Fridge-Mounted Shopping List

Last weekend I added a new angle to a project I’ve been working on for a while: easy shopping list functionality for the family. Previously I had created the AJAX web app that we use on our smartphones, and we had been entering new items on the phones as well.

To take this to the next level, I decided to repurpose my old Nook Color (it’s pretty much unusable for much of anything now) and make it a dedicated shopping-list-entry device.

Neodymium magnets superglued to the back of the nook. The soft, rubbery surface made the superglue bond amazingly well - there's no way I could pull these magnets off.

I could have used a pre-built fridge mount, but it didn’t seem worth the cost and I wanted to include at least a little bit of DIY. Fortunately, these little 0.3″ magnets worked well. I was a little surprised that I needed so many given the amazing apparent strength of these little guys. I guess sideways force (from gravity) is not their strong suit. With six of them glued on, it stays up even with the door opening and closing and use of the device.

Fortunately CyanogenMod has a custom override setting that can prevent the Android device from ever locking the screen if it’s plugged in to a power source, so no special tweaking was needed for that part.

Here’s the device in action:

Built-in shopping list. Run out of something? Just type it in after you close the fridge door. Automatically synced to our smartphones through the web app.

And here’s the list:

Close-up of shopping list

So far it’s worked well in the week since it’s been up and we’ve given it a couple test runs. I just need to come up with a more permanent cable management solution for the power cord – maybe some kind of magnetic clip to make it nice and straight.

Leave a Reply