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Needing help with a "pet " project , please...


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#16
Troy

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I vote we call in the monkey. I'll send him a PM - he comes out with some rather good ideas in topics like this. :)
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#17
heyyouinleftfield

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Oh Good, I'm not familiar with the person you refer to as the Monkey , but he must be very good. I'm new to the site , so I very much appreciate your help in networking with people knowledgeable in this area . I think that it would be a very fun and useful "toy" for both me and the dogs , if we can just figure out how to make it work...I have to go to the Doctor today, so it may be awhile before I can return, Thank you !
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#18
dsenette

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sorry troy....my best advice on this one....buy a product that already exists.

it would be really fun to build something like this, and it wouldn't be TOO difficult (i don't know the specifics but it's possible to do)...the issue with it is making a device, with limited knowledge of what you're doing, with a transmitter small enough to fit on the dogs collar, a receiver that's small enough to be carried around have a battery usage that's reasonable (i.e. the battery would last at least as long as you're out with the dogs), and would be able to track multiple dogs at the same time with just one receiver.

i could see some ways of doing this with one dog as a test. you could get some type of microcontroller (like an arduino) then you'd hook that up to some form of radio receiving circuit (no idea on frequency, it would have to be something that would be highly unlikely to be used by some other device in the area). then you'd tell the microcontroller to sound an alarm (and/or vibrate) when that signal goes bellow a certain threshold. then you'd have to make a transmitter that would work on the same frequency on the other end.


RC cars have signal detection (at least decent ones do)...if you got a radio receiver unit for an RC car and hooked it up as the "receiver" for your system, then used that to signal your micro controller to do it's do...typically when an RC receiver's signal goes "dead" it goes into an all stop mode to keep your car or plane from going off into oblivion, so you couldn't get that to directly ring a bell or vibrate something. then you'd have to gut an RC remote circuit to retain just the transmitter portion. since the receiver and the transmitter are already paired you wouldn't have to worry about getting the right frequency (per se). if you coiled the transmitter/receiver's antenna properly you could shorten the range and tweak it to just the right distance
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#19
heyyouinleftfield

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This sounds like something I can get my teeth into, thank you very much, I'll see what I can put together from this, and hopefully my Frankenstein will come to life someday , Thanks again to all of you, any more ideas are always welcome, I'll see what I can get started for now with this information first though !!
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#20
dsenette

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also you might want to check out Instructables.com...they've got a lot of great info on building stuff and making circuits and such
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#21
heyyouinleftfield

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thank you ! I'll check that out !!!
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#22
Troy

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That thing was the monkey. We love him around here. :)

I told you he'd have some great thoughts to contribute!
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#23
heyyouinleftfield

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Crazy ! I can't thank all of you enough , especially Troy and his friend the Monkey !! Seems that I have the information I was needing to start trying to figure it out now, needed a direction to get started "BAD", now , when I get time , this will be my cross word puzzle to ponder over, hopefully not for ever, I do want to put this contraption together to have fun with, all in time, all in due time.... I Salute you all !!!
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#24
dinotech

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This might be a stretch, but what about one of those child locater devices. I believe its a collar you put on the child's hand, and the device is about the size of a transistor radio. I'm not sure if there is a perimiter alarm, but in the absence of something specific for pets, it might be worth looking into.

By the way, have you talked to your vet about this? He might have connections to seminars, conferences, etc; if their isn't a project already started or completed on this, you might find some people who are willing to stake your idea.

I'm going to ask my vet and see if he has heard of something.

Also, what about an ankle bracelet like the one in White Collar? I realize it is for humans, but if you can spring board an idea from that device and make it work for animals, you might have a product to sell!

D
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#25
heyyouinleftfield

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You know I always thought it was a good idea , a little kooky maybe , you know like the clapper !?!@ But yea you have some good ideas for sure, let me know what the vet says, please ...
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#26
Troy

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Maybe you should do a search and then patent it... :)
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#27
dinotech

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What about an RFID solution? If vets can store information on a chip and insert it into their bodys, couldn't the same technology be used in storing a signal that transmits and a receiver that responds to that signal.

One of the issues of RFID is the fact that someone can track the item all over creation if the frequency of that chip is known (plus the encryption key, etc). So I can insert a chip in a set of high-profile Levi's and track them indefinately if needed. RFID chips are low in power, and can be custom configured to the context needed.

