QS Sensor Development Opportunity, Boston, Short-Term

Our research team uses hundreds of small discreet sensors that attach to objects and furnishings in the home to provide a quantitative record of the objects a person interacts with on a daily basis. We are currently looking for a part-time hacker generalist interested in home automation who can help us create a new low-cost object usage sensing system to be used in a variety of research projects. Our goal is to update the custom system we currently for use detecting whether objects have been moved with a version that can send data to an Android mobile phone (by way of a network of GuruPlugs). Your responsibility would be to help us implement and test such a system.

This is a great opportunity to work in a dynamic research lab, with potential to get involved with other related projects in the future.

Specific responsibilities include:

  • Master using the GuruPlug wall-mounted computer or find a better device for our purposes.
  • Write or modify drivers for the GuruPlug computer or alternative so that a SHIMMER USB radio receiver can collect data from the SHIMMER wireless sensor.
  • Write code for the GuruPlug that permits multiple GuruPlugs (located one per room in a house) to pass data to each other, ultimately sending all data received from the wireless sensors located on one end of a large house to a single computer on the opposite end.
  • Write code for the GuruPlug and an Android phone that permits GuruPlugs scattered throughout a house to seamlessly communicate with the mobile phone, sending data about which Shimmer’s moved to the phone in real time.
  • Test a modified version of the SHIMMER hardware with the system,
    possibly modifying the firmware on the device.


  • Ability to work independently and complete this project quickly
  • Able to meet with researchers at MIT and/or Northeastern University on a regular basis
  • U.S. citizen or green card holder

To apply:

Respond privately to this message with your resume and a cover letter. In your cover letter, please indicate experience level, if any, with (1) java programming, (2) android development, (3) driver-level programming, (4) firmware programming, (5) wireless sensors and networking, (6) TinyOS and/or SHIMMER sensors, and (7) user interface design.

Hi Jason - I noticed that there were over 70 views of your message, and just curious about whether anything interested resulted in terms of names or contacts or conversations. We have the luxury of running this forum for the benefit of the participants, so no worry about hurting our feelings if nothing came of it. I ask the question in public just for the sake of learning.

+1 on Gary’s comment

Hi Jason, did anything come of this post? I’m working a startup and am interested in knowing any lessons learnt.