I need a Project

I am going to be doing A2 computing next year. I was told I needed a project to do that year so I am thinking now on what I want to do.

The project would need a lot of coding (not necessarily really professional coding but a lot of it).

My teacher told me that someone is building a security camera project. Basically it pans the room until it detects some movement then centers on that. It can also be controlled via internet/remote.

What I want to do is something similar in complexity. Can you please post ideas, basic cost of parts and resources needed.

BTW I have never used ARDUINO before but I have a whole year and 1/2 to do the project.


Basically it pans the room until it detects some movement then centers on that

Not an easy one to crack. You have to figure a way of detecting movement in a moving scene. Very, very tricky, even with a powerful processor, all but impossible with an itty-bitty microcontroller.

I dont think its going to use a micro controller to process the movement. He said he was going to create a program in java to do that. Hes just using the basic arduino kit to make the camera move. All the other processes are done by a real PC

Yes, you can use the Arduino to control the servo(s) that do the pan and tilt, them use a computer and openCv to do the image processing part.

Java or C, spotting movement in a moving scene is no easy task.

AWOL: Java or C, spotting movement in a moving scene is no easy task.

Yes but we have some help from an expert programmer (help as in he answers questions not does the work)

just a reminder thats another students project. I need an idea for mine :D

You can capture at something like 30fps, and simply move the servo, grab a few frames, do your thing to see if there is movement, them move the servo another degree or two and rinse and repeat.

Thanks for the input guys but i still need a project

I usually find that motivation comes when the project ties into other interests; in my case, photography, scuba diving and Armagnac.

Look for "Circuit Cellar" in your library, published in June, 2011. Article: "Virtual Sensing Build a Virtual Alarm System With the right parts and a clear plan of action, you can build a platform for a variety of virtual sensing applications. This microcontroller-based design, which can detect both nearby and distant movements, outputs sensory data on a basic monitor."

Build on Atmega8, arduino will perform even better. :P

Listen to AWOL. Tell us what YOU are interested in, cars, sex, home automation, sex, sunspots, remote monitoring, baseball, automatic trashcans, or maybe sex? There are projects that you'll be interested in for about five minutes but to do something big and keep with it you have to want to do it.

For example, I've been fighting with a stupid garage door I constantly leave open. When I leave it open the ground squirrels get in and tear stuff up. So, a project around garage doors would be good for me. This sounds trivial but suppose it needs to sense me leaving the property and shut the door automatically? Or needs to be checked from the corner bar (16 miles away). Or alert me because a squirrel ran in while I was backing out? A robot sentry armed with a pellet gun to take care of the little critters. Any problem can be as complex as you want to make it.

Even if all you do is listen to an iPod all day there are projects around that. FFT (google it) to do a light display. LED laser show with fast mirrors to trace the lights around the room. An arduino orchestra conducted by you waving a wand antenna around. Heck, an air guitar that senses your hand movements and plays rock cords in sequence.

If you have a disabled friend, a wheelchair sensor that looks out for objects. An ultrasonic cane for the blind that beeps for objects at a distance. Extreme magnifying glasses that have a ccd camera in them and tiny displays for reading the paper. A hat that senses when they might hit their head and alerts.

So, what do you think about when you're not thinking about sex?

AWOL: I usually find that motivation comes when the project ties into other interests; in my case, photography, scuba diving and Armagnac.

I would be intrigued to hear more about this Armagnac project ;)

School view...

Make an automatic panorama camera taking photos. Stitch those together on a pc into 360degrees - view. Scan the school every 20-60ft and create a website where people can have a virtual tour like... Googles Street view. Try to find some "interesting" info about the school, try to get the school director do a little speech about the unbelievable greatness of the school, add it to the site as well and call it school view.

If creating a automated panoramic picture taker alone is too simple, throw away the tripod and build a robot driving it around. Add the possibility to take pictures from different heights. Be sure to stand in front of the camera only once when it's busy during the entire job, otherwise people might start thinking students on your school are identical ;-)

@Draythomp, any suggestions for a sex & Arduino-project ?

Try and make it a project that is somewhat expandable, and if you can get away with it, has an imprecise specification. Your fellow student's project is a bit all or nothing, nice to have a project that'll get you partial credit even if you don't get it all done, and extra credit if you over achieve. For example, a greenhouse control system: my dad has a domestic greenhouse that he wants to get temperature data from so he can judge when seeds in the greenhouse are safe from frost. This piece alone has gone through wifi shield and now x-bee to transmit the data and a LAMP server to store/present it. Humidity was the obvious next step, but then you can add control of fans, shades, water sprayers, window openers. Try auto watering, measuring soil dampness. There are plenty of Garduino projects around - in 18 months you could make a pretty complex one.

However, your best bet, as already said is to see if you can find a project that you or someone else needs or is interested in.

I would be intrigued to hear more about this Armagnac project

I'm trying to find enough in one place that I can scuba dive in - the quality of light would be amazing, and the photos something to treasure.

@Draythomp, any suggestions for a sex & Arduino-project ?

Uh, I could probably go on for about 40 pages with that one. Wow, one that I can actually put on a pubic er, uh public board? How about:

A sensor that you install in a bar stool that senses the temperature of the person sitting there. It would have to be capable of fractional changes and allow for movement of the persons posterior section. It would have to respond very quickly and have some kind of indicator that is discreet but still easily viewed. That way as you use your various lines on the target human you could quickly see the affects. Higher temps and you're working it; lower temps and you struck out. 8)


A simple movement sketch can be made with the help of a distance sensor that does a 360 degrees sweep (5degr. steps => 72 ints ) by means of a servo. You can measure the distances at 5 different heights (different tilt?) to create a "reference blob" 5x 72 = 360 ints (less than a KB). Then in the next sweep you check all the distances again. If there has been a (substantial) change it will be noticed, so even intruders standing still are caught. Then you will know the spatial direction in which the changes are => then point a webcam.

Problems are plenty of course, how to handle the differences in measurments and position of the sensor, and how to handle that in software.

Note: If you use a MEGA you can increase the resolution as it has more RAM. you can store the reference blob in an external EEPROM once and read from it to compare every sweep. (e.g. an 24LC256 can hold 32KB that is good for 16000 distance measurements. One circle = 360 measurements so there is room for full sweeps at 45 different heights.

You can use less measurements (1000 may be adequate) in the sweeps and if an area looks suspicious do a more detailed "scan" of that area

in the end not using a webcam and try to solve it with an Arduino, a distancesensor (or 4?) 2 servos and an EEPROM might prove more a challenge

my 2 cents, Rob

The reference blob can be exported to the PC, and every serious delta can be send to the PC to

If you want a project that would produce a useful product, why don’t you add to the below open source webcam2000 program such that parameters could be sent to it via a get request, and it would send a serial message to an arduino switch between cams, and then send the frame back to the client. This would make for a webpage based multicam security cam program. Bottom is webcam2000 in operation.



And I thought I was getting risque with the bar stool…

Thanks for all the replies.

I now have an idea.

Its an automated door unlock system. You send a pass code via text or e-mail to a specific phone/email address. If its correct the door unlocks. Useful when letting people into your house whist you are away.

Now I want to know if this is even possible? What I would need? And what programming language I need to learn eg. Java, c++, V.B. or whatever.