NXT-G Programming Workshop
Advanced Programming Workshop Slide Show PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jamie Diamond   
Sunday, 11 October 2009 17:17
Here is the slide deck from our Cleveland workshop.  We had a lot of fun meeting with all the other teams.
Attachments:
Download this file (Cougar Cleveland Advanced NXT-G Programming Workshop.odp)Cougar Cleveland Advanced NXT-G Programming Workshop.odp[NXT-G Programming Workshop slides in OpenOffice.org Impress format]3252 Kb02/11/09 08:09
Download this file (Cougar Cleveland Advanced NXT-G Programming Workshop.pdf)Cougar Cleveland Advanced NXT-G Programming Workshop.pdf[PDF version of Slide Show for those without OpenOffice.org Impress]2597 Kb02/11/09 08:08
Last Updated on Monday, 12 October 2009 20:37
 
Calibrate Program PDF Print E-mail
Written by Joey   
Wednesday, 07 October 2009 21:16

UPDATED 10/17/2009 at 10:37pm  - Revised code to remove use of Mini-Blocks 

This is our Cougar Calibrate program.  It is set up to use the light sensor on port 1.

  1. Start the program.
  2. Move your robot around until the light sensor is reading the lowest value you can easily find on the field (darkest spot).
  3. Press the left button.
  4. Suddenly it will be reading 0 for that dark value.
  5. Move the robot around until the light sensor is reading the brightest value you can find.
  6. Press the right button.
  7. Suddenly it will be reading about 100 for that light value.
  8. Move the robot around checking to see that the light values are ranging from 0 to 100.
  9. Stop the program.
  10. Do not run it again unless you want to recalibrate again.  The first step of the program resets the light sensor calibration.

 

Attachments:
Download this file (Cougar Calibrate.rbt)Cougar Calibrate.rbt[Calibrate Light Sensor 1 for min and max values]1078 Kb17/10/09 21:36
Last Updated on Saturday, 17 October 2009 22:05
 
Advance To Line program PDF Print E-mail
Written by Joey   
Wednesday, 07 October 2009 22:53

This is our Cougar Advance To Line program.  It is used to line up perpendicular to a line.  We used it a lot last year to re-align mid run out on the field.  

This program is based on our 2008 robot, "CA White".  Motor C is on the left side of the robot. Motor B is on the right side of the robot. Light sensor 1 is on the left side of the robot. Light sensor 4 is on the right side of the robot.

It will, in two threads:

  1. Run motor C at 90% power, 2 degrees per loop, checking light sensor 1 to see if the light level has gone below 50
  2. Run motor B at 90% power, 2 degrees per loop, checking light sensor 4 to see if the light level has gone below 50.
  3. Each motor will stop when the light sensor associated with them drops below 50, causing the robot to align perpendicular to a line

 

Attachments:
Download this file (Cougar Advance To Line.rbt)Cougar Advance To Line.rbt[Line up perpendicular to a line]403 Kb07/10/09 23:02
Last Updated on Saturday, 17 October 2009 22:06
 
Mission Select - LB or EB or RB PDF Print E-mail
Written by Joey   
Sunday, 11 October 2009 16:38
Our Mission Select program.  This program detects which button is pressed and sets a corresponding variable (LB, EB, or RB) to true based on that choice.  If EB or RB are chosen it also sets the variable "Exit Loop" to true.  These values control the execution path of our master program.
Attachments:
Download this file (Cougar LB or EB or RB.rbt)Cougar LB or EB or RB.rbt[Mission select program]814 Kb11/10/09 17:26
Last Updated on Saturday, 17 October 2009 22:06
 
Magnets for your Robots PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jamie Diamond   
Monday, 19 October 2009 19:34

Several teams have asked us about our use of magnets.  We used magnets extensively in the Power Puzzle and a fair bit in Climate Connections.  We will probably use them again this year.  Here are the parts we use complete with links to  them on Bricklink.

The Magnets themselves are LEGO Part # 73092 -> http://www.bricklink.com/search.asp?q=73092

The magnet holder we use most often is Part # 2607 -> http://www.bricklink.com/search.asp?q=2607 

Some other magnet holders we have and have occasionally used are Part # 2609 -> http://www.bricklink.com/search.asp?q=2609

and Part # 30159 -> http://www.bricklink.com/search.asp?q=30159

 
Bluetooth USB Adapters PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 19 October 2009 21:57

The Lego Mindstorms support page lists several Bluetooth devices that are supposed to be compatible, however, that was with Windows XP. Some of the devices have bad reviews when it comes to installing and working with Vista. The Belkin F8T013 does seem to have good reviews with Vista. The Abe UB22S is the one that Lego sells.  Local sources don't stock much and the ones they "Ship to Store" (i.e. WalMart sells the Cables-To-Go device) have reports that they are not compatible with Vista. Buyers would be well advised to do some research on the web before buying anything.

