AFK - not dead.

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by thatoneguy, Oct 18, 2012.

  1. thatoneguy

    Thread Starter AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2009
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    Hey guys, sorry for being absent, just got out of hospital (Pneumonia, 1.5 weeks, bad case of it). Moved and changed jobs, so I'm still settling in and still not feeling 100%. I'll try to be back around more, though.
     
    strantor likes this.
  2. Georacer

    Moderator

    Nov 25, 2009
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    Did you catch a cold or was it bacteria? Get well soon, either way.

    Contrast to this, if you can move and switch jobs just like that, I think you must still have plenty of energy.

    Cheer up!
     
  3. MrChips

    Moderator

    Oct 2, 2009
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    Was wondering what became of you. Good to see you back.
    Hope you get back to good health soon.
     
  4. loosewire

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 25, 2008
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    Missed your post, I go over the lost list and sometimes and ask about members

    by name, like Retched and others.
     
  5. maxpower097

    Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2009
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    Happened to me when I took a winter job up north. I was there 2 weeks and got deathly ill. Thankfully we were a big biz and ran the lil town it was in so my boss just called the local doctor and he gave me a script for antibiotics that day. Otherwise I might of had pneumonia.

    Another account is an alcoholic friend got it one night he just woke up with a sharp pain in his side. Went to hospital and turned out to be pneumonia. Since he was a lush and drunk all the time he had no idea how sick he was. Was in the hospital 2 weeks. Went into booze withdrawls and having waking dreams,sweating severely, etc.. They doped him up with morph to get him thru the alcohol withdrawls. Was given a 30% chance of surviving but he made it.
     
  6. maxpower097

    Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2009
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    Called Retched yesterday around noon. His voicemails still up but no answer.
     
  7. DerStrom8

    Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2011
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    I was thinking I hadn't heard from you in a while and was wondering if you were ok. Glad to see you back, anyway. Hope your recovery continues to go well! Take it easy TOG :)
     
  8. loosewire

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 25, 2008
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    @ MaxPower097,we do remember our members...like family,we really care

    and that shows. Off Topic is very important to commuications. Other forum

    look mechanical with emotions,even our Moderators have a heart.

    @ DerStrom8, can't forget you buddy,always there with a good word for everyone.
     
  9. DerStrom8

    Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2011
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    Thanks loosie. Just doing my part to support my family here ;)
     
  10. thatoneguy

    Thread Starter AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2009
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    Stopping in again, things are improving/smoothing out, moved and got the job, then got ill. Been doing a LOT with the PICAXE, my kid likes it because it makes I²C, IR Remote, and servos so much easier to implement (ends up at a 2k program). He made the robotics team again at school, but they are using the Lego system, he doesn't like it much.

    His robot now has sonar, Sharp IR Rangefinder, line follow, edge detectors, 3D Accelerometer, IR Remote control override and to change settings, an electronic compass, all terrain, and pretty good AI, all on a 20X2 (With an Beefy Motor Driver and MAX6956)! I only helped with the hardware assembly, he did the rest (wiring, programming). This is the most advanced thing he's made, and very proud of it, so, I'm sharing me being proud of him with you guys as an update.

    Also, a HUGE Shout out and congratulations to BillO, who created the PICAXE dev board! It is awesome, and has an ample amount of decoupling capacitors :D. Try one out if you haven't before!

    Any word from Retched?
     
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  11. R!f@@

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 2, 2009
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    U got a great kid one guy.

    Come to think of it, where is that dreaded retched anyways ?
     
  12. nerdegutta

    Moderator

    Dec 15, 2009
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    BillO did a great job on the PICAXE!:)

    ... and welcome back. I wondered where you had wandered off to.
     
  13. Georacer

    Moderator

    Nov 25, 2009
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    I have two of BillO's boards, one for the Arduino Pro Mini and one for the PICAXE. I use them both right now and they work great!

    Send us some pics of your son's (?) robot.
     