It would be worth looking into. RFID - Wikipedia

sorry troy....my best advice on this one....buy a product that already exists.

it would be really fun to build something like this, and it wouldn't be TOO difficult (i don't know the specifics but it's possible to do)...the issue with it is making a device, with limited knowledge of what you're doing, with a transmitter small enough to fit on the dogs collar, a receiver that's small enough to be carried around have a battery usage that's reasonable (i.e. the battery would last at least as long as you're out with the dogs), and would be able to track multiple dogs at the same time with just one receiver.

i could see some ways of doing this with one dog as a test. you could get some type of microcontroller (like an arduino) then you'd hook that up to some form of radio receiving circuit (no idea on frequency, it would have to be something that would be highly unlikely to be used by some other device in the area). then you'd tell the microcontroller to sound an alarm (and/or vibrate) when that signal goes bellow a certain threshold. then you'd have to make a transmitter that would work on the same frequency on the other end.


RC cars have signal detection (at least decent ones do)...if you got a radio receiver unit for an RC car and hooked it up as the "receiver" for your system, then used that to signal your micro controller to do it's do...typically when an RC receiver's signal goes "dead" it goes into an all stop mode to keep your car or plane from going off into oblivion, so you couldn't get that to directly ring a bell or vibrate something. then you'd have to gut an RC remote circuit to retain just the transmitter portion. since the receiver and the transmitter are already paired you wouldn't have to worry about getting the right frequency (per se). if you coiled the transmitter/receiver's antenna properly you could shorten the range and tweak it to just the right distance


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#28
dsenette

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What about an RFID solution? If vets can store information on a chip and insert it into their bodys, couldn't the same technology be used in storing a signal that transmits and a receiver that responds to that signal.

One of the issues of RFID is the fact that someone can track the item all over creation if the frequency of that chip is known (plus the encryption key, etc). So I can insert a chip in a set of high-profile Levi's and track them indefinately if needed. RFID chips are low in power, and can be custom configured to the context needed.

this won't work.

quick explanation of how RFID works and why it won't work in this situation.

RFID is Radio Frequency Identification. an RFID system has two parts, a ID "chip" and a reader. the "chip" is a coil of copper wire attached to a microchip. that microchip is hard coded (usually...some are programmable) with an ID number (the number is actually completely irrelevant). the coil of copper wire is what's known as an induction coil. an induction coil takes some form of non electrical energy (in this case radio waves) and converts it into electricity...if you've got a properly wound coil of wire and you introduce the proper radio frequency you can make just about any voltage possible as long as the radio frequency is strong enough, if you've seen those "power mat" phone chargers this is how they work (interesting side note, you can make this work in reverse, if you pass a strong enough current through a coil of wire you can generate radio frequencies high enough to melt steel, which is how induction heating coils work in metal foundries, it's also how induction cook tops work). so what happens is when you pass the chip in front of a reader, the reader is emitting a low power radio signal (all the time) this frequency "charges" the induction coil, which powers on the microchip, when the chip powers up it emits it's own low frequency radio signal which the reader reads. the reader then takes that ID number and passes it on to some form of management system. for door locks it sends that number to some software that matches the number against a database, if your number matches that door's access level the door opens if it doesn't then it stays closed.

so, the reason this won't work is 2 fold. #1 you'd have to have a "reader" that was emitting a massively powerful radio signal to be able to charge the induction coil in the RFID chip. you'd also have to have a similarly massive RFID chip to be able to transmit back over that distance. the readable distance of passive RFID chips is inches (at best) not feet. there are active RFID systems (where the RFID chip is self powered) but the range on these is still way too low for something like this. #2 RFID chips only store a number, they don't know where they are and they don't actively send out signals. for the receiver to be able to judge the distance to the RFID chip either the chip needs to know where it is (via GPS or triangulation) or the receiver needs to have a method of timing the chips response to it's polling, which would require a constant back and forth of signals from the receiver and from the chip. which is how the RC remote/receiver knows when it's out of range. both the receiver and the remote are constantly sending out signals (like active sonar on a submarine) the receiver and the remote calculate how long it takes for the signal to travel from one end to the other, if that time is too long then the system is out of range and everything turns off.


i didn't suggest the child locaters or anything else because those exist. they've got GPS collars for dogs, you can pay for the service and if your dog gets loose you just go online and look at a map to see where he/she is. they've also similar radio based short range collars for dogs that both do alarming/locating (like bear collars for science research) as well as training (they've got a small vibrating contraption that gets the dog's attention if they're doing something you don't like). the OP implied interest in not buying something off the shelf that's designed for this process.

it would be MUCH easier to just buy something that's already on the market
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#29
heyyouinleftfield

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You guys are mind blowers !! I've got to try and get started on this, it sounds like a fun project, the kids are out of school next week, so I'm not sure exactly when to start pounding it all together ?? I can't wait, I very much appreciate the help, I just can't tell you, I'm impressed with your amazing intelligence , and kindness ! Thank you :)
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#30
dinotech

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You can see why we summon the Monkey for questions like this. I skimmed that Wikipedia article on this, so I probably missed the explaination of how it works.

Left, that is the beauty of GeeksToGo. You will be answered - you might not like the answer, or it might blow you away. Keep moving toward the goal!.

D
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