Dice Face Detector Uses Infrared Sensor Array

While it’s easy enough for humans to read dice, what if you want a computer to do so? Depending on your expertise, you might consider a vision-based solution, but as engineering student Calvin and his fellow classmates demonstrate, this can be accomplished using only five infrared emitter/receiver pairs.

The device is able to only use five sensors to infer which face is shown — instead of the nine that would be required to discreetly sense each pip location — by taking advantage of a die’s symmetry.

The build was first prototyped on perfboard, then designed into two PCB versions — one with a shift register for increased accuracy, one without. Schematics, along with demo code, are found in the project’s writeup. The team also created a few accessories for the board, including a stepper-driven paddle wheel to push the die into the correct position, and a contraption that rotates into an orientation corresponding to the face detected.

As you might suspect, figuring out how to actually read a die like this took a quite a bit of research and pondering, and the inspiration came from a 2009 Make: post. This nearly 10-year-old version can be watched below, revealing the number detected on a 7-segment display.

Dice Face Detector Uses Infrared Sensor Array was originally published in Hackster Blog on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Original article: Dice Face Detector Uses Infrared Sensor Array
Author: Jeremy S. Cook