Building Robots With Lego Mindstorms

By

  • Guilio Ferrari, Author of bestselling "Building Robots with LEGO Mindstorms", Italy

By

  • Mario Ferrari, Author of bestselling "Building Robots with LEGO Mindstorms", Italy

Lego robots! Mindstorms are sweeping the world and fans need to learn how to programme them Lego Mindstorms are a new generation of Lego Robots that can be manipulated using microcomputers, light and touch sensors, an infrared transmitter and CD-ROMs. Since Lego launched Lego Mindstorms in late 1998 sales have skyrocketed - with no sign of slowing down. Mindstorms have captured the imagination of adults and children alike, creating a subculture of Mindstorm enthusiasts around the world. The kits are now a staple part of engineering and computer science classes at many high profile Universities.Building Robots with Lego Mindstorms provides readers with a fundamental understanding of the geometry, electronics, engineering, and programming required to build your own robots. Mario and Giulio Ferrari are world-renowned experts in the field of Lego Mindstorms robotics, and in this book they share their unrivaled knowledge and expertise of robotics as well as provide a series of chapters detailing how to design and build the most exotic robots. Mario and Giulio also give detailed explanations of how to integrate Lego Mindstorms kits with other Lego programmable bricks such asScout and Cybermaster, as well as with non-robotic Lego Technics models.
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Audience

Anyone who owns a Mindstorms Robotic Invention Kit. Educational institutions interested in teaching Lego Mindstorms robotics in engineering classes

 

