Pololu Blog (Page 2)

Welcome to the Pololu Blog, where we provide updates about what we and our customers are doing and thinking about. This blog used to be Pololu president Jan Malášek’s Engage Your Brain blog; you can view just those posts here.

Khan Academy interactive continuous rotation servo demo

Posted by Jon on 28 November 2014
Khan Academy interactive continuous rotation servo demo

Khan Academy user mbbackus created a demo that allows users to visualize the effects of sending different pulse widths to the SM-S4303R and Parallax continuous rotation servos. (You can use the up and down arrow keys to change the pulse width, and more instructions can be found as comments in the code.)

For those who are interested, you can learn more about standard RC servo pulses in this series of blog posts about hobby servos.

You can see the demo on its Khan Academy page.

Black Friday Sale at Adafruit

Posted by Paul on 28 November 2014


Our friends at Adafruit are holding a Black Friday sale today, offering 15% off everything in stock plus extra free items for orders above certain amounts.

You can find the details on the Adafruit blog.

Black Friday/Cyber Monday Sale: check out all the deals!

Posted by Ben on 25 November 2014


You can now find all of our sale details, including a full list of the sale items, on our Black Friday/Cyber Monday sale page. The first doorbuster deals go live in less than 12 hours!

Coming soon: Pololu Black Friday/Cyber Monday Sale

Posted by Ben on 21 November 2014


Our annual Black Friday/Cyber Monday sale is less than a week away! We have put up some of the special offers on the Black Friday/Cyber Monday sale page. Stay tuned for more details!

New products: Pololu T-shirts

Posted by Jon on 21 November 2014
Tags: new products

We have a new batch of T-shirts available, just in time for winter! These shirts are very similar to the ones we released in 2012, featuring a printed circuit board (PCB) design in the shape of the Pololu logo on the front and the Pololu slogan “Engage Your Brain” on the back.

The shirts are available in a variety of youth and adult sizes, and this time we have two new colors available in addition to our standard royal blue: cardinal red and charcoal gray.

You can find our full selection in our T-shirts category.

New products: Stackable headers for the Raspberry Pi

Posted by Ben on 19 November 2014
Tags: new products
New products: Stackable headers for the Raspberry Pi

Stackable 0.100″ Female Header: 2×20-pin, Straight.

We now have special extended, stackable female headers for the Raspberry Pi:

The 2×20 versions work with the Raspberry Pi Model B+ (and the just-released A+), while the 2×13 versions match the I/O header on the older Raspberry Pi Models A and B.

See our Raspberry Pi category for our full selection of Raspberry Pi accessories.

ToyCollect: A robot that collects toys from hard-to-reach places

Posted by Brandon on 19 November 2014
ToyCollect: A robot that collects toys from hard-to-reach places

The people at Seewald Solutions posted about their Raspberry Pi-based robot they call ToyCollect. Inspired by the creator’s daughter, who hides her toys under the couch, the robot is controlled via Android and can be driven under the couch to allow the user to view the hidden toys via a Raspberry Pi camera module and retrieve them. Along with a Raspberry Pi, the ToyCollect robot uses a Zumo Chassis Kit, 100:1 Micro Metal Gearmotors HP, Qik 2sv1 Dual Serial Motor Controller, and a Zumo blade to push the toys. The video below shows the robot in action (in German; subtitles available):

For more information, including the source code and instructions for building your own ToyCollect robot, see the ToyCollect post on the Seewald Solutions website.

New product: Parallax BASIC Stamp Discovery Kit (USB)

Posted by Ben on 19 November 2014
Tags: new products
New product: Parallax BASIC Stamp Discovery Kit (USB)

We are now carrying the USB version of the BASIC Stamp Discovery Kit. Please see the product page for more information.

New products: Brackets for mini plastic gearmotors

Posted by Brandon on 14 November 2014
Tags: new products

Our mini plastic gearmotors make great low-cost actuators for small robots, but they have one major shortcoming: they are not easy to mount (the offset versions have just one mounting hole and the 90° versions don’t have any). Well, today I am pleased to announce that we now have two mounting solutions!

Mini Plastic Gearmotor Bracket Pair – Wide.
Mini Plastic Gearmotor Bracket Pair – Tall.

These new plastic brackets, available in a wide version and a tall version, are designed specifically for our mini plastic gearmotors, with internal ridges that fit into recessed features on the gearmotors to hold them securely in place. Both brackets are compatible with all of our mini plastic gearmotors, and the two versions allow for different mounting orientations, some of which can be seen in the pictures below:

In some orientations, features of the mini plastic gearmotor cases prevent them from being flush with a flat mounting surface. To address this, we include a spacer plate with each bracket that fits between the gearmotor and the mounting surface in these orientations, keeping the motor level. If you look closely at the pictures above, you can see the spacer plate being used in three of them.

These new brackets are sold in pairs along with mounting hardware (two M3 screws and nuts per bracket).

See the product pages for additional information:

Video: Introducing the DRV8835 Dual Motor Driver Kit for Raspberry Pi B+

Posted by Jeremy on 12 November 2014

We have a new video for our DRV8835 Dual Motor Driver Kit for Raspberry Pi B+. The video gives an overview of some of its features and mentions a few considerations for working with it. Check it out, and get some ideas for a cool Raspberry Pi robot!