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You can slap the Corona Virus live right here on Remo.tv.
Just to make it very clear, this project is meant to provide some comic relief during these times, it’s not meant to disregard the severity of the current situation. Please follow the latest guidelines for your area, stay home, stay safe and take care of each other!3D Printing
First things first, we’ll need a version of the Corona Virus to slap. Greg Bejtlich created a 3D model based on images of the virus released by the CDC. Different versions of the model can be found here on Thingiverse.
We scaled the model down to 50%, cut it in half and printed it with supports to create the big green virus. Using a pair of long nose pliers, we removed the supports and glued the two halves together. To finish the look of the virus, we added two giant googly eyes to the pointy parts of the virus.
Next, we’ll also need something to slap it with. A roll of toilet paper should be very effective against Corona, why else are people hoarding it? We 3D printed this model, adequately named “Toilet Paper Is Life”, shared on Thingiverse by Chris Taylor. Of course, the toilet paper needed its own pair of googly eyes.Servo
To move the toilet paper towards the virus, we’ll be using a popsicle stick and a 180 degree metal gear servo. Here’s a great guide on getting started with controlling servos with a Raspberry Pi.
We glued one end of the popsicle stick to the servo hub and glued the 3D printed toilet paper to the other end, as you can see in the attached pictures.Pi Camera
Our internet controlled robot also needs a camera, so viewers can see the virus being slapped from the comfort and safety of their own home. To do this, we added a Pi camera to the Raspberry Pi. The Raspberry Pi Foundation wrote this great tutorial about getting started with the Pi Camera.Remo.tv
To allow people to use the slapping robot remotely, we’ll be using the robot streaming platform Remo.tv. Follow this guide on GitHub to set up Remo on your Raspberry Pi.
For our slapping robot, we selected the hardware type “none” and edited the code in the hardware/none.py file. The code we used for this is added in attachment. Please note that this might not be the cleanest way to do it, but it does the trick :)Combine It All!
Lastly, we need to combine all these separate parts into one internet controlled robot.
Our setup consists of the following parts, arranged inside a storage cabinet:
- The Corona Virus is hanging from the ceiling using some fishing wire. We tied the wire around one of the pokey parts of the virus and to a screw which we partially screwed into the roof of the cabinet. We used the servo with the toilet paper on it to determine the height of the virus when tying it to the ceiling.
- The servo with the servo hub, popsicle stick and 3D printed toilet paper is glued to the bottom of the storage cabinet. We tested the robot first to see if it could hit the virus and to determine where to place it before gluing the servo.
- The Pi Camera is held in place by using some sturdy metal wiring and a twist tie. No, this is not a very high tech solution and there is surely a better way to do this, but this method has proven quite successful for us, as you can freely move the camera into basically any position without being limited.
- The Raspberry Pi is sitting on the floor of the storage cabinet, controlling all the things and connecting them to the internet.
And there we have it, an internet controlled Corona virus slapper!
Just to make it very clear, this project is meant to provide some comic relief during these times, it’s not meant to disregard the severity of the current situation. Please follow the latest guidelines for your area, stay home, stay safe and take care of each other!