Our cat Penny has an internal clock as accurate as NIST. She starts meowing just a minute before each of her feeding times. We used to leave a note that said "I fed Penny" but this was not always helpful in keeping track. If I saw that note at lunch, I could not be certain that it meant my son fed her breakfast or my wife had just fed her lunch and Penny was trying to scam a second serving.

The Arduino to the rescue! I built a box with a display and one button for each meal. Press the breakfast button and the display will show "At 8:03a Penny had BREAKFAST." The timestamp comes from a Real Time Clock module connected to an Arduino Nano. As added entertainment, the Arduino plays "Warm Kitty" through a piezo speaker.

I developed the circuit and software on a standard solderless protoboard and then transferred the design to a stripboard. True stripboards, sometimes called Veroboards after the originator, have parallel copper strips running the full length or width of the board on one side. A grid of through holes spaced at 0.1-inch (2.54mm) pitch allows mounting standard components on the other side. Interconnections are made by adding wires between strips and cutting strips at selected holes. Stripboards are ideal for Arduino projects as they make a permanent base for projects, can be made in a few hours versus weeks for a printed circuit board, and are very inexpensive.

Step 1: Parts & Tools List


None of the parts is difficult to find but you may need to use more than one source. Some good suppliers are Tayda Electronics , various eBay vendors, Banggood, and Amazon.

  1. Arduino Nano
  2. LCD 1602 display with I2C adapter
  3. Real Time Clock Module with DS1307 chip
  4. 12mm tactile momentary contact pushbuttons (4)
  5. Piezo transducer (passive type)
  6. Stripboard 94x53mm
  7. AWG #24 or #26 tinned bare solid wire
  8. Plastic project box
  9. 1/8 Watt resistors 470, 820, 1.8K, 4.7K, 2.2K
  10. Pin headers 2.54mm single row

Tools :

  1. Diagonal cutters
  2. Needle nose pliers
  3. Soldering iron with small tip
  4. Rosin core solder
  5. Small cross-point (Phillips) screwdriver
  6. Pin vise and 7/64-inch or 1/8-inch (3mm) bit
  7. Craft knife
  8. Magnifying lens
<p>This would also be really great for people who take medications several times a day!</p>

About This Instructable




Bio: Professional electrical engineer, Arduino guru, ESP8266 fan, Internet of Things instructor, radio amateur.
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