My first robot is done (for now!) :)
It's based on the 'start here' robot, but I kept the darlington driver, did not use a servo, added speaker and led and wrote the code from scratch.
For the body I ended up using a small tupperware container from the dollar store. I needed something that would offer at least minimal protection from my two year old son. He's generally not violent with objects, but he is very curious.
The plastic was a bit of a pain to deal with. Cracks very easily (it did when I poked the hole for the LED). However, I'm not terribly concerned. The goal wasn't for Tubs to look perfect, but rather it was for him to be assembled and functional.
All the connections are done using leader pins and the construction is done with double sided tape. Since this is the first robot I fully expect to change it, reconfigure and reuse parts as I go along. For the next bot I'll probably do something a bit more permanent for rubustness' sake.
Tubs roams around occasionally making little beeps and chirps and avoids obstacles. When he's close to something he turns until the IR field is clear and when he's much too close to something he backs up and beeps like a truck. Most of the 'features' were added keeping my son in mind, who is currently obsessed by trucks. Flashing lights are huge too, so of course Tubs had to have his own little flashing LED. Thankfully it was an instant hit. My son loved it and did not want me to turn it off. Ever.
I wrote the code without using the 'pause' command. Tracking states takes up more variables and debugging time, but I think it opens up the possibility for more interesting behavior. It also seems more 'natural' when sound, lights and movement can happen independently and simultanously.
I don't think Tubs is awesome, but I had a lot of fun learning while making him. I think thanks to him I am forever hooked to robotics.
I'm hoping to add
pictures and videos tomorrow :)