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Fez TurtleBot


#1

I recently received my first Fez Domino board and set to work to do something interesting with it.

This was a really fun weekend project… A turtle robot that runs a kind of Logo language. This uses PWM to run two servo motors and USB Host and an optical mouse for position sensing.

http://realiser3.spaces.live.com/?_c11_BlogPart_BlogPart=blogview&_c=BlogPart&partqs=cat%3DTurtleBot

Still a work in progress - so please comment and suggest new ideas for this!


#2

Very neat.

Have you thought about literally making your own language and storing the plain text files on an SD card?


#3

Very nice, and taking advantage of the emulator too :slight_smile:


#4

Smart idea! I like it :smiley:


#5

Thanks :slight_smile:

I have considered running Logo straight from SD card. It’s a matter of simply interpreting the commands from a file - just like the original Turtle.

Initially I thought it would be nicer to teach the child how it works to program something in the coding window, run it, see it do something in real life and then debug the program. In retrospect it’s way too much to ask of an 11 year old with no programming experience (yet). What is nice about the original Logo concept is to do things interactively - so saying “Forward 50” does it straight away. So my next goal is to set up wireless comms between TurtleBot and the PC so you could issue such commands over a “terminal”.

It will definately be cool to insert an SD card and see it run the program too - so I’ll definately do that (one day when there’s enough hours in the night!)

I currently have a technical problem someone here could perhaps help with…

I power the TurtleBot from a 4.8V battery pack connected to the 5V pin on the Fez Domino via a diode. I thought this would be OK because that line runs through a 3.3V regulator “downstream” for the processor. The lights come on, but it doesn’t seem to run the app. When I connect USB, I get the “connect” sound it starts running the program immediately. Do you think the problem is with power or with .Net MF wanting to be connected to the PC to run the program?

If I use the 12V input, I think I’ll need 6.2V at least because the 5V LDO regulator will drop 1.2V so I was trying to avoid that.

Can Fez Domino be powered from 4.8V NiMH? It it safe to 6V (Alkaline) on the 5V line as an alternative?


#6

4.8 is not enough. You need 6V or more


#7

[quote]Initially I thought it would be nicer to teach the child how it works to program something in the coding window, run it, see it do something in real life and then debug the program. In retrospect it’s way too much to ask of an 11 year old with no programming experience (yet). What is nice about the original Logo concept is to do things interactively - so saying “Forward 50” does it straight away. So my next goal is to set up wireless comms between TurtleBot and the PC so you could issue such commands over a “terminal”.

It will definately be cool to insert an SD card and see it run the program too - so I’ll definately do that (one day when there’s enough hours in the night!)[/quote]

Yeah, this is a little much to expect from a 10yr old, although I really like the remote control idea. Maybe you could have two parts to the “IDE”. One part to use visual blocks, and the other part to program it “normally”. The part with the building blocks would output to the “normal” part so a kid could see how his visual program goes together without typing any code.


#8

That’s a nice idea. Very similar to the Lego Mindstorms way of visual programming?

How about this? Use a UI with a “joystick interface” (forward, back, left right) and a text console. You basically push the button in the direction and enter a number of steps on the calculator and execute. On the console it writes out the “program” to do what you asked (e.g. Forward 50, LeftTurn 90) - and you can modify the program and get it to do different things. You basically program by example.

I can probably even use the MF emulator for this UI - if for no other reason than it’s fun - and maybe one day I can make a portable remote console for it with another Fez.


#9

That would also work. Just make it so it’s very clear where the “source code” is.


#10

I like your Bot.
It looks like F1 racing car too.