Some amazing video of Vstone Robovie-M

Jeff Fox wrote:


I'm sorry if I missed it before, but what is the URL for your website? -- D. Jay Newman http://enerd.ws/robots /
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I suppose any soap box calls for a few cheap shots. The particular soap box I was standing on was not aimed at Forth, but rather the general idea that so many programmers seem to feel that they aer somehow above the need to even attempt the simplest of comments or code readability. As in: "My thoughts and ideas are so far beyond you that I have no obligation to code in any maner that is usable by others."

them
downloaded.
Nice web site. I'll take some time and browse around. Can you point me directly to a good Forth example?

Sounds like a good general purpose language. I have heard that some people use other languages to do some of these things.

Sounds like fun.

years
I've had similar experiences. The most rediculous was a few years back when Intel 286 chips were new. We had a mission critical application that had to run on three CPUs lock stepped together so that they executed the same instructions at the same time. It was simple to do. We had it working in a matter of days. But the Intel 286 ICE machine gave us some trouble. So we called Intel asking questions. They calimed that what we were doing was "impossible". So we invited them out to see it and they acted as if awe struck. Why? It was simple to do and the concept was no rocket science, but somehow they could not even see the possibilities of their own hardware till we put it in their hand.
Over the years I have seen many examples of this kind of brain lock. Poeple just seem to get stuck in a mental rut.

Often the larger the group the less they can get done. I once worked for a large company that ran many independent projects. The projects were notoriously over time and budget. So to address the problem they decided to have every person write down their job description and give it to his/her immediate supervisor all the way up the chain. The we had weekly meetings to discuss whether we were really doing our job or wether we had somehow become all mixed up that week. Well, the result was that we spent a whole lot of time in meetings and our productivity got even worse.
Every time I have worked with a small group or company we have been able to make incredible progress and do things that larger companies simply could not achieve with hords of programmers and engineers.
Not to spend too much bandwidth bashing bill, but I believe that most of the innovations, capabilities and features of Windows, MS Office, etc., were created by small companies or individuals who were crushed or absorbed into the MS goliath.

who
Well, you come off as a little cocky here, but I understand your meaning, and appreciate that you tend to send the lower levels somewhere else. When I have actual questions they then to be of black belt nature. I really hate when I have a black belt question and I have to wade through "what version do you have", "did you download the latest...", "did you plug it in?", "Is the power switch in the ON position?". It's good to know there is some place to go when you have a real question.

Ok, but you may notice that that particular quote is a simple bounce back of your: "If I want to know more about your dreadful Fourth language I will know who to ask."
Just showing that if you want to play in the mud I can do that too. But it's kind of a waste of both of our time.

That was part of my cheap shot. It just does not get any easier that MS bashing. However, it's not just marketing that MS excels at, they also have an outstanding legal department that can litigate and crush almost any smaller outfit they choose to descend upon. The king is usually not the smartest fellow, but he generally has a big stick that he used to beat the living sh*t out of the smartest guy and take all of his stuff.

software
their
I'll take it out till I have time to digest some of the information on your site. Want to give me a good starting point? As you said there is a lot of stuff there.
Cheers,
--Steve
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The key is the intended audience for code. If you are doing professional work you assume the next person to look at the code will be a professional and will understand the programming language, understand the natural language of the comments, and understand the details of the problem domain.
If you are writing a tutorial you assume the person is learning the language or how to use it along the way. The way you comment will be very different.
I had one job where I replaced a programmer named Roy. Everyone there said that Roy code was obvious when you encountered it. Every line had a comment, but all the comments only explained what the assembler opcode on that line did. "This line adds the contents of register A with the contents of register B and writes the result back to register A."
There were no comments telling what the program was doing. The comments were useless to anyone who know anything about the language and useless to someone who wanted to know what the program was trying to do or why. Managment didn't want to pay this guy to waste time writing comments that only served as tutorials for the opcodes.
Likewise if someone is writing code for spacecraft operation or VLSI design and simulation they expect that the reader is up to speed on the terminology used in the documentation. Someone who knows nothing about the problem domain and is trying to learn the programming language by reading the code may consider it bad code. That's just not the kind of code they need to learn from at that point. But another scientist who is familiar with the problem but not the programming language may be able to read the code quite easily.
Comments should explain what code is doing and why, the code should explain how it does it. To understand those things you have to already know the languages and details of the problem domain.

