Wednesday, January 27, 2010

tuesday. t-28.

exactly four weeks to ship from yesterday!

yesterday was a productive, if chaotic, day....

annie headed the effort to start using a motor to actuate the cam. decided on a van door, will hopefully be testing today.

shifrah, sarah r, and lindsey worked on a prototype for pneumatics actuation with a gate hinge. shif cut wood in the shop during lunch and they'll be done with that soon.

anndini drilled holes in the 8020 for the better prototype of marvin.

caroline wrote new drive code with some of the new programming team members. we tested it on chad. the wireless bridge REALLY does not like going over the bump. at all. not even a little bit. we think that it's a combination of just the innards of the bridge and the crio connections. we're insulating the bridge, and we shall try to order another one.

drills have been researched and we will order a new dewalt asap.

Monday, January 25, 2010

monday 1/25


chad goes over bumps! chad operates pneumatics! chad is amazing!
[chad is the kit chassis.]
unfortunately, chad does not go over bumps too well --- there are quite frightening crashing sounds when he lands. and the wireless likes to shut off. sticky wheels at the back work better than slick wheels at the back, though. but we as much as we love chad, we would prefer to not actually have to use him. especially as he has an attitude problem

PAIATAAOTGOR team wants you to know that they were successful in their robotics mission. they are about to go on an ACE run to get hinges etc to take their kicker mechanism to the next level.

the chassis [preemptively named "marvelous marvin"] is being drawn up by nandini.
sallie, divya, and santhi are wiring up various sensors. i THINK i found accurate documentation for the gyro [rate: signal, 5v, gd], but i cannot decipher the accelerometer documentation.

victoria, kylie, and shreya have been working on the lego robot, aka henry. they are screaming very loudly so as to trigger the sound sensor.

thank you to mr dean for chaperoning and to the harris family for dinner.
and a reminder that we are meeting until 8:30 this week.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

thursday 1/21

it's been a long while since i've properly updated -- sorry! we've come a long way.

chad, the kit chassis with last year's electronics board but this year's labview code, is FINALLY FINALLY FINALLY up and running! it's terribly exciting.

marion, victoria, kylie, and caroline are going to work on pneumatics code. anna m has been spearheading the pneumatics movement, which is really awesome. the current pneumatics setup is slightly sketchy. we may possibly have been hardwiring to the battery, but we are in the process of hooking everything up [safty FIRST!] carefully following instructions.

aneesha, anna h, kaley, and tobi are working with mr cardinal to build the bump tonight. thank you so much for his help!

we've had some serious laptop/labview issues. after getting the new laptop from tech and installing labview 8.6, we think that labview is not windows7 compatible. this is a problem, meaning we won't be able to code on the new one successfully unless we downgrade to xp. mehhhh.

we have essentially decided that the design for the kicker that we want to pursue is the surgical tubing/4 chairs concept. a rectangular frame with a metal rod running though it with surgical tubing attaching to the top pulling the back of the kicker, allowing you to release quickly. i'm not sure that description is the easiest to understand, but i shall try to upload some pics whenever i have a moment.

more later

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


mentor: stephen
lead: nandini
code: caroline
sara h

mentor: santhi
lead: anne
code: divya

"pneumatics as it relates to... things" [pairtt]
mentor: holly
anna m
sarah r

mentor: karlin
lead: allie
code: sallie/sherri

hopefully the other new team members will join the various subteams soon. thanks to all for a great design review! i'll try to write more late.r

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

important links

labview programming guide --

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

from anna

anna can't figure out how to post so i am posting this for her:

Today Shifrah, Sarah R, Divya and I [Anna] were able to work on a pneumatics system to possibly use as a "kicker" for the robot. Jessa came by and helped us figure out what the pieces in the pneumatics boxes were for. After numerous trials and resealing the connections with teflon tape we were able to get the system to work! Currently the "kicker" dosn't move very quickly, but hopefully we will soon be able to connect it to some electronics so that we can get a good prototype up and running!

also, i (shreya again) wrote a poem

we don't know why
and we don't know how
but our projector
smells like a cow.


summary version of where we're at:

caroline, karlin, and i got extremely frustrated with the downloading mishaps and decided just to go home on time yesterday. we will continue wrestling with it on friday, but as we can actually write code and download it, we are not going to continue driving ourselves insane.

