How to Get Started With Robotics

About: Transformational Speaker - Writer - Philosopher - Futurist - Inventor - Philosophy Portfolio : Robotic Portfolio :

After years of robotics , tons of prototypes, and struggles finding the right parts and programs, I've figured out the cheapest and quickest way to get massively experienced with robotics and being an inventor.

The following is the formula I've used to start the M.E.C.H. club at University of South Florida [ see ] and could be used to start your own robotics club!


  • Systematic approach to get right into robotics quickly and confidently
  • Best quality parts and software
  • Best approaches , tips , and tricks and tutorials
  • Easiest parts to use and integrate
  • Other streamlined robotics tutorials [ see "Parts Projects + Optional" for more details ]

For my experience and credentials, check out my website :

Or my youtube channel :


Step 1: Parts [ Minimum ]

NOTE : These are all parts I've used / own

Robotics Kit

Hands down the quickest way to get started right away is to get a kit

Arduino kit is perfect because :

  • Has 3 different types of motors
  • Has the most sensors and output modules of any kit
  • Great value [ don't have to go out and find the individual parts ]

If that kit is too expensive, consider this one

Step 2: Parts [ Highly Recommended ]

These are parts that are either :

  1. Used a lot and need replaced
  2. Help make projects easier to complete

1 - Commonly Replaced Items :

2 - Project Assistance Items

[ 1 time purchase ]

3 - Make Life Easier Items


Sound module Hands down the easiest way to add sound files to your project

Uses "blink" sketch-like controls [ see programming section below ]

NOTE : Need a pair of speakers like these

*Make sure the speaker has an aux. cable [ standard headphone jack ]

Step 3: Parts [ Projects + Optional ]

Control things with Xbox 360 Controller :

  • See my tutorial here on how to easily set up this up
  • Control Servos , lights , and more

Robotic Arm Projects :

NOTE : need the bracket kit above or 3D printable brackets

See my tutorial here on how to build a Xbox 360 wireless robotic arm with files + code!

Home Automation / Internet of things Projects :

Wearable Projects :

Amazingly small arduino!

  • for how to easily set up

Or use this slightly bigger Arduino

Step 4: Programs



  • Create a student account
  • 3 yrs free with email
  • Tons of youtube tutorials likethese
  • Create STL files [ 3D Printable Files ]
  • Create PDFs and vector files [ Laser Cuter Files ]

List of all the free programs from Autodesk, which all have 3 yr trials



  • Needed in order to program Arduino Board
  • Free forever
  • File --> Examples --> Basics [ To Get Started]
  • Blink Example --> 1 of the Most important + Can be used to control the Adafruit Sound Module

Free download or search " Arduino IDE " in google



  • Free forever
  • Create wiring files [ for pcb - smd ]
  • Tons of Libraries with common components Ex. Adafruit Library - here for the tutorial

Step 5: Coding - Simplest Approach

Want to get started right away with your Arduino kit?

All you need , for a very long time , is all within the Arduino program

The easiest way is to follow these steps :

  1. Watch youtube tutorial videos
  2. Do the examples provided by Arduino

Within Arduino IDE --> FILE --> EXAMPLES

  • Conquer the BASICS folder and you'll be surprised how useful those examples can be
  • Also, don't over complicate things - google for Arduino codes and libraries
  • Finally, watch youtube component videos and arduino tutorials [ see below ]

Step 6: Learning

Step 7: Final Thoughts

This is a living , breathing Instructable that I will periodically update with tips and tricks.

  • The most important steps are [ in order ] :
  1. Get the Arduino kit recommended
  2. Download Arduino IDE
  3. Watch youtube videos on Arduino for beginners
  4. Take old toys and electronics apart and collect them [ in the bin mentioned above ]

Other Steps / Suggestions:

  • Join a robotics club or maker space
  • Create a robotics club
  • Learn through mini projects / tutorials and then
  • Choose 1 main project you are truly passionate about and stick with that one



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