ROBOZEST 14 Report
Robo-Zest 2014(Workshop on Android Robotics), conducted by IIT-Bombay and RoboSpecies kicked off on the 31st of January, 2014. The workshop was inaugurated by the Mechanical Head of the Department, Dr. Josephkunju Paul C and Mr. Prakesh M Kallanickal in the Seminar Hall. We had all gathered there by 9:30 am. Dr. Josephkunju Paul C talked about the importance of software in the mechanical field and also about the limitations of education from college. He was very supportive to conduct such brain bombing workshops in college. He thanked Robo-Species for approaching them with such an opportunity. The student coordinators, Jaise Paul and Tilak Raj introduced us to Mr. Arpit from RoboSpecies. After lighting the Kuthuvilaku, he took over the class.
There was a total of 17 teams, each comprising 5 members seated in the Seminar Hall. We were introduced to Arduino. Arduino is an Open Source Electronics Prototyping Platform based on flexible, easy-to-use hardware and software. It’s intended for artists, designers, hobbyists and anyone interested in creating interactive objects or environments.
In the morning, we were familiarized with the basics from data storage right from the 0s and 1s to storage and processing of various micro-controllers. Then we were given a detailed description of Arduino, the applications and industrial importance. He also gave us tips on how this workshop could be helpful for future projects.
In the afternoon, Arpit showed us various Arduino boards like Uno, Dun, Yun, Micro and the different protocols used. Then he took us into deep details of the diode and hand software to us. We were then tutored to write codes in the Arduino Software. It was similar to C++ programming but different libraries. We were taught programs to blind multiple LEDs and establishing a Bluetooth Link.
On the First of February i.e. the second day, each team was given a pack that contained an Arduino board, IR sensors, Motor and Bluetooth Board, a chassis, two wheels and motors and a lot of wires. There was a cable for connecting the Arduino main board to the Laptop. We then uploaded the software and saw the corresponding results on the LED board. Similarly we explored the IR and the Motor Board. By afternoon, he taught us to link our Android phones to the Arduino board and established remote connection. By 4 pm, we were asked to make a robot that would trace a particular path. Then what followed for the next hour was a series of experimentation and coding. It was a competition, the winners of which would get a chance to present themselves at IIT-Bombay.
The workshop ended by 7pm with all 17 teams responding with positive participation. Robotics never seemed so easy with such simple programming objectives.