using the littlebits mic and arduino module, every time thunder strikes, the jaw and the eyes would move accordingly. Sound is playing from the phone and connected to littlebits. #HackHalloween

How To Make It


Connect the Servo bit to the Skull Use hot glue gun to connect the servo bit to the skull.
Use a paperclip to connect servo to skull. Measure how far you can drill a hole.
Then drill a hole to the jaw of the skull and connect the servo and the jaw with paperclip. Loosen the jaw screws if it's too tight, so it will move.

Picture 2


Add Long LED to the skull Drill holes to the eyes of the skull. Insert the Long LED modules and connect them together. This will be the flashing lights. I use the long LED so it would look creepier, like a worm in the skulls eyes. Pull and push it for extra creepiness.

If you actually connect these to a bend sensor bit, you can have your own skull puppet. I connected a glove to a bend sensor then connected the Servo and LED, it works as an animatronic puppet. Add a wireless bit, then you can have a remote puppet, add hours of fun. But we're not stopping here.

Extra Wormy Eyes



Connect the Arduino Bits Connect the Microphone to Synth Speaker. Then Synth Speaker to the Arduino Bit A0. Then Connect the Servo and the LED modules to Arduino Bit D5, set to analog. I used the Arduino to amplify the data coming from Synth Speaker. This way we can have a better signal to the Servo bit.

Put things together


Upload the sketch Extract the zip file and upload the RobotSkull.ino sketch file to your arduino. I'm using Kalman Filters to clean the signal from the microphone You can test it out, say something in the microphone and the jaw would move, lights would blink.

If it doesn't work well, change this line of code

 int PWM_value = map(correctedValue, 500, 620, 0, 255);

 play with 2nd and 3rd value.... make it lower or higher. See what happens. What this command does, it maps the value from the microphone to what will be sent to servo bit.


Connect your speaker to microphone bit In order to synchronize the lights and sound, connect the speaker to microphone bit using aux cable wires.

If you have a phone, connect it to your phone. I found a voice changer app in the android play store. I used that to record some sounds, make it scary.

But we're not stopping here.


Test if it works If you have a mac, you can test it by playing any sound or better yet use the say command go to the terminal and type

> say -v "Hysterical" "bwahahahahahahahahaha"

This will make the skull laugh. It will make you smile, I promise.

Side Note: This is a cool thing. What if I create a twitter app that would read the tweets with certain hashtags. I tried that, and it works.. It's fun little project. I used Node-RED. If you like Internet of Things, you'll like Node-RED. But that's another story for another day...



To add creepiness, follow this Augmented Reality Tutorial 

This augmented reality tutorial is very good. The Step by step video is easy to follow. It will work with any photo. I just printed a skull image and mirror the other image. Be creative. I published it as an Android app to make it easy to film.


Share it with your friends and family This is an important step. Share it with your friends and family.
Dim the lights so the effects would shine.
Upload it on YouTube, add creepy music for extra points.

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