Monday, November 21, 2016

Clifford the little red robot has new code

When I build robots I typically concentrate on the hardware and only write enough code to test the hardware works as I'd like.  I initially built this robot about 4-5 years ago, and he never really did anything interesting because I never invested much time in the software.

In the past few weeks I've spent some time programming the little guy, and have him to a state I can show to folks...

I have the motors, wheel encoders, servo, and ultrasonic distance sensor all working in a pretty well integrated behavior.  I still have some more work to do to smooth out the motion.  He moves in discrete steps now because the wheel encoders don't handle overshoot and I can't let him build up much momentum.

He's controlled with a Microchip PIC16F684 micro-controller programmed in assembly language with Microchip's MPLABX IDE.  I designed, etched, and built the board myself.  His body was purchased from Sparkfun.