Tracking cat eyes with Arduino and Kinect

A Maker by the name of jgbradley1 recently shared his innovative graduate project on Instructables that describes how a Kinect and an Arduino Uno (ATmega328) can be paired to create illustrated cat eyes that “track” an individual.

Aside from the Uno and Kinect, key project components include:

  • Creepy cat poster
  • 2x 1 1/2″ wooden balls
  • Paint
  • 2x standard servo TowerPro SG-5010 motors
  • 8xAA batteries (battery case optional)
  • IC breadboard
  • Hot glue gun

jgbradley1 kicks off the project by cutting out and painting eyeholes, mounting the eyeballs onto server motors, attaching the motors to the back of the poster and configuring the circuit.

“Since we need to power two servos at the same time, we cannot rely on power from an Arduino alone. An external power source is required for the motors. Each servo is rated to work at 4.8V – 6V,” the Maker explained.

“Therefore, a 12V power source (an 8 AA battery pack works well) for the motors should be fine. If the motors were controlled one at a time, you could easily run both off of the Arduino.”

In terms of programming, jgbradley1 uses a servo library on the Arduino side, with Processing (simple-openni library) chosen for the Kinect.

Interested in learning more about the building your own tracking cat eyes? Check out the project’s official page here.

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