TDT had a lot of fun setting up our booth at coolTECH this afternoon. We had a lot of fun learning about the other exhibitors, and had a particularly good time visiting the Robrady booth – Engineering heaven! We plan to go down to Sarasota to visit the design company later this summer, and get a first hand look at the process behind all their great inventiveness. The company builds everything from floating tools to Segways and motorcycles. Even better, they clearly like sharing their enthusiasm for design and technology with others, especially interested engineers-in-training.
coolTECH reception guests also seemed to have a good time with our students sharing their own enthusiasm for design and technology, with several trying their hands at driving our TDT robot.
The SkypeBot got a bit of early debut as well and drew a curious crowd, watching remote operators drive the robot around the coolTech exhibit area from a home in Odessa. All in all, it was a fun kick off for what looks like an exciting event tomorrow. And TDT will be there bright and early, too, to meet with a Fox Good Day for a morning show taping.
TDT member, Chris Willingham, is debuting his SkypeBot on June 4th, at coolTECH. Can’t make it to coolTECH? You can still drive SkypeBot – that’s the whole point! Check out the video and give it a try on Friday, June 4th, between 9am and 5pm, and see first hand, how FIRST inspires students! Visit the Tampa Bay Technology Forum to learn more about coolTECH.
When TDT toured Georgia Tech in Atlanta, last month, members enjoyed learning about Pleo, the robotic Camosaur. Bob Christopher, one of Pleo’s creators, is now heading up Anybots, and leading development of another generation of robots with QB, a “mobile telepresence robot.”
In Anybots QB Robot is a Telepresence for the 21st Century, PC Magazine reports:
…this 5-foot, 9-inch, 32 lb rolling bot, combines a computer, the Internet, mobility, and some self-awareness and autonomy to replace the frequent phone calls, instant messages, and even some video conference calls that distant co-workers have to make to stay in touch and keep on top of work and ongoing projects.
Rolling around at up to 3.5 mph (approximately human walking speed) on two, 12-inch aluminum and rubber wheels (company execs insist this is actually more stable than a three-wheeled robot), QB is a self-balancing robot stuffed with a full Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, as well as numerous mini computers. It uses the technology to capture video though its 5-megapixel eye and deliver it to a browser-based interface on any Mac (Windows support should arrive by the time QB ships in the fall) or PC.
You can read the full article and see video of QB at http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2363866,00.asp But …
Before you start hyperventilating over the $15K cost, consider SkypeBot , the creation of one of our Team Duct Tape members. Developed by 17 year old Chris Willingham over the course of the last couple of months, out of simple curiosity and his desire to try out a Java API, SkypeBot will debut at coolTECH in June.
If QB is an Anybot, SkypeBot is more of an Everybot – open source, accessible, affordable and fun. And a great testament to the skill and inventiveness of the type of highly capable students that participate in FIRST robotics .
Visit back regularly to keep up with Chris’ progress on SkypeBot, and drop him a line at email@example.com if you’d like to be a SkypeBot beta tester.