29 April 2012

Creating a Range Map

So, the first thing I though about for my swarm project, after getting through all the wifi tutorials (actually, I have another week to go, now that Dexter Industries Wifi Week 2 is out), is having my main, user controlled (or autonomous, using AI algorithms if necessary) be able to know it's surroundings. Now, I could use my NXTCam v3 and transmit a video feed to the user, but that would be an expensive option (okay, maybe on-board cameras are not expensive in the real world, but scaled to my project, they are expensive). In swarms, cheaper is better. So, I decided to try and use the ultrasonic sensor and create a "range map" of its surroundings. This would a much cheaper solution, although it sacrifices more user information. Nonetheless, I tried it out.

21 April 2012

Wifi Working

Well, after extensive emailing back and forth with the Dexter Industries guys, I was able to get my DI Wifi Sensor working. So, I will drop the project I posted last time to give more time back to the real project.

However, if anyone wanted to know how my last project was coming along, HERE is the code/LDD  for it.

For the robot, you'll need to modify it a little for the caster ball section, switch the light for a color sensor, and add a gyro sensor for more precise turning.

11 April 2012

New Project Flow

This is the flow chart I made for my next project. It will consists of 3 robots, each with a specialty, and will work together to achieve a goal (in this case, getting the red object).
Here is an LDD for my first robot, with the Light and US sensors (the ball acts as a caster that should be under the NXT between the motors):

Again, the files for the LDD are available HERE

06 April 2012

Running a Maze-Sensor-LESS

The joy in swarm robotics is that many cheap robots can run together to achieve a goal. These "cheap" robots do not have many complex sensors and cameras because each receives information from the other, or does a separate task. One may have a camera to relay positions. The other merely as wheels, yet acts as checkpoints. The third will have simple claws to grab things. Alone, they are useless; together they are a remarkable team.
See THIS video to understand what I am talking about.

Why the nice intro? Well, it was a segway to my project I just completed. It is comprised of two robots: 1 with a UltraSonic sensor, 1 sensor-less. The first completes the maze, all the while sending information to the clone robot about movements and turns. Then, the clone runs it, no problems. See for yourself:

Here is a pic of the robot with the US sensor. If you see my previous post, you can see the clone (it is the same model).

The code for this project is available HERE
That about wraps it up. Till my next project.