When embedded systems designer Robin Findley was living in the ‘hood, he knew he would have to be a step ahead of the bad guys when he took his family on vacation. When you live in a neighborhood where a SWAT team raid two doors down is not unheard of, you’ve gotta take some precautions. Robin decided to use FPGA tech and his home’s infrared-activated (i.e. remote-controllable) dimmer switches to psyche out any would-be robbers while the family was away.
So, Robin got to work – the IR activation on the dimmer switches would have to be reverse-engineered. He would have to create a custom logic core to drive some IR LEDs from his Xilinx Spartan3E Starter Kit that would be able to activate the lights. Lastly, he would need the the capability to set the current time, set on/off times for the lights in each room (plus or minus some randomization time to make it realistic), and manually turn lights ON/OFF, for testing purposes or setting initial states.
I won’t spoil the whole story for you, but the end result was definitely solid in its execution. Head on over to Robin’s project page and check out a detailed synopsis, more photos, and of course the code he wrote for this. Nicely done!
(via EE Times)