TyroBot, the DIY Humanoid Robot Kit Launches on Kickstarter

Buffalo, MN: Tyro Electronics, an educational robotics an electronics company founded by Tyler Spadgenske, just launched TyroBot on Kickstarter. TyroBot is a 3D printable do it yourself humanoid robot kit aimed at getting people of all ages and experience levels started in robotics and programming.

TyroBot can be assembled in an afternoon with only a screwdriver and a computer. TyroBot is available in two different models:

  • The Maker’s kit includes all the electronics and components you need to build a TyroBot, but you must 3D print the plastic parts yourself. That can be done on any 3D printer with a bed size of at least 100mm^3.
  • The complete kit includes everything you need to build a TyroBot except a screwdriver. 

TyroBot’s brain is Tyro Board, a custom electronics controller board with a 32 bit ATSAMD21 microcontroller, WiFi, accelerometer for detecting orientation, rechargeable lithium ion battery and two expansion ports for further customization. Tyro Board supports 7 servos, 4 for walking, 2 for arms, and a head servo. On the reverse side of Tyro Board is a 2.8in TFT touchscreen display for programming and playing with TyroBot without the use of a computer.

Once TyroBot is built, flip the switch and TyroBot is operational. Using the built in software, you can make TyroBot walk forward, backward, left and right without ever having to plug him into a computer.

When you are ready for something more advanced, connect TyroBot to a computer and follow easy programming tutorials to make him do more advanced maneuvers by programming him in Arduino with our open source libraries.

With TyroBot’s built in WiFi, the user can also make TyroBot send tweets to Twitter, email, or do anything supported on the IFTT network.

About Tyro Electronics LLC

Tyro Electronics is an educational robotics company founded in 2016 by 17-year-old Tyler Spadgenske.

Tyro Electronics started out by selling parts to make retro game emulators but has moved into selling DIY Kits with the release of TyroBot. Tyler Spadgenke is a student who has built countless electronics and robotics projects, including a Smartphone, Home Monitoring System, and a Smart Drawer.

Links

Kickstarter: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/tyroelectronics/tyrobot-diy-humanoid-robot-kit/

Project Development: https://hackaday.io/project/12275

Project Source Code and Design Files: https://github.com/TyroElectronics/TyroBot

Algobrix Makes Coders Out of Kids With Its LEGO Compatible Coding Blocks on Kickstarter

DELAWARE, USA  – July 25, 2017 – Algobrix is announcing the launch of its Kickstarter campaign today to make programming simple and fun with its play-based coding blocks. Algobrix turn traditional LEGOs into programmable robots through tangible lines of code. Each coding-block teaches children the basics of STEM with its step by step coding activities for a kid-friendly introduction to programming.

Imagine your typical LEGO set growing up. Chances are you would build a car, play with it and deconstruct it shortly after being left underwhelmed or frustrated. With Algobrix, play is limitless and screenless so kids (or kids at heart), can develop greater analytical thinking skills while learning the basics of coding while creating moving masterpieces. All it takes to upgrade your standard-block play to coding-block play is a bit of programming and imagination. Creators simply:

  • Snap: Each block represents a unique function and commands the AlgoBot to play audio, light or move in any direction.
  • Set: The parameters are stacked on top of the function block to determine specifically how the AlgoBot will carry out the function and for how long.
  • Activate: Once the function blocks are snapped together, a sequence is triggered and the AlgoBot is set into motion.
  • Explore: AlgoBots come with a variety of mats and activity cards to enhance and elevate the learning experience.

Why program on a screen when you can program with your hands? Algobrix takes standard, computer code and allows you to hold it in your hands in the form of coding blocks.  Now, ordinary LEGOs are transformed to create moving AlgoBots. AlgoBots light up, make sounds and explore the space around you through simple code.

“Kids find it difficult to sit next to a computer and learn how to program,” describes co-founder Amir Asor. “The first problem is language related and the second problem is that they don’t enjoy the experience. Algobrix changes what is stereotypically a boring, confined experience to a playful, intuitive, and fun learning experience while maintaining a high, positive correlation with coding languages that leave a lasting impression.”

