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Saturday, December 8, 2012

Bird Buggy - Parrot driven autonomous Buggy

This is the coolest Autonomous and Bird Driven Vehicle, I have seen to date!:) Check it out and don't miss the video of Pepper, the parrot, Driving His Buggy!:)


Bird Buggy - Parrot driven autonomous Bird Buggy.

Bird Buggy allows my trained parrot to "drive" around the house.  When it's time to put the bird away, Bird Buggy is able to dock itself to a base station utilizing a web camera.

Go there...

Video Link...

More Videos here...

Pepper, the parrot, has been a part of our family for over a decade.  However, Pepper produces terrible shrieks when left alone.  To combat the shrieks an automated sound triggered squirt gun was created to deter the bird from shrieking. At first, the squirt gun proved effective. The bird’s screaming would cease after the squirt gun would fire. However, the effectiveness of the water gun did not last. Pepper started utilizing the water as a bird bath and continued to shriek. Next, a remote controlled noise maker was placed near the bird’s cage (fig 2). Whenever the bird shrieked, a user could press a button to activate the noise maker startling the bird. This too did not last as the bird became adjusted to the rattling of the noise maker.

Instead of startling the bird into muteness, allowing the bird to roam around the house may be a better option. However, because of the messes the bird leaves behind and the possibility of the bird getting stepped on, roaming the house un-attended is not an option. If he could be placed on a mobile platform that could move about the house, hopefully he would stop screaming. Thus the idea for the “Bird Buggy” was born.


Project Overview

Primary Objectives:
1) Develop a mobile platform that a parrot can utilize for self transportation.
2) Develop a platform that can autonomously park.

Secondary Objectives:
1)  Prevent parrot from "escaping" from the platform.
2)  Provide feedback to the parrot in order to improve driving skills.

Returning from sea can often be a precarious evolution for ships. Shoal water, navigational hazards, and outgoing traffic can cause a headache for any sailor. To assist the safe passage of ships in inland waters, range lights were created to guide ships safely through channels. The navigational aid consists of two lights facing in the direction of a maritime channel. The forward light is lower than the rear. Range lights indicate a ship’s position within a channel. When a ship is positioned in the center of a channel, the range lights will be vertically aligned. If a ship is left or right of the center, the rear light will appear left or right of the front light. While mostly used for nautical applications, range lights can be used for guiding ground vehicles too.

    Computer vision requires a great amount of computer resources and is processor intensive. One could then say that using a very fast computer would result in a shorter image processing time. However, fast computers require large amounts of energy. On a small robot, where power consumption is important, having a fast computer is usually not an option. Therefore, a compromise between processor speed and energy consumption must be made. The BeagleBoard-xM, with its ARM-A8 processor, can handle image processing while only consuming around two amps. To detect the docking station, the robot will require a camera. Creative Labs Creative Live! Chat HD web camera was chosen because of its image quality and low price. The camera is interfaced with the Beagleboard using a USB cable. For simplicity, the robot will use two wheels for propulsion and two castors for platform support. The web camera will be mounted to the robot through several servos allowing several degrees of movement for searching. Inspired by navigational range lights, the docking station will consist of two spherical lights painted neon green and neon orange. The green light will be in front of the orange at a lower height. Whereas the orange light will be in line with the green light but positioned higher.

    Developed by Intel in 1999, OPENCV has become very popular as computer vision software with over 2.5 million downloads.  It is a robust cross platform library that supports multiple languages.  Very powerful, OPENCV has been used to track objects, recognize faces and gestures, and simulate depth perception using multiple cameras.  In addition to the many applications of OPENCV, the software is open source and free.  For this experiment, a Python version of OPENCV will be used.


Bird Buggy - Parrot driven autonomous Buggy

Bird buggy soothes a screeching parrot
Tracking 4 - YouTube
Buggy Tracking Spheres - YouTube
BirdBuggy - YouTube
Bird Buggy
Project Overview - Bird Buggy
Students to show off robotic innovations at demo day - The Independent Florida Alligator: Campus
About the Designer - Bird Buggy
EEL 5666 Files - Bird Buggy
Inspiration - Bird Buggy
Media - Bird Buggy
Pictures - Bird Buggy
MVI 1691 - YouTube
OpenCV knows where you’re looking with eye tracking - Hack a Day
Open Computer Vision Library - Browse /opencv-unix/2.2 at
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Processing Tutorials: Getting Started with Video Processing via OpenCV
Following faces with OpenCV and Arduino - Hack a Day
arduino-opencv-processing-face_follower.mp4 - YouTube
Getting started with OpenCV - Hack a Day
Introduction to embedded vision and the OpenCV library
Following faces with OpenCV and Arduino - Hack a Day
Welcome - OpenCV Wiki
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