Everyone has different work styles, and techniques for staying healthy and productive. You may be the type of person who needs to take a quick jaunt to the water cooler once an hour to refresh your mind. Or, you might be the type of person who gets into the zone and is most productive when you’re left undisturbed for hours. If you’re the latter type, a single interaction can break your concentration and it can be difficult to make that clear to your coworkers. That’s why you may want to consider creating this Slack status indicator for you desk.
Slack is collaboration software for your work team, and has all sorts of features for communication and sharing items. One of its most basic features is chat, so coworkers can exchange quick messages. Like most other chat applications, it allows you to set a status. For example, you can set your status to “busy” to let your team know not to send you messages unless there is some kind of emergency. This Slack status indicator is device that sits on your desk and lights up with a color and pattern that corresponds to your current status in the software, so coworkers passing by know not to disturb you.
To build this Slack status indicator, all you’ll need is an Adafruit Trinket M0 development board, an RGB LED, and a few resistors. The LED is connected directly to the Trinket board through the resistors, so no breadboard or PCB is necessary. After soldering the LED and resistors, you can flash the open-source CircuitPython code that was developed by Cody Buell. By default, it’s setup to respond to specific Slack status messages or emojis with distinct LED colors and patterns. But you can always modify those to act in the way that makes the most sense to you so that you can remain productive at work.