Older blog entries for Botnerd (starting at number 54)

I am doing robotics again, finally! I just got one BEAM robot done which is a solar roller named Blau for blue of course in German. Next I am going to build a Turbot and I am probably going to name it Flip-Flop. I haven't decided what circuit I am going to use but I thought about using some kind of solar engine with a light sensor so the Turbot would move towards light but also have caotic movement instead of just flipping forward. In the mean time I am still looking at ideas for my robotic arm. I haven't fully decided on what microcontroller to use. I want something that is somewhat powerful and has a built-in servo controller. Also, I want something that is like a developement board so I can try circuit out and other stuff. The mini Atom board that I looked at has this neat PS2 controller port and shows you how to program it to control a robot with a PS2 controller and the thing has a built in controller board for up to 16 servos. It is a purdy powerful controller too, the Basic Atom. I do not know all the spects on all the controllers but it is more powerful than the Basic Stamp. The only think about the mini board is it doesn't have a power jack or a developement area, it's all pins and no I/O buses with connecters. I could buy the board for the Basic Atom that is the developement board but then I wouldn't have the servo controller built in or the PS2 port. Maybe I can find a way to connect it to the developement board. Well, recently I built a Jacob's Ladder. I have been wanting a Jacob's Ladder for some time now. I bought me a 11000Kv neon sign power supply off of ebay. I paid $20 something counting the power supply and the shipping cost. It puts out a decent purple arc that is about 2 inches long. I just used a piece of wood my dad cut me off and made the V part out of some 10-guage copper wire. The V shape part is about a foot long minus the part below it that supports it in the air. Well, I hope to have some more bots going soon. Maybe I will come up with my ideas soon for the arm and the others and be ordering me some parts soon. The arm is really going to deplete my funds though. Its going to be somewhere in the neighborhood of $400 or $500 when I am done with it. Who knows, it may end up being $600 or more, but I doubt it. Well, I'll hollar at ya later.

Thanks for your suggestion andycamach. I totally haven't even thought of a basisX for this robot. I of course have heard of them and even thought of using one in a project before but I haven't thought about them for a while so I totally fogot about it. I think I will be using the Basic ATOM though because of the servo commands and the onboard servo controller or which is basically like a servo board anyway. I am going to use servos so I thouught and still think this board would be good for this project. The only thing I don't know is if this controller is compatible with a CMU Vision System which I would like to add later on. I have been wanting to get my hands on one since I started robotics. -Botnerd-

9 Aug 2006 (updated 9 Aug 2006 at 01:39 UTC) »

What have I been doing lately? I have been building a few BEAM robots. I am also waiting for payment from selling my BASIC Stamp Discovery Kit on ebay. After I receive the money I can then buy the parts for my robotic arm that I am going to build. I still haven't fully decided which microcontroller I am going to use but I am thinking about using the Basic Atom. I still do not know about it though. If I don't do that I will probably go with a AVR or something like it. I just want to build a robotic arm for a testbed for programing so I can learn programing as I go along with the robot but also I just think it would be a fun and cool project. I still do not have a name for the arm yet. I do not have much time though because I will be leaving for the Navy. I hope to build a few more robots before I go though. Hopefully I will still be able to build them while in the Navy but I will probably not have much time. I hope to do somekind of robot project in college. I plan to build a few more BEAM bots before I go because I just find them fun but they are not the main things that I hope to do. I hope to build this arm and get a purdy good ways with it before I go but also I hope to build a few more bots. I hope to get somewhere soon.

30 Jul 2006 (updated 30 Jul 2006 at 14:25 UTC) »

Hi, Right now I am trying to sell my BASIC Stamp Discovery Kit because I decided to use a different controller for my robotic arm. If anyone is interested in buying it you can follow this link to where it is for sell on ebay: http://cgi.ebay.com/BASIC- Stamp- Discovery- Kit- With- BASIC- Stamp-2- Serial_W0QQitemZ260013377106QQihZ016QQcategoryZ50915QQssPage NameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem Also right now I am waiting for my parts from solarbotics so I can finish my BEAM robots. Its been two weeks since I ordered my parts and they have went past the 8-13 days that my shipment was suppose to come in. It's taking forever. It might endup being a month in all once its all said and done.

