Posts Tagged ‘2012’
Last night was the final countdown for the RoboBrrd Indiegogo campaign, we surpassed our stretch goal!
Big thanks to all the new and old friends of RoboBrrd, for backing the project and/or spreading the word!
We will be keeping everyone in the loop as to what is happening, and we will be posting pics and vids of the behind the scenes action on twitter/facebook/g+, so you can follow RoboBrrd!
If you have any questions about RoboBrrd feel free to ask them!
It is extremely exciting to be able to get RoboBrrd in the hands of even more people now. I can’t wait to see what people will be making with them!
YIPEE WOOT WOOT CHIRP CHIRP BEEP BLOOP WHIRR SQUAWK!
WOOOOHOOOOO!!! We did it! RoboBrrd is fully funded!
Thanks everyone who has funded, and those who have spread the word! This is fantastic! There are over one million fireworks going off in my head right now!
But let’s not stop here… time to soar further! Fwooosh!
If we meet Stretch Goal #1, we’ll add in:
• 1 Piezo speaker to each RoboBrrd Kit (make chirping sounds!)
• 1 Customized ‘mood changing’ pencil (plan taking over the world by RoboBrrds, using this pencil)
• 1 Special not-seen-before RoboBrrd token for the occasion (hint: it will have lots of drawings of stars on it!)
This will happen if we reach: $15,494
It’s possible, we can definitely reach it! Plus, when it is reached, then there will be another Stretch Goal that we can aim for.
This is a great opportunity to try and get even more people interested in robotics. Help make it happen!
Thanks everyone, more updates coming soon!
Maker Faire New York was an incredible amount of fun! Our table consisted mainly of three RoboBrrds, Seagull, Impy, and Camouflage.
The kids really enjoyed interacting with the RoboBrrds. With Impy, the NFC hats interaction trick never gets old. I love watching how the younger kids are able to connect the hat to the action what the RoboBrrd is doing, then try the different hats and see what they do.
We started off Maker Faire with Education Day. This day is actually my ultimate favourite, mainly because it is really structured with kids going around to the tables and being very polite when asking questions.
The response from the kids and educators was great. It was really nice to have them interact with all the RoboBrrds, and be inspired by the robots. One of the observations that stuck out to me is that with RoboBrrd, the girls asked more questions than the boys. I’m not entirely sure why this is the case just yet, either the boys thought it was too easy and weren’t interested, or the girls were interested and wanted to figure out how they can make one.
This year it took place inside the big blue room, aka the grande hall. This room rocks and makes RoboBrrd look all sciencey.
For the big day on Saturday and Sunday, we were located in the Central Pavillion, lower level, nearest to the staircase as people finished climbing down. This was a really awesome spot and it gained a lot more attention than being in the little room in the back did last year.
Here is how our table was set up:
^ pic from jbc
Seagull RoboBrrd was acting as the stress test for the kit version. To interact with it, you have to shake it. So I was handing it over to kids who would then shake the RoboBrrd all around, grabbing onto its wings and such. It never broke! Seagull RoboBrrd lasted through Maker Faire. This is great news
Impy over here could interact via the hats and the iPad. I had a switch so that I could toggle what mode it was in. The iPad communication worked flawlessly, and the hats always triggered a great response from the kids.
Next up was Camouflage RoboBrrd (named because it is almost the same shade of green felt as the table cloth– thanks for the name idea Windell!). This RoboBrrd used a really simple way to interact via a distance sensor. If you move close enough to it, then it will act hyper. Either way, it does a random action every 2 seconds or so. This one was made at the last minute on Friday, so a big thank you to Chris for the distance sensor!
It was great that there were many people interested in many different detailed aspects of RoboBrrd. There were some that were really interested by the iPad aspect, CAD, EDA, etc. I had my iPhone displaying the Autodesk 360 model of RoboBrrd, and also had the model displayed on paper (from Maker Faire Bay Area 2012!).
Another great thing was having the pieces for the kit there. Some kids actually even started building up a RoboBrrd just from looking at the CAD model on the iPhone! It was pretty cool. A really great way to illustrate how the RoboBrrd can be built up.
Laser cut artwork is always a hoot. Here are two examples of that:
One of my highlights was seeing Jeri again (she’s a big inspiration for me), meeting even more people I knew online but not in person, goofing around with my friends, meeting more friends, waving to all my friends. Basically, just being with all my friends! It’s so cool to have friends
Speaking of friends, check out macetech’s glasses on RoboBrrd! SWEEEEEET!
There were a lot of great instances of funny interactions with the people who came up to my table. My favourite is when I tell the kids about the robots, say that Seagull RoboBrrd has to be shaken to work, the kids reach out to pick it up, then the parents say ‘NO don’t touch!’. I always laughed and remarked about who was actually listening.
The craziest moment was on Sunday when the rain hit. Everyone swarmed inside and it was completely insane but totally fun! Actually it was thanks to Luis who popped over and watched my table for a bit while I escaped for a few moments on Sunday.
