Older blog entries for kelaar (starting at number 6)

Well, no luck getting Proce55ing to work with my stamp yet. The serial connection just doesn't seem to be initializing. I guess it's either back to Director, on forward to C++. But that's daunting. Of course, it would be a worthwhile language to learn. Anyway...

Ordered my marionette yesterday, as well as four servos to control it. They will hopefully all show up middle of next week. Then I can at least get some push-button controls working. 'Bout time, I think.

Next step is to go pick up some scrap metal to build the framework with. Drew some rather sketchy plans to get an idea of what to do. I'm going to include slots on the top so the servos are adjustable. But I'm waiting for all of this until the parts show up, so I can build it to correct proportion.

I am back now, ready to get started on my project. Addie and I haven't had time to meet in person, but have talked a bit online. We are hopefully meeting with our professor next Friday. I might have had time for more this week, but I just finished eight days in a row of work, with school on top of that. While working at the school bookstore has its perks, the first week of the term is definitely not one of them. It was amazing to find myself trying to find ways to avoid being around people and hide.

But enough of that. I'm ready for serious robotics work this term. Anyone have suggestions on where to pick up supplies for building armatures?

Yeah, break time for now. Time for a visit to the family and a random trip to Canada. Then it's back to the grindstone at work and school. I'll hopefully have some pictures to at least link to of plans for the puppets at some point soon.

6 Dec 2003 (updated 16 Dec 2003 at 05:48 UTC) »

I succeeded in having my stamp interface with Director. I used "mini snap action" switches from LKG Industries to control a search routine my friend Chris wrote using Lingo. Each button determined a different area of the U.S. to search for data. T'was quite fun, despite the amount of time Addie and I spent debugging things (digging through Chris' code). Or maybe because of that process. Ah, critical thinking.

Over my winter vacation, when I'm not working that is, I'll be learning PHP, MySQL, and Proce55ing. I think we might try to write a program in Proce55ing to interface with the puppets we'll be building. It would be nice to run them with something less bloated than Director.

25 Nov 2003 (updated 25 Nov 2003 at 06:46 UTC) »

No time to work on things today. Hopefully tomorrow in class I'll get together with my partner and have a stab at solving the bugs with serial communication.

Later -- took a couple minutes and the bug was gone. Don' know where it came from, something that will be looked into, but at least I can get on with making use of the connection.

23 Nov 2003 (updated 23 Nov 2003 at 18:03 UTC) »

I just succeeded in making Macromedia Director write random letters to my basic stamp which then echos them back to Director. Some strangeness in the communication as two control characters I'm sending aren't showing up in Director. Here's the BS2 code:

'{$STAMP BS2} s var byte Main: '** pause 6000 serin 16,84,500,go,[dec s] debug dec s debug "5" s = 0 debug "Done" end

go: debug "No Data", CR goto Main

I used s as a variable for simplicity. Will likely change it to something more descriptive like "SerData".

Hmm... just noticed that end should be goto Main. Now I'm curious why the program is working at all.

Turns out the "Serin" command, when given dec in the variable section, searches for decimal numbers until a non-decimal character shows up. Why then is it debugging the result out? It must keep gathering data and let the program move on? But then, why aren't "5" and "Done" showing up? Hmm.... Mysterious.

Today marked my first successful connection between my Basic Stamp 2 and my Powerbook. I'm able to read from the stamp, but not yet write to it with success. Wrote a small program for the stamp that should have echoed back the string that the PC wrote to it, but sent back garbage. I have a feeling it's due to the timing of the data transfer.

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