I have known John for a few years now due to him doing a write up on my LEGO Wheelchair for Make, back then he was working on a book that covered using LEGO and Arduino’s together, called Make: Lego and Arduino Projects: Projects for extending MINDSTORMS NXT with open-source electronics. It’s a fantastic book!
His new book, Hacking Your Lego Mindstorms EV3 is on a similar theme but of course for the EV3, not the NXT. It also covers making your own parts via 3D Printing and Laser cutting which I found very useful.
The book features nice colourful based instructions to build 5 projects and then how to hack each one (e.g change the EV3 for a Arduino or Pi). Like the previous book, this book uses products from Wayne and Layne e.g the Bricktronic Shield however also includes hacks / projects using the Raspberry Pi. I would of liked to have seen the introduction to Electronics chapter added to this book which exists in the previous book. I believe this book is more designed for beginners than the previous book.
If you own a EV3 and want to take it to the next step by using another controller, this book is a very good introduction for you.
The Skills show is a massive careers show at the NEC, it has over 70,000 + people visiting and boy it’s busy. It covers everything from hairdressing, welding, fitness to joining the army.
The O2 / NSPCC / The Lab had a awesome display and we stayed pretty busy throughout. The LEGO displays went down like a bomb!
Got to have a chat with VEX UK and Studica Ltd (who do Tetrix and Fischertechnik). It was really nice seeing all the different types of robotics platforms for kids to learn on.
I loved the fact that Forensic Science was next to the butcher area.
Great event to take the kids to!
Back in the day of NXT’s etc, I spent most of my time programming the pBrick in RobotC, being a iOS developer(ObjectiveC), it felt right for me. However Lejos always kept popping up with some awesome features. Move forward to today and the EV3, for my needs (Mobile connectivity, vision processing) Lejos is the clear winning platform to take your EV3 to the next level. I find it a lot easier now especially since I do Android development as Lejos is in Java.
Lejos 0.9.1 brings some super exciting features to the table, but don’t take my word for it, please check out Lejos 0.9.1
So, one of the big requirements I need from a programming language for the EV3 is to be able to talk to a mobile device. With the EV3 being newer, less options seem to be available.
I have started work on some Lejos samples to demo 2 way communication via sockets to an Android device. The current work in progress can be found on Github https://github.com/burf2000/LejosToAndroid
Watch this space!
So, using your phone while driving is becoming a huge killer around the world. So I thought I would make a LEGO model that demo’d this.
This is programmed in Lejos and uses an Android Phone
I have always fancied building a pair of LEGO Roller Skates. So Friday Night I did 🙂 2 EV3’s per leg, 8 NXT motors, programmed in EV3-G
So I was really lucky and got asked to show the VEX Skateboard at NY Maker Faire. Over 1000 people had a go. The weather was awesome (24 degrees), it was huge. It was epic!!
I recommend to everyone to visit a Maker Faire, so much cool stuff. Please check out my Album : New York Maker Faire
So, I decided to buy a 3D Printer, I found a site that offered online chat and talked to a lovely person. I brought the Wanhao i3 Duplicator
Here is how I got on
Trying out the VEXIQ stuff for building human moving vehicles. Very impressed with the power the motors give out. This is using only 2 brains / batteries powering 16 motors!
So I have been very lucky and been sent some VEX IQ Robotics sets including the HEXBUG 4-1 Set to have a play with. Here are a couple of videos I have done on VEX
I have really enjoyed messing around with VEX and hope to continue using it. I have plans to do my usual and build something huge using VEX IQ and compare it to LEGO MINDSTORMS. It will be very interesting to see how it compares.