  14. thatoneguy

    Thread Starter AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2009
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    It is his, I don't get to see it much. I just help with stuff he isn't comfortable with (he's in 7th grade, super glue fumes bother him, crimping the 1x1 connectors, and that's about it). The design and all is his with little tips from me here and there. Most of the wires and breadboard components are held with hot glue, boards with double stick foam tape, and hinged access with the "Industrial" Velcro.

    Here is the 1.0 Alpha version (1 month-ish ago). It's at his house where he programs it and keeps tweaking the program. Edge/floor sensors on the bottom, PICAXE-20X2 and Motor driver under the top lid, batteries and motors under that deck. The front breadboard is the "patch place" for power and signals, as well as the I²C buss, 20 port expander/LED driver, IR receiver, etc. I guess I never thought of taking many pictures of the project, I don't do that much.

    Total parts cost as shown is economical from the Tamiya track/motor base, $100-$140 total depending on capabilities of motors, motor driver board, LiPo vs. AA batteries, etc.

    Accelerometer is very useful for mild terrain to stop before tipping over, turn into hills, etc. It has negated the need for the protective hood over the sonar/servo, but looks neat, so he's keeping it. Upgrades for motors/tracks alone will be double that cost as well as the size, plus $30 for the Tank over-body as I already have lots of balsa/glass/carbon fiber from R/C Aircraft I've played with for over a decade. Current dimensions, including sonar hood are: 6" W x 8" L x 7.5" H

    [​IMG]
     
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  15. Georacer

    Moderator

    Nov 25, 2009
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    That's actually a pretty beautiful and well built robot. Well done to your son!
     
    DerStrom8 likes this.
  16. spinnaker

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 29, 2009
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    That is really cool!

    What do the "eyes" do? Does the mcu process the video or is it just recorded?
     
  17. R!f@@

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 2, 2009
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    Nice...! well done.
     
  18. thatoneguy

    Thread Starter AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2009
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    On the top it is just a SRF05 Type Sonar attached to a servo that does sector scans to stay clear of obstacles while it moves. It is a fast servo with metal gears, 5 scan points from straight left to straight right are done in under 1/3 second (with 40mS sonar echo delay at each stop). The measurements then determine if it is approaching an obstacle at a shallow angle and adjust orientation to parallel it if desired. Otherwise it gives everything a wide berth.

    The sonar doesn't work very good around soft things such as a blanket or cloth padded chair in front, so there's a Sharp GP212 type IR rangefinder on the front to keep it from bumping into free-hanging cloth or other soft items that sonar doesn't get a return on.

    Below the Sharp IR is a board with IR LED/Phototransitor pairs for line following, as well as stopping before it falls off a table or down stairs.

    Which mode it is in is set by the Generic TV Remote in the background. Direction can also be overridden by hitting the arrow keys on the remote.

    If it gets into a place it cannot find an escape from after a full turn (rare), or the Z axis accelerometer doesn't sense the "bumps" from the treads (thrown track), there's a super bright white LED on the front that flashes SOS.

    The new chassis will have good motors in it and better tracks, these fall off when it turns on carpet, otherwise they work great inside and outside.

    I don't see needing another processor for it, since we are only at 1/2 the program space on the PICAXE. Most of the processor time is waiting for the servo to move. During that time it reads the Line/fall sensors, IR Receiver, and front rangefinder, accelerometer-compass, it still needs to delay a few hundred mS with all that before the fast servo has moved 36 degrees (~0.03sec). PICAXE is running at 32Mhz. The other LED on the expander is a blue LED which lights up when idle, it looks continually on, giving a good indication of if it is bogging down. Worse case, it will clock to 64Mhz, but use more battery, then.

    I'm impressed for a Language (PICAXE Basic) that doesn't do floating point math or negative numbers! Also impressed by how well he soaked up my books on control and automation, I didn't write one line of code for it, just gave him hints.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2012
  19. nerdegutta

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    Dec 15, 2009
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    Bravo Zulu!
     
  20. spinnaker

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 29, 2009
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    I think you have a genius on your hands there thatoneguy. You should help him with a pcb so that protoboard does not go falling apart.
     
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