In order to show off their products, Autodesk has come up with an event called The Factory where participants are invited to assemble a manufactured device to take home. This hands-on experience is meant to show how things are actually made, and while “free stuff” might always be popular, in order for something to be more than a fun paperweight it actually has to be something that participants need.
After first using speakers as the take-home devices, they decided instead to create an air quality sensor with the help of Sweet Sense. This non-profit makes sensors to monitor the indoor air quality for people who cook indoors with coal, wood, and the like. While such a unit isn’t particularly exotic, it’s also not something that participants are likely to have, and can be certainly be useful for those that enjoy clean air. Development proceeded with a cycle of prototyping, feedback, and improvement until they had exactly what they wanted.
The entire process is an interesting lesson in how things are made — or at least should be made in an ideal setting — and the final build, as you would suspect, looks really cool. The device is powered by an Adafruit ItsyBitsy, and features a Honeywell sensor, a echargeable LiPo battery, and a NeoPixel ring for user feedback.
Full documentation on the design can be found on GitHub if you’d like to make your own, or perhaps you could come up with a derivative based exactly on your needs!