Alexandra Baron and Misha Boyko


Alexandra Baron and Misha Boyko

The Fiesta Box™ motivates you to get out of bed by presenting you with a surprise, but only if you open it within one minute of your alarm going off. The Fiesta Box™ will be your go-to wake-up excitement. The product is a fun light up box that you can open only right after your alarm goes off. All you have to do is press a button, and the box unlocks. Otherwise, it is locked for the whole day, so no one can go in it and steal the prizes. The box is made out of laser-cut ¼ inch birch plywood, a 60-light NeoPixel ring, satin nickel door hinges and handle, a sound sensor, a servo motor, and an Arduino microcontroller. The product is compact, so it will fit on your dresser. Your parents or your friends can put a fun prize in your box and that will motivate you on those way-too-early school mornings. Forget about those tough wake-ups — start your day off with a fiesta!


Misha Boyko and Alexandra Baron

 Every day students sleep after their alarms and miss busses or rides. We had this in mind when we built our project. The problem isn’t the lack of sleep; rather, it is purely based on students not wanting to wake up. Most students are late to school because they wake up too late. Adding on, many students sleep-in. I myself have been late to my bus multiple times because I was lazy; I’d turn the alarm off and proceed to sleep. Students needed a motivation to wake up on time. We delivered.

    What a journey it was to get to our final problem and solution.  The original problem we focused on was that of our school’s vending machine being too slow and hard to use. We came up with multiple solutions to this problem; our most reasonable solution was a locker system with a lunch code system implemented so that you wouldn’t have to have cash on hand. But issues arose when (1), we couldn’t use lunch codes, and (2) the locker system vending machine was already being used elsewhere.

We then thought of a cubby system in which one person could put an item in and get a code to give to someone else who would open the cubby. This could be used for many things: Secret Santa, Valentines, borrowing items, etc. The only problem was that not many people wanted to use such a creation as it was too similar to a regular locker.

Next, we moved on to the idea of having heated/cooled compartments for those with beverages in the media center and a locked charging station for phones. The problem about the drinks wasn’t security, so a fancy locking system wasn’t required. We decided that the hot/cold drink problem could be solved well by a simple a fridge or a red lamp. For the phone-charging idea, we didn’t think many people would want to leave their phone behind. Everyone wanted their phone to be on them, so we moved on to our next idea.

We came up with an arcade-style game in which one would press a button to initiate a ring of lights to start moving. These lights would spin until they lost momentum and landed on an item. You’d receive the item and be on your merry way. This wasn’t as appropriate it was similar to gambling, and it wasn’t original. Finally, we moved on to the problem of getting up in the morning; this problem we solved with the Fiesta Box.

    Our prototype contains a locking mechanism which locks the box when the alarm has been turned off for a certain duration. The box consisted of a switch, lights, lock, and the box itself.  The prototype would count a specific length of silence before it would count a loud noise as an alarm; during the night there was little noise. Once an alarm rang the Arduino in the prototype would count a specific duration in which it would allow the box to be opened from the flip of a switch. Once the switch was flipped, NeoPixel lights would turn on in a circle and slowly turn off similar to momentum. Inside the box there is a prize put in place by friends or family.

The next step would be to create an automatic prize dispenser so there would be no need for a middle man (family or friends.) We would also want the product to either to have its own alarm or connect to one; this would make it harder for the machine to be cheated and eliminate most false-positives. False-positives could cause the box to open if someone came from school after a long period of silence during the day. Adding on, we could add a mist sprayer to physically force someone to wake up. Also, we could add a coffee maker inside as many wake up from the caffeine.