Mini-ITX as robot brain?

Anyone tried using a Mini-ITX system as a brain for a robot? It seems that it would be a very powerful core that you can run any OS you want
with lots of IO possibilities and standardized interfaces for screens if you need that, sound card incorporated, and even wlan for wireless access to the internet. Easy integration of GPS or other positioning systems. Boot off a CompactFlash and it could be pretty compact.
http://www.mini-itx.com
Anyone have any idea how much power a thing like this would consume? Maybe the first task of the robot would be to plug itself into your wall socket for recharging whenever batterylevels become low. :-)
Best regards.
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Check the mini-ITX web site; they have a whole section devoted to the use of these boards in robotics related applications. Regards M

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Take a look at:
<http://www.mini-box.com/powersimulator.html
for EPIA Power Simulator.
Paul.
snipped-for-privacy@online.no (Jeceel) wrote in message

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And their even smaller form factor, the nano-ITX: http://www.mini-itx.com/news/computex2003-1
-C http://hossweb.com
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Been there and done that. it works good. What I do is use a ISOPOD (www.newmicros.com) as the I/O controller and use the Mini-ITX as the brain.
here's some links you can check out. http://robots.net/article/1020.html
http://robots.net/article/1042.html http://www.mobilerobotics.org/robot /

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Earl Bollinger wrote:

Are you running Linux?
I just ordered my M10000 and would appreciate any hints needed to get it up and running. -- D. Jay Newman
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I use Windows XP, Linux didn't support the USB ports with the USB devices I wanted to use. No fuss no mess, no writing my own drivers, no having to recompile the OS, etc. Like RTFM under Linux means anything, hundreds of pages of documentation for the wrong version of everything. Of course if your a "expert" fanatic programmer and live eat sleep Linux, you shouldn't have any problems. Every other year of so, I make an attempt at getting Linux do so something useful, then eventually I give up.
Now Solaris was pretty good, I just got tired of having to roll my own drivers and stuff all the time. I want to install a OS, put on the compilers, and start using it now. I don't want to spend weeks writing or debugging code to get it to work, before I start using it.

use
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How do you get Windows XP to not do things like index the whole darm disk drive whiel you are tryinf to time the return-pulse from an ultrasonic rangefinder?
Or, how do you even talk to the parallel-port from a C program?
Or, how do you send servo-pulses to a hobby servo motor?
I could never figure those things out with Windows (any-version) so I just swapped to Linux, and I'm good-to-go.
I just have no idea what windoes is up to, no process-control, things just run whenever they want to and I can;t turn anything off and know that it's off for sure.
And how do I get a program started up without logging in to a graphics terminal?
I can run Linux with no graphics card at all, and things run just fine.
Sorry, but I'm a little too stupid after 20 years running UNIX to be able to figure out how to do anything with Windows.
--
- Alan Kilian <alank(at)timelogic.com>
Director of Bioinformatics, TimeLogic Corporation 763-449-7622
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I use a ISOPOD from www.newmicros.com as a smart I/O controller. I use Atmel MCU's for this too. The mini-ITX talks to it via a serial port. I never had a problem with it wanting to do things like indexing the hd, as the mini-itx is dedicated 100% to the robot. Honestly I don't remember ever seeing it do that anyway, maybe it did index the HD but I never really noticed or thought about it. So it only had what software was needed to run the robot. Running RC servos directly off the PC itself? That's what the I/O controllers are for. I've been programming since 1971 myself. A bunch of those computers people nowadays probably never heard of or knew existed. I have two Sun and two HP boxes at home still, plus a Linux box being used as a database server.
Honestly, I personally have never seen a real Linux based robot in any setting other than a "static" display. It seems everyone was off still writing code for it to get it to work. of course there seemsto be a lot of neat robots that will be coming out down the road after a while. I tried to get a Linux based robot to work and failed, maybe someone else was more successful. More power to them. Way to go.
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You can turn off indexing. Pretty easy. You can also turn off most services. Sure, Windows XP is not a real-time OS, but neither is Linux. There are some real-time extensions for Linux, and there are some also available for Windows. The main difference, of course, is price.

Not that difficult. A very often-asked question, actually. You can write your own driver or use one of the many freely available drivers.

The same way you would with Linux. You just have to learn Windows programming, just like you learned Linux programming over the years.

Smart decision, though. ;-)

Totally wrong. You can do whatever you want with the so-called "task-manager" on Windows NT/2000/XP/2003. And the built-in Administration tools allow you to turn any service on or off.

For instance, you'd write a service. There are other ways, too.

Ok, this one is a bit trickier with Windows, but not impossible at all.

Well, of course, if you have that much experience with Un*x-like systems, you're better off using it.
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