Some last-minute inspiration for the Gadget Freak Design Contest!

Pet owners who want to spend a day hiking, at the beach, shopping at the mall or even a weekend far from home can build an automatic pet feeder to dispense water and dry food at a preset time. Tom Thompson, Julie Redmond, Curtis Siebenaller and Nathan Woodworth at Colorado State University explain how to combine electronic and mechanical devices to do just that.

You can download detailed instructions here.

We’re offering a smooth kilobuck to the grand prize winner, but the deadline is coming up tomorrow night! So get ’em in!