The crazy part… when I came back, there was a red ribbon on the table? What is this? It was an Educators Choice Award! Wow, this is a pretty big honour for RoboBrrd and I. We try really hard to get more people interested in robotics with the cute and cuddly nature of RoboBrrd. Having our efforts up to that point recognized by Maker Faire was amazing. It does truly mean a lot.
When I brought home the ribbons, all of the RoboBrrds gathered for a group shot around the original RoboBrrd:
We’re still going to try and spread the joy of robotics even more. With the RoboBrrd kit finished and coming out at some point in the near future, I’m really interested in seeing how well it will take off.
We had a lot of support from numerous people at Maker Faire giving out some interesting things. Thank you to everyone! Notably, thanks Chris Connors for the ‘Fashioning Technology’ book, which will hopefully teach me how to make the soft e-textile sensors that I want to put on RoboBrrd! Thanks Joey for the free kit, this is a really generous action as it does cost a lot of money to give out a kit like that! And thanks to Kevin Osborn for the components for some of the RoboBrrd Brain Board build. Thanks Brett for the useless machine! Also thanks to my friend from RedBearLabs for the BLE shield.
There are so many more that I can go on and on about for ages! Thanks for the goodies, I really appreciate it, and I will make something with them!
^ pic from jbc
Maker Faire NY was fantastic! Thank you to everyone who made this adventure possible. Special thanks to Andrew & family for letting RoboBrrd and I stay over, Andrew (clothbot) for driving RoboBrrd & I back safe and sound. Thanks mpng for bringing me some food, I probably would have passed out if it wasn’t for food!
Last but not least, thanks to the person who made it all possible by donating some last minute funds! To think that we almost didn’t make it to Maker Faire. This was an amazing journey!
I’m looking forward to sharing the latest news about RoboBrrd with everyone. Stay tuned!
This year for Open Hardware Summit I lucked out with being accepted as a speaker, demo presenter, and poster presenter!
^ pic from @GrishinRobotics
As a speaker, I presented a delightfully short presentation titled ‘Sharing the Inspiration with Robot Kits’. It was shorter than the allotted time (3 mins out of a given 5 mins), and I was entirely frightened (compared to my SecondConf talk a few days ago where I was completely calm). The reaction on Twitter was quite nice, and I do recall people clapping at the end of the talk.
^ pic from @LittleTinkerCo
The recording of the talk will most likely be up on YouTube later on at some point. I’ll be sure to post about it when it is up. In the meantime, if you want you can find it somewhat near the end of this ustream recording.
With a short talk such as this one, I figured the only way to leave the audience with something memorable would be a quote. But you know, using someone else’s quote is so boring, so I created my own quote of a quote:
Once a wise robot told me via Serial.println that Robots teach us about ourselves.
The presentation is up on SlideShare here.
The demo table was fun. It was great to be able to answer some more detailed questions about RoboBrrd. We had all the RoboBrrds working there!
This robot here loves to be all swaggy with its awesome badge from 2011!
The posters were a great addition to the demos. Here was the RoboBrrd and Robot Party poster!
Here are the posters digitally:
There was definitely a big difference from last year to this year on my end. Since OHS 2011, I participated in Montreal Startup Weekend, and also the International Startup Festival, so I sort of had a clue now of what some of the people were talking about this year. Yet, some of it was still beyond my comprehension at this point. OHS is an interesting conference because of all the multiple disciplines, combined with the enthusiasm!
I’m looking forward to next year already, since I will hopefully learn even more before then, and be able to participate in the discussions more intelligently.
Until then, thank you to the organizers and volunteers for making a really nice day! It was really fun to meet everyone and it was a great environment!
Woohoooo! I finally had the opportunity to visit Adafruit HQ! Back on Sunday October 21, 2007 was when I ordered my first Arduino Duemilanove from them, and then later became actually interested in electronics! Their tutorials have helped me along the way, so it was totally a blast to go there and see them in human form again, check out their pick and place machine, say hello to the Adabot character, and learn even more!
The Adabot puppet is really interesting. It is fabulous looking in real life. With Adabot, they are taking the approach that robots are friends, which is really nice! Just like RoboBrrd! They can both be friends!
The pick and place machine… wowza, I was amazed to see it in person. Think of all the technical details that have to go in to a machine like this! Vision, programming, mechanical! There are trays and reels from which it can take the parts from. It places the pieces on the board from checking on its vision system. Plus, it even knows when it drops a component. Not only all of this, but your circuit creations can be functional in seconds rather than hours of soldering. It’s just wicked!
RoboBrrd wants a pick and placed brain some day…
ladyada is an inspiration, and the pick and place machine is stellar!
After the tour was done, they let me choose stickers! I kind of went out of control, but check out how great the RoboBrrd travelling case looks now! Thanks for the stickers Adafruit
In return for the visit, I said I would make some sort of Adabot head with servos. I’m probably going to revise this idea into some sort of goofy project enclosure to hide your Arduino project in, and it will also have servos for the antennas. Well, more on this later since there’s a lot of pre-existing work to get done before a next project.
