Let's Make Robots!

SparkFun vs SPARC. Trademark infringement or rabid lawyers?

Everyones favourite supplier of robot goodies receives a cease and desist letter from SPARC over trademark infringement. Read the whole thing here.

SPARC really have no idea do they? If you have ever ordered goods from SparkFun before and wouldn`t like to see them forced to change their name by a big company send a quick email to sparcinfo@sparc.org saying what you think of this. Don`t forget, be polite, we are all adults.

Motors and Tracks

For my next project, I want to use actual motors (I have used continous servos to this point). I also want to have tracks instead of wheels for this project. My question is whether or not the motors I want to use will connect to the tracks I want to use. I want to use this Tamiya Track Kit seen here http://www.robotronic.co.nz/images/TAM-008-000.gif and I want to use the Solarbotics motors like seen here http://www.robotshop.us/solarbotics-gm9-gear-motor-9.html .

Sampler board with microphone and speaker

Can anyone give me a working link for a "Sampler board with microphone and speaker" that is needed for the Yellow Drum Machine (I live in the USA). The link on the tutorial will not wok for me. I have googled it but the only items I find are well over $400USD.

Thanks in advance!

Trouble connecting Vcc2 to SN754410

I've tried looking around a bit and expect this to be a fairly basic question, but nonetheless I still can't get it to work. Basically I have an arduino connected to a SN754410 motor driver powering a lego motor. This all works fine until I try to use a second power supply (9V battery in this case) instead of the arduino's 5V output. Here's the current setup:


SN754410 Test LayoutNote that the arduino is running off of USB power.


Intoroducing R-Dev-Ino

R-Dev-Ino is a Robotic Development Arduino compatible board, easily stackable. If you want to build a more complex robot, you need to modularize it. Instead of designing specific boards for each module, I have designed a multipurpose configurable board with a small prototyping area and an I2C connector made so the boards can be stackable side by side, one on top of the other like this:

Location, location, location!

Hello everyone!

How to detect ghosts and spirits ect?

I just saw in a crap film this guy who had some thingey with wich he could detect spiritual activity, you know the kind. "Oh there is a high level over here now.."

Now, since I started building robots, whenever I see gadgets like that, I know how to make them. Only I do not know what sensor to use.

What sensor would one use? Seriously? I would like to try to build one!


       Hello, Well basically i'm a graduate with biology as my core subject. I had absolutely zero Knowledge of electronics but have now managed to know a little bit from this wonderful website. Please suggest me some refference ebooks for basic code programming.

       I also have a broken RC toy car with two functional motors and an SM6135W microcontroler on its circuit board. Unfortunaltely I couldn't find its remote control. 

       Please feel free to suggest what I can make out of this as my first robot. 

Total beginner with a PIC question

Right so Im a trainee at the university as a technician..


Work's have provided me with a University made microcontroller board with a PIC18F4520 on it...


Im a total newb with electronics and Im finding it hard getting to grips with this board, I really want to follow the tutorial with the 85$ robot and for that it requires a PICAXE board...


Touch Screens: Suggestions, Recommendation, Opinions wanted

I'm getting into Visual interfacing with my AVR projects and I am selecting a Touch screen to prototype with.

So far I have narrowed it down to 2 different ones that are within my price range.

The [url=http://www.liquidware.com/shop/show/TSL/TouchShield+Slide]TouchShield Slide[/url] , which I could use with an AVR running the Arduino software and bootloader, seems simple to use but whimmpy
- OR -
The [url=http://store.earthlcd.com/ezLCD-103-ezLCD103_2?sc=7&category=297]ezLCD-103[/url] which seems a bit more "robust and powerful" than the other.

Step Motors

Hi to everybody:

My name is Rafael Lezama, I'm live in  Puebla, Pue. México.
I am electronics engineer and I like a lot your web.
I have a question, I hope someone can help me.
I have some steps motors but I haven't found information about them.
I could already identify some cables, but I can't make run them.
I send some technical data and photographs of these engines, and hope can help me.

Do robots have personality?

Many sci-fi shows and books depict robots with personality, sometime as the result of an accident like the movie "Short Circuit", sometimes intentionally as in the movie "I, Robot". Now that I am working for Dagu I have discovered that even simple robots demonstrate personality.

Hexapod walking algorithm

Hi everyone, I am working on a hexapod, so far I have constructed one leg and now I am working on the programming.


Is this something to bookmark? Anyone have experience with bildr yet? Does it apply to LMR as well?

[edit: LMR-II does support vimeo embedding!]

LMR keyrings and other merchandise

During my time as a member of LMR I have seen the odd discussion about LMR T shirts, caps etc.  Jack would like to help promote LMR and is looking at producing some keychains.

The minimum order is 300 and it cost about $600 USD to have the mold made. We would sell them at cost ($2 USD) or give one out with every order from an LMR member. We are not doing this to make money but to promote LMR as the best robot site on the web.

Below is the design Jack proposes. What do you think? Does LMR need or even want merchandise?

How far can you get in parts hunt?

Just an hour ago I have disjointed this little peaceful innocent birdy, just for a little switch as I ran out of them and did not want to stop my robot building proccess! I'm a feelingless monster...


The question of the day:

How far did you ever get in robot building fever? What dirty deeds you did and what sacrifices you put on altar of robot building?


In System Battery Charge Monitoring

Good day all,


I appologize if this has been asked before but I am building a robot that is starting to have what I would consider a complex power system with three different Ni-MH batteries powering different systems. This section of the robot is controlled via and Arduino which talks to the main robot "Brain" a ARM Cortex-M3 processor. What I need to be able to do is check the charge level on these three cells so that the robot knows how much power is remaining.

Thumb Joystick with Basic Stamp

I'm trying to interface the joystick from Sparksfun with the BS2 , using the RCTIME function.





Using the attached schematic, I'm only able to detect a reading on one side of the joystick (down & right) & nothing on the other side. however, if i connect the Vcc to the Vert & Hor pins, I'm able to detect all four directions. But this also means that I can't use the Select button.


I Don't Get the Xmos Environment...

Okay, so programming the thing will eventually break into my mind. I'll get it eventually. It's the whole environment that's got me thinking I'm in way over my head. I don't get the environment. Any tips from seasoned Xmos Veterans?

Sharps, Sonar and a dead horse...

This is a dead horse, but...

Again, I am still sick of my sharp sensors. I am looking at  the LV-Max-Sonar(s) EZ(x) sensors as an upgrade... These are the "single-eye" sorta sonar sensors.

Open Question:

Has anyone played with these? Plus and minus for the output options (serial, an., pulse)? Is there clean data?  Etc. Etc.

Gimmie what you got.