Robot with a Roomba - non-invasive procedure! No need to take it apart.

Here is a simple project to build a nimble robot out of a Roomba, without having to open it up. I use mine as a telepresence robot.
Works very, very well.
- Get a Roomba that uses a remote control, such as the Roomba Red, which retails for about US$120 after coupons (The Roomba Discovery Series, the Roomba Pro and Roomba Pro Elite work with the remote. The original silver-colored Roomba is not compatible with the Roomba Remote).
- Open the Roomba remote control ($15.00) and solder a couple of wires to each button contact point (turn right, forward, turn left).
- Build a simple parallel port interface that switches cheap relays (such as reed relays, Radio Shack 275-232). Connect the relays to the wires coming from the remote control.
- Velcro your laptop to the Roomba. Velcro the remote control and parallel port interface to the laptop.
- Install a parallel port control software.
- Have fun!!!
During these holidays, I'll post links to the software, hardware, and pictures/video of my Roomba telepresence robot.
Mark
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Here it is:
http://www.villela.com/roombarobot
You will find video, plenty of pictures, complete instructions, free software, etc.
Constructive feedback is always welcome.
Enjoy!
Mark

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