A project log for Happy Vertical People Transporter

Douglas Adams envisioned a Happy Vertical People Transporter as opposed to the mundane every day elevators

digigramDigiGram 04/29/2014 at 02:050 Comments

The Defocused Computer Perception (DCP) module is used to 1) detect motion on each floor and 2) determine if the motion is coming towards the HVPT or moving away.

OpenCV2 is used with python bindings to make this work. First three images are read, thresholded and then filtered to decide if enough change is present in them to mark it as motion. Thereafter we calculated the moments of the change (in all fairness, OpenCV calculated it, we just asked nicely). If the moment is large enough, we find the centre point and mark it on the original image (it just looks much better than using the thresholded images). Next the absolute distance between a set point and the moment centerpoint is calculated (thanx Pythagoras). As each frame will not neccesarily show forward motion as the person is walking (shadows, arms swinging etc will muck this up) a list is kept and the tendency is calculated (somewhat ineffective though). This lets the Arduino know via serial when movement is detected approaching the HVPT. All of this is iterated frame for frame over each camera to detect motion on multiple levels by utilising only one script. Obviously in a large building this will need to be improved on by using threads, interrupts and maybe more processing power.

And with this, we mark the end of the HVPT project for the Sci-Fi competition. We will however continue this project later on to round it off way better than it is now, and a spin-off is coming in the form of a yard security monitor OR a pool safety monitor. Who knows, maybe both.