Mugsy, Hackable and Customizable Robotic Coffee Maker

Matthew Oswald has created Mugsy, an open source Raspberry Pi coffee robot which he unveiled at last years Maker Faire in New York and recently launched via Kickstarter.

The robotic coffee machine allows you to control every aspect of the coffee brewing process from coffee bean grind size, water temperature and more. Or you can simply use the on-board barcode to simply scan your coffee beans and allow the on-board computer to work everything out automatically.

“Mugsy works the way you do. Send a text, a tweet or just ask Alexa for a fresh cup of coffee. Mugsy currently has integrations with emailsmsTwitterSlackAlexa and even the command prompt. With it’s simple to use open ended API, we expect lots of new integrations to be coming out all the time. No need to learn a new clunky app, just communicate with Mugsy the way you already communicate with the world. Stay in bed a bit longer and let Mugsy make the coffee, he doesn’t mind.”

Matthew has created a project that not only solves a problem — how to make amazing coffee at home — but also brings him one step closer to ‘making things’ for a living.

Mugsy the open source robotic coffeemaker is now available to back via Kickstarter with pledges available from $150 for the basic kit, with delivery expected to take place during November 2018.

Juniper Moves its Open Source Multicloud Networking Platform OpenContrail to the Linux Foundation

Juniper Networks’ OpenContrail open source network virtualization platform based on software-defined networking (SDN) has officially moved under the umbrella of The Linux Foundation and is now called Tungsten Fabric.

“Formerly hosted by Juniper Networks, Tungsten Fabric is a scalable and multicloud networking platform. It provides a single point of control, observability and analytics for networking and security. It is integrated with many cloud technology stacks, including Kubernetes, Mesos, VMware and OpenStack. It supports private cloud, hybrid cloud and public cloud deployments such as AWS and GCE. Tungsten Fabric includes a high performance vRouter that connects container, VM and bare-metal applications, and a controller which orchestrates network overlays, switch fabrics and router gateways.”

Juniper first released its Contrail products as open source in 2013 and built a community around the project. In the announcement, Juniper said adding OpenContrail’s codebase to the Linux Foundation will further its objective to grow the use of open source platforms in cloud ecosystems.

“We are pleased create Tungsten Fabric with a neutral governance under The Linux Foundation,” said Arpit Joshipura, general manager, networking, The Linux Foundation. “The set up allows Tungsten Fabric to collaborate with other Linux Foundation and Networking projects. We’re looking forward to expanded collaboration across a growing software-defined ecosystem.”

For further information you can refer to the official announcement at linuxfoundation.org.

HACKADAYPRIZE: Vote for our Open Source Projects

Our Big Fan and collaborator Vittorio Loschiavo has recently presented four Open Source project (Snow Plow Robot, Lawnmower Robot, Mini Vertical Wind generator 3D printed and Cabinet for Arcade games) to “HACKADAYPRIZE 2018“.

You can help him with your vote!

These the OpenSource projects

1) Lawnmower Robot powered with a rechargeable battery with 10-watt solar panel. The battery is recharged via the solar panel or via the charging base. The chassis is made of ABS printed with a 3D printer, for the movement it uses two gear motors, to which are mounted two 150 mm diameter wheels and two pivoting wheels on the front are mounted. A nylon blade with 255 mm of diameter is attached to the shaft of a powerful engine (secured to the center of the robot) that allows grass cutting. The blade is equipped with protection and a sensor system that locks it immediately to prevent anyone from coming into contact during operation. Various ultrasonic, infrared and shock sensors allow detecting obstacles, while a particular sensor allows the robot to know where to cut without leaving the perimeter set. The robot can also be controlled with a model remote control or a PlayStation controller.

.

.

2) Snowplow Robot, remotely controlled, with strong mechanics, control electronics and powerful electric motors. The result is a miniature version of a real snowplow with caterpillars, motorized blade (that can be raised and moved) and light projector mounted on top to light the way in the dark. The robot can be remotely controlled by the PlayStation remote control.

.

.

3) Mini vertical wind generator with nylon blades and supports printed with a 3D printer, the structure made of aluminum and based on an electric motor with a power of 55 watts, usable as a current generator or dynamo. Can generate electricity that can be stored, using a charge regulator, in some batteries. By increasing the scale of the generator and using a more powerful electric motor, it is possible to realize a larger wind generator and more powerful. The wind generator can be mounted on the railing of a terrace or on a pole.

.

.

