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Goldie Fishwater & the Internet-Connected Aquarium

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Charles Murray
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Toyota aquarium
Charles Murray   12/10/2013 6:20:10 PM
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I wonder if the people who built the Toyota Highlander aquarium (which we wrote about recently) need an automatic fish feeder. Seems like a natural for a bunch of fish sitting around a tank at a trade show.,

http://www.designnews.com/author.asp?section_id=1395&doc_id=269589

Elizabeth M
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Clever!
Elizabeth M   12/11/2013 5:12:08 AM
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Well that is certainly a clever way to ensure your fish is well looked after, even when you're not around. I doubt there is another pet fish in the world under such tight surveillance.

Battar
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Platinum
Infringer
Battar   12/11/2013 9:03:43 AM
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Looks like you have infringed patent US6782309. (seriously). Prepare to be sued by your friendly local patent troll.

tekochip
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Re: Infringer
tekochip   12/11/2013 10:06:48 AM
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I think Cabe and Goldie are safe.  The patent has a very narrow scope, always referring to a spa.


William K.
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Other approaches
William K.   12/11/2013 10:25:47 AM
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Given the relative complexity of the system, it seems that there could be some alternative approaches that would be simpler and more reliable, and probably take up less space. For monitoring the temperature, a thermometer stuck to the far side of the tank could allow temperature checking as part of the video monitoring procedure. And with the price of cameras being quite low, multiple cameras would eliminate the need to have a moving platform and all of that control and drive hardware. The automatic feeder would still be a challenge and I can't offer much of a suggestion without understanding a lot more about how it is supposed to function.

Of course I realize that the whole project is designed to be an interesting writeup and so it had to include the various systems. But sometimes there is a simpler and more reliable way to do things, often without needing to include an Arduino.

Battar
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Re: Clever!
Battar   12/11/2013 10:29:10 AM
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Maybe not pet fish, but... Take a look at this...

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2013/03/killer-military-dolphins-go-awol-for-love-maybe-not/

 

You want to keep a close eye on these pets. They are armed.

GTOlover
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Platinum
Re: Other approaches
GTOlover   12/11/2013 11:46:36 AM
Another approach, though I am sure PETA and fish lovers would call me evil, buy another fish if this one happens to die while I am on vacation. For the cost of the various hardware and time, a lot of replacement goldfish could be bought.

William K.
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Re: Other approaches
William K.   12/11/2013 12:34:46 PM
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GTOlover, that is why dogs are much better pets, which is that at least some of the breeds are smart enough to take care of themselves for a few days. I had a Golden/Shelty mix who would only eat what shee needed each day, so although I gave her fresh food each day, for those days when I would be quite late, I could leave her extra and she would not eat it until much later. 

Our problem with fish was that they would jump out of the acquarium and hide under furniture, only to be found much later. And it is a real challenge to play fetch and throw with a fish. Also, really hard to take them for a run.

Nancy Golden
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Pistol and the Internet-Connected Pasture
Nancy Golden   12/11/2013 3:38:22 PM
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So Cabe - can you design a similar setup for me for my horse Pistol? He is about an hour away...and I feel the same way about him as you do about Goldie. You could become a millionaire - horse people will buy anything that has to do with their horses...

Charles Murray
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Blogger
Pre-Internet fishfood feeder
Charles Murray   12/11/2013 7:12:56 PM
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Many years ago, we had an article about an automated goldfish feeder. I've loolked online, but the story apparently isn't posted on the Design News website anymore. It was pre-Internet. The system's inventor used a phone connected to a vibrating device. When the phone was called from a remote location, each ring of the phone would vibrate the fishfood box, causing the flake food to drop into the aquarium. To drop more food, the caller had to remain on the line for more rings.

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