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My yard was under attack. Woodpeckers were drilling holes in my deck, something was living under (and destroying) my shed, and moles dug a series of tunnels that rival most city’s subway systems.

Picture of my yard under attack

That’s why I used a Raspberry Pi, the Notecard, and a bit of machine learning to try to catch my yard’s attackers in action. More specifically, here’s a high-level overview of what I did.

  • I put a Raspberry Pi in my yard.
  • I connected a motion detector to the Pi.
  • I connected a Pi camera to the Raspberry Pi.
  • When the detector detects motion, I take a picture with the Pi camera.
  • I analyze the photo using a machine-learning algorithm.
  • If the photo contains an animal, I store the photo and use the Notecard to send myself a notification.
  • If the photo does not contain an animal, I delete the photo.

Picture of the final setup I used

To see how I did it, check out the full writeup on Hackster, where I walk through how to set up the hardware and software that made this project possible.

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