Here is a very simple and crude proof of concept I taped together with my Particle Photon, basically a WiFi and Cloud based Arduino, the replacement to the Spark Core. I posted this because I am looking for some clever ideas from this great community to expand this fun project into something even more interesting Many thanks to @juano2310 and @jjhtpc for their projects which has led me to my new one here. This is what I started with:
1x $19 Particle Photon - Wifi Development Chip
1x $3 Micro Servo Motor - Analog Hobby/RC Motor (Originally from Arduino Kit)
1x Microusb phone charger
1x Spare breadboard wire or old computer case port wire
1x Scotch Tape, because thats how I roll
1x Tall Plastic Container
Using the latest similar project Spark Core Blinds, this is what I did
- Re-Flash your Particle Photon with Spark Code, but change variable A7 to A5.
- Connect 1 wire from micro servo motor to A5 on the photon and
- Connect the positive and negative wires to the VIN and GND on the photon
- Create a SmartThings Device Type using Device Type Code
- Create a SmartThings Device by selecting newly created Device Type from bottom of list.
- From your phone, control motorized devices wired to the wifi chip.
- Attach micro servo motor to cup or container for treat or food.
- Power device using Micro USB wall charger.
Here are two videos showing it in action
So now I am looking to move this proof of concept into a larger and more stable enclosure. Rather build it out of wood and metal in the garage, or hack something else for the purpose. At the moment, the most cost effective solution I can think of would be a dry food dispenser with a rotary handle. Rather a wall mount or a free standing dispenser from ebay for less than $30.
I may want to switch to a continuous rotation servo motor, instead of a positional servo mo tor (180 degree turn) but I have not gotten to that point yet. I currently have a Foscam IP camera that has has two way audio, placed next to this. Currently there are no good camera integrations for the Particle Photon, and frankly, I would rather have an overview of the entire area.
How would you proceed based on your experience? Appreciate your thoughts and input!
*EDIT: I have seen some internet enabled electric candy machines, which would provide 1. Nice and clean housing 2. Comes with a electric motor 3. Has option for simple battery or wallplug, all for ~$25 on eBay. Hours saved would be worth the money, I dont need anything too custom. But would still need the Particle Photon, as shown in one of the below examples.
Example 1 https://www.hackster.io/eely22/physical-web-controlled-candy-machine?offset=2&ref=search&ref_id=candy
Example 2 http://www.instructables.com/id/SnackBot-The-Internet-Connected-Candy-Machine/?ALLSTEPS