We recently released the add-on kits for the Sphero RVR into the wild. If you ordered a Sphero RVR and one of the add-on kits, make sure to check out the assembly guides to attach your hardware to the chassis.
Don't forget to check out our guide to start programming your robot with the additional hardware in Python! Explore your environment by streaming video from the RVR's point of view using Raspberry Pi Zero W's WiFi and the pan-tilt servo motors. Then start streaming data remotely using the GPS receiver and ToF distance sensor .
As with any project, you will want to start small and work on the project in parts. In this case, my initial goal was to built one suit for Mark IV before making six more for each student. This has been an ambitious goal of mine since making the first version for my students back in 2014.
Once I created the EL suits for each student, I decided to move forward to the next goal and control two channels wirelessly. Satisfied with a wireless blink test on a breadboard between a controller and one sequencer, I tested the setup remotely with a wireless glove and three sequencers. After a few successful tests, off I went to modify the EL Sequencers, hacking the EL inverters, making custom EL wire extension cables, cutting out enclosures, and connecting the hardware for each dancer. This was tedious but not as time consuming as sewing the EL wire along each suit's arms and legs. I had enough time so I decided to go the extra mile to sequence the suits to the beat of the music three times in the piece.
How did the performance go? Overall, it went well. However, I found it difficult to dance and control the suits simultaneously. One of the sections that I decided to sync the animation with had a lot going on. The music was fast music and there was lot of movement. This was not ideal as the controller had to be in the correct mode before I was able to hit the send button. What I could have done differently with this setup would have been to not to have as much movement when hitting the send button.
Mark IV: EL Wire Dance Suit in 2017
How Do You Build Such a Thing? Part 3
Check out the tutorial below for details on how to complete this project.
Have you built an EL Wire Suit before? If you have, did you use an XBee or a different wireless module? Let us know your thoughts below in the comments. Otherwise, tune in some time in the future for Mark V for some additional upgrades and improvements! ;D
Today we're continuing our feature on all the tutorials and documentation you can use to take the SparkFun SIK and Arduino Uno SIK beyond the guidebook. Here are some additional resources and videos to help you along in learning more about the world of electronics with Arduino.
How do I install a custom Arduino library? It's easy! This tutorial will go over how to install an Arduino library using the Arduino Library Manager. For libraries not linked with the Arduino IDE, we will also go over manually installing an Arduino library.
This tutorial will teach you what a bootloader is and why you would need to install or reinstall it. We will also go over the process of burning a bootloader by flashing a hex file to an Arduino microcontroller.
What is an interrupt? In a nutshell, there is a method by which a processor can execute its normal program while continuously monitoring for some kind of event, or interrupt. There are two types of interrupts: hardware and software interrupts. For the purposes of this tutorial, we will focus on hardware interrupts.
Handling PCB jumper pads and traces is an essential skill. Learn how to cut a PCB trace, add a solder jumper between pads to reroute connections, and repair a trace with the green wire method if a trace is damaged.
The SparkFun Inventor's Kit v4.1 opens a world of possibilities with five different projects. Are you hungry for more? Maybe you want to explore the world of I2C? Have no fear! These tutorials will get you started playing with SparkFun's Qwiic ecosystem. We specifically included the RedBoard Qwiic with the new SIK to make expanding into this ecosystem easier. The best part is that Qwiic offerings are expanding every week, both inside the four walls of SparkFun, and from outside, thanks to other open source hardware contributions!
Adding Qwiic Functionality
With the RedBoard Qwiic included in v4.1, you can also connect to several I2C sensors and boards with our Qwiic system!
Freescale’s MMA8452Q is a smart, low-power, three-axis, capacitive micro-machined accelerometer with 12-bits of resolution. It’s perfect for any project that needs to sense orientation or motion. We’ve taken that accelerometer and stuck it on a Qwiic-Enabled breakout board to make interfacing with the tiny, QFN package a bit easier.
The SparkFun Inventor's Kit v4.1 opens a world of possibilities with five different projects in the guide. Are you hungry for more? Have no fear - there are tons of sensors and shields you can hook up with your SparkFun RedBoard programmed with Arduino that will help take your projects to the next level. For more inspiration and ideas, check out these tutorials.