Let's Make Robots!


Bottoo or is that Bottwo ?

Well..  I'm just starting out on my second Robot.   I learned a lot about what to do, and more specifically what NOT to do while working on Robbie.


This new one will of course be based on the premise of Robbie, Raspberry Pi making the decisions, planning. mapping, etc.. with Arduino's doing the mundane work of running motors, reading encoders. 

Royal AP8000 8000mAh USB battery for $12 !!!

I just visited one of Costco's Clearance Outlet stores nearby, and found this LiPo battery pack for $12!  Just because it was out of it's packaging!

5v 2.1A out, wich charge level meter on front panel.  Weighs about 12oz...

Had to buy two of them  IMMEDIATELY before someone came to their senses!

It retails at Costco for $40, which is still a great price for LiPo  8000mAh here in Canada. 

Demo of a Conversational Robot that Learns by Listening...

I have been working on this for the past few months, basically, its a conversational learning AI.  I've tried to figure out how to explain it...best to watch the video.  The logic based stuff is a few minutes into the video.

At the core of it, the bot learns concepts by listening to people and remembering what they say...



Looking for ideas on a I2C Pan/tilt stand-alone sonar

This quest to build a stand-alone I2C pan/tilt range finder controller started with an article here by Ladvien.  In    http://letsmakerobots.com/node/39130, Ladvien explores using an ATtiny85 (84) as an I2C motor controller...

And in http://letsmakerobots.com/node/39222,   Chris the Carpenter   gives us an awesome pan and tilt code example... so...

Droid Planning

Firstly Thanks to Oddbot, Pome & the Dagu team for this amazing Robot.

Assembly time was about 16 hours, that included rebuilding the right wrist to get the servo in a position to be able to pour a liquid ;-)

SparkFun launches robotic parts & "Robotics 101" video series

Actobotics Logo - page

December 20, 2013: SparkFun launches the Actobotics robotic components online.

The first video shows Robert from SparkFun introducing the product line and talking about the various items.

"Do not average your Max-Sonar results..ever!" who knew?

I've apparently been mistreating my MaxSonar EZ-1.   I can't find where i stole.. er... borrowed my idea from for averaging a series of responses to reduce the inconsistencies, but I was looking up some information on the Arduino pulseIN() timeout (Thanks Oddbot!) and came across http://playground.arduino.cc/Main/MaxSonar   ... Yeah... I know it should have been one of my first places to look, but...

Sid, the clumsy housekeeper

You know I bought a Service Droid from Dagu, right? I wrote about assembling the kit here: http://letsmakerobots.com/node/39518

December 15, 2013.

Desk Robot; An attempt at planning.

 Yet to be named desk robot                                                                                                                                             

Two Arduino problems fixed in one day! Halelujah!

 I've been procrastinating on two problems that I've not been able to resolve  - or google an answer for in my code.


1) Slow response in the Serial.parseInt() function... yes google gave me lots of people with the same problem, but I finally found a reference to  Serial.setTimeout()  ... well what do you know...  I set Serial.setTimeout(50)  in my setup... and low and behold...

  SNAP RESPONSE now!!!!   


Congress Talks about "Trash Robotic Router Platform". My personal project.

I wolud like to share with you, two talks that I have made this year in two national security congresses.

In both talks I present a Router based ROV [Texas Ranger] and a Fonera quadcopter [Atropos] both presented in LMR already:



The aim of "Trash Robotic Router Platform" is pretty the same of many members of this site. Use all you can get lying around in your home!



Finally got a "live" Sonar screen in HTML5 canvas / Javascript working

Prefacing everything i do with "I AM NOT A PROGRAMMER"...

Ok, so it's nowhere near perfect, but I thought I would post the code here in case anyone else wanted to tinker.

Web Control page for Autonomous Rover


The sonar.php  file which displays the instrument expects it's data as a JSON encoded data set in the form of:


Review: The Service Droid kit from Dagu

I have received my Service Droid kit along with the Rover 5 robot chassis on a Monday evening. Excited, I opened up the package to reveal 2 big boxes, one with the Rover 5 and the other with the actual SD kit. The base comes assembled, with a battery box, a screwdriver (with a magnetized Phillips end), an Allen key (hex wrench) and a little bag with silicone lubricant. The droid kit comes with lots of parts grouped in separate labeled bags for easier assembly. To do the assembly, I used a cutter, a plier and the screwdriver from the Rover 5 box.

