Pololu Blog (Page 27)

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.

Micro Maestro Delta Robot

Posted by Ben on 25 May 2012
Micro Maestro Delta Robot

A Micro Maestro and three servos power this well-constructed delta robot.

Thoughts on Open-Source Hardware

Posted by Jan on 26 April 2012
Thoughts on Open-Source Hardware

As open-source hardware (OSHW) has become more prominent over the past five years or so, I have heard questions about where I or Pololu stand on the subject. Most recently, I got into a bit of a discussion with Phillip Torrone of Make and Adafruit on one of his blog posts, and his questions and subsequent interview pushed me to try to organize some of my thoughts about OSHW. Because there are many aspects to OSHW, I don’t have a simple conclusion like, “It’s great!” or “It’s the future!” or “Pololu will never release an OSHW product.”. I am skeptical of some of the claims by OSHW proponents and of the significance of the more organized aspects of the OSHW movement. However, what is going on is very significant to me because it affects Pololu’s business and involves issues I care about a lot, such as freedom, creating things, and education. Continued…

Wixel as Wireless USB for Propeller Chip

Posted by Paul on 19 April 2012

This video by Martin Heermance shows how you can use a Wixel to to wirelessly program a Parallax Propeller microcontroller. For more information see this forum thread.

Three and a half months to plug in our machines legally

Posted by Jan on 29 March 2012
Three and a half months to plug in our machines legally

This post is an account of the difficulties I have had for the past four months in getting permits to run our equipment at our new location, which we moved to in December of 2011. I am writing this partly as notes for myself and others at Pololu, but the main point of sharing this is to warn and commiserate with other businesses having to deal with such problems and to give other readers some awareness of the real-world ramifications of the regulations much of the public seems all too eager to embrace. I still have a hard time believing we really had to go through all of the hassle and expense, so I am also hoping that some readers might point me to some resources so that I can avoid this in the future. I realize there is speculation and hearsay in my report, but I want to emphasize that my impressions are based on many vendors, contractors, public employees, and manufacturers: in all, I spoke to dozens of people about our experience. I will try to be as specific as practical without unnecessarily exposing individuals who were trying to be helpful to undue scrutiny. Continued…

The GardenBot - using computer vision to help out in the garden

Posted by Ryan on 14 March 2012

“The GardenBot” uses a Maestro Servo Controller to help it track an orange bucket. The plan is for it to help its creator’s wife do her gardening by following her around with a large wagon full of supplies. See this forum post for more information.

Trackduino P1213 Arduino shield

Posted by Paul on 2 March 2012
Trackduino P1213 Arduino shield

This custom Arduino by Craig Hollabaugh shield mounts a Pololu dual MC33926 motor driver carrier for easy control with an Arduino. For details, see his project video and build log: page 1, page 2, page 3.

W.A.V.E art performance using Arduino and Maestro Servo Controllers

Posted by Ryan on 2 March 2012

An Arduino Uno and five Mini Maestro 24-Channel USB Servo Controllers are used to control an extensive installation for this art performance.

DIY fully-automatic book scanner

Posted by Ben on 13 February 2012

This do-it-yourself fully-automatic book scanner uses a Maestro servo controller to control the page-turning, and picture-taking servos. It was able to scan 468-page book in about 12 minutes with zero page-turning errors. For more information, see the DIY Book Scanner forum thread.

Featured link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=

Popular Mechanics Build Your First Robot

Posted by Ryan on 3 February 2012
Popular Mechanics Build Your First Robot

Gordon McComb has published a project in Popular Mechanics called Build Your First Robot. The parts that Pololu offers are in this wish list, and more details are available on Gordon’s site.

Display for compass and accelerometer readings

Posted by Ryan on 3 February 2012
Display for compass and accelerometer readings

This forum post shows how to use a Baby Orangutan to read the accelerometer and compass values from an LSM303DLH and display them nicely on a 1.8" TFT LCD display. January 2012.