R.U.D.I. Project Update

Just wanted to give you an update on my robot project.  The EZ-Builder developer kit is turning out to be working quite nicely.  The different components in the developer app makes it easy to add controls to the servos and accessories.  Let me break down what I am hoping to have by EerieCon in Sept-Oct.

Mark I

  • Wheels in the feet to have it move forward, backwards and turn like a tank
  • Head to rotate 90 degrees left and right, 60 degrees up and 30 degrees down
  • 3×3 LED grid for each eye.
  • Camera to get a first person view to drive
  • Talk/Beep to interact with the people
  • Interface on my tablet to control it

Biggest problem I am having is the speech functions.  I could type it and get the bot to say it but that only works on the laptop and not the tablet.  Thought about having a microphone that I could talk into and it would come out of the robot speaker, but there is no means to do that.  Thought about having it beep like R2-D2 or BB-8 and I just press buttons on the app to make the noises or setup a chat bot interface with a microphone and speaker.

The problem with the chat bot is I will have to hack the brain and solder on a speaker and microphone and make the chat bot with Pandora Bots.  With Pandora bots though I have to make the responses for questions people might ask.

If I finish with Mark I will make a Mark II?  I have thought about adding some of the following items.

Potential Mark II upgrades

  • Arms with possible pinchers for hands
  • Flashlight
  • Cigarette Lighter
  • Drink Tray
  • Laser Pointer
  • MP3 player
  • Phone Charger

The cigarette lighter, flashlight, laser pointer and phone charger would be on arms would extend and retract from the body like R2-D2, and the drink tray would attach to the arms.  The ideas are endless but time and effort aren’t, so I think I will keep it to Mark I.



I am a member of Interlock Rochester, which is a local hacker space.  People there are working on projects and I though that I make something that is fun.  So I made a Festivus pole like mentioned in an episode of Seinfeld.  The pole is supposed to be unadorned.  I started with a aluminum shower curtain rod with a flange and some 1/2 inch thick MDF.IMG_20151208_191548748

Then I cut the MDF to an 8 inch square as the base.IMG_20151208_192737682

Attached the flange to the center of the board.IMG_20151208_202034630

Put some electrical tape to the end in the flange so it will stay in and pole for Festivus for the rest of us.


Expedition Granted

I have some great news. I submitted a project for National Geographic’s Expedition Granted. NatGeo is giving away $50,000 to pursue passion that is innovative and has a positive effect locally or globally. I submitted a project to produce a documentary on DRM and it’s effect on the end user. I call it “Do You Copy?” so check it out and remember to give your support of it.