Bill R. wrote in to share his trashcan accelerometer that uses an Adruino, an Adafruit datalogging sheild, and a triple-axis accelerometer.
The city that I live in provides weekly trash collection services. Customers typically have a 96 gallon trashcan which is left out by the curb early in the morning on a scheduled day. Sometime during the day a large truck arrives and the lone driver/operator activates a giant claw that reaches out, grabs the trash container, lifts it up into the air and empties the contents into the back collection area of the vehicle. Then the giant claw drops the container back down to the ground, retracts and moves on to the next house. The process is very quick and efficient. (See the video further down.)
Watching the truck manhandle my trash container week after week I began wondering what g-forces were exerted on the trashcan by that giant claw? So I decided this would be a good Arduino data collection project.