How to activate

While preparing two applications for open call here and there, I have been figuring out how I can activate the sound and light outdoor sculpture “threshold” in order to complete the installation at Stone Quarry Hill Art Park.

My challenge here is to make a reliable system that I can activate one MP3 sound file with a motion sensor and light sensor during the daytime. After I researched and compared the cost of the systems, I decided to use Arduino Uno for the motion sensor with MP3 sound and the light sensor, then add a simple 24-hours timer in order to turn on and off the Arduino Board. Maybe, because I have already used Arduino few times in my work, and I know I will enjoy figuring out the programming.

I purchased two of each; Arduino board, MP3 Player Shield, the case and some parts, from, which has a lot of tutorials and tips for beginners like me. If you are interested in this kind of project, you should check it out. For more information about Arduino, please visit


This above photo shows how I soldered the Stackable Headers to the MP3 Player Shield. Well, if you notice the photo shows something wrong, I know, you already have Arduino board. The Stackable Headers must stand straight up in order to attach to Arduino board nicely. In order to keep the alignment, first I put the Arduino board upside down on the table. Then I placed the MP3 Player Shield upside down with the Stackable Headers onto the board. To do this, you can keep the headers straighten with the headers on the Arduino Board. Now I solder the end pin of each Stackable Header, adjust them again, and solder every pin.


This photo shows in process to figure out how I can use PIR Motion Sensor. It is a simple test. When something across above the sensor, the LED light is up, actually this was for blinking the LED light. After I tested out the MP3 Player Shield with MP3 file on Arduino, I attached the PIR Motion Sensor with it and wrote a new sketch. (Sketch is the unit of code that is uploaded to and run on an Arduino board.) My first attempt was okay, but the problem is that whenever the sensor catches the movement, one MP3 file starts to play from the beginning. I wanted to finish the entire sound file though, hunnnn…

I haven’t figured it out yet, then almost run out my budget for this project… Even I am a novice user of Arduino, I must complete this project as a steady long-runnable system on the site. So, I don’t need to drive up 300 miles every time the system failed.

I wonder how I can collect money to complete this project. I must make a box to install this system and bring them to the site. Maybe is a good place to start? I am thinking about it.


This entry was posted in art, sound, tech and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.