SO: tonight, we have four groups of people working on things.

caroline is working with lindsey, shreya, emilie rw, marion, kylie, and victoria and is walking them through the labview code from last year. we were hoping to have a projector to make teaching/explanation easier, but we could not manage to get the projector to work.

allie is working with teresa, annie, aneesha, and meghana and putting chain on the kit chassis. we're definitely going to stick with 35 chain this year, since we can't come up with good concrete reasons to switch to 25 and it is a huge hassle.

anna and shifrah are heading up a group that is prototyping a PNEUMATIC ACTUATOR!!!! i am very excited about it. yay for experimentation and messing around with parts.

tobi and a group are working on a pincher mechanism with 80/20.

thank you to mrs holston for dinner and chaperoning and to jessa for turning up!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

a very productive day!

hello everybody! shreya here. i've been appointed "official blog person" so get used to me :)
it's the 4th day of the season and the robotics room is buzzing! build and programming alike a re busy as bumblebees!
happening today:
  • sherri, caroline, sallie, divya and karlin are trying to fix the wireless connection--basically, several parts have identity crises and are not aware they exist. and they need therapy.
  • anne and nandini filled in our lovely mentors, stephen and holly, on this year's challenge
  • anna, shifrah, emily and i built a prototype chassis
  • annie, sarah, christine and meghana built a prototype kicking mechanism
  • tobi, nina and aneesha worked on a prototype pinball flipper thing for kicking the soccer ball
  • allie, lindsey and victoria inventoried parts :D
chaperone and dinner was my mom (aka kc), who offered these words of wisdom: there is no such thing as too much garlic bread.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

and away we go!

it's strange to think that season's already started -- sixth year!

yesterday was kickoff. the challenge this year is essentially a modified soccer game with "bumps", and a "finale" involving robots elevated onto platforms. here's a link to a youtube of the animation:

caroline, anna m, anne, and i [sherri] went down to sj at the crack of dawn to receive the challenge and get the kit of parts. we came back to school and kicked off with the larger team and community at noon. i definitely think it was the biggest kickoff yet! over fifteen new team members showed up. we had an initial brainstorming session which we are continuing today. yesterday, we also inventoried the kit of parts, began to read the manual, and began to set up for labview/downloading.

this morning, we outlined major dates and guidelines. we want to have a design review sometime in the 17th-19th, actually choose a design, especially for drive train, by the 22nd. sometime early in season, we need to actually make a decision: do we want a gripper/elevation thing or not? we don't want another scotty-situation.

allie is going to create a twitter account for us.

we have a list of tasks/jobs that need to be done, especially things that underclassmen can do...
blog -- shreya
inventory robotics lap?
bill of materials
"manual expert" -- anna m
cart -- sarah r
picasa/photos -- teresa
junior safety captain?
youtube scout -- victoria
game components

and off we go! thank you to ms mourad, the mentors who came yesterday, and all the parent support. we couldn't do it without you. let the madness begin.

Friday, January 01, 2010

Crate Progress

Today, Shreya, Shifrah, Anna, Tobi, Sherri and I (Annie) met at Castilleja to build the crate. The design is similar to our previous crate with a few modifications. Firstly, it is lighter, as we used lighter plywood for the sides. Also, it will be kept inside, so it will stay dry and last much longer than our old one.

We finished the two halves and are waiting to complete until the season starts because it won't fit up the elevator in the Arrillaga building, but for storage it will be kept in the Gym, as it is 4" thinner and will fit in that elevator. The halves are currently in the robotics room.

Many thanks to everyone who helped out, especially Ms. Mourad and Mr. Cardinal for supervising.

Happy New Year!