For a little code with lots of explanation and documenation look at http://www.ultratechnology.com/meta.html the code is simple, what it does is not.
Like much of the other stuff at my site the subject is considered by most a black belt level problem, metacompilation. But in that case there is lots of explanation about what the code does.
For essays on using good style or on methodology try:
http://www.ultratechnology.com/1xforth.htm a transcript of presentation by the inventor of Forth on the language
http://www.ultratechnology.com/forth.htm an essay by me about the language and how it differs from many others
http://www.ultratechnology.com/lowfat.htm an essay on low fat computing

That is an example of the sort of high fat overhead that is endemic of the industry. It created justification for the middle managers' jobs, or at least looked like it did.
Best Wishes
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<snip> : > Often the larger the group the less they can get done. I once worked for a : > large company that ran many independent projects. The projects were : > notoriously over time and budget. So to address the problem they decided to : > have every person write down their job description and give it to his/her : > immediate supervisor all the way up the chain. The we had weekly meetings : > to discuss whether we were really doing our job or whether we had somehow : > become all mixed up that week. Well, the result was that we spent a whole : > lot of time in meetings and our productivity got even worse. : : That is an example of the sort of high fat overhead that is endemic : of the industry. It created justification for the middle managers' : jobs, or at least looked like it did.
I inherited a whole department once, and it was also very far behind schedule! I did a "Functional Audit" similar to the one above, laid off 70% of the employees, (57) and we didn't loose another day on the schedule, even made up 13 days. Delivered the system within budget, still 4 months late and met all requirements. Sometimes there are just too many heads ramming into each other and no progress.
BTW: The finished code was clearly documented with all comments in clear understandable ENGLISH. I mention that because we had two of the 18 programmers who commented their code in Mandarin! (Among the first to go!)
The first rule of design is simple, focus on the task, and leave clear documentation for those who follow. You never know when you will be road kill (or is that freeway mush?)
Roger Gt.
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X-No-Archive: yes
<snip> : > Often the larger the group the less they can get done. I once worked for a : > large company that ran many independent projects. The projects were : > notoriously over time and budget. So to address the problem they decided to : > have every person write down their job description and give it to his/her : > immediate supervisor all the way up the chain. The we had weekly meetings : > to discuss whether we were really doing our job or whether we had somehow : > become all mixed up that week. Well, the result was that we spent a whole : > lot of time in meetings and our productivity got even worse. : : That is an example of the sort of high fat overhead that is endemic : of the industry. It created justification for the middle managers' : jobs, or at least looked like it did.
I inherited a whole department once, and it was also very far behind schedule! I did a "Functional Audit" similar to the one above, laid off 70% of the software group employees, and a few others, after that we didn't loose another day on the schedule, even made up 13 days. Delivered the system within budget, still 4 months late and met all requirements. Sometimes there are just too many heads ramming into each other and no progress.
BTW: The finished code was clearly documented with all comments in clear understandable ENGLISH. I mention that because we had two of the 18 programmers who commented their code in Mandarin! (Among the first to go!)
I grouped the work units in five to seven per group and put one person in charge of reporting (via Email) No formal meetings! Every two weeks we reviewed each groups progress separately. The hardware people didn't need to set through the code discussions, nor did the optical and mechanical guys.
The first rule of design is simple, focus on the task, and leave clear documentation for those who follow. You never know when you will be road kill (or is that freeway mush?)
Roger Gt.
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Your biped is looking good. After I finish my hexapod and get a little experience in programming Atmel AVR chips I am going to attempt to clone your clone. It is the coolest bot I have seen. Hopefully you will be willing to share some of the code since I too will be using an AVR :-) Keep up the good work, it looks like you'll have an awesome bot soon.
Tim
wrote:

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Ed, where did you purchase, and what are the part numbers for the 'needle thrust bearings' listed on the website?
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On 14 Jun 2004 12:55:08 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@teklogix.com (tgray) wrote:

Here's the website:
http://nobtech-hosting.com/cgi-bin/secure_html/bearingsdirect/autocart.cgi?CATC
The part number is AXK32482
Cheers, Ed L
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Is there a parts list available? Specifically, what are parts PN1001, PN1004, PN1005, and PN1007 shown in the '2 Axis Joint Assembly Drawing'?
snipped-for-privacy@earthlink.net (Ed LeBouthillier) wrote in message (tgray) wrote:

http://nobtech-hosting.com/cgi-bin/secure_html/bearingsdirect/autocart.cgi?CATC
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On 15 Jun 2004 14:26:32 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@teklogix.com (tgray) wrote:

