New Products – 12/28/2015

December 28th, 2015
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We’ve got the littleBits Exploration Series, for your edutainment! Each littleBits Kit comes with magnetic snap together modules, designed to mitigate the danger of making a mistake, allowing for neophytes young and old to make electronics projects in a snap! No soldering, wiring or programming required. Your kids [and you!] can learn the basics of electronics, explore STEAM/STEM principles, form the foundations of critical thinking, or just have fun with blinking, buzzing creations. Kits range in price from $99.00 to $199.00.

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If you’d like to learn Arduino Programming skills, which are a valuable foundation for getting involved in the realm of modern electronics, the RobotGeek Experimenter’s Kit line is for you! Each kit comes with the Geekduino and the easy to use RobotGeek Sensor Shield. With the RobotGeek System, students can dive right in to programming using Analog and Digital input modules, controlling a variety of output modules with Digital and PWM signals! With easy to follow guides, simple to assemble parts, and a large variety of modules, the RobotGeek Experimenter’s Kit line is a top notch choice for STEAM/STEM learners! We offer basic kits for new learners, and specialized kits, such as RFID, Touch, Linear Actuator, Floor Mat, and Display Kits to move you up to the next level and give your next project a swift and informed start. Kits range in price from $39.95 to $199.95.

HR-OS1 Tackles the Stairs!

December 17th, 2015

Taking the Stairs
Qian Wang, a student working in a group of researchers from the Institute of Media Innovation at Nanyang Technological University has done an excellent job making a set of motions that allows the HR-OS1 to climb up stairs! Keeping in mind the weight balance of each part, the movement looks both careful and acrobatic.

One of the major challenges, and often the first question we hear when discussing bipedal robots is, “Can it take the stairs?” and thanks to the efforts of Qian Wang, the answer is a resounding yes!

This was shared with us by Shihui Guo on the Trossen Robotics Forums, and there is an active discussion about how to improve this movement. They were kind enough to share the motion files, which can easily be added to your HR-OS1’s RME list with r3n33’s WinRME. Try it out, join the discussion, and get creative!

Android & Bluetooth Robot Control with BT Commander!

December 11th, 2015

Bluetooth Uprade

Want to control your hexapod or other ArbotiX-M Powered InterbotiX robot with an Android Phone or Tablet? You’re going to need the InterbotiX Bluetooth Upgrade Kit so you can get up and scuttling quickly with the BT Commander App! The BT Commander App is an easy to use solution for controlling your robot via Bluetooth. Based on the ArbotiX Commander, the control scheme should be familiar to anyone who has used one, and simple enough to learn for those who are just getting started.

Upgrade your Hexapod to MK-III!

December 10th, 2015

Now is the perfect time to Upgrade to the Hexapod MK-III!



Hex Metal UpgradeHex Metal MK-III
Upgrades, upgrades, upgrades! The PhantomX AX Metal Hexapod MK-III from Interbotix Labs is the 3rd major revision of our popular Hexapod robot kit. In addition to numerous design improvements over our MKII model, we are excited to release the robot as an entirely open source platform, complete with 3D cad models of the robot, open software, and schematics for the electronics. This kit has evolved over the last 5 years to become one of the most advanced robotic development platforms on the market, bringing unparalleled performance and quality the hands of robotics enthusiasts, educators, and researchers. Already have a MK-II? Toughen it up with the PhantomX Metal Hexapod MK-III Upgrade Kit! This kit includes all of the metal brackets and plates, delrin parts, and hardware you’ll need to step your hexapod up to the next level!

Graceful Fall Algorithm

December 7th, 2015

Falling Robot

Researchers at Georgia Tech have identified a way to teach robots how to fall with grace and without serious injury. In the video, the top robot uses a novel algorithm to minimize impact when the robot falls. The algorithm is not used for the robot on the bottom of the screen.

The work is important as costly robots become more common in manufacturing. The skill becomes especially important, too, as robots are sought for healthcare or domestic tasks – working near the elderly, injured, children or pets.

DynamixShield Kickstarter!

November 18th, 2015

DynamixShield

Our friend at NeuroRobotic Technologies has been developing an Arduino Due Shield that plays nice with everything in the InterbotiX and RobotGeek product lines (and subsequently, his PhantomX Hexapod is playing nicely with the kids)! This is a comprehensive shield that lets you connect AX, MX, and XL Dynamixel Servos! The DynamixShield is an electronics board that fits onto an Arduino Due microcontroller to give you the ability to control Dynamixel smart servos and regular servos, while also providing numerous Grove and RobotGeek connectors. Grove and RobotGeek are hardware frameworks for modular sensors and actuators. There are tons of off-the-shelf modules for these two frameworks that can be plugged into the shield with a single cable. This includes everything from GPS sensors, RFID scanners, and LCD displays that are plug-and-play ready for use with the shield. This makes it very easy to build your robots by combining modules and servos. Check out his Kickstarter, and if you want to see it happen, you can make it happen!

We’re on Instructables!

November 9th, 2015

RobotGeek RFID Kits

We’ve got a few projects up on Instructables now! The newest of which is the RFID Windows Login Project! To celebrate, all of our RobotGeek RFID kits are on sale through November! Check it out!

Drinkinator Lives!

November 4th, 2015

Drinkinator

This project is so cool. Next Project Awesome has been working on a drink serving project known as Drinkinator. Utilizing a load of RobotGeek Pumping Stations, a Geekduino, and operated by a Raspberry Pi touch screen interface made in Kivy, this beautiful project makes for a fantastic automated party bartender. This project is well documented on Next Project Awesome’s GitHub, so if you’re looking for a project to follow, it doesn’t get much better than this. Next Project Awesome is an ambitious new youtube series that covers the use of Raspberry Pi and Arduino to make projects. They’re pretty amazing so far, and if you like what you see, you should subscribe to their channel!

RFID Lockbox

October 29th, 2015

RobotGeek RFID Lock Box Kit
Kyle shows off the RobotGeek RFID Lock Box Kit in this informative video! The RobotGeek RFID Lock Box kit combines Arduino, RFID and a Project Box to make your very own personal safe! The lock box kit allows you to to program your arduino to lock and unlock the box with the swipe an RFID tag or card, it even stays locked if unplugged. Mildly secure your semi-valuables in this decorative conversation piece!

Get a Grip(per)!

October 22nd, 2015


We’ve got a gripper with some new moves at RobotGeek. Snapper Arms now come with our new Parallel Gripper, which is a major improvement over the old 9G Gripper. With a more powerful RGS-13 Servo and smooth parallel action, this gripper takes the cake (or whatever you want it to take, really). We also carry a new Wide Gripper, for larger cakes. Wider cakes. Cake would probably make a terrible mess of these, you should probably not try to lift cake with them. If you do lift cake with them, we’re not responsible for any damage the cake does to your gripper. Even though cake is really tasty, the gripper won’t appreciate it as much as you do. Fair warning.