Building Robots With Lego Mindstorms

1st Edition

Authors: Mario Ferrari
Paperback ISBN: 9781928994671
eBook ISBN: 9780080476285
Imprint: Syngress
Published Date: 6th December 2001
Page Count: 448
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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.


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

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


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About the Author

Mario Ferrari

Mario Ferrari received his first Lego box around 1964, when he was 4. Lego was his favorite toy for many years, until he thought he was too old to play with it. In 1998, the Lego Mindstorms RIS set gave him reason to again have Lego become his main addiction. Mario believes Lego is the closest thing to the perfect toy. He is Managing Director at EDIS, a leader in finishing and packaging solutions and promotional packaging. The advent of the MINDSTORMS product line represented for him the perfect opportunity to combine his interest in IT and robotics with his passion for LEGO bricks, which started during his early childhood. Mario has been a very active member of the online MINDSTORMS community from the beginning and has pushed LEGO robotics to its limits. Mario holds a bachelor's degree in Business Administration from the University of Turin and has always nourished a strong interest for physics, mathematics, and computer science. He is fluent in many programming languages and his background includes positions as an IT manager and as a project supervisor. Mario estimates he owns over 60,000 Lego pieces. Mario works in Modena, Italy, where he lives with his wife Anna and his children Sebastiano and Camilla.

Affiliations and Expertise

Author of bestselling "Building Robots with LEGO Mindstorms", Italy