Stripped Laptop Robot Project
So earlier last night I was itching to do something robotic-y while waiting for my FOREVER order from dealextreme.com. I've been very curious about the embedded PC bots using things like Mini-ITX boards, Ras-Pi's, BeagleBoards, etc. There were a few old laptops laying around, and thought, why not use one of them?
I did some research online and I know there are MANY robot chassis acting as a carrier for a laptop as its primary controller. My issue is, I personally dislike these types of machines. I love tiny robots!
So I stripped apart one of my viable laptops, and viola! It's a really crappy, old Dell Inspiron PIII @ 700mhz with 256mb ram (which I'm going to upgrade). It has Windows XP, a 20gb(?) HDD, and DVD burner(detatched), Serial/Parallel/External keyboard+mouse ports and 3 USB(!) ^_^.
Unfortunately I managed to break the thin connector that runs from the back of the LCD to the mobo, but I might be able to source a replacement if I really want the screen on the bot (no screen = less power consumption though). I kept the base plastic simply because it mounts everything nicely and keeps it secure. I'm thinking of trimming away the plastic that extends out to the front for more room, however. The next issue will be how to power this via external battery. The Li-ion one is a HEAVY monster.