“The third industrial revolution is around the corner,” says CTO and co-founder Dr. Danny Eizicovits. “We are starting to see robots in hospitals, schools, and even our homes. By teaching our kids to communicate with our robotic counterparts, we are hoping to give them the proper tools, and competitive edge in a world that is moving further towards robotics every day.”

 

About

Algobrix was founded in April 2016 after Amir Asor and Dr. Danny Eizicovits came together with a collective goal to enhance and redefine how children learn to code. The company’s mission is to introduce young children to an entertaining and effective style of education that is based on fun, intuition, and the joy of LEGO-building through the implementation of coding and its patented coding blocks.

Amir, CEO and Co-Founder, established his first educational company, Young Engineers, in 2008 and was named YBI Entrepreneur of the Year in 2011. Following his success with Young Engineers, Amir co-founded BRIXO, an electric building blocks company, that raised $1.5 Million through Kickstarter and Indiegogo. Algobrix’s CTO, Danny Eizicovits, received a PhD in Robotics and is an award-winning researcher and lecturer in accordance with Ben Gurion University of the Negev.

Sony Global Education Launches an Indiegogo Campaign for KOOV, a Coding and Robotics Kit for the Next Generation of Young Innovators

SAN DIEGO, CA (June 20, 2017) – Sony Electronics in conjunction with Sony Global Education announced today the launch of a limited Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign for KOOV, a new coding and robotics kit for the next generation of young innovators.

The Sony Global Education team developed KOOV as a fresh approach to learning robotics and programming. KOOV is already available in Japan and China, and Sony is now looking to expand the program to the US in order to gain feedback and insight into the American market.

KOOV is a robotics and coding educational kit made up of blocks, sensors, motors, actuators, and a companion app that teaches children core concepts about design, coding and robotics. The app also features a secure social space, where children can share their designs and code with other young inventors from around the world.

The blocks can be assembled into any shape, with the final figure capable of being controlled as a robot. The kit encourages learners to „Play“ by building with 7 kinds of translucent blocks, „Code“ by controlling the assembled figure through the KOOV app, and „Create“ by embracing their creativity and imagination.

Sony Global Education believes that the teaching materials for robotics and programming will play a major role in cultivating STEM literacy and nurturing the next generation of problem solvers.

KOOV was built on the belief that STEM learning tools should be accessible to all children. Through the use of inclusive colors, shareable design and the goal of building a foundation for future STEM learning, Sony hopes to attract parents of children 8 to 14 years old, with equal emphasis on boys and girls.

Pre-orders are available for a limited time beginning June 20th via an Indiegogo, with product scheduled to ship to backers in early December. The suggested retail price is $359 for the Starter Kit and $499 for the Advanced Kit with limited quantities available at discounts of up to 40% for early backers. Interested consumers can learn more about KOOV, and place preorders at https://igg.me/at/KOOV.

 

VEX IQ Frog

Maybe you have seen my VEX IQ frog at VEX Worlds or on VEX Robotics Facebook and Twitter channel.

 

My fellow VEX IQ SuperUser Andreas Dreier created building instructions for my robots, I want to share with you here.

The Complete Package for the green and gray version, including the RobotC program, can be downloaded here:

-files-frog

-files-frog.green

-files-frog.gray

-files-frog.complete

If you have any questions or problems regarding the VEX IQ Frog, you can find me in the VEX IQ Robotics Facebook Group

Learn programming and more with the Hedgehog robotics controller

Hedgehog is for anyone who wants to explore robotics, no matter their age or expertise. It is particularly suited for learning programming, but doesn’t stop there: building your own robot allows you to explore mechanics as well, and experienced programmers can tackle complex projects, such as swarm intelligence, advanced image processing, or developing their own microcontroller firmware.

Hedgehog is developed by the Practical Robotics Institute Austria and is a robot controller: the control module and heart of any robot. It can be combined with standard RC servos, DC motors, as well as various kinds of sensors and push buttons. Its case connects easily to Lego building blocks, but of course robots can be constructed from any kind of pieces.

