ASPIR is a full-size, Arduino-powered humanoid robot

Arduino Team November 3, 2017

Building robots can be difficult, and if you want to construct something humanoid, designing the mechanics alone can be a significant task. ASPIR, which stands just over four feet tall, looks like a great place to start.

John Choi’s 3D-printed robot can move its arms, legs, and head via 33 servo motors, all controlled by an Arduino Mega, along with a servo shield. Read the rest of this entry »

Manipulate time with this Arduino-controlled LED glove

Arduino Team November 2, 2017

While you might not be able to actually manipulate time, this glove by YouTuber “MadGyver” certainly makes it appear that way. His glove, shown in the video below, uses a gigantic LED controlled by an Arduino Nano to allow objects such as a fan, water falling from a shower, and a spinning top to stop, slow down, and even reverse.

The trick is that when the LED’s frequency is aligned with that of the observed moving subject, it lights it up in the same position over and over, making it appear to pause. Frequency is adjusted by rolling one’s hand via an accelerometer, or a potentiometer mounted in the base of the glove can also be used. Read the rest of this entry »

An Arduino-controlled geodesic greenhouse and chicken coop

Arduino Team November 1, 2017

Danish industrial design student Mikkel Mikkelsen decided to do something a little different this past spring, and constructed a self-sufficient geodesic greenhouse dome. His dome, which was planned using this online calculator, now stands roughly 13 feet tall, providing space for crops, along with an annex for chickens.

While this seems like a very “back to nature” project, he didn’t forget to include modern conveniences via an automation system that uses both an Arduino Nano and a Mega. The chickens can come and go through an automatic door, while ventilation windows on the top of the dome can be opened as needed. Even plant watering is controlled automatically. Read the rest of this entry »

Automate Halloween with the Stack-O-Lantern memory game

Arduino Team November 1, 2017

While Halloween has come and gone, it’s not too early to start brainstorming for next year’s jack-o’-lantern hack. Perhaps you’re thinking about lighting a pumpkin with an Uno-powered array of LEDs, or activating a shield to play scary recorded noises. If, however, you’d like inspiration for something more involved, the New Scientist team’s Arduino-controlled nine-pumpkin rig shows off lots of creative ideas.

The system holds candy in a hacked cereal dispenser, which is released through a long clear plastic tube. But instead of giving away treats for free, it’s activated by an interactive memory game involving four pumpkins on the sides of the assembly.

Trick-or-treaters must tap each pumpkin’s aluminum foil switches in sequence. If replicated in the correct order, they are rewarded with candy. If not, visitors are “treated” to a spray of silly string! Read the rest of this entry »

Capturing a complex TV commercial with Arduino

Arduino Team October 31, 2017

Ever wonder how studios like Oslo-based Flambert get perfectly timed (and complex) shots of “disasters,” such as the destruction of a birthday party setting seen in the Coop Obs! commercial below?

While the moving camera position was handled by a robotic arm, food jumping off of the table is coordinated by a series of 18 pneumatic actuators controlled by an Arduino.

The pneumatic equipment is cleverly concealed by a tablecloth, making the food appear to fly off the table with no trigger other than the hostess of the party initially slipping. Another clever innovation was making the table with two interchangeable tops, so one could be set up while the other was being shot, saving a huge amount of time during filming. Read the rest of this entry »

An Arduino vibe bowl screw feeder

Arduino Team October 26, 2017

Vibratory bowls, which feed small parts up a long curved ramp, are essential elements in many types of automated manufacturing. While the video seen here doesn’t get into how the bowls themselves are made, a crucial part of the setup is the ramp on the end, which controls how items exiting the bowl are aligned.

In the clip below, NYC CNC’s John Saunders machines a feed ramp and proceeds to integrate an Arduino Uno after the 21:00 mark, which uses a photo interrupt sensor to count how many parts have exited the bowl. Read the rest of this entry »

Ivy is a massive 240-step sequencer

Arduino Team October 24, 2017

Most musical sequencers use an array of buttons to control sounds played in 16 or perhaps 32 steps. As seen here, Moscow-based artist Dmitry Morozov (aka ::vtol::) created an installation called “Ivy” wth not 16, but 240!

The sequencer is based on an Arduino Mega along with 74HC40967 multiplexers to handle input from the 240 sliders arranged as controls for each step.  There’s also a bunch of WS2811 LEDs, which are driven by a Teensy board. Read the rest of this entry »

Building an ALS communication device with Arduino

Arduino Team October 24, 2017

The father of hacker Ricardo Andere de Mello’s good friend has ALS. His symptoms have become worse recently, causing the loss of much of his motor control. To help with the situation, de Mello decided to build a device that would enable him to communicate with his family.

What he came up with was a finger-mounted accelerometer that senses movement, and feeds data to a computer using an Arduino Uno, updated for HMI use. The computer then allows the ALS patient to speak via the same ACAT software used by Steven Hawking. Read the rest of this entry »

Students invent a low-cost electric wheelchair kit with Arduino

Arduino Team October 23, 2017

While electric wheelchairs are a vital tool for those with restricted mobility, they typically cost around $2,500, an amount that’s not the most affordable. To address this problem, a group of students from Aviv High School in Israel have come up with a low-cost, 3D-printed motor conversion kit that connects to a standard push-chair without any permanent modification or damage.

The system uses a pair of motors to steer like a tank, and features a joystick and Arduino Uno for control. Another interesting feature is shown later in the video below, when it’s folded up for storage with the motor kit still attached. Read the rest of this entry »

The Weather Followers randomizes your digital experience

Arduino Team October 20, 2017

As our lives become more and more automated, we tend to rely on computers and unseen algorithms to “protect” us from unapproved experiences. In order to illustrate this concept, and hopefully introduce serendipitous events to our digital lives, David Colombini has come up with an installation that feeds information to users via a web app, available only when it’s on display.

Instead of implementing a carefully designed algorithm, what users experience is based on constantly evolving local weather data sensed by a physical machine equipped with an Arduino Mega, a Raspberry Pi, various sensors, and some other components. Read the rest of this entry »