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Dog Speedometer

I built a Persistence of Vision speed indicator for my dog, using an Arduino, a few LEDs and resistors, and less than 40 lines of code.

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Using a skewed line of LEDs, I built a Persistence of Vision display attached to my dog that shows speeds as she is running. The least distorted speed shown is the speed she is going. This is a very simple build with very little code, and could be a great evening project.
  • 1 × Arduino
  • 1 × Cut Veroboard
  • 1 × multipin headers
  • 5 × LED (5mm through-hole)
  • 5 × 220 ohm resistor

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Johan Beyers wrote 5 days ago point

Video uploaded!

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markbng wrote 5 days ago point

The dog seems to me like a very sweet dog. I hope she got an extra dog snack for the project input ;) Nice project. It is a simple and good solution to use the x offset of the LEDs, but you can also use an Inertial Measurement Unit for the motion/speed sensor (eg BMX055/BNO055, there are arduino libraries available) and LEDs with the same x offset. The IMU gives you the speed, with the speed you can determine the flashing frequency of the LEDs and with the LEDs you can display the speed. You can also measure the acceleration, etc.

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Johan Beyers wrote 5 days ago point

Yes, and she liked the attention, even though she did not like the harness.... There are many ways to measure speed, I was initially thinking of doing audio doppler, photosensor trap or something with a gps. This was just a really unusual way of doing it and an interesting challenge with almost no hardware.

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Patrik wrote 10/11/2017 at 18:37 point

Hi, just for me to understand. Technically its just blinking LEDs that are distorted depending on how fast your dog is running? I really like the simplicity and the idea!

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Johan Beyers wrote 7 days ago point

Yes, that's exactly it. I've got the video showing it in action shot, just need to edit. It's surprisingly difficult to catch the effect on a videocamera. Took about 30 tries :D

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Johan Beyers wrote 10/08/2017 at 19:56 point

No sensor needed, that's the trick of it! The flashing sequence stays exactly the same, but because of the arrow shape of the row of LEDs, it skews differently when it's moving at different speeds. That's what I tried to convey in the GIF with the arrows in the blogpost. I've taken some video today showing it in action on a rotating platform, still need to trim/edit and upload.

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Joshua Zimmerman wrote 10/08/2017 at 18:44 point

Alright, I really want to build this for my dog.  My question is, how does the Arduino determine the speed?  Doesn't it need some kind of sensor?

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Johan Beyers wrote 10/08/2017 at 19:57 point

Egh, I created another comment instead of replying, just pinging here so you notice :)

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