Book information

  • Published: December 2001
  • Imprint: SYNGRESS
  • ISBN: 978-1-928994-67-1


Table of Contents


Foreword

Preface

Part I Tools

Chapter 1 Understanding LEGO® Geometry

Introduction

Expressing Sizes and Units

Squaring the LEGO World:Vertical Bracing

Tilting the LEGO World: Diagonal Bracing

Expressing Horizontal Sizes and Units

Bracing with Hinges

Summary

Chapter 2 Playing with Gears

Introduction

Counting Teeth

Gearing Up and Down

Riding That Train:The Geartrain

Worming Your Way:The Worm Gear

Limiting Strength with the Clutch Gear

Placing and Fitting Gears

Using Pulleys, Belts, and Chains

Making a Difference:The Differential

Summary

Chapter 3 Controlling Motors

Introduction

Pacing,Trotting, and Galloping

Mounting Motors

Wiring Motors

Controlling Power

Coupling Motors

Summary

Chapter 4 Reading Sensors

Introduction

Touch Sensor

Light Sensor

Rotation Sensor

Temperature Sensor

Sensor Tips and Tricks

Other Sensors

Summary

Chapter 5 Building Strategies

Introduction

Locking Layers

Maximizing Modularity

Loading the Structure

Putting It All Together: Chassis, Modularity, and Load

Summary

Chapter 6 Programming the RCX

Introduction

What Is the RCX

Using LEGO RCX Code

Using the NQC Language

Using Other Programming Languages

Divide and Conquer: Keeping Your Code Organized

Running Independent Tasks

Summary

Chapter 7 Playing Sounds and Music

Introduction

Communicating through Tones

Playing Music

Converting MIDI files

Converting WAV Files

Summary

Chapter 8 Becoming Mobile

Introduction

Building a Simple Differential Drive

Building a Dual Differential Drive

Building a Skid-Steer Drive

Building a Steering Drive

Building a Tricycle Drive

Building a Synchro Drive

Other Configurations

Summary

Chapter 9 Expanding Your Options with Kits and Creative Solutions

Introduction

Acquiring More Parts

Creating Custom Components

Creative Solutions When More RCX Ports Are Needed

Summary

Chapter 10 Getting Pumped: Pneumatics

Introduction

Recalling Some Basic Science

Pumps and Cylinders

Controlling the Airflow

Building Air Compressors

Building a Pneumatic Engine

Summary

Chapter 11 Finding and Grabbing Objects

Introduction

Operating Hands and Grabbers

Understanding Degrees of Freedom

Finding Objects

Summary

Chapter 12 Doing the Math

Introduction

Multiplying and Dividing

Averaging Data

Using Interpolation

Understanding Hysteresis

Summary

Chapter 13 Knowing Where You Are

Introduction

Choosing Internal or External Guidance

Looking for Landmarks: Absolute Positioning

Measuring Movement: Relative Positioning

Summary

Part II Projects

Chapter 14 Classic Projects

Introduction

Exploring Your Room

Following a Line

Modeling Cars

Summary

Chapter 15 Building Robots That Walk

Introduction

The Theory behind Walking

Building Legs

Building a Four-Legged Robot

Building a Six-Legged Steering Robot

Designing Bipeds

Summary

Chapter 16 Unconventional Vehicles

Introduction

Creating Your Own SHRIMP

Creating a Skier

Creating Other Vehicles

Summary

Chapter 17 Robotic Animals

Introduction

Creating a Mouse

Creating a Turtle

Creating Other Animals

Summary

Chapter 18 Replicating Renowned Droids

Introduction

Building an R2-D2-Style Droid

Building a Johnny Five-Style Droid

Summary

Chapter 19 Solving a Maze

Introduction

Finding the Way Out

Building a Maze Runner

Building a Maze Solver

Summary

Chapter 20 Board Games

Introduction

Playing Tic-Tac-Toe

Playing Chess

Playing Other Board Games

Summary

Chapter 21 Playing Musical Instruments

Introduction

Creating a Drummer

Creating a Pianist

Other Suggestions

Summary

Chapter 22 Electronic Games

Introduction

Creating a Pinball Machine

Creating a Simon-Says Game

Other Electronic Game Suggestions

Summary

Chapter 23 Drawing and Writing

Introduction

Creating a Logo Turtle

Tape Writer

Further Suggestions

Summary

Chapter 24 Simulating Flight

Introduction

Introducing the Forces Involved in Flight

Designing the Simulator Project

Building the Hardware

Programming the Simulator

Operating the Simulator

Downsizing the Project

Upsizing the Project

Summary

Chapter 25 Constructing Useful Stuff

Introduction

Building a Floor Sweeper

Building a Milk Guard

Building a Plant Sprinkler

Designing Other Useful Robots

Summary

Part III Contests

Chapter 26 Racing Against Time

Introduction

Hosting and Participating in Contests

Optimizing Speed

Combining Speed with Precision

Summary

Chapter 27 Hand-to-Hand Combat

Introduction

Building a Robotic Sumo

Attack Strategies

Getting Defensive

Testing Your Sumo

Summary

Chapter 28 Searching for Precision

Introduction

Precise Positioning

Finding and Collecting Things

Playing Soccer

Summary

Chapter 28 Searching for Precision

Introduction

Precise Positioning

Variations on Collecting

Playing Soccer

Summary

Appendix A Resources

Introduction

Bibliography

General Interest Sites

Chapter 1 Understanding LEGO Geometry

Chapter 2 Playing with Gears

Chapter 3 Controlling Motors

Chapter 4 Reading Sensors

Chapter 5 Building Strategies

Chapter 6 Programming the RCX

Chapter 7 Playing Sounds and Music

Chapter 8 Becoming Mobile

Chapter 9 Expanding Your Options with Kits and Creative Solutions

Chapter 10 Getting Pumped: Pneumatics

Chapter 11 Finding and Grabbing Objects

Chapter 12 Doing the Math

Chapter 13 Knowing Where You Are

Chapter 14 Classic Projects

Chapter 15 Building Robots That Walk

Chapter 16 Unconventional Vehicles

Chapter 17 Robotic Animals

Chapter 18 Replicating Renowned Droids

Chapter 19 Solving a Maze

Chapter 20 Board Games

Chapter 21 Playing Musical Instruments

Chapter 22 Electronic Games

Chapter 23 Drawing and Writing

Chapter 24 Simulating Flight

Chapter 25 Building Useful Stuff

Chapter 26 Racing Against Time

Chapter 27 Hand-to-Hand Combat

Chapter 28 Searching for Precision

Appendix B Matching Distances

Appendix C Note Frequencies

Appendix D Math Cheat Sheet

Sensors

Averages

Interpolation

Gears,Wheels, and Navigation

Index