4) Cabinet for arcade video games that can be assembled without screws or nails, all simply by clamping the various parts. It can be made of plywood, MDF or printed with 3D printer. The size of the cabinet allows you to use a 7 or 10-inch monitor, while as commands it is predisposed to use a joystick and six buttons for the games. On the sides of the cabinet are available holes for installing speakers with 70 mm diameter, Credit and Start button. In the posterior part of a cabinet are available the power outlet, USB port, HDMI port for an external monitor, power-on / off switch. As a video game emulator, Raspberry Pi can be used (recommended, given the number of resources available for this application) or more.

HOW TO VOTE

  1. First off you have to register:

go on https://hackaday.io, and click on the “Join Hackaday.io” button:


  1. Insert your email address and the password for your new account:

Then click on “Sign up”

  1. Customize your profile:

Compile all required fields, click on
The “save your profile” button and Go ahead specifying what you’re Interested in.

  1. In your email box, look a for an email by “Hackaday.io”, click on the “Verify email” button.
  1. Finally, go to https://hackaday.io/projects/hacker/296956 and like all the projects:

Thank you very much!

Raspberry Pi Powered Stent-Testing Robot

Medical engineering is just one of the important areas where researchers have found a use for the Pi.

This stent-testing robot was designed by Dr Henry J Feldman, chief information architect at Harvard Medical Faculty Physicians.

Stents are small tubes used to prop open a patient’s airway. It’s incredibly important they don’t fail because they keep people alive.

The usual stent-destroying machines are dumb clamps, with no idea whether the stent is breaking or not, so Feldman created something different and more accurate. He developed a system that uses a computer vision and machine learning to identify when a stent fails during testing.

His stent-testing machine works by running the image-recognition library OpenCV on the Pi, which analyses footage of the test captured by the Pi’s camera module. The Pi is augmented by a HAT, which controls the gripper crushing the stent during tests.

The system provides data and images that identify the point of failure more precisely, which in turn allows designers to produce a more resilient stent.

Please check out the raspberrypi.org website for more information.

DIY an Arduino-Powered CardBoard Spider

If you thinks that a 3d printer or CNC equipment  is absolutely necessary to build a quadruped robot…maybe you should carefully check out this project. Instructables user Raz85 has built a quadruped using a structure comprised entirely out of corrugated cardboard.

“In my case I used a shoes box which I’ve cut and make the frame out of it. The carton that was provided by my box was a 2 mm thick so it is very thin. So for each part of the frame I’ve had to cut three identical parts and glue them together with double tape scotch. So actually we will have to make 3 frames to have at the end a 6 mm thick carton.”

Each of the four legs are driven using 9g micro servos, controlled by an Arduino Nano. A human operates the spider-inspired robot with a remote consisting of an Arduino Uno and a small joystick module, while pair of NRF24L01 radio transceivers provide a link between the robot and controller.

Electronical parts required for the Quadruped:

– Arduino Nano Microcontroller;
– Deek Robot Nano V03 Shield – not essential, but it will make the connection of all servos to the Nano Board much easier.
– 12 pcs Tower Pro Micro Servo 9g SG90 – 4 legs with 3 joints each;
– LED – for light
– 1 x NRF24L01 transceiver

Electronical parts required for the remote controller

– Arduino Uno Microcontroller;
– 1 x NRF24L01 transceiver;
– Joystick;
– LED;
– Various resistors;
– Push button;
– Some jumper wires;

For the frame:

– Corrugated Carton sheet
– Cutter
– Screw Drivers
– Double tape scotch
– Triangles
– Ruler
– Pencil

Create your robot with Micro:bit

It is a newborn board, but it is rapidly growing in popularity thanks to the potential we are going to show you through the project of a robot on wheel that can be controlled by a smartphone via Bluetooth.

micro:bit is a small but solid and powerful prototyping board designed by no other than BBC (the English broadcaster), that can be easily programmed from a personal computer; besides the microcontroller which represents its core, it has onboard sensors such as accelerometer, compass and a small “display” composed of a 5 x 5 LED matrix. The small board has built-in 2.4 GHz wireless Bluetooth LE connectivity, implemented thanks to a dedicated transceiver and a proprietary protocol, besides an antenna integrated into the PCB. By combining the ease of use of micro:bit and a motor controller, in this article we are going to show you how to create a robot on wheels that can be controlled through an application from your smartphone using the onboard low-energy Bluetooth link. For a start, we must mention the origins and structure of micro:bit. The micro:bit project micro:bit (http://microbit.org/) is the mind child of BBC, promoter and coordinator (with the nonprofit goal to provide kids and students with a platform to easily learn the basics of programming…), and it is also supported by several partner companies, each providing a portion of the onboard components; among these companies we can find ARM (providing the processor and owner of the known architecture), Freescale (providing the sensors), Nordic Semiconductor (providing the transceiver and Bluetooth controller), Samsung and others.