In many ways, Hedgehog is similar to other controllers, but what makes it stand out is its versatility. Hedgehog supports both visual and textual programming through Blockly and Python. It allows you to connect different kinds of custom hardware through its UART, I2C and SPI busses. You can connect to Hedgehog over Ethernet, WiFi, or by directly plugging in monitor and keyboard. Use either the beginner-friendly in-browser development environment, or use SSH to access Hedgehog’s Raspberry Pi directly. Augment your controller by using thousands of third-party applications & libraries for the Raspberry Pi. Get into Digital Manufacturing by downloading our blueprints and laser-cutting a customized acrylic case – the possibilities are endless.

“We use Hedgehog in workshops all the time, and simplicity and versatility are two major requirements for us. Simplicity allows our learners to focus on exploring robotics, instead of handling the system. And versatility allows us to work with the same hardware in different settings, be it with elementary schoolers, in robot competitions, or in projects with students from technical high schools,” says Clemens Koza, one of Hedgehog’s developers. Workshop and classroom settings are indeed a focus of the controller’s design, but hobbyists profit from this as well: more possibilities potentially mean more projects and experiments, making the controller a cost-effective purchase.

All of Hedgehog’s hardware and software is open source, Clemens Koza explains: “when versatility is one of your goals, hiding details is counterproductive. We’re convinced of our system’s value and dedicated to its ongoing development. We try to enable a broad audience to explore technology and engineering, and I think Hedgehog is a great tool for this.” Hedgehog is currently on Kickstarter, and more information is available at hedgehog.pria.at.

RobotsBlog @ Maker Faire Berlin 2017

Move Your Project From Prototype To Production With Evezor

Evezor is a robot that can carve, draw, engrave, pour, pick,
place, cut, weld, 3D print, grab, mill, assemble and create your next
project or business.  Powered by Raspberry Pi, open source software and
hardware, Evezor is the most hackable robotic arm there is.  Evezor can
share and automate the hand tools you already own and with open tool head
platform, anyone can make tools for this machine.

A welded tube tower and steel skeleton give Evezor the strength
to support tools weighing over six pounds.  Precision machined components
and NEMA 23 motors deliver precise control, quiet operation and the power
for machining operations.  An 800mm wingspan provides the build area for
large projects.  Evezor has printed an entire single piece violin.

Magnetic encoders make this collaborative arm so user friendly a four year
old can program it, and closed loop control gives you the peace of mind that
you’ll never miss a step.

Make prototypes from a wide array of tool heads, then seamlessly
scale up to production with the same tool.  Evezor’s agility opens the door
to the entrepreneurial world for every maker.  What can Evezor make?  The
answer to this question is anything you can think of, and cocktails.

Evezor commits itself to giving back to the open source and open
hardware communities by contributing 10% from every arm.  „We think it’s
important to give back to the ecosystem that made this project possible“
says Andrew Wingate [Founder.]  Their mission is to democratize
manufacturing and increase access to opportunity.

„Chicago is one of the world’s megaregions and we often get
overlooked behind Silicon Valley and New York. I think this is the best
place in the world to kick start the next industrial revolution“ ~Andrew
Wingate

Evezor has launched a crowdfunding campaign that can be found at
http://evezor.com/kickstarter

ICON Corp. Toy Robot to Teach Programming to Infants and Toddlers

TOKYO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–On April 20th, 2017 (Thu.) ICON Corp. will begin a crowdfunding campaign for KUMIITA, an educational toy designed for 0 to 3 year olds to teach them the concepts of programming.

Kickstarter project page at https://goo.gl/MLkbjM.

By providing a language-less and hands-on experience in the form of a puzzle game, children will be accustomed to programming from a young age. KUMIITA cultivates the basic thinking patterns and logic behind programming in children by allowing them to physically assemble command panels and see how the resulting programs are executed – and why they fail at times, as well. Failed programs can also be fixed by rearranging the panels in various ways, allowing children to figure out new solutions for themselves.

KUMIITA is played by placing down panels which the robot will roll over, following its path ahead. The robot scans each panel and executes different commands to change its color or direction, play a musical instrument, or make animal sounds.

The ICON Outlook
Through cultivating a rich culture of product development that has led us to solutions for searchable, encryption protected data systems, ICON Corp. will soon reach the 20th anniversary of our founding. The KUMIITA project represents a confluence of technical expertise and free thinking to realize the development, introduction, and furthering of new ideas under the banner of „well-being through technology“ that we have strived for since our inception.

