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This piece of art knows when it’s being photographed thanks to tinyML

Arduino TeamSeptember 9th, 2022

Nearly all art functions in just a single direction by allowing the viewer to admire its beauty, creativity, and construction. But Estonian artist Tauno Erik has done something a bit different thanks to embedded hardware and the power of tinyML. His work is able to actively respond to a person whenever they bring up a cell phone to take a picture of it.

At the center are four primary circuits/components, which include a large speaker, an abstract LED sculpture, an old Soviet-style doorbell board, and a PCB housing the control electronics. The circuit contains an Arduino Nano 33 BLE Sense along with an OV7670 camera module that can capture objects directly in front. Tauno then trained a machine learning model with the help of Edge Impulse on almost 700 images that were labeled as human-containing, cell phone, or everything else/indeterminate. 

With the model trained and deployed to the Nano 33 BLE Sense, a program was written that grabs a frame from the camera, converts its color space to 24-bit RGB, and sends it to the model for inferencing. The resulting label can then be used to activate the connected doorbell and play various animations on the LED sculpture.

More details about this project can be found here on Tauno’s website.


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