As a member of my university’s SAE Mini Baja team I decided we needed a better way to time our vehicle, the traditional stopwatch is a bit outdated. After attending an auto cross event this past weekend I thought why not build a timing gate system like they use to keep track of racer.s best times. I originally wanted to build a completely embedded system that does everything via a control box. I then decided that was too complicated and it didn.t leave a lot of room for improvements. I then decided that an interface that connected to a computer would be best, and have software handle the rest. So I started looking into what it would take to make such a device. I already had a set of infrared gates to make a timing gate out of. So all I had to figure out was how to connect those to a computer. Seeing as these gates would be used in remote areas the interface would need to work with a laptop, thus eliminating the use of Serial or Parallel ports. The solution would have to be USB.