Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Hacking Robot Vacuum Cleaners and Lego Robots

iRobot Roomba robot vacuum cleanerBack in August I attended a lecture by Professor Rodney Brooks, Director of the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, on Robotics. He used the example of the iRobot Roomba robot vacuum cleaner. There has been research about the vacuum cleaners (they can run the Linux operating system).

Amazon sell remanufactured models of the Roomba and books on reprogramming them.

Hacking Roomba: ExtremeTech, Tod E. Kurt, 2006:
Hacking Roomba: ExtremeTechA gizmo as cool as Roomba just begs to be hacked. Now, with this book and the official ROI specification furnished by iRobot®, you can become the robotic engineer you've always dreamed of being. Build a Bluetooth interface for your Roomba. Turn it into an artist. Install Linux on it and give it a new brain. Some hacks are functional, others are purely fun. ...
The new LEGO Mindstorms NXT robot kit with a 32 bit processor is also available. These are popular at universities as well as for hobbyists.

LEGO Mindstorms NXT robot kit:
LEGO Mindstorms NXT
Set includes: NXT programmable LEGO brick, ultrasonic sensor, sound sensor, light sensor, touch sensor, 3 interactive servo motors, USB cable, 7 6-wire cables, building instructions, user guide, Quickstart guide, easy to use software and test panel. 6 AA batteries not included.
LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT Hacker's Guide, Dave Prochnow, 2006:LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT Hacker's Guide

• Your First Robot • Stupid RCX Tricks • Save Your RIS • As Smart as a Brick • MOVE IT! With Servo Motors • Hmm, I Sense Something • Yes, But I Don't Know How to Program • Testing, Testing; Oh, Trouble Shoot • Katherine's Best Hacking Projects • Katherine's Design Fun House • NXT Programming Language Guide • NXT Elements • NXT Resources

See also: Robot store, with kits, books and videos.

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