Not really, I started assigning part numbers and making a Bill of Material, but then I found it more work than was necessary. Almost all parts are online. I'll add the rest of them this evening.
Realize, the first cut was not perfect. There were tolerance problems that I'm going to fix on a second version of the robot but I'm going to finish it entirely as is before doing that.
The two major implementation/design flaws that I see are:
    1) Tolerances of the thigh and shins (design flaw):      I didn't properly accomodate the bend allowance      when I made the parts and they came out about     0.100" too wide.     2) Weak servos (implementation flaw): I was     controlling them with a Basic Stamp 2 last week     and I realized that the servos are weak, but will     be passable for basic walking. Anything more than     walking, though, and they're too weak.
Cheers, Ed L
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On 15 Jun 2004 14:26:32 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@teklogix.com (tgray) wrote:

The only "parts list" is the list of drawings on my webpage. I have now uploaded all files that I've used. If you want to build one, you'll have to study the drawings and figure out how things go together. If you still have problems, ask me and I'll answer any questions you have.
Cheers, Ed L
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Is there a parts list available? Specifically, what are parts PN1001, PN1004, PN1005, and PN1007 shown in the '2 Axis Joint Assembly Drawing'?
snipped-for-privacy@earthlink.net (Ed LeBouthillier) wrote in message (tgray) wrote:

http://nobtech-hosting.com/cgi-bin/secure_html/bearingsdirect/autocart.cgi?CATC
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http://www.wowrobot.co.kr/Shop/index.php?var=Good&Good_no#4
Check this out. A new kit from Korea. Around $1,400 USD. Not a bad price, if it's decent. It seems to be fairly powerful. It can do a handstand and more. The servos seem decent. There's a movie embedded halfway down on the page. He does a little drunken boxing... and some quick fighting poses. Looks nice.
- Dave
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www.sozbots.com has started importing them here in the USA.
Dan
Sega wrote:

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I've updated the webpage for the VStone Clone project. You can see it at:
http://home.earthlink.net/~apendragn/biped/index.html
I've added the servo controller boards and main processor into a box. This will allow me to develop the software and motion sequences in a larger, friendlier environment. Eventually, I'll ditch the box for a smaller, dedicated controller.
My intention is to develop a board especially for this bot, but first I want to make sure that I understand all of the requirements. My first attempt at controlling the robot with a basic stamp left me realizing that a more powerful controller is needed, but I still don't know exactly how powerful.
The current controller board is a general purpose control system that I've been working on (with a higher priority than even the robot). Now that these boards are done, I have the ability to control all of the servos simultaneously with high update rates over a serial cable from a laptop. I'll be developing the sequences and identifying the minimum requirements for a successful control system. Once I do that, then I'll lay out a PCB.
As soon as I can, I will be putting some video of the biped walking but I'm not expecting that until next week at the earliest.
Cheers, Ed L
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Looks great Ed! Any plans for a dynamic balancing gait using accelerometer/gyro?
John
snipped-for-privacy@earthlink.net (Ed LeBouthillier) wrote in message

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On 29 Jul 2004 10:15:03 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (John Vannoy) wrote:

Eventually, but one thing at a time. First, I'll get it walking with static stability, then I'll add accelerometers and gyros and work on dynamic stability. This all takes a lot of work and time and I can imagine it being at least 6 months before I'll get to experimenting with dynamic motion, realistically.
Cheers, Ed L
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Ed LeBouthillier wrote:

Looks like it's coming along good. Do you personally machine the metal components? One option you may want to consider is using polycarbonate or PETG materials. They're lighter, still immensely strong, and far less expensive. They're even cheap enough to affordably have your parts laser cut. This is what companies like Lynxmotion have been doing for quite a while with some fairly impressive results (
http://www.lynxmotion.com/images/jpg/bps13.jpg ).
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On Fri, 30 Jul 2004 02:27:05 -0400, "Chris S."

Yes and no. Most of the parts are cut out with a bandsaw. There are only about 2 or 3 pieces which were cut out with a mill.

I wouldn't think that polycarbonate foam would be stiff enough. I have thought about using carbon fiber but I have to finish what I have first.
Cheers, Ed L
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Ed LeBouthillier wrote:

Of course not foam (I wasn't even aware polycarbonate came in foam form). I meant the solid plastics. They're easily strong enough to handle any forces encountered with servos. Polycarbonate (a.k.a. Lexan) is what's used in Battlebots to shield the spectators from the arena and in some of the bots themselves. PETG is nearly just as strong, but easier to work with.
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