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Vgo: Presentation at Olin

Nov 10, 2010   //   by sam   //   Blogs, Outreach & Media  //  1 Comment

Want to see the newest thing in video conferencing? How about a robot that a user can control from anywhere in the world, and get a live video feed? That is pretty much what the Vgo robot is summed up into a sentence. Ben, Aaron, and I attended a IEEE conference at Olin collage last night; an event that we go to every second Tuesday of the month. This months speaker was the CTO and one of three founders of the Vgo video conferencing robot, Tim Root. He spoke about how his robot worked, why someone would need a Vgo robot, and then let the audience test the robot out. He even let the 3 kids from our team test the robot out, which was a lot of fun. Driving around the Vgo robot is pretty much like being in the other room; you “become” the Vgo ‘bot. Although the view angle for the camera could be a little bit better, the video feed is amazing. Ben (being a computer programmer) tried to find how delayed the video feed would be, and he couldn’t beat the camera feed. All 3 of s would like to thank Vgo for speaking at this event, and IEEE for hosting the event. Hope to see you in the future (maybe using a Vgo robot?).

Getting stuff done

Oct 28, 2010   //   by sam   //   Blogs, Robot & Team  //  No Comments

Ahhhh...our first robot

Our goal today was to play around with Tetrix, and RobotC programming environment. We also had to goal of revamping our engineering notebook to what you see today. We decided as a group to write our notebook as more of a blog entry, then a bullet point list of what we did. Although, we did have some objection that each entry might be to long, or tedious, we decided that it would work just fine. Splitting up into groups really helped us get more done then usual; Aaron and Ben. started working on programming, Nathan and I started building a Tetrix robot, and Ben. worked on a new engineering notebook design. We started out working on a new design based off of a picture in the FTC manual. Nathan and I almost finished putting it together by the end of the period, but we didn’t have a soldering iron to use for the battery connections to the motor controller. Aaron and Ben. I worked on programming, and were able to use the ultrasonic sensor with the NXT motors. I was surprising to see how fast people caught on to the programming language. Also, approximately 30 minutes ago, we received an email that Solid Works finally came through and made the FTC parts for our team! Another to-do item off my list.

Building the Obstacles

Oct 24, 2010   //   by sam   //   Blogs, Robot & Team  //  No Comments

More stuff done :)

Yeah! We finished the obstacles! We had some of our pieces cut at home depot, since we would rather not have our fingers cut off. But, most of them were cut by the all knowing and amazing Jerry. He cut most of our pieces on the table saw, since we were unable to use it. Although, we did have to drill, screw, and cut some other pieces. We started by putting the field tiles in place that we got this past week, and we needed to cut the edges off the  perimeter tiles. That didn’t take to long, but it did take 3 ex-acto knives which caused some concern with our parents. We then moved on to use the power drill, 70’s hand drill, and saws to cut the piano hinges 2 x 4’s and mountain. The mountain seems to have the correct dimensions now, it fit into place on our board. Just in case, we did make it out of plywood. Since we received the kit last week, we are hoping to start building and programing this week. Videos and pictures of test robots to come!

Getting the kit

Oct 18, 2010   //   by sam   //   Blogs, Robot & Team  //  No Comments

New stuff

New stuf!!!

Finally! We just got our kit, and it is AMAZING. We opened up the box to find a copy of Labview, RobotC, and to big heavy boxes. One contained the Tetrix kit, and the other the full LEGO Edu. kit! Sadly, we didn’t find the color sensor with the LEGO Edu. kit. We didn’t get to play with it then because we have yet to get a computer to install on, but we are hoping to get one soon. We worked on strategy today. Can’t really talk about it, because we aren’t sure what we are going to do yet. We are hoping to build a omni-directional robot, but we aren’t sure yet. We do have a design for the baton holder, but it isn’t final and its only in rough aluminum and barely works. Prototype #2 should be up and running soon.

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