Baby steps

So, yeah, I take really small first steps. One of which I did ok on this week;

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It is just a simple connector board, to clean up some of the wiring rat’s nest on RoboNUC. The purpose of learning to do things in Eagle through produced board was a success.  Next board will actually have parts, I promise.

Emerald City Robotics

I hosted a meetup group today. And while attendance was (expectedly) low for December, everyone had a Robot :)

I discussed plans for a business venture I am planning and it was well received … stay tuned.

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The new IBM Chip

I just want to point this out again (and probably will again and again)

“It is the largest chip IBM has ever built at 5.4 billion transistors”

“70mW total”

TrueNorth Chip
“Fully event driven digital mixed synchronous-asynchronous neuromorphic architecture.”

“46 billion synaptic operations per second”

I don’t know why, but it gives me wood :| I’ve been hating on von Neumann for so long.

Brain Power

I for one,  welcome our new robotic overlords, finally.

Gtronics ProtoShield

As mentioned before, I ordered a Gtronics Proto Shield Plus

It arrived in a reasonable time from across the water, for the price advertised.  Very nice.  Everything worked as it was supposed to out of the box.

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I did make one small change; The metal offset in the middle was a tad too long, causing it to sit uneven.  I basically took 2 nylon standoffs, and screwed them together. Then I cut off the male end so that the remaining part was .005″ or so shorter than the supplied metal standoff. I then used the piece I cut off as the top screw, and I can adjust the length of the standoff by screwing apart the 2 pieces on the bottom. Now it is perfect.

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Clap buddy Lives!

A Windows 8 store app I wrote is actually being useful.  What lies ahead?

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Update 12/16/14:

ClapBuddy

I am in the store now.

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To be honest I mostly do this so I do not have to renew my developers license every 90 days to run software I write on my own tablet.  The problem is if I  do not have a need to renew for a while,  I grab the app and go to use it, perhaps on a real production shoot, with money spent, and Microsoft tells me tells me I can not run my app because the dev license is not current. This deployment model is horrible.

Visual Studio Thing

So, I got to a point where I needed to refactor the map planning in order to get live data projected on it.  And that led me to a point where it made sense to put in the Visual Studio tabbed docking interface I knew I was eventually going to end up with.

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I used a non-open source library I found after trying just about everything else except the $1000 ones (DevExpress, Telerik). AvalonDock, part of xceeds free and pay toolkit has horrible documentation and is awful to use.

DevZest WPF Docking

It went in way easier than I expected, but now learning the details with auto generated doc from code is going to take a while. I also started seriously looking at 2 other themed robot projects, that have business considerations, so things might slow down on RoboNUC more than I had expected, but in the end, a new outdoor version of RoboNUC would be the 3rd themed project, so it might also go to higher places than expected as well :)

Arduino breadboarding

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Mike Hansow recently pointed me to a new bread board rig he saw;

http://www.gtronics.net/en/products/arduino-proto-shield-plus

It looks exactly like what I had been looking for. I had recently bought some logic ‘trainer’ off Amazon for 3 times the price and was so disappointed in it (malfunction out of the box, poor design, terrible build quality) I had dropped my intended project.

This Arduino form factor bread board has shipped and is on its way.  As soon as I finish the other 3,123,423 projects that have since cropped up, I hope to get back to the original.

Robotics, hahaha