Main Site Documentation

FEZ Robot Kit - First Impressions


#1

I am building a browser controlled robot ( http://www.tinyclr.com/forum/1/934/ ), so I got a FEZ Mini Robot Kit.

Here are my impressions. First, I’ll list complaints (believe me, there are barely any).

  1. The demo application ( http://www.tinyclr.com/downloads/Mini/FEZMiniRobot-Demo.cs ), has a reference to the FEZ_Components.LED class. It would be good for new people, if the demo had a comment telling people where to find this class.

  2. Page 11 of the User Guide incorrectly refers to the 3x8mm flat screws as the 3x6mm flat screws. It would also be good if the picture of the Screw and Nut set on page 9 was an accurate depiction of what is actually in the set and marked what screw is what size. Some of them are similar and it was kind of difficult to tell what is what. Plus, the packet had way more screws (like at least triple the amount) than is described.

  3. My cat is still not impressed by the awesomeness of the technology in front of her nose.

Anyway, on to the good stuff.

  1. The kit was extremely easy to put together, even for a mechanically averse person like me. I took me about 10 minutes from opening to the box to the finished product.

  2. The motors are far more powerful than I anticipated. The robot kit won’t be chasing an antelope any time soon, but dang, it can move fast.

  3. The kit is actually a lot bigger than I anticipated. Which is good.

  4. “Driving” the robot driver is very easy. There aren’t a lot of methods and the ones that do exist make sense and are really responsive.

Anyway, job well done.
Tomorrow I’ll be connecting the WiFi module.


#2

Thanks for the positive impressions and pointing to the few minor fixes. I am sure GHI staff will be fixing these errors soon.

I hope you will keep satisfied with this product, but what I hope even more is that you keep us posted with your progress. Please make a lot of photos and videos and don’t forget to create a project page to receive bonus experience points ;D


#3

We will look into your comments and thanks for the great feedback. We look forward to seeing more


#4

[quote]Thanks for the positive impressions and pointing to the few minor fixes. These will be fixed soon.

I hope you will keep satisfied with this product, but what I hope even more is that you keep us posted with your progress. Please make a lot of photos and videos and don’t forget to create a project page to receive bonus experience points[/quote]

Sounds like you’re in the GHI staff now ? Congratulations, then :clap:


#5

Uh, I do not know why you respond like this? I am just being nice to a new member…?

We all know GHI / tinyclr crew always tries to correct errors as soon as possible, so this respond is nothing more then a way of telling this.

I love robots, and I always like to see new projects being posted. He even gets bonus points for it, so I try to encourage him to create photos and videos.

If you are looking for someone to “attack” by the way you respond to him, please find someone else. I do my best to help. If you are having a problem with my way of responding, or feel my response is inappropriate, please let me know. Thanks.


#6

I think “Foekie” feels that he is a big part of the community (and he defiantly is) and this is he responded just like if he is a GHI engineer. We honer this and your response was very nice but I think you slightly over did it with …

It really sounded like it is coming from GHI’s staff. Yes you are right we will fix them but such response can confuse new members.
You can say …

I do not think “Bec a Fuel” it trying to put anyone down but I think he was just surprised with the answer. Please continue to post and respond to other members and lets us put this behind us :slight_smile:


#7

Oh ! :o

I didn’t mean to attack you at all ! :hand: I appreciate your answers to people and your work. No doubt about this.

I hereby apologize if my post did hurt you, it wasn’t intended to :-[

It was simply the “tone” of your answer that made me think you were more involved in GHI than it looks like.
In your answer, you could easily replace the author Robert by Gus without changing anything else and it would be considered as an answer from GHI, to me.

Things like “These will be fixed soon” can’t be told by someone not deeply involved, I think. Hence my thinking of your “hiring” in GHI.
Btw, I don’t think that working for GHI is that bad, isn’t it ?

Once again, there was some misunderstanding, here. I do not want to attack you, nor anybody else here. Why would I do that, btw ? :o

I can’t remember exactly, but it seems that it’s the second time my purposes are not understood the way they should be :think:
I think that the few posts I still miss to reach the next experience step will stay at their current level… I don’t want to gain “experience” by posting such OT things.

Have a nice day.


#8

Alright Gus, the way you post your example makes me feel Bec is sort of right. I should have said it a little different.

I have corrected the sentence, sorry for the mix-up :slight_smile:

No problem Bec, this was a mistake on both sides. Let’s forget it and keep on making this community better, we are all part of it ;D

Neither do I :stuck_out_tongue:

Thanks both of you, I will try to rethink my responses to not mix-up GHI crew answers and community answers.


#9

@ rgleg. I agree. Some of the docs a bit fuzzy around the screws, etc. However, the kit does have enouph screws where it does not matter so much. Except for the motor where you can’t use a longer screw or it will push on motor with possible damage to mount if you start cranking. Other then that, you can just pick a screw that is long enouph.

On the Pro side:

  1. Super quick to get something going. Even fast then my first NXT tribot.
  2. Add some leds and sensors just as fast.
  3. Coding c#, imho, is easier then using nxt labview. With nxt, I still struggle with blocks, switches, and connector lines. Some of the side UI side effects get in the way more then they help. With c#, couple lines can replace many blocks. Granted, it helps if you know c# already.
  4. Adding a Wii nunchuck is almost a no-brainer add-on after your basic bot is setup and running.

Now just have to wish for generics, Linq, and Reactive Extentions in some vNext version. With flash size going up so fast, they can’t use 300K as a limit excuse any longer. I also worry about MSMF going free and open source. MS tends to cancel projects after they go free (i.e. MS Accounting, first virus checker, Money, etc)


#10

I am not overly worried about netmf’s future. They seem to be supporting things well - the team at GHI can comment equally I would guess about how they are supported (they always seem to respond quickly when someone identifies an issue).

Free AV - Microsoft Security Essentials. It’s relatively new, obviously its in everyone’s best interest to have 100% saturation of malware protection, so a good idea in my books.

I see the open source as an enabler for new features. No longer is it just what the netmf team want to include, if someone passionate and skilled contributes then things move forward. But I also like some of the other ideas people are putting forward, innovate on top of what is “core” (for example GHI’s one-wire support), and then some more open initiatives (JTAG on Panda in prep for enabling “tinkering” and self-porting)


#11

Brett. Agreed. I hope for more RD. I can see a lot of goodness in this space in future. I just noticed in last year they have been choping projects and people, and loss-leaders tend to stick out. I have been around enouph to see open source not exactly a plus in many cases and somewhat new to MS. Good in theory, but in no so much in practice. But lets hope for the best.