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Topic: Will pay you to make my wife her birthday present (Read 4512 times) previous topic - next topic


My wife and I were in istanbul and saw this, the "scared cube"
at a museum exhibit about interactive art. My wife absolutely adored the little cube, scuttling around scared of anything coming close to it, then turning itself off a few meters away. I contacted the guys who made the project, but they wanted an insane 5000 euros to make me another one. I thought perhaps arduino fans could make one for a reasonable price, or know where I could find somebody who could.



Sounds fun
What does it do if it say, hits a wall?
Does it only move away from people?

What's the timescale?
What's your budget?



Making a simpler version does not seem out of the question - presumably you don't have an empty room to put this in anyway.
Making a version the same as that would be a lot of work.

What exactly would you want this cube to do?


Her birthday is on the 23rd of september, so there is some time. I'd like to pay on the lower side of 400-700euros, including all costs, (shipping to germany), etc.

A simplified version should still have: A white plexiglass box with uniform lighting inside, on wheels. I presume it has motion sensors on most sides, since once you get close to it, about 1 meter, it lights up, acts as if its a scared animal, moving away, changing direction, spinning around, until it is 2-4 meters further away, and it turns off its lights, as if it was escaped some nasty predator. the more "scrared it is" the more its internal lighting acts up. the playful, lifelike movement/behavior are really the key part.



i guess I would just want to be able to turn it on in a room, any room, and have it chill by itself until somebody comes close and "disturbs it" and its zoom away until it finds a spot somewhere where it feels left alone.


Wow.  Scared Cube is hotness.  5,000 euros doesn't seem too far off for something exactly as depicted in the video.  That is, considering there is no mass-production involved.


Well I can see that price being feasible but obviously there are going to be limitations - I'm not sure if I'll be able to undertake the project but if there is until 23rd September that gives a while.

More likely a combination of sensors. The hard part is making it move away from a human but not hit something :D
Looks like they may have even used cameras on their device/something taking an image input.
In a way, their empty room is much simpler than placing one in a normal household environment as there's nothing small that may be in the way of its movement (say a chair leg, shoes, anything that could be on the floor)

I'm pretty impressed with what they have made though - not surprised they asked for 5k :)

I'll have a think about how I think this project could be feasible with that time scale and the features requested and how best sensors would have to be used/what sensors. If I think I can undertake the project I'll let you know.


When I met up with the creators, they were talking about creating custom silicon for a new one, because the version in the video uses a PC in the next room. When I heard about arduino a few months later, I wrote them an email about it, how it would help us make a cheaper version, but never heard back from them. Its hard for me to estimate what it costs to make such a product, just what I would be willing to pay. I guess I might go a little over my upper limit if I new it would make her happy.

I think I would be happy with one that would just avoid large objects, walls, etc. I can understand how making something that avoids low (shoe) or thin (chair leg) objects might be much more work.
maybe kinect integration could solve those problems.

Mowcius, If you are up for it, I would love to have  longer IM, or skype chat to talk about how this project could work.



Yeah I imagine the current system took a while to design and code and takes quite a bit of processing power on the computer front due to how it responds.

I can see how a similar project would work with an arduino but it depends on what compromises you're prepared to make on what it does.

I have a few ideas. I'll send you a PM and then we can communicate about it via email (and/or instant messaging of some kind at some point).

For anyone else reading - this doesn't mean I'm going to undertake the project so if anyone else would like to step in - be my guest.



The immediate thing that jumps to my mind is: how willing are you to compromise on the aesthetics?  the unbroken frosted cube makes it tricky for onboard sensors to detect anything approaching.  If you were willing to have a couple of holes on the 4 horizontal faces (cute cartoon face on each facet of the cube?), then ultrasonic sensors (as eyes) are a pretty cheap option.


I guess I am not really hung up on it being a white translucent cube. The more I think about it, it could actually be much better if we make it something else entirely. I'll think about it and keep in mind having to have the sensors visible.


Did you get my PM?

I kinda forgot about this.

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