Let's Make Robots!

Studying and working in the field of robotics

I'm in high-school now and I'm considering to study robotics and have a career in robotics. I guess it's what I'd like to do the most. What college programs and university programs should I take? What are the different career options in robotics? I think OddBot works for DAGU and I heard him say he loves his job (I never doubted he would, either). So how is your job like, OddBot? Any recommendations?

Great thanks to the whole LMR community

Home-base recharging

I have been brainstorming and learning a lot since the last ... err... 5 months or so and I have come up with a lot of ideas. However, I thought that, in order for a robot to be completely autonomous, the robot has to be able to recharge itself and I was wondering how I would be able to implement this ``home-base charger`` the robot can find within a reasonable range. I`m guessing I should somehow use infrared but I`m not sure. Any ideas? Anyone?


Does anyone use Roborealm for machine vision? I just want to know if it's worth buying it or if there is a free software of the same sort?

Parallax Incremental Rotary Encoder

I've found an awesome rotary encoder (I believe it was the smallest on Rootshop) but I have no idea how to use it? I believe there's an input, a ground and a signal pin, but I don't know how to configure it or anything. I'm going to be using it with an arduino.

I've digged the web and have found no documentation. Just sayin

Thanks ;)This thing is approximatively a 2,5 cm cube

Area mapping

I have (that is relative because I have not yet ordered my first parts from Robotshop) a PING ultrasonic sensor. I'll be having an arduino mini - though I'll no doubt buy something bigger after - and I wonder if I can efficiently make my upcoming rover (differentially driven, nothing special really) map it's surrounding area using a grid. Is it possible or will I run short on memory with the arduino mini? And more importantly, I need help with the code (I have 0 experience with code, though I have enough theory I guess...). Any suggestions are appreciated.