Let's Make Robots!

"Dog" bot, time to get started!

After nearly a month of waiting (shipping was a nightmare) I finally have my picaxe 28X1 starter pack. I want to thank everyone on LMR for answering all my ridiculous questions before i jumped in! Now, for me to contribute back :) 

The idea is simple, to creat a robo-pet (me and my wife cant have real pets in our apartment) that will be relativly light on hardware (i.e. a simple design) and heavier on programming. To design something simple, but has a lot of character and personality. For the chassis Im thinking of a hacked RC car. Radio shack has a sweet remake of the rebound (of course they would never admit its a rip off) for sale and I have my eye on it. our apartement is a little cramped in some areas so I think its best if the bot uses to motors on a 4wd setup instead of the front wheels turning ( I could see it getting stuck in a three hour, 10,000 point turn marathon to get out of a corner). As far as senses.... All I have right now is a sharp IR sensor, it just seemed like a good starting place. 

I used to run with sweet RC cars so I know the building from the ground up motto "make one thing work" So I split up my view for the development of this thing into different steps. 

#1) make the motors work, just get it all sorted out

#2) Make the SHR - I'd call it a small milestone :) thanks fritzl!

#3) Give it personality -more for aesthetics but I also had some programming ideas, like every once a a while it changes direction on its own, just to give it a better "explorer" look... maybe have it head toward light or something.

 

#4 Go Big or Go Home- This will be my "play around" step. Once Im comfortable with the bot, I want to push the programming hard...map the room, bark and stuff, chase a cat, object tracking, touch sensors (so you can scratch him behind the "ears") ... this is gonna be the real fun part, were it comes from being a machine to more :)

 

Anyway thats whats in production, my camera is on the bust so ill have pics of it up ( and then start a project page) asap. What I would really appreciate is any input on what senses would make this feel more "alive" Just sensing distance isnt enough I think. Any ideas on programming on how to make this bot seem more like a pet?

 

Thanks LMR, you guys really helped me out and I just wanted to contribute a little to show im thankful! Cheers!

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i want ot make a pet too, because i cant have a pet in my apartment too.i will use a breadboard module of pic 16f628.lol :p

Someone must have hit the "report Spam" button by accident (or to be a jerk) on you, but as a result, I can't send you a private message.  In any case, I have to come to the U of I hospital next week (the day before Thanksgiving) and I wondered what your schedule was like.  Maybe we could meet up for caffeinated or alcoholic beverages and get a pic for the "post card wall."  Let me know if you can do that!

I havent been on LMR in forever (School has torn me a new one this last semester) But im back and want to apologize for never responding to you, it was rude and Im sorry.

 

Im thinking of just creating a new account to get rid of my "spam" status lol.

I went once to Chicago to participate in a competition and I saw a nice plush dog toy that was in the "sitting on his behind" position that was fitted with a 2WD in the back and 2 ball casters in the front paws. The eyes had LEDs and even a AVRcam in the open mouth. It was using the camera to follow a line, but you can expand and do all the stuff you want it to do. Just an idea, don't get set on a car like chassis if is not necessary. If you want a pet, make it look like a pet.

may I suggest you hit up the local Goodwill/Goodwill-like store to see if you can find a useful chassis before picking up a brand new toy to tear apart?

yea we have 2 goodwills here in town, but ive been keeping an eye out for about 3 weeks and have not really seen anything. I suppose people in Iowa city eith really love RC cars or hate them lol.