Ai Weather Presenter #StephenHawking

Stephen Hawking's voice emulator was used to read a local weather station database with genuine ai emotional responses.

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Over the last 18 months I built an autonomous GPRS weather station and, in the final step, created an audio interface to communicate the data with Stephen Hawking's voice emulator, the Emic2. This gadget reads an online php file which in turn reads the weather station database and reacts emotively to high windspeeds and atmospheric pressure changes.

Don't worry folks - I'm going to give Stephen his voice emulator back when I've finished!

The actual dataflow is here:

MySQL database -> PHP file -> GPRS module -> Arduino Mega 2560 -> Emic2 and is triggered by an RTC clock module to broadcast each hour, on the hour.

And just to make it more entertaining, there's even a little bit of Hawking style sing song.

Here's the device in action:

Assembly of the gadget is fairly easy, but the project must have an external power supply AND a battery. It also only works properly on the Arduino Mega2560 (other options were tried).

Parts Required:

  1. Emic2 text to speech module
  2. Arduino Mega 2560
  3. Adafruit SIM800L module
  4. RtcDS3231 module
  5. 5v power supply
  6. 1000 mAH LiPo battery
  7. Speaker
  8. GPRS aerial
  9. Ufl to SMA aerial connector

Technical Connections:

  1. Mega SCL to DS3231 SCL
  2. Mega SDA to DS3231 SDA
  3. Mega D12 to Emic2 Sin
  4. Mega D11 to Emic2 Sout
  5. Mega D10 to Fona Tx
  6. Mega D9 to Fona Rx
  7. Fona Key to ground
  8. Fona 5v (in the middle of the board) to 5v
  9. Fona Vio to 5v

Other than the above, it's all pretty obvious. The Emic 2 has SP- and SP+ for the speaker. Connect all the modules to 5v and ground as indicated on the modules themselves.

So, with the hardware rigged up, it's just a matter of uploading code to the Arduino and creating a PHP file to read the weather station database.

The really great thing about this project is that you don't actually need your own weather station or PHP server as you can just read mine - no usernames or passwords required! Just set up the hardware as above and upload the following code to the Arduino Mega:

#define rxPin   11  // Serial input (connects to Emic 2's SOUT pin)
#define txPin   12  // Serial output (connects to Emic 2's SIN pin)
#define ledPin  13  // Most Arduino boards have an on-board LED on this pin
#include "Adafruit_FONA.h"
#define FONA_RX 9
#define FONA_TX 10
#define FONA_RST 4
#include <SoftwareSerial.h>
// DS3231 SDA --> SDA
// DS3231 SCL --> SCL
// DS3231 VCC --> 3.3v or 5v
// DS3231 GND --> GND

#if defined(ESP8266)
#include <pgmspace.h>
#include <avr/pgmspace.h>
    int i;
    int hobbits;
    int orks;
#include <Wire.h> // must be included here so that Arduino library object file references work
#include <RtcDS3231.h>

RtcDS3231<TwoWire> Rtc(Wire);
char datestringB[20];

// this is a large buffer for replies
char replybuffer[255];
char url[80];

#include <SoftwareSerial.h>
SoftwareSerial fonaSS = SoftwareSerial(FONA_TX, FONA_RX);
SoftwareSerial *fonaSerial = &fonaSS;
SoftwareSerial emicSerial =  SoftwareSerial(rxPin, txPin);

Adafruit_FONA fona = Adafruit_FONA(FONA_RST);

uint8_t readline(char *buff, uint8_t maxbuff, uint16_t timeout = 0);

uint8_t type;
int switchStatus=0;
int smsnumB=1000;
String textMessage;
String textMessageShort;
int previousNum =0;
int smsNumberStatus=0;
int z=0;
int p=0;
int selectSMS=0;
int speakStatus=0;
String d;
String nothing;
char webpage[1000];
int g=0;

void setup() 
{   Serial.begin(9600);
    Serial.print("compiled: ");
    //--------RTC SETUP ------------
    RtcDateTime compiled = RtcDateTime(__DATE__, __TIME__);
    RtcDateTime now = Rtc.GetDateTime();
   // while (!Serial);
    Serial.println("Hello There!");
    pinMode(ledPin, OUTPUT);
    pinMode(rxPin, INPUT);
    pinMode(txPin, OUTPUT);
    emicSerial.print('\n');             // Send a CR in case the system is already up
    while ( != ':');   // When the Emic 2 has initialized and is ready, it will send a single ':' character, so wait here until we receive it
    delay(10);                          // Short delay
    emicSerial.flush();                 // Flush the receive buffer

   pinMode(4, INPUT_PULLUP); // Use this to reset Fona.
   digitalWrite(4, HIGH);
   digitalWrite(4, LOW);

  Serial.println(F("FONA basic test"));
  Serial.println(F("Initializing....(May take 3 seconds)"));
  if (! fona.begin(*fonaSerial)) {
    Serial.println(F("Couldn't find FONA"));
    //emic.speak("Bad news .. We could not find the Fona .. Please reset all devices");
    while (1);
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  • 1 × Emic2 text to speech module aerial
  • 1 × Adafruit SIM800L module
  • 1 × RtcDS3231 module
  • 1 × 5v power supply
  • 1 × 1000 mAH LiPo battery
  • 1 × Speaker
  • 1 × GPRS Ufl to SMA aerial connector
  • 1 × Arduino Mega 2560

  • Stephen Hawking does Gangsta Rap ..... innit!

    TegwynTwmffat04/14/2017 at 15:54 0 comments

    Just before I returned the voice simulation gadget to Stephen, I used it to record a song that has Stephen taking the mick out of gangsta rap:

    NB. This is NOT me taking the mick out of Stephen Hawking - it's me 'Bigging Up' Stephen Hawking taking the mick out of some other people - complicated? ...... Just listen to the music!

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