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Dancing Penguin

A team of Olin students created an interactive dancing penguin. The penguin responds to smiles and is capable of dancing three different dances. The smile recognition program reads in images and analyzes them using a Raspberry Pi which sends messages to an Arduino Uno to manipulate the server control mechanisms. 

On their website, the team explained the mechanical system: "This project was an excellent lesson in mechanical design and opened our eyes to many mechanisms that provide various types of motion. We considered many more designs than we used in all of our iterations, ultimately choosing those that provide the desired motion in the simplest way.  In the early iterations, the Keepon inspired much of our vision and understanding about how to achieve our intended degrees of freedom. As we progressed through the project, our goal-set changed and we encountered different mechanisms than those used in the Keepon that were better for our budget, motions, experience and available tools. 

There are more details on the engineering behind "Dancing Penguin" here