mooBot

The MooBot,
A digital moo-box build during the FabLab BootCamp 2011 at FabLab-Barcelona / Iaac (Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia).



Components:

3D Printed body - FDM by ZCorp machine
A modified 3D model of a cow found at Google's 3D-Warehouse.
Arduino One - to produce the sounds
A tweaked code from the "Pitch follower using the tone() function" example.
Tilt switch sensor - to activate the sound when the cow is inclined.





The Making Of: mooBot


The body:
During the FabLab BootCamp 2011, several techniques of object creation and reproduction were presented, tested and evaluated. Below some experiments with molds and materials:













The Cow: A modified 3D model of a Cow to have enough internal space to accommodate the circuitry and components.



FDM / Fused Deposition Modeling:
The 3D printed outputted a nice cow, but it was quite fragile and the legs broke. After spraying the cow with salty water, it seems more stable, but still fragile.









The electronics:
Test 01: Build a Hello_Speaker board,
Being my first experience in welding, the results are quite satisfactory, at least it worked.
I was seeking a sound similar to a cow's Moo, but I couldn't achieve it via Assembler..
So, at the end of Test 01, the Cow was playing a basic frequency scale up and down.



After Test 01 with Hello_Board I decided it would be faster to use an Arduino to accomplish the desired effect, because using the HelloBoards might have had a longer learning course than the time I currently had on hands.



Test 02: Arduino
Using and Arduino One, I happily discover that there is a "Tone" function already embedded. So, using the example code "Pitch follower using the tone() function" I was able to get a custom frequency range for my cow.
I added an analog Tilt Sensor, that gave me some position ranges based on the connectivity, so then I was able to map that ranges to the tone frequency. Since the sound wasn't convincing at all, I tweaked it a bit more until an unexpected high pitch got randomly mixed between the moo-kind frequency.
So now, the Cow did a moo-like sound when inclined 10 degrees or more, and eventually emites high frequency beeps when the tilt sensor reaches its connectivity peak. Done!



Further investigation: achieve a Moo sound with Hello_Speaker PCB




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