Ravioli >>an Arduino powered Laser Painter Project

What is it?

"Ravioli" Is an Arduino powered "digital light painting" robot I have been working on this summer, between work and classes. It paints words, and simple shapes. I chose to name it "Ravioli," as I will be naming all of my creative endeavors in technology after Italian dishes. It is still a work in progress, but my final project for a web authoring class was a good opportunity to build this site. With this site, you should have enough information to copy what I have done so far, and continue or modify my work.

How It Works

build| Hardware
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The design consists of two servos, mounted in a way in witch one servo pans the other on an x axes, while the other servo tilts a laser on it's y axes. The laser is turned on and off with a transistor, and a camera shutter control is operated by a transistor. This is all controlled by an arduino one control board. A camera with a very slow shutter speed (usually 10-13 seconds) captures all movement of the laser, and creates "digital" light paintings.
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code| Software
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A python based GUI sends strings of characters to the arduno via serial connection. The arduino stores the position of the pan, and the tilt servo in two global variables, creating a sort of "pseudo-vector" as an index for the position of the laser. Commands are sent within {brackets}, and text to be "painted" outside of the brackets. The arduino has a function for each letter, and command, that manipulates the position of the servos, and the status of the transistors controlling the laser, and the camera shutter control.
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Ravioli