Great news! The motors are working and can be controlled remotely! We’re getting closer! Check it out.
Had a bit of a malfunction this week involving the powered hub. Check it out.
We made some actual progress this week! The VR component of the telepresence robot is finally working and the arduinos have just arrived, so we’re ready to hook up the motors and the servos and write some code to get this thing moving. Check out the video for more details!
Newest video is up! No new hardware to show but lots of bugs and frustrations to discuss. Enjoy!
We’re back! After an embarrassingly long hiatus (given how briefly this project had been going for) we’re back and hopefully for longer this time around.
First robot is done but there is some broken hardware that I need to replace before I can get a demo up, in the meantime, work has begun on Robot #2…a telepresence robot! Check out the video for details on all of the above.
The first Cylon is well on its way and so far, no part of it has burned out or burst into flames, which I consider a mark of progress. The components are all attached and the obstacle avoidance code seems to work, but I’m having issues testing it properly because the wheels I’m using aren’t very good and are getting in the way of functionality. The plan is to get new wheels and see if that changes anything. I’m also having a balance problem where the robot keeps falling over backwards. You could fix this by adding a third wheel at the back, but I got the idea to add brushes instead and try to turn this obstacle avoider into a roomba! I’ll fiddle around with that over the next week and we’ll see how we go. For more details on what I did as well as what I’ve got planned for next month, check out the video.
A lot of people like to make new years resolutions but this year, Mark Zuckerberg took it one step further and set himself a challenge to build an AI that manages his house. Not one to be shown up by the Zuck, I decided to set my own challenge. You’ll find my whole schpeel in the Facebook post below but the long and short of it is: I’m going to build one robot every month for the entirety of 2016 and the whole thing will be called the 12 Cylon Challenge.
As I mentioned in the post, I want each robot to be simple enough that I can do it as a hobby project over the course of the month. That said, I don’t want to rebuild the same thing 12 times so each month I will pick a theme, a concept or piece of tech that I want to fiddle with, and base the bot around that. That way each one has a unique flavor. January’s robot will be a simple obstacle avoider and the theme for the month will be building a complete system out of off-the-shelf components (as opposed to a pre-packaged kit).
I want to keep people up to date on my progress; I like YouTube as a medium but sometimes you need to have text. So all my updates will be posted to this blog, but the updates may just be an embedded YouTube video with a little bit of intro text. That about covers all the background information I have for this post. You’ll find the first video of this challenge below where I talk about my first robot, component shopping and what you can expect from this challenge. Enjoy and let me know what you think!
A piece I wrote for Egyptian Streets about the rise of a new Egyptian tech start-up called Engezni, started by two friends of mine from university.
By Mostafa Rizk, contributor, EgyptianStreets.com
Sometimes it seems that any news you hear out of Egypt is bad news. Whether it’s about an increasing budget deficit, a new wave of violent clashes or another government screw up, it feels as if everybody is actively trying to make things worse. But that couldn’t be farther from the truth.
For every person out there not doing their job or actively making the country a worse place to live, there are a thousand more who are sick of the politics and stagnation, who just want to see Egypt flourish, and are working tirelessly to make that happen.
The team behind Egypt’s latest tech startup, Engezni, are some of those people.
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A while back, everyone freaked out over Egypt’s planned space agency being a waste of money given the nation’s other problems. I disagree with that sentiment so I wrote an article for Egyptian Streets explaining my perspective. The link is in the title. Enjoy!