This week’s selection is the highly over-engineered “Ultimate Cloud Cat Feeder” by designer Piotr Westfalewicz.
Clearly the most popular item category on the internet is surely Cat Videos. We can’t really post cat videos here, as that doesn’t really fit into our news topic.
But we can talk about a 3D printed cat feeder!
Westfalewicz, who is obviously a cat fan, sought to build something better, or at least a lot more sophisticated, than your run-of-the-mill automated cat feeders that plague Amazon.
No, this 3D printed device is vastly more complex than you could imagine. It includes a very fancy LED ring that notifies everyone, including the cat, of the current status of the Feeder.
Cloud Cat Feeder
Not only does it distribute food to a feline pet, it is also cloud based! The Ultimate Cloud Cat Feeder connects to a cloud server that controls activities and tracks sensor data.
Sensor data? Yes, there is a scale that captures the weight of the attending cat as it voraciously consumes food pellets from the hopper. This information and a ton more are then analyzed and displayed for the cat owner to peruse.
Here’s a screenshot of only some of the comprehensive information displayed:
Here is a video of the Ultimate Cloud Cat Feeder in action with an actual, live and hungry cat. Note that the cat has learned to wait for the Feeder to activate.
Ultimate Cloud Cat Feeder Project
This is not a casual project as you can imagine. The STLs alone comprise over 40 separate parts that must be 3D printed and assembled, and there’s plenty of electronics and software setup involved, too.
Westfalewicz has also provided access to the part designs in Autodesk Fusion 360 in case you’d like to make some improvements. In fact, the entire project is open source, and anyone can contribute. You can even watch him develop the CAD design in this video:
As of this writing, Westfalewicz has not yet provided the firmware and software for the project, saying these “will be coming in August/September.” It’s a bit past that date, but as you can imagine, this is a complex project.
If you happen to have a cat, and have access to a 3D printer, this might be a project for you. Give it a try; your cat will be forever grateful.