Read GCODE and parse CoOrdinates

So my polargraph had come to a halt, i had it running a processing sketch on a pc, and extracting shade data from images one pixel at a time. it had some cooool effects, im really happy with it but its time to move on.

I found i can convert a line/vector drawing to GCode in Inkscape, and as GCode is pretty much THE standard for opensource CNC it seems like the logical thing to use!

As before, this is a project for myself so im CERTAIN i havent gone about this the most effecient way (using a pre existing sketch would be the easiest option!) but its a learning process!


Today I found this in a local Carrefour store in Qingdao for 70 RMB. It has two RGB LED's which illuminate the ears and a couple of buttons. When certain buttons are pressed, it plays some songs or speaks some text (in Chinese).

I will probably hack it and build an emotional/chat robot out of it. In a first step I will take it apart and see what's inside (if my daughter let me...)

Five free Insect Bot Mini kits

This is a free (well, it does not cost money) giveaway of 5 Insect Bot Mini kits.


All 5 kits are gone now, please do not request anymore but you still can comment :-)


USB Microscope

I got myself an Andonstar USB microscope of eBay and must admit that I’m pretty impressed with the resolution and magnification.
It is a great tool for inspecting SMD soldering joints and the kids had great fun with it this exploring small insects and flora this summer.

So if you’re wondering what to get yourself this Christmas, this might be it.

Some pictures from the microscope

Second iteration of 08Lunchbox project board

Few days ago I recieved a package from Fritzing Fab with 10 PCBs of the second iteration of my 08lunchbox project board.

It is now smaller: 50x50mm and interfacing pads are completely redesigned to allow more versatility and eliminate jumper wires for some components. Here is visual comparison:

V0.5 on the left VS V0.9 on the right.

Interactive Stochastic Learning Automaton - cleaned up code

I have cleaned up the interactive Stochastic Learning Automaton code I once wrote and attached it in this short blog. Just send '0' or '1' via serial monitor, if a chosen action was favorable or unfavorable and see how the automaton learns to chose the right action over time.

KellerRobotics and its progress

Well I've been working http://kellerrobotics.com, the website for my business KellerRobotics since August or so, and I finally have the first printer of the fleat of printers which is a RepRap Prusa Mendel i2. I ordered a new hot end and it should be here early next month. I was a little bored tonight so I downloaded Blender since its one of the few full-feature and free 3d modeling programs available and its not that bad of a learning curve, Had a pretty decent wolf head made within a half hour of downloading the program.

Servo Power Gearboxes - revamped

We have recently revamped our line of Servo Power Gearboxes! Our gearboxes have always been top-of-the-line and super powerful (up to 3,402 oz-in of torque!) but now offer upgraded features and a more durable construction.

T-800 reloaded

A funny afternoon in the office, some robot talk, and one of my Chinese artwork girls with some photoshop fu came up with this (it's me!)

That said, I really want to build a life-sized humanoid robot...And it will kill us all!

Troubleshooting 3-d Printer

This blog is a place to collect notes to be worked up into a Tips post for trubleshooting 3-d Printer problyms.

The idea is to list a symptom with a photograph and list sucsful fix actions to try.



For Example:

Printer: Printerbot LC

Material: ABS

Notes: Extruder temp 230C, Bed temp 110C, Fan on 100%,Polymide (Kapton) on a glass bed 

Problym: Poorly formed vertical edges, Keystoning (wider at the top then the bottom)

Insect Bot Mini Workshop

Last Saturday I held a workshop in Xinchejian, our Hackerspace in Shanghai. The workshop was about to build an Insect bot mini.

Hello LMR Community!

 Hi Friends,
We've been watching and reading the LMR site for several months now, and we have really enjoyed it! We recently decided to begin posting regular blogs on LMR that will include customer photos, build logs, new product announcements, guest articles, helpful tech tips, and more. We hope you'll stop by every now and then to see what we're up to.