Introduction: Brookstone Rover

Do you have a Brookstone Rover? If so, don't worry about having to use it with your iPhone any longer! Now you can control it from your computer with a Wii Remote, Joystick or your voice! You can even control the Rover from another location over the internet!

The camera on the rover does not have true-life colors, but in a well lit environment, it can also track colors... have the Rover chase a red ball :)

Below is a quick intro to the control you will be able to have over the Rover with the next few steps...

Step 1: EZ-Builder

You will require the latest version of EZ-Builder for this tutorial.
  1. Visit http://www.ez-robot.com/EZ-Builder to Download and Install EZ-Builder Robot Control Software
  2. Launch EZ-Builder from the Start Menu
  3. Select Add Controls from the top menu
  4. Select Brookstone Rover category
  5. Select Movement Panel from the sub menu

Now let's add the Camera device, so we can see what the Rover sees
  1. Select Add Controls from the top menu
  2. Select the Camera category
  3. Select Camera Device form the sub menu

Step 2: Control Rover

It's time to control the rover. We'll first simply use the keyboard to drive the rover.

  1. Connect to your Rover by WiFi, the same way you would use with your iPhone.
  2. Press Connect button in the Brookstone Rover control window in EZ-Builder
  3. In the Camera Control, select Brookestone Rover from the Video Device list
Now you should see the image from the Rover on your computer. Very cool :) It's time to drive this little robot around!
  1. Move your mouse cursor into the black box beneith the directional arrows in the Brookstone Rover control and click.
  2. You may now use the arrow keys to drive the rover forward, reverse, left and right.


*Note: The vertical slider on the right of directional arrows controls the speed.

Step 3: Color Tracking

The camera isn't true-to-life colors on the Rover, due to the night vision mode. So you may need to fine-tune the color tracking values of the Camera control.

The Camera Control has Tracking Types, which when selected will enable the respective tracking method. You may enable multiple tracking types. The setting tabs to the right of the control will allow fine-tuning of the specific parameters for each tracking type.

To enable movement tracking, press the Config button and select the Movement Tracking checkbox.

*Note: The attached photos highlight the most common setting locations for this step.

Step 4: Speech Recognition

Now you're ready to talk to the Rover? Okay, let's do it!

Requirements:
  • Your PC must have a soundcard and microphone
  • Ensure the microphone is selected as Default Device prior to running EZ-Builder


Steps:

  1. Select Add Controls from the top menu
  2. Select the Speech menu category
  3. Select Speech Recognition from the sub menu

By default, the speech recognition module has settings for moving forward, left, right and reverse. You can view the commands by pressing the Config button within the speech control. You may add your own commands using EZ-Script in the future.

Step 5: Joystick

Do you have a USB Joystick? You can control the rover with it!
  1. Connect your joystick via USB
  2. Select Add Control from the top menu
  3. Select the Misc category
  4. Select Joystick from the sub menu

Now you may use the joystick to control the movements of the rover :)

Step 6: Many More!

There are hundreds of more EZ-Builder Controls and features that make the Brookstone Rover a great robot platform! Even writing your own EZ-Script is easy!

Comments

author
Prezz0506 made it!(author)2016-11-14

This is kind of a broad question but, this robot has a port that is used by brookstone for servicing and I was wondering what the brookstone company uses to program these things and would It be possible to hack this robot to your advantage. Like maybe reprogram it to go faster or use a different way of communication.

author
Ryan792 made it!(author)2015-03-06

I noticed there are so many WiFi based Rover car available now on amazon. Can i use any WiFi based Rover instead of Brookstone to connect with EZ-Builder software? I wanted to use rover from the internet.. :(

author
24pphyoe made it!(author)2014-11-19

cannt connect with new version anymore
is anyone have old version ?
URGENT :(

author
angpal59 made it!(author)2013-09-18

Must be nobody comes here anymore.

author
angpal59 made it!(author)2013-08-13

Will the esplora joystick work with the rover? and if so, could someone please help a novice out with programming it, I would highly appreciate it.

author
angpal59 made it!(author)2013-08-03

Will ezbuilder work with the new rover 2.0 DJ?

author
angpal59 made it!(author)2013-08-08

I can connect to the rover 2.0 to the wifi, I just can't get ezbuilder to connect to it. The rover 2.0 is one awesome machine, they did a great job improving it from the first one.

author
ntc490 made it!(author)2013-02-10

Nice software! Here's a teardown for those who care - http://techbloginator.wordpress.com/2013/02/09/spytank-teardown/

author
oldmechanic made it!(author)2012-07-10

I ****ing Love The rocver. isn't it so cool? what about controlling it with a PS3 Controller?

author
rmmarconi made it!(author)2012-05-07

can the ez connect to my home access point?
i want to control the rover from the internet.

author
djsures made it!(author)2012-05-07

Or, even better just run the EZ-Builder software on a local computer and connect to its built in HTTP Server: http://www.ez-robot.com/Tutorials/Help.aspx?id=48 or connect to it from another EZ-Builder copy: http://www.ez-robot.com/Tutorials/Help.aspx?id=171

author
djsures made it!(author)2012-05-07

It sure can if you use the Wifi adapter instead of the Bluetooth. http://www.ez-robot.com/Tutorials/Hardware.aspx?id=22 :)

author
Gelfling6 made it!(author)2012-04-11

I am curious, are there any internal pictures of the Brookstone rover? the general design, it looks an awful lot like the old Wild Planet/SpyGear Spy-TRAKR, before Wild Planet dropped marketing of it.. I'm wondering if it's internally the same, but with a different MCU link, for the iPhone App, where-as the TRAKR, had a simple remote with a small LCD/speaker, but the TRAKR had an SD-slot, 2 USB sockets (One type-A that they never developed, one Mini-5pin for connecting to a computer, to transfer small 'C' apps.) Look-up 'KRA5H', on here, he's made a few mods to the TRAKR, and pretty sure he'd be interested too.

author
djsures made it!(author)2012-05-07

There is someone who modified their rover for the EZ-Robot platform and has inside pics: http://www.ez-robot.com/Community/Forum/posts.aspx?threadId=851

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Bio: I build robots to encourage others to do the same. I believe the future is in robotics and playing a part for the future is ... More »
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