Having kittens as pets can bring immense joy, but taking care of their high energy levels can be a challenge, especially when you have a busy schedule. What if there was a way to keep your cats entertained even when you’re not available to play with them? Enter LazerPaw – an innovative solution that offers autonomous fun for your feline friends.
Inspired by his love for cats and his tinkering with computer vision using OpenCV, inventor Hoani Bryson designed LazerPaw, a laser turret that keeps your cats engaged and active. Equipped with an infrared camera, the LazerPaw functions in low-light environments, ensuring playtime day or night. The camera, along with a Raspberry Pi, is mounted on a servo-based pan/tilt module, cleverly positioned on the ceiling using smartphone clamps. This configuration guarantees that the laser beam is always away from the cats’ line of sight.
To enhance the experience, Bryson incorporated the LazerPaw with NeoPixels and an Arduino-based controller, creating a mesmerizing display of lights and colors. This additional feature adds a touch of hacker vibes, making the playtime even more captivating.
The software behind LazerPaw streams video from a webcam at 30 frames per second. The video is then processed by scaling it down for optimal performance and applying a threshold filter. When the software detects a black pixel, representing a cat, it adjusts the position of the camera to move away from the laser. This clever mechanism ensures that the cats are consistently engaged in the chase, as the laser continuously evades capture. Moreover, the processed images can be accessed through an interactive website, allowing for remote playtime when you’re away.
With LazerPaw, you won’t need an internet connection to initiate playtime. The device features a physical start button, providing immediate entertainment for your feline companions. Say goodbye to bored cats and hello to endless amusement with LazerPaw!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Can LazerPaw be used during the day?
Yes, LazerPaw is equipped with an infrared camera that allows it to function in low-light conditions. This enables your cats to enjoy playtime at any time, day or night.
How does LazerPaw prevent the laser beam from reaching the cats’ eyes?
The laser turret is mounted on a servo-based pan/tilt module, ensuring that the laser beam is always directed away from the cats. Additionally, if the device is aimed directly at a cat, the laser is automatically turned off, guaranteeing the safety of your furry friends.
Is LazerPaw easy to set up?
Yes, setting up LazerPaw is straightforward. Simply mount the infrared camera, Raspberry Pi, and laser on the servo-based pan/tilt module, and attach it to the ceiling using smartphone clamps. Connect the device to a webcam, and you’re ready to go!
Do I need an internet connection to use LazerPaw?
No, LazerPaw features a physical start button, allowing you to initiate playtime without an internet connection. However, if you wish to access the processed images remotely, an internet connection would be necessary.