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by Dennis Clark
Our resident expert on all things robotic is merely an email away.
Tap into the sum of allhumanknowledgeand get your questions
answered here! From software algorithms to material selection,
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Istart this column knowing that Critter Crunch is only a short time away, and I need to get more testing for Silver Surfer going to make him more competitive. All the best intentions swallowed up by constantly being distracted ...
This month's question nicely coincides with my previous observation that
walking robots are so "in" that I'm going to concentrate on them in the lab. There
are two kinds of walkers that I'm attracted to myself: Humanoid RoboOne/Real
Steel™ style robots and Mech Warrior™ style robots. Both are totally cool as far as
I'm concerned. Lucky for us, they are both very buildable with today's technology!
I am a workshop hacker and don't have access to all of the knowledge and
technology of the university projects, but I have Google and I'm not afraid to use
it! So, while I am never going to get to the fancy coordinated flying quadcopters,
I feel that a Mech walking around shooting the cat with LEGO dart cannons is
not out of my league! How about you? What are your projects?
Regardless, robots are fun, cool, educational, instructional, and, let’s face it,
part of our society and mindset. They are here to stay! I drop into my kid's
classrooms every year with robots and the children are totally into the discussion,
especially the "hands-on" aspects when I let them play with the robots and get
ideas. This year, a couple groups of kids made their own line follower mats to
guide my little line follower robot. The bug bots are always a big hit and cause
lots of squealing in the class when they go stomping around.
Now, on with the questions!
motion files that can’t be changed.
You then need to go to the
“custom” mode which makes
everything a lot more difficult to do.
(Getting a legged robot to walk is
difficult!) The HUNO robot has 16
degrees of freedom (DOF) and moves
pretty well for a biped with no lateral
hip servos. Check out some videos on
www.robobuilder.net for examples.
The manual is big on
construction, but very, very thin on
how to use its software. The
www.robobuilder.net site has no
software updates newer than 2009,
but does have firmware updates up
to 2. 34.
Q. I have a RoboBuilder Creative kit that I’ve had for three years and have just
gotten around to experimenting with
it again. I’ve been working with the
Motion Builder and Action Builder
tools to make my own “moves,” but
the manual is not very clear about
how to build custom motions. I am
not having any luck at all with making
an Action file. Can you help me
Robiwan Kenobi? You may be my only
A. I’ve had a RoboBuilder 5720T (Figure 1) kit for a while now, and have built a few new
motions for it. You didn’t specify
which kit you had, so I’ll assume that
you have the Creator 5710K — the
“basic black” one (Figure 2). (If you
are interested in a good humanoid
biped for a minimum of money, it is
hard to beat this kit, which is typically
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