Build A Real-Life Remembrall

A DIY tool for your to-do list

Remembrall
Sanding the inside of the ornament and filling it with cotton polyfill helps hide the electronics, diffuse the LED lights, and give the interior a smoky look.Allie Fauer

When you're heading out on an expedition, it's important to be prepared. To make sure she remembers everything on her checklist, designer Allie Fauer built a magical reminder—a Remembrall inspired by her love of Harry Potter.

At Hogwarts, a Remembrall is a tennis-ball-sized glass sphere that turns red whenever its owner forgets something. To build the real-world version, Fauer stuffed a clear plastic Christmas ornament with LEDs and a Wi-Fi-enabled computer chip called a Particle Photon. Next, she made a list of tasks on the website Todoist and wrote code that tweets if it finds overdue items on her list. These tweets signal a service called If This Then That (IFTTT) to ping the Particle Photon, triggering a glowing red light that reminds Fauer that there’s work to be done.

“A to-do list is something that I use a lot,” Fauer says. “So I wanted to make something that would be both useful and relatable.” Although the Remembrall started out as an experiment, Fauer hopes her work will inspire adventurers and craftsmen alike to incorporate electronics and programming into their own lives.

To see Fauer’s build instructions, visit her Instructables page here.