Here is the link to the Lego Bluetooth compatible devices: http://mindstorms.lego.com/overview/Bluetooth.aspx.

I will try to get some screen shots of the steps to set up Bluetooth in the MindStorms program. If anyone has anything already - please send it for me to add.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 20 October 2009 08:36
 
Advanced NXT-G Programming Workshop - WPAFB Starbase PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jamie Diamond   
Sunday, 11 October 2009 19:54

WHAT:                 FIRST LEGO League Advanced NXT-G Programming Workshop

 

WHEN:                 17 October 2009, 9:00 - 4:00

 

WHO:                   Presented by FLL team 127, the Cougars, of Columbus, OH (who have a history of AWESOME LEGO robots)

 

WHO ELSE:         All FLL teams welcome, space limited.  PLEASE only bring your lead programmer (or two) and one or two coaches for a maximum of 4 people to represent your team. 

 

WHERE:               STARBASE, Wright-Patt

                                156 Spinning Road

                                Dayton, OH 45431

                                (Directions are attached).

 

WHY:                    To learn some tips and tricks that will make your team more efficient and successful robot programmers!

 

COST:                    FREE!  (RSVP required by October 12 – space is limited)

 

RSVP:                     This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

 

Greetings FLL Teams!

 

We hope you have a good start on your FLL creations and are now ready to Take It Up a Notch with an Advanced Programming Workshop!

 

The Cougars of Columbus, http://www.cougarrobot.com, have graciously offered to help FLL teams in our area learn to write better NXT-G programs.

The Cougars are among the very best FLL teams in Ohio and have extensive experience making NXT-G do what kids want.  They will help the rest of us learn some of the great techniques they used to build their robot last year.

 

The objective of this workshop is to gain awareness and comfort with a few advanced programming techniques and their practical application in a FIRST LEGO League competition robot.

 

It is an interactive workshop. We will spend a short amount of time explaining a topic, and then quickly move to discussion, application, and practice.  Our target is 25% instruction and 75% application & practice.

 

Participant expectations:

·                     Bring your own laptop, preferably bluetooth capable, loaded with Mindstorms NXT-G

·                     Bring your own robot, 2 touch sensors, 2 light sensors, 3 motors, some wheels. It doesn't have to be working.

·                     Bring a USB cable to transfer programs to your robot (in case Bluetooth isn't working in big crowd).

·                     USB thumb drive to share data

 

9:00 - Meet & Greet, introductions & expectations

 

9:30 - Icebreaker activity

 

9:45 - Basic NXT-G programming - a review

 

10:15 - Design Principles & Strategies.

 

10:30 Basic Techniques Mini-Sessions

·                     Incremental Development using Bluetooth - Where to go from here?

·                     Precise Turns - Left Face!

·                     Debugging Tips - What in the world is it thinking?

·                     Video - What's really going on here?

·                     Sensors - When should I stop?

 

11:15 -  Medium Techniques Mini-Sessions

·                     MyBlocks - good things come in small packages

·                     Multi-threaded programming - walking and chewing gum at the same time

·                     Dependent threads and synchronization - throwing the newspaper while riding your bike

 

12:00 - Pizza Lunch (Provided, courtesy of The Ohio Educational Outreach Foundation)

 

1:00 - Advanced Techniques

·                     Position Registration, our favorite subroutines - X marks the spot.

·                     Sensor Calibration - is it night or just cloudy?

·                     Timers - when will this match be over?

·                     Variables - how many times are we going to do this?

·                     Master programs/menus/scripting - your wish is my command

·                     Mini-blocks - how can we squeeze all this stuff into my tiny brain?

 

2:30 -  Development and Practice time

 

3:30 -  Clean up

 

4:00 -  Adjourn

Programming Techniques and Design Principles go hand in hand so, we will also talk about

·                     KISS

·                     Mechanical Design Choices

·                      Navigation

·                     Strength and Power considerations

·                     Tool Design First

·                     Quick attachment switching (magnets or pins)

·                     Leapfrog Development

·                     Competitive Development

·                     Change only 1 thing at a time

·                     Repetitive Testing

·                     Slow Motion Video (show the robot, then show the video)

 

Contact Info:

RSVP to:

Kathy Levine

This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  by October 12.

 

Specific content questions can be directed to:

Jamie Diamond

Technical Coach, Cougar Lego Robotics Team

614-596-0213 (cell/work)

This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

www.cougarrobot.com

 

Location:  STARBASE, Wright-Patt (Directions are attached).  Please follow the directional signs to the back of the Prairies Community Center (the home of STARBASE).  You will enter the building through the marked door behind the building and take the stairs to the 2nd floor.  STARBASE directions can be found at starbase_directions.pdf

 

Last Updated on Monday, 12 October 2009 09:10
 


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Pictures from the WPAFB Starbase Programming Workshop

Pictures from the Cleveland Workshop