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“A wise robot once said to me through Serial.println- that robots teach us about ourselves.”

Fun Weekend Ahead

This weekend is going to be pretty fun for me :)

I have soooo many things to play with, it’s going to be wickedly hyper awesome!

I went to the RobotShop and got my Lynxmotion SSC-32, Soldering station, and some female jumper wires, and a force sensing resistor! :)

The SSC-32 is awesome! I tried it out the other day, and my MANOI is ALIVE! :) I made it move its head
The only thing though is that I’ll have to power all the servos externally – which is okay now as I got a 12V DC transformer to plug into the breadboard :)

The soldering iron is horrible :( I was (and still am) trying to solder the Wave Shield, but the solder won’t stick to the iron >:( So far it has taken me 3 hours (and counting) just to solder in the resistors. The iron doesn’t melt the solder, and the flux is GOOEY! It’s disgusting! I’m even trying lead solder (this stuff SUCKS) and it won’t work… going to try to sand the tip tomorrow, and see if it works better.

The old soldering iron literally exploded… so it’s in the garbage now.

I also bought a nintendo wii nunchuck (the accelerometer thing) to go with my WiiNunchuck Arduino adapters. I’ll be using it to control MANOI :) (and of course, many Processing programs)

I was playing around with the Fourier transform again today… and I somehow made it to morph time. It’s really freaky! I was recording sound, when my watch beeped. When I played back the sound (after the FFT alg) it was morphed… in a totally weird and unexplainable way XD kind of sped up, but also kinda moshed together…

This entire week I’ve been studying for the SAT. This pretty much involves me trying to sit in one place, focus on one thing, and not fall asleep/daydream for 4 ENTIRE HOURS! I just can’t stay focused that long… :( I make so many sleepy mistakes … I have absolutely no idea what to do. The real SAT is on October 4th (in 1 week) I’m not really in a panic as the test is so trivial and boring … 😛 I just can’t focus on one thing for more than 45 minutes! My brain is always in hyperdrive mode thinking about what ifs and whys… “Why exactly do they think this test evaluates your reasoning abilities” “What if they made this test interactive, like a game, on a computer?”

I’ve been asking what if and why a lot the past week… here’s some of the questions I can remember

What if time wasn’t measured in anything… but was just a continuous flow like a river
Why do we have to measure time?
Why do we always use graphs in two dimension? I don’t care about a squiggle function on a line… why can’t everything be graphed in 3 dimensions?
Why do we always round decimal points when it’s obvious it gives us inaccurate answers?
Why is the tinfoil on my lamp making high pitched noises like vibrations? Is it because of the heat… or did I just discover something I should look into further about light?
What if light had mass?
Why don’t we know what’s in/through a black hole?
What if we could make our own net of space and see how everything interacts with anything?
Why didn’t they put more corrector magnets into the LHC?
What if the computer isn’t monitoring enough information to really see what the Higgs is like?
What happens if they’re smashing the wrong particles together?
Why can’t they just model it on a computer?
Why is the LHC in a circle?
What would happen if it was in a spiral?
Why are my desks always messy?
What will happen when robots will become pets?
Why are people so judgemental about robots?
Why are robots stereotyped to be wirey and ugly?
What if the answer to better AI systems would be to create an “AI Internet” with many algs, and an API, to create a general AI?
What if cancer can be eliminated with the use of dandelions?
What if robots could code themselves and make better versions of their algorithms?
Why is random not random?
What if there were many robots in one square, and they were given random coordinates to navigate to and from? Would it be classified as swarm robots as eventually they will all converge?
What if I made a parrot robot that could read twitter feeds out loud, in a parrot voice?

So yeah… that’s pretty much the way I think all the time… I hardly can focus on one thing, ever!

Weeeee I can’t wait to get MANOI moving and waving this weekend!

7 CommentsLeave a Comment

  • Ron

    8 years ago

    It sounds like you might not be working with the right solder, or your iron isn’t hot enough. That lead-free solder won’t melt well until it gets about 650 degrees. The lead solder melts a lot lower.

    We use 0.032 / 21 gauge lead-free. For lead, we use Kester “44” rosin core, which is 0.031.

    If you have the right heat and small diameter solder, you should be flying through the joints. I did a Peggy recently (hundreds of joints) and each one took about a second.

  • Ron

    8 years ago

    Oh, one other thing: I’m not so sure you need to sand the tip down. You really don’t want solder to “stick” to the iron. The iron should be heating up the joint, which then “sucks” in the molten solder, if that makes any sense. Not like an eyedropper. :-)

  • Erin, the RobotGrrl

    8 years ago

    Noo! I’m using the toxic Lead Solder crap and it makes me woozy all the time- I HATE IT! And it still WON’T WORK!

    I’ll make a video to show how annoying this soldering iron is!

    (It’s driving me insane!!!)

  • Ron

    8 years ago

    It’s weird that the lead solder is giving you problems, we find the opposite–it’s a lot easier to work with. That’s not acid core, is it?

  • Erin, the RobotGrrl

    8 years ago

    Both solders are giving me problems :(

    The Lead solder is:
    High-Tech Rosin Core Silver Bearing Solder (nextech) 0.022″

    The non-Lead solder is:

    I’m making the video now Ron ^_^

  • Erin, the RobotGrrl

    8 years ago


    At first it was looking like I was using the wrong hand…

    then when I was trying to solder the headers in it got soooo hot, even when the solder joints were cold :S — If I used it on an IC it would have blown up…

  • Ron

    8 years ago

    The solder gauges looks good.

    The hot headers I can understand, since they will act like little heat sinks, “drawing” away the heat from the joint and onto themselves. They can be a bit of a drag to solder, you might have to use the highest heat level and be careful not to overheat the PCB itself. The headers can take a beating, but you don’t want to mess up the PCB.

    Do you have a cheap tool store (like Harbor Freight) in your area? They often sell little cross-over tweezers make in Pakistan. Cost just a couple of bucks. They are very handy for protecting parts while you are soldering, as they too act like heat sinks, drawing excess iron heat away from the part. Make sure they are cross-over–since they keep their jaws closed (clamped), leaving your hands free.

    See the one on the far right, they also make smaller ones:

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