Tag Archives: Tide Machine

This IFTTT surfboard clock shows wave height

This simple, cloud-connected surfboard clock displays the wave height in Newport, Rhode Island.

If you’ve ever seen a surfing movie like Maverick, then you know experienced surfers will tell you that the best time to catch a wave is generally in the morning. But before doing so, they must tune-in to reports to hear about the swell. And, while most folks in New England could only dream of hitting the beach, soaking up rays and hanging ten at the moment, self-proclaimed culture hacker Zachary McCune has designed a slick cloud-connected display that reports the height of waves right from home. After all, summer isn’t that far away.


The appropriately-named Tide Machine is a simple clock-like device that uses IFTTT to collect Surfline reports and sends the data to a built-in cloudBit and servo littleBits module (ATtiny25). Aesthetically, the project is merely a small box with the numbers 1-4 and a surfboard as a dial, which provides updates on the tide heights every five minutes. Depending on the waves for that particular day, the dial will move and point to the corresponding number to indicate tide heights.

The time-lapse video below shows the build from beginning to end, while a how-to log of the Tide Machine can be found here. Surf’s up, Makers!