Hackerspace passport was STAMPED!
Thanks Adafruit for the tour! It was a blast!
SecondConf was a great experience! I spent the weekend learning and taking in a lot of useful knowledge about software and also hardware!
The most I learnt about was Bluetooth Low Energy from @macisv (Bob Kressin) and @bradlarson (Brad Larson). They are doing some really spiffy things with the technology. Not only is it going to have uses that can benefit our day to day lives, but it will be great for hobby uses and research.
Bob actually gave me a BLE module to play around with, and I have one of the shields from RedBearLabs from Maker Faire now as well, so I cannot wait to test it out! I’ll probably have to rent an iPod Touch for a weekend to test out the apps on it, but hey better than nuttin! Better than MFi! (That there in the pic is also a book that I won from the puzzle contest!)
I gave a talk on Apps for Arduino and RoboBrrd! You can view the slides on my webpage here, or on SlideShare here. There was a demo afterwards where I showed off RoboBrrd, the laser cut pieces, and also the boards.
I was quite pleased with this talk, since it was 40 minutes long I was able to explain everything in detail. People clapped afterwards, and the response on twitter was good, so hopefully people enjoyed it and learned something new!
^ pic by Kevin Mitchell
The demo worked great, except Impy had a little bit of stage-fright batteries at the beginning. I’m glad that I left the demo to after the whole talk was finished, because then people could come up and ask questions!
^ pic by Kevin Mitchell
This pic is funny, apparently RoboBrrd does not know how microphones work yet.
^ pic by Kevin Mitchell
It was interesting how often the word ‘design’ was used during the conference, mainly because it’s important, but it also has a lot of different contexts. From SecondConf I learned that design could mean anything from the user interface of the app, to accessibility, to behind the scenes physics formulas. Well, it seems kind of obvious now, but it’s just like design is everywhere. Not just CAD or EDA or UI, but how you do whatever you’re doing!
One of the perks of the conference being in Willis tower was going up to the Sky Deck and being totally scared out of your brains! I’m not usually a person scared of heights, but when you step onto the open glass, your mind plays tricks on you and you think that there is no glass- that you would be falling. It was pretty crazy kneeling down to take a picture of RoboBrrd like this:
It’s just so crazy to be that tall up off the ground!
The organizers were really great! The food was good, the pop was good, and even the tea was good! The pizza there was pretty crazily three dimensional too. Amy was awesome, and tried her best to rescue me when I was stranded at ORD and I only had access to Twitter through a poopy touch screen public computer. In this pic is David and I, he was really cool too!
^ pic by Kevin Mitchell
As you can tell, I was pretty happy to be at SecondConf! I’m looking forward to trying to go next year. The size is small enough that you get to meet everyone at least once, and learn about what they make etc. It’s just an excellent way to learn pearls of wisdom from other developers who are as experienced as you, if not more!
^ pic by Kevin Mitchell
It was great meeting many new friends at SecondConf, and I’m really looking forward to what everyone is going to make in the future!
Join us at the Open Hardware Summit 2012! We will be giving a talk, doing a poster presentation, and also demoing RoboBrrd.
Our talk will be during the Hardware & Materials session, somewhere in between 11:30 and 1:00! It is called: Sharing the Inspiration with Robot Kits! Check out the description here. It’s only 5 minutes long, but I aim to leave people more inspired anyway!
When building a robot, transitioning from using accessible resources to designing a kit version is often times very challenging. One of the underlying motivations to tackle this challenge is the ability to share your inspiration with more people. This talk will discuss reasons to jump in and design a kit version, and how doing so will benefit the community. It is intended primarily for those who have not had the experience with designing their own kit, but can also be beneficial for experts to communicate their lessons learned as well.
Our demo is about RoboBrrd of course! Look for D7, and that will probably be us. You will be able to check out the new Seagull RoboBrrd, as well as Impy RoboBrrd, and see what some of the kit pieces will look like. For more info see here.
RoboBrrd is a robotic bird character that has an entertaining personality, and can interface with virtual learning applications. It is designed as a do-it-yourself kit, providing an introductory experience into the world of robotics engineering. This demo will showcase the intractability of the RoboBrrds, including feeding it virtual fruit, and putting different hats on RoboBrrd to change its behaviours!
Our poster is about the Robot Party. Look for P3, and it will be it. Alternatively, it may be located at the same place where our demo is. From the poster you will be able to learn about the Robot Party, and how it can inspire many robot builders. Check out more details here.
The Robot Party is a weekly Google+ hangout that brings together robot builders to share their robots, knowledge, and ask questions. This poster will showcase screenshots and descriptions of various moments featuring makers who have created robots and shared their knowledge on the Robot Party. It will be fun and colourful to look at, capturing the spirit of many of the Robot Party hangouts!
I’m looking forward to what the badge will be for OHS this year. Will it be tasty? Blinky? Who knows! Also hoping for some really nice freebies, because I want to build more crazy robots!
Looking forward to meeting everyone at OHS and learning more about the open hardware world. If you see us there, feel free to stop by and say hello!