Augmented Single Function Objects

This project focuses on augmenting existing objects with digital information to add some form of intelligence within it's current operation. Through this the aim is to take an existing single function object and extend it's functionality without radically deviating from our currently held mental model and expectations.

In this example a simple analogue clock has been altered and it's operation extend to allow information from current digital sources to be disseminated within a physical setting. By digitising the clock it is possible to set the current analogue display to any time rapidly moving forward and backwards in direction. As it is important not to complately alter the current operation of the object inteligance has been added to the device by giving it an awareness of when someone is watching the clock and for how long. The aim is to allow the clock to operate normally without effecting your previous behaviour as you glance at the time but trigger the aditional functionality when you continiue to stare.

The inital altered functionality for the clock takes information from your exsisting digital calandar and dispalys the time of your next appointment by physically moving the analogue hands to the specified time. Therefore rather than having to search through and determine when your next appointment is you can simply stare at the phyiscal clock for more than 3 seconds and it will adjust its dispalyed time acordingly. Another proposed application is to act as a count down to the time that you must awake. As you then stare at the clock it will indicate the number of hours of sleep you have left and continue to count backwards towards this time.

This has been acheived through combining Open CV, Java and the Arduino development board. The clock it self is controlled by the microcontroller creating a pulse to move the it forward for each second. With this communication is made over Bluetooth between a computer sending the time that is to be displayed. To determine if a person is looking at a clock an IP webcam is used to stream video to the computer where it is processed in realtime through the Open CV framework. From this faces and eyes are detected and used to determine if how long someone has been staring at the clock. As the behaviour is controlled by a remote computer further functionality will continue to be added.

Completion Status

Is It Done

More Info

Blog Entry

Open CV & Java

Arduino Controlled Clock