Motion detecting cat toy

We love our pets, but sometimes we just can’t keep up with them all the time. Sometimes, we need some automated playmates for our furry pals. [Kateham] has built a motion detecting cat toy to keep their cat content and active. Their price list was roughly $5 for the whole project, but they did obtain things like microcontrollers from family members. Some places they did manage to cut costs were to harvest various parts from a VHS deck. Its great to see kids not only hacking, but recycling as well. Great job [Kateham]. This project is like a simpler version of the laser pup.

Comments

  1. medix says:

    I wonder what motion sensor was used?

    This would be fun to do with the ‘motion’ package for linux. (similar to the ‘blender defender’ but no x10)

  2. rasz says:

    I wonder if there was ANY motion sensing used, all i can see on the clip is cat and endlessly spinning motor driving fake mouse

  3. Tom says:

    Yeah, it doesn’t appear that there is really any motion sensing required. It is just a spinning mouse.

    Presumably it starts and stops based on the presence of the cat, but they don’t show it.

    Plus, the cat doesn’t seem to be terribly interested in it in the first place, which seems a larger design flaw than the motion sensing…

  4. na says:

    I love how the cat starts licking his nether regions and the camera jerks away and does a close up of the tripod.

  5. Dave says:

    That’s rubbish!

  6. kyndal says:

    Lame “hack a day”
    don’t see any motion detection..
    just a mouse spinning way to fast

    doesn’t seem like the cat care much for
    the idea regardless

  7. beaker says:

    click the link folks – there is clearly motion detection in use. i agree it is pretty lame though.

  8. falcon says:

    That tripod doesn’t look very stable…..

  9. NatureTM says:

    Wow, this site has gone downhill.

  10. dnny says:

    Developing idea:
    add a sandbag to the tripod so it doesn´t fall.

    thumbs up for the kids who made this.

  11. michael says:

    This was for my little brother’s science project. I programmed the microcontroller. I used an Atmel Attiny25 for the MCU and we used a motion sensor I had lying around my house that I got from Radio Shack. Surprised this got on Hackaday.com, it was pretty simple to make.

  12. Andrew says:

    Not everything needs to be rocket science to be worthy of a blog entry.

    A problem was observed and a solution rendered. It could probably do with a revision that incorporates a sandbag and a system slightly more dynamic. Although I think what Caleb was highlighting, was something that some kids were doing and encouraging other young kids who read this blog to have a go and to make a start somewhere even if its small.

  13. patrick says:

    Perhaps a better video would use motion detection, a slower spin, a weight so the cat doesn’t destroy all the work on it, and optical zoom instead of crude digital…but seriously at least you attempted something and that is more than most.

  14. patrick says:

    Actually he does have a newer video that looks better and looks like it takes into account some things. I’m thinking that the maker is quite young also so compared to what other kids his age make, I suppose it is quite the fine achievement.

  15. Dabert says:

    Well said, finally a good report on this stuff

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