Light Timer Project: Beta testing

Yup, I’m calling it in beta now. After the work done today, I don’t have any other plans or expect any changes to be made. Testing will continue through the weekend, which should be enough time to confirm everything works completely.

1The biggest change was simplifying the logic for the alarms. Each hour and minute has it’s own variable and I originally was checking what hour it was, then look at the minutes, and react appropriately. It became complicated very quickly so I tried something else. Basically, the logic works with the total minutes of every time (the hour multiplied by 60, plus the minutes), instead of the hour and minute values separately. It made the logic a lot simpler to figure out. The code will be released once I’m satisfied it works fine so you’ll see what I did.

2Another change I made was the LCD brightness is now controlled by the code instead of the hardware potentiometer. I had to move the LCD digital inputs somewhere else to free up a PWM pin. Although I said I’m not planning on any other changes, I am willing to move around the button input pins to free up two more PWM pins if I come up with something else that would need it. Anyway, on the default screen with the time and date, the LCD dims five seconds after you press any button or return from the menu. In the menu, it stays on full brightness.

The last change I made was the menu now times out after 10 seconds after the last button press and returns to the default screen. As I mentioned in a previous post, the alarm processing is done when it’s on the default screen so it’s important that it’s not left idling in the menu. I still have to make sure it works on all of the menus but so far it’s been fine.

Now that the guts are nearing completion, I’m trying to figure out how I’m going to package it. I don’t want to use cardboard because I want it to look more presentable this time. The last resort is cardboard covered in coloured construction paper, but I’d really like to find another way.

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