Scholarship Robot Proposal: Garden Bot
Right now, my wife and I have a small garden(5'x7' if that). We have had good success at growing tomatoes so far. None of them have started to ripening so this would be a good test environment. The main idea would be to come up with a way to have the robot pick the tomatoes.
One idea is to have a camera positioned on the tomato plants. The camera relays the information to a PC that does the visual processing. The PC sends general coordinates to the robot and the robot picks the fruit (tomatoes are really fruit).
if the visual processing is not feasibility in the time frame available. The robot could water the plants at a certain time and a variable amount of water per plant.
I have a couple of arduinos that can be used to aid in the functionality of the robot. If the arduino zigbee unit comes out it would be cool to use that as well.