And now for something different, Instructables user 'cube000' has published details on how to make a full 3D object scanner using Arduino, a PC running processing, LEGO, an old stepper motor, a laser and a webcam. Phew! But it really does work - the laser beam is reflected from the object being scanned back to the webcam, where the processing sketch takes over and does the imaging calculations. The processing sketch creates a file of point coordinates, which can be constructed using Meshlab which results with the 3D image, for example:
If you find this type of project interesting, get yourself a copy of "Practical Arduino" by Jonathan Oxer and Hugh Blemings:
Create your own Arduino-based designs, gain an in-depth knowledge of the architecture of Arduino, and learn the easy-to-use Arduino language all in the context of practical projects that you can build yourself at home. Get hands-on experience using a variety of projects and recipes for everything from home automation to test equipment. For more information and to order, click here.