This week our students from Computing in the Creative Arts had a public exhibit of their term projects. This project is close to my heart as I worked closely with this particular group of students who despite having very little technical background were deeply passionate about creating an interactive robot capable of expressing emotions and interacting with people.
The students involved were
Lauren Abramsky [portfolio]
Kristy Titanic [portfolio]
Jesse Shaw [portfolio]
The instructors were
Antonio Gomes (myself) [portfolio]
Paul Strohmeier [portfolio]
I have submitted this project to the robots and arduino contests. If you like it, your vote is appreciated :)
I present you "Goon Quad". In this version, Goon Quad has 4 prerecorded states ("angry","party","confused","breathe"), triggered by the touch of a person in areas specified by the eyebrows and a tattoo that read "Mom", painted with bare conductive and used as capacitive sensors.
My students just finished editing their video! Cheer them up with some comments and likes on YouTube :)
To enable the robot to record new motions, 8 analog feedback servos were used. As of now, we are only using one leg to record and translating it into the remaining 3. v2 will feature a fully programmable robot. Here's an example of the recording motion in action (arms and base video below)
In the step by step I will provide all the .stl files and early iterations of the robot. Assembly should be self-explanatory by looking at the images but if anyone as any questions or requests for laser cutter friendly formats I am happy to provide those. Just leave me a note in the comments section!
Hope you like this project and feedback is very much appreciated
Step 1: 1. Parts List
1x Power Distribution Board [link]
1x Arduino Mega [link]
8x Analog Feedback Servos [link]
1x Zippy Flightmax 1000mAh 15C [link]
1x Bare Conductive Pen [link]
3x 10M Ohm Resistors
4x RGB Leds
Step 2: 2. 3D Printed Parts
All parts were printed on a replicator 2x. To assemble the robot you will need:
(If anyone needs .ai, .cdr, shoot me a message and I will upload them ASAP)
Step 3: 3. Development
It all started with a simple idea. Developing a robot capable of expressing life-like movements. Early iterations aimed at devising a starfish due to its organic nature and reduced body complexity
This videos shows their first attempt at creating coordinated motions in a tech demo prototype.
After much deliberation, they agreed a quadruped was the most appropriate format to follow since there are a fair number of explorations they could refer to for design ideas and pre-recorded motions.
First motions after assembling the robot. The wiring was significantly reduced through the use of a power distribution board. Future version of this robot will encompass a micro-sized arduino with multiplexers, thus reducing the need for external cabling
Step 4: 4. Programming
Arduino code attached.
In its current state, 2 separate sketches are used, one for pre-recorded motions, one for recording motions (I will upload the second at a later time as well as a single code as soon as i have time to work on this)
Step 5: 5. Final Thoughts
I hope you appreciate the project as much as I did while working on it.
Any comments and additions you would like to see in future versions are welcome, leave me a comment below. I will keep updating the Instructable.