To realize a prosperous future through technology, we have taken a stance of total integration, to include not only our programming software, but hardware products and services. And now we are venturing to build opportunities for children so that they may enjoy programming in the effort to accelerate the creation of new ideas, and value that will ultimately carry the future forward.

KUMIITA on Kickstarter
The Kickstarter campaign will run from April 20th through May 20th with a project funding goal of $30,000. For full details concerning the campaign including pledge rewards, please see our project page at https://goo.gl/MLkbjM.

Meccanoid XL 2.0 Review

This article has been automatically translated from German to English

Some weeks ago, I received the Meccanoid XL 2.0 as a review copy. Unfortunately, it was only a few weeks later that I found time to commit myself more closely with this new humanoid robot from Meccano. Even though I got the Meccanoid free of charge, this is a neutral report. Here are my first impressions after the assembly and the first hours of the „programming“.

The Meccanoid XL 2.0 is the successor of Meccanoid G15KS and its smaller G15 version. Even the G15 has received a successor with the Meccanoid 2.0 (excluding XL). The number of parts has been reduced slightly compared to its predecessor, and the previously existing building instructions for a dinosaur are missing on the robot now. There’s a new „Meccasaur“ Dino robot now as a separate product. Also accounted for, is the ability to control the robot through a Smartphone by controlling the movements in front of the camera. This option was apparently completely removed from the app and is also no longer available for the G15 or G15KS. Newly added are over 3000 new gestures and language editions, as well as possibilities of speech recognition. The understood vocabulary of the robot was so significantly expanded compared to the previous version. The Meccanoid XL 2.0 has a size of 1,20 m, what makes him to be really impressive, and an absolute eye-catcher.

The Assembly was largely problem-free; however I must confess at this point that I am a newbie in Meccano. The instructions could have been given in better quality, so it was difficult to identify building steps and the corresponding correct holes for the screws in some places. You should take special consideration on the cable guide, because this is neglected in the building instructions’ manual. Here planning and thinking is required, whereby the degree of difficulty is rather aimed at advanced hobbyists. Even the assembly time of 5-6 hours proves to me that this is not a robot Kit for beginners. The specified minimum age of 10 years here, in my opinion, is somewhat young. Certainly, children need assistance by an adult when reassembling.

The parts are different from what Meccano usually offers, not made of metal but of plastic. Meccano has already received criticism online for the plastic parts, but they did not disturb me. The motors of the robot parts made of iron would be more overworked than with new plastic model.

Unfortunately many of the components are very specialized, creating one’s customized building is complicated. The hope here is that a few days ago on the Meccano Facebook page, there was posted a video, belonging to a new „Meccano mega builds“ series. This series presented alternate building possibilities in combination with other Meccano sets. Also present is a video for a new „Mecca spider“, a robot spider based on the Meccanoid and the 25 in 1 4 x 4 off-roader set. Unfortunately, I have promised instructions in the video not yet on the Meccano site, but I have already informed the support team. Please more of such alternative models are for the meccanoid set!

The Meccanoid can be adjusted to different types of „Programming“. Movement can be recorded by the movement of the limb and play back by the push of a button. This is not of course the correct programming, but it can very quickly store movements, which can then be retrieved. This „programming mode“ is suitable for everyone who shuns the correct programming. Another mode is the recording of motion sequences with the Meccanoid app (for Android and iOS). In the app is a virtual robot available whose movements can be transferred to the real Meccanoid. This method also provides no proper programming, it also only records movements. Correct programming, however, is possible with the „drag and drop – programming“ in the app. Here simple programs can be put together, which is similar to how a flow chart is built. It can be used on events (inputs) such as time, engine movement, button pressure, etc be it responsive and affiliated movements, speech, LED color change and other operations will be launched. Here we can also easily learn how to program operations and programming constructions (loops, conditions). Since the Meccanoid contains no additional sensors, the possibilities here unfortunately are somewhat limited. The app offers an interactive tutorial with an English language edition and German subtitles. Appealing to children here is the ‚Coach Meccanoid‘ virtual robot that gradually step by step guides them on using the app.

