Cat Ears

One of the best things about a cat is it’s ears. They are so expressive.

cat_ears_big

Illustration Credit: Lucy Knisley. For full version, see here.

What we’re making

Animatronic Cat Ears

You’ll need…

  • Headband and some velcro to attach servos to the headband
  • Plastic straws to attach the ears to the servos
  • Foam or paper material to make the ears
  • Tape or Glue – some kind of adhesive.

Hooking up the hardware

Hardware hook-up for Cat Ears

Tips for Success:

  • Servos have three wires coming out of them:
    • Connect Brown to GND
    • Connect Red to 5V
    • Connect Orange to the Digital Pins in the Arduino, in this case, the servo controlling the left ear connects to pin 9 and the servo controlling the right ear connects to pin 10.
  • Push buttons are perfectly square. If your connection doesn’t work, then it’s possible you may need to rotate it 90 degrees.

Arduino Sketch

Cat Ears Starter File for WIT and WISEST conferences.
Cat_Ears.ino for if you’re doing this at home.

What to do if you are done early?

  • Design a new emotion to display and try to program it into the Arduino sketch. What would a cat’s ears do if it was angry and wanted to scratch you? And if it’s happy? Here are some cat gifs for inspiration….or personal amusement. Whateverz….

cat_dance

cat_watermelon

cat_wiggle

grumpy_cat

  • Maybe you don’t like cats and you would prefer dogs or dolphins. What emotions would they display? And maybe they wouldn’t even use their ears but their tails instead. Thinks about how you’d modify the set up and the code to make a dog tail wag. Here are some dog gifs and a picture of some huskies smooching:

husky-kiss

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