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PQ Robotics Club

SEEK Robotics Meetings

    Below are the meeting summaries:

April 8, 2016 Brad Risse is going to present us with a tutorial on NodeBots. This is the term that refers to using JavaScript as the basis for programming microcontrollers used in a robotics environment. So how to you go from JavaScript to and Arduino? The key element here is using Node.js library to establish nodes that can be manipulated by some sort of framework. That framework is someting called Johnny-five. Sound weird? Go to https://johnny-five.io and check it out. The Arduino side is real straight forware since all we need is to load up StandardFirmada to a Arduino Uno. This is a sketch that comes with the Arduino IDE. Firmada is an API that maps to all of the I/O pins and allows a graphical representation as well as several other way a control app can reach the features of the Uno. Johnny-Five provides a simple codeing wrapper that uses Firmada. The cool thing is Node.js is an event driven framework that makes the Arduino act as a realtime microcontroller responding to interrupts, so you can actually change the I/O or read in values on the fly just like JavaScript can dynamically change content on a webpage. From a terminal window you can control the Arduino. Brad with fill in the details.

Any question you might have, send them to me via the Contact Page.

April 1, 2016 We met and went over the basics of networking from a description of the three tiered Internet structure and ISP providers that fund the system. The first network for compute-to-computer communication was the AppaNet where packet switching was first attempted. It worked and is still the way it's done today. We went over the client-server communication work from a browswer issuing HTTP requests to a DNS server converting our URL to an IP address in binary so the routers can process it. The protocal of LAN and WAN are based on unique requirement of those systems. Once the HTTP request is completed back to the browswer the unpacking of the message takes place through a port selected to match the software application that made the request. In our case a web page via port 80.

We discussed various physical system that transport packets: copper, fiber optics, microwaves, satellite, etc. Each system has its own protocal and timing specification so no bits are misread or lost. Routers separate segments of the Internet and once at a near the destination for the packet, the protocols change, the physical frames change (timing), and we pass through a router to a system of switches that don't use the IP addressing scheme, but relie on the MAC address of individual components of the LAN to include our host machine that made the original request.

The browser is a complex piece of software that wears many hat. It must know HTTP, the DOM model for web pages, recognize JavaScript, HTML, CSS, and other forms of page manipulation software. The use of the Internet is directly supported by the concept of hyperlinks, or addressable links we can place within a web page to interconnect places we want to see via a URL or link within a website. The page navigation is nothing more than linking around within the website.

Any question you might have, send them to me via the Contact Page.


Here are the slides for this session:

March 18, 2016 we will see demos of a couple of shift registers and the 555 timer. These are building blocks to work with TTL logic circuits. Shift registers are built into microcontrollers, cell phones, MODEMS, or any other device that moves bits around. The 74HC165 is a parallel in, serial out chip, and the 74HC595 is serial in, parallel out configurations. These are the only two shift registers you need for your projects even though there are many other types. Most of those are for legacy support or specialized circuits. The 555 time has been manufactures more than any other chip. It's simple, accurate, and versatile. I'll demo sending 8-bits from a parallel source to the Arduino to process and on to a serial in, parallel out chip and associated LEDs to see the results. I'll also demo using a pair of 555 timers - one to create a pulse interval and the other to create a variable width output.

Any question you might have, send them to me via the Contact Page.


Here are the slides for this session:

March 11, 2016 we will see demos of various specialty circuits to add voice from code, sensitive detection of movement using PIR, how to drive high current LED strips with audio inputs and how quadrature encoders work.

Any question you might have, send them to me via the Contact Page.



Here are the slides for this session:

March 4, 2016 we will get into Python that is incorporated on a new development board called the PyBoard.

Any question you might have, send them to me via the Contact Page.




Here are the slides for this session:

February 19, 2016 we will get into more complex systems of components. I will demo a thermostat system based on an I2C temp sensor that has a LCD dispay of current temp, set point and adjustment, and fan run indicator. Next is a cart that's controlled via BT. The software is the main focus here. Then I have a demo for Arduino interrupts and optical sensor to control a scanner bed.

Any question you might have, send them to me via the Contact Page.



Here are the slides for this session:



February 12, 2016 we held our second session to further advance our understanding of Arduino and its surrounding electronics. This time the emphasis was on logic gates and motor drivers. We also diverted into details of how gates form the basis of computing and how instructions are read inside a computer. Demo'd Bluetooth application of controlling a DC motor.

Any question you might have, send them to me via the Contact Page.



Here are the slides for this session:



February 5, 2016 we held our second session to further advance our understanding of Arduino and its surrounding electronics. This time the emphasis was on logic gates and motor drivers. We also diverted into details of how gates form the basis of computing and how instructions are read inside a computer. Demo'd Bluetooth application of controlling a DC motor.

Any question you might have, send them to me via the Contact Page.



Here are the slides for this session:



January 29, 2016 at noon we started Arduino 101 with the Coleman College Robotics Club. The presentation was tailored to microcontroller technology, electroincs, and programming in general. We discussed the Arduino architechure and software IDE. We stopped short of discussing motors. See the attached slides below.

Any question you might have, send them to me via the Contact Page.



Here are the ref docs for this session:



parts