Going to bed is one thing, and getting up is another. Some of us might find it difficult to close our eyes and drop our heads on a pillow after a long, hard day at work to sleep more or less instantly – no sir, there are constant worries and fears that swarm our heads, letting us toss and turn all night long. Just when dawn is about to break, we finally get that sense of peace to enter dreamland, only to have a pesky alarm clock rudely wake us up a couple of hours later. The DIY Sunrise Alarm Clock attempts to do things slightly differently – it is a project for an embedded systems class, where this sunrise-simulating alarm clock will gradually light up your room so that you are awakened naturally instead of being jarred rudely awake.

This is not new at all, but considering the fact that commercial units of a similar idea will retail for $70 and above, where the main function was to replicate such functionality at a fraction of the cost, all the while relying on money saving open source components.

There is an Arm Cortex M3 processor at the heart of things, showing off the time through a pair of 8 × 8 LED matrix panels that are located on the front of the device. The DIY Sunrise Alarm Clock was specially programmed to simulate a sunrise over a period of 5, 15, 30, 45, or 60 minutes. If you still fail to wake up by then (no idea how it detects whether you’ve woken up or not), it will rely on the failsafe traditional piezo alarm. At least it doesn’t send pepper spray to your face to wake you up!

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