Like Sisyphus eternally rolling a boulder uphill, mowing the lawn is a chore that’s never really complete because grass always grows back. To make the task less of a slog, the next best thing to paving your lawn is to build a remote control lawnmower with a live-streaming camera that lets you cut the grass even while lounging on the living room sofa.
There are certainly alternatives to manually pushing a mower back and forth across a lawn already available, but riding mowers are only practical if you’re maintaining an expansive green space, and autonomous robo-mowers are expensive and require a lot of setup to ensure they don’t wander off your property. What the intrepid inventors of YouTube’s ‘I did a thing’ came up with was a compromise between the two.
Using wheels and electric motors salvaged from a personal mobility scooter, a traditional gas power lawnmower was upgraded with basic remote operability. Like with a tank, steering is facilitated by individually controlling the speed of the left and right side drive wheels which is controlled using a wireless remote. The simple upgrade means a driver can plop down in a nearby lawn chair and mow the lawn without having to push a thing, but who wants to be stuck outside under the blazing summer sun when indoors the miracle of air conditioning creates a comfortable climate-controlled oasis?
The most critical part of this innovative upgrade was the addition of a GoPro action camera on the front of a mower, mounted using a couple of foam kitchen sponges to help absorb and dissipate the severe vibrations introduced by the mower’s gas engine. With the ability to wirelessly livestream what’s just ahead of the lawnmower to a set of video goggles, it allows the operator to safely pilot the less-than-safe creation from anywhere that’s within range of a wireless network. It allows a once tedious task to be complete while stretched out in bed, while enjoying dinner, or even while taking care of other recurring duties in the bathroom. There’s even the potential to mow the lawn from anywhere on earth when streaming the live video feed across the internet, although further upgrades would be needed since the mower’s gas engine still relies on a pull-start mechanism to get going.