Archive for the ‘ Project ’ Category

Atmega 8 serial and iButton code

Last weekend was project work weekend, and I started messing with my atmega8 and olimex development board to get some serial communication working. After implementing the really simple USRT code they demoed, I wrote some simple print functions so I could get useful debug output.


Tuesday night I decided to port the onewire library written for the arduino to C for the atmega8. After a few hours, I got the sensor detecting my iButton.

Code is available here.

Next step is to implement the spi bus for the ethernet module.


ADA and optical coin detection.

One of the projects I never wrote a writeup on that I’ve been working on for the past little while is the “auto drink admin.” For those of you who don’t know, CSH has something called DRINK which is basically a group fridge. Using a key-fob based iButton you can log into the machine and it will link to your LDAP account. There is also SNACK which is an addon in the form of an old snack machine. Based on how many credits you have in your LDAP account  you can purchase things in the machine. Now, how do you get credits? You have to talk to a drink admin. They take your money, log into their database front end, and update your credits.

Continue reading

Wiznet module

I’ve done nothing productive all summer.

A few days ago, I ordered an SPI ethernet module from a local company for 20 bucks. I just started playing with it today. It’s the same one used in the arduino ethershield, so it was pretty easy to hook up. I’d never worked with anything on an SPI bus before, but it’s pretty damn simple. All I needed was power, ground, and four data lines and I was set. The only thing else I had to do was tie the reset high so the board would run.

The chip is really full featured. While all the features of the board can be used with the SPI bus, there are also some parallel data ports broken out for higher transfer speeds. When I get my ARM I’m going to dig into the data sheet a bit more if I can to see what kind of performance I can pull out of it.

In the meantime using it with arduino’s libraries made it really easy to get a simple server up and running, which is pretty immediately gratifying. Considering I worked on it for something like two hours, I haven’t had a chance to write anything interesting with it, but it’ll probably be involved with the doorlocks somehow. We’ll see.

Mig Welding

I recently decided to indulge myself and bought a mig welder on clearance for 170 bucks at sears. After welding a few pieces together, I decided to build a little statue, modeled after Pintsize.

Still need to find a head for him..

Photo Exposure Box

Another project I’m helping with is Cory’s photo box. I said I had a few project ideas that would be useful to have around a couple weeks back, and he stepped up to work on this. It ended up being a pretty sweet little timed UV light box with auto shut off.

Continue reading

Imagine RIT 2010

This weekend was the third annual Imagine RIT festival. There was a record breaking 32,000 attendees and I feel like every one of those walked by our booth and asked us to explain retaliator. Unfortunately, Thomas’s pedestrian tracking algorithm wasn’t developed enough to track in real time by the time of the festival, so I threw together my first attempt at video processing. The end result was a turret that would track and fire at motion!

Continue reading


About 6 months ago, I started working on an electronic air-soft turret.  My friend Thomas was looking for a computer vision project, and I had recently shown him a project by a guy from my home state, who does some really amazing write-ups.  Check out some of his other stuff while you’re there.

Continue reading