Hey, I have not got to build any robots lately. I am waiting on some parts to come to build a few more BEAM bots. I really want to build that levitating one but I dought I will have the time to build it before I leave for the Air Force. I still have to call my recruiter and get whatever I need from him and then it is off to my local MEPS where I will enlist. So in about a month I will probably be posting from a base. Actually it will be longer than that because I will have to go through basic and I do not think they will have internet access. That is going to suck when I don't get to read articles on here and know what everyone is doing. I am going to miss a lot of stuff. I want get to build any robots either. I will have to pick back up on it when I get stationed somewhere, that is if I have time then because college and the Air Force alone is going to be a full time job and not to mention my girlfriend. So I am going to be purdy busy. I very well might not to build robots intill I am out of the Air Force in 4 or six years from now. 2010 or 2012. Well as soon as I get done with my BEAM bots I am going to start on my robotic arm. I figured up some parts that I will need from lynxmotion and the total just in servos and mechanical hardware is $162 not counting shipping and handling so I am probably going to spend a boat load. I am just going to use it to test out programs that I come up with in PBASIC. I am thinking of making it gyroscope controled. Its an idea. I know there are cheaper ways to control a robot with motion but I am anxious to use the technology. I just hope I don't put more than $400 into this project. It looks like I am going to put $500 or more into but I dought I will be free long enough to do everything I want with it. I will be in Texas probably doing basic training. Then later I will somewhere else doing technical training so robots are still going to be a long ways away. Will I ever have free time for robots????!!!! I hope. I have it now but it is not for long. I hope to get moving along soon on this project, I will be if I get my parts soon enough. I should beable to build the arm in a day if everything goes to plan and then I can start programing her. I still need to come up with a name for it. I had one but I forgot it. I guess I need to rack my brain intill I remember it. Well ill post more later as there are new developements. Bye for now my fellow roboticists.

Hey, well I am done with high school now. I passed all my exams and now I am waiting for my graduation ceremony. I am going to try to get in the Air Force soon and hopefully make it in. Robot stuff, well I thought about using my BASIC Stamp 2 and Board of Education but the more I think about and how simple it is the more I want to try another microcontroller that uses a more complicated language. If anyone has any suggestion for a microcontroller that is a few steps up from a Basic Stamp 2 please tell me. I have not mastered PBasic yet but I have learned a purdy good bit of it so far and it is really simple. I want to build a robotic arm to use as a test bed for programing. I was going to do some kind of computer based project but all that I have seen and read was automated controled with software and there was no programing invovled so I really want to use a microcontroller. Mabey some kind of PIC or other controller that uses a more complex language than PBasic. If anyone has any suggestions please let me know. I hope to get started on this project soon. I will probably use my graduation money on this project.

Hey everybody, I am not doing any robot building right now due to being unable to purchase parts. I have money but I have no way to order parts and there is nowhere near by to purchase them. Well, anyway, I am still doing some PBasic programing and I hope to be done with it soon so I can apply it to a project. Also I am wanting to build a simple steam engine right now but I have not been able to buy the parts for it aswell. In the mix of everything else I am wanting to build this really cool BEAM type robot. It is going to be a solar engine driven antigravity device. It is going to have a parabolicish shaped dish which will have electromagnets which will levitate a cube of neodymiun magnets. The coils will be powered probably by a solar engine that I will design. I need to build something that puts out alot of power to make the cube levitate. In the mist of all this I am also going to build a couple more BEAM bots. Probably just about three but I want to build them. I have a new web page now. It is with tripod. Here is the address of my page http://madcyborgscientist.tripod.com/

Well I am not doing any robot stuff right now, still, and it is depressing. I am mostly studying for my ACT test since last time I made a 15 on it and I need to make a 19 or better this time. Also I am trying to design a steam engine because I have wanted to build one forever and I just find them fascinating. I may just buy a steam engine kit but I haven't been able to find a cheap one. I am looking around the neigbourhood of $30-$40 if possible but I do not think you can find one that cheap. At least one that is somewhat complicated and neat. Also I am still doing some basic programing with my microcontroller and hope to use it in a project as soon as I finish the curriculem. I am probably going to sale my X box soon and games and a few other items just to have some cash for my projects. Soon I want even have time for robotics which is bad because now I have time for the most part but I don't have any money. When I go into the Air Force I will have money but no time because I will be in Active Duty and going to college at the same time. Will I ever get time for robotics and money, I hope? I do not even see how I will ever beable to compete in competitions since I will be in the military. I have dreamed of competing in many competitions and I guess that dream is slowly dieing. I wish there was another way!

Well I am back! Tennessee was not at all a fun trip. I am glad to be back home! I have been distracted from robotics long enough. Now that I am back I need to get a job. Wish me luck. Hope to get some robotics stuff done soon.

Hey, I haven't done any robot building lately. I have been thinking about my projects but I have not had any money lately to fund any projects. I sure hope I get a job soon. I put tons of applications into local grocery stores and restraunts but to no avail. Nobody seems to want to a hire me. Now I am being dragged off to Tennessee with my family for a spring break vacation. I really want to learn more about what is going on in the robotics world and actually start working on something again. I am still beating around the bush with BEAM robotics but I am starting to get bored with that. I need to get back on my programing basics and use the simple controler I have for some beggining project. I really do not know much programing so I thought it would be good to start out with PBasic. I will have this whole summer free but I still don't know if I will get much robot building done though because I may travel to Europe for the some of the summer and then in the fall I will have to sign up for the Air Force if I decide to go in that is. I am purdy much set on it though. I hope to get stationed in Europe but I still do not know what colleges teach American students. I wish someone could help me. I hope to take Computer Science or Mechatronics. And if it is avaliable I want to take a minor in Cognitive Science. Also I plan to take German but that will probably be as a elective or another minor. Then after it is all said and done I hope to be working in Europe on some ambitious project. It doesn't look like I will have any time soon to work on robots as a hobby. I really want to see Robonexus oneday but I will be stuck in the Air Force for 4 or 6 years. Well anyway, wish me luck.

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