Is the Meccanoid good for use in the classroom? No. With a construction period of 5-6 hours, the building period will take too long for teaching. The learning processes through movement of the robot offers no learning effect. The use of the built-in voice control and dialog function (which did not want to work with me in German), is based on volume which is not suitable for a class room. Drag- and -drop programming is certainly suitable for the classroom, unfortunately there is the lack of tasks set or instructions for the teaching of Meccano. The introduction to simple programming sequences can be taught with some adequate preparation. Additional advanced features give hope that the  Meccano can provide a download portal for „open source programming“. Here you will find sample projects and libraries to control the meccanoid by third-party hardware.

As far as my impression of the Meccano Meccanoid XL 2.0, should you have questions or suggestions, you would like to use the comment function. Pictures and videos of the set up will be available here soon.

PLEN Cube: The Portable Personal Assistant Robot, from PLENGoer Robotics Inc., launched on Kickstarter

PLENGoer Robotics launched a KICKSTARTER campaign to bring PLEN Cube:
The Portable Personal Assistant Robot, to the world. PLEN Cube can be your
customizable, palm-­sized companion featuring a smart camera and automation skills.
Visit PLEN Cube’s Kickstarter page to pre-­order it, meet the developers, and learn more
about the product that is changing our lives.


PLEN Cube is a portable robot that can consolidate your devices and favorite web
services;; capture moments with a smart camera that tracks your face and motions;; and
complement your life with hands-­free voice activation, and customization options.
Natsuo Akazawa, CEO at PLENGoer Robotics, explains: “Think of PLEN Cube as your
right-­hand man (in robot form). We’ve packed a lot into this playful 3-­inch powerhouse:
a powerful processor, Full-­HD camera, display, microphone array and speakers, along
with cutting-­edge software in facial recognition, speech recognition, and more.“

 

A HANDS-­FREE CAMERA THAT FOLLOWS YOUR MOVEMENTS

No need for a cameraperson. Simply use voice commands to take a photo or video. PLEN Cube also uses computer vision technology, and can rotate 360 degrees to follow you wherever you go. Because PLEN Cube is wifi and bluetooth-­enabled, you can instantly share photos or videos on social media.

KEEPS YOU INFORMED

PLEN Cube aggregates all your day’s essential info including the weather, schedule, reminders, social media and more.Use the PLEN Cube mobile app to connect your services. PLEN Cube will keep you informed through its display, movements, sound, or notifications to your mobile device.

ALL YOUR SERVICES AND DEVICES IN ONE PLACE

With PLEN Cube, you can control all your favorite devices via Wifi, Bluetooth and infrared.You can also connect and consolidate your social media, including Facebook,Instagram, and Twitter.

CUSTOMIZE TO YOUR LIFE -­ FROM MORNING TO NIGHT

Anyone can customize the PLEN Cube using IFTTT, a web-­based automation service that allows you to create chains of actions with your favorite web services. PLEN Cube can do everything else a personal assistant bot can do, and also expands the number of triggers (inputs) and actions (outputs) you can use. Advanced developers can access our open API and take customization to the next level. We’ll also launch a community forum where users can share ideas and collaborate, and PLENGoer can provide further developer information.

Specs:

  • Size: 75mm x75mm x75mm / Weight: 500g (1.1 lbs).
  • Intel Joule 570x
  • WiFi, Bluetooth
  • 320×240 LCD – full color
  • Full HD Camera – with stop motion, panoramic, and face and actiontracking
  • Microphone x2 – to locate sound source
  • Electromagnetic field-based sensor – detects hand presence and motion.
  • Program different gestures to activate certain application actions
  • Speakers – full range drivers, woofers and tweeters from GoerTek, a leaderin the global miniature electro-acoustic industry
  • Infrared home appliance control – through a partnership with Crossdoor
  • Motors – for PLEN Cube’s expressive movement
  • Linux OS
  • Robot Operating System (ROS)
  • Voice recognition software (we’re currently evaluating the best option for this)

About PLENGoer Robotics Inc.

Founded in 2016, PLENGoer Robotics Inc. develops personal service robots to achieve a richer quality of life. With the robot development technology our parent PLEN Project Company has cultivated thus far, and production technology of GoerTek group, we aim to develop unprecedented and truly functional service robots. PLENGoer Robotics will be an innovation platform for service robots.
Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/plengoer/