Tuesday, 29 September 2015

ArcTuRus v1.0

Ever wanted to build a robot?  Of course you have!  You could just "buy" one pre-done and job done, but where's the fun in that?

I was thinking..... robot interest flared at the end of the 90s and early 2000s but like the mobile industry it took a bit of a nosedive afterwards, just like the mobile industry.  The technology has now moved on leaps and bounds, what would be involved in building a robot that you could just bolt together and write a little bit of C code for?

Back in the day(late 80's), I got a GCSE in electronics, it interested me, but it was too low level.  I learnt the colour coding of resistors, making PCB boards, etc... but I'm a developer, not an engineer.  I don't "make" widgets, I "use" widgets to get a job done.  It took a few years for me to realise that.

Keeping that in mind, now that the Arduino has matured and the Arduino Shields have come on a long way, these have now become "widgets" that can be bolted together to achieve an end goal.

I decided it was well overdue that I should start to build a meaningful robot that could detect it's surroundings via ultrasonic and infrared sensors, use an object recognition camera to detect objects and react to them, as well as controlling wheel motors for movement and just for kicks have the robot "talk" and connect to the internet.  I had a week "vacation", therein, ArcTuRus v1.0 was born  :-)

So, I'm starting small and working my way to BIG.

This is part 1 of a multi-step guide on how you too, can use an Arduino to build a robot and connect to the internet and utilise NodeJS/Watson and associated services (such as Node Red) to do things you only dreamt about as a kid... well, it IS the 21st century after all, so isn't it about time these things became a reality?...

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