The onboard sensors allow developing various applications, such as IoT and wearable electronics applications. The sensors are connected to the main controller through the I²C bus connected on the P19 (SCL and P20 (SDA) pins on the GPIO comb connector (with direct insertion).

The magnetometer can generate an interrupt towards the main processor while the accelerometer can generate two different interrupts towards the main processor. The latter, a nRF51, also includes a temperature sensor.

The project

Very well, after this brief introduction on the micro:bit board we can get down to business, i.e. describing the robot on wheels project.

The electronics of our robot is composed of a micro:bit board nested in the connector of a docking station board, which will allow to create electric connections with the rest of the hardware, composed of the controller based on the integrated L298N driver by ST and the motoreducers piloted by it.

In terms of structure for our robot, we chose the frame kit sold by Open Electronics with product code 2846-FISHGOCHASSIS, including a robotic platform composed of a Plexiglas body formed by two plates, two motoreducers, two Tamiya racing wheels, a metal ball-caster, a deviator, a power outlet, a 4xAA battery compartment with screws, nuts and hex bolts to assembly the two plates.

As for the programming, since we are dealing with the micro:bit, we will choose its dedicated language and development environment, i.e. Block Editor by Microsoft (www.microbit.co.uk/blocks/editor#).

Now, we will start by describing how to build the hardware, that is our robot on wheels.

Practical production

For the electronics section, given the simplicity of the circuit diagram, we wanted to avoid a printed circuit and connect together modules and motors, choosing to connect the micro:bit with the motor drivers and the power source using make – female jumper cables (like Arduino’s). We are also going to wire the motoreducers to the motor driver board; the motoreducers used have a 120:1 reduction ratio and 180 RPM when powered by 6 Vcc.

Despite the considerable number of wires employed, the result will be very neat and visually “clean”, especially if you’re going to zip tie the wires and fix them in place once the wiring is done. Since the electronics is placed on the mechanics, we will start by building the latter, which involves HSE and two motoreducers with front wheels, plus a pivoting wheel on the backside; the list with the parts needed to build the mechanics section is listed in the Material needed box.

Once we have all the elements, the first thing to do is assembly the frame (it is composed of a top plate that will host all the electronics and a bottom one that will host batteries and wheels, mounted on the respective moto-reducers); in order to connect the two frames we’re going to use the provided 3MA screws and hex bolts that you are going to screw on the bottom plate by using the 3MA nuts. In total, you will need 4 bolts and as many screws beside the respective nuts.

On the bottom side of the frame, we are going to place the motoreducers, using 3MA screws and nuts, after inserting them in the dedicated plastic brackets “coming down” from the bottom of the frame itself.

Each motoreducer can be fixed using the two supports that must be inserted in the frame in the dedicated slots, screwing through the lower external mount first, then the motoreducer and finally the internal mount. Torque the screw with a nut and repeat the operation on the top hole.

Finally, we are going to mount the spacer bolts using eight screws (four for each side) to place the ball caster that will be used to keep our robot standing; the four hex bolts have 3MA threading and are 15 mm of length each.

On the top plate of the frame, you are going to mount and attach the motor driver board and the micro:bit (using the usual 3MA x 15 mm).

We can now start with the wiring, which is better described by the scheme in the figure.

Connections between the driver of the motoreducers and the micro:bit board are shown in figure  and are recapped in table 1. Please note that to control the motors we chose a module based on the ST L298N integrated circuit, one of the most used for this task. Connections are really easy for the program we are going to use, even for the newbies of the applied electronics world, we’re going to connect the first motor, which is the left motoreducer in our case, to the OUT1 and OUT2 terminals, and we’re going to connect the second motor, which is to right one in our case, to OUT3 and OUT4. The micro:bit board can be powered by a standard micro USB cable, or by a direct 3 V voltage (you can only use one power source at the time), which we get in our case from two 1.5 V batteries placed in the battery compartment provided with micro:bit and equipped with sliding switch (to turn it on and off), as shown by the arrow in figure.

Table1

Anyway, please remember that in order to make the micro:bit connections easier, we can use a kind of docking station that has a direct insertion connector on one side to host the micro:bit and a PCB on the other side from where you can access all the board’s connections.

Once the wiring is done, you have to connect the two battery compartments by wiring the power of the motor driver through the switch in order to be able to turn off movement anytime.

Please note that the on/off switch for the movement is placed into the dedicated central space of the upper part of the frame. The battery compartments must be cabled by soldering the black cable of the battery compartment to the central pin and another cable to the other pin that will then be connected to the motor module. The battery compartments must be attached to the bottom part of the frame using two screws and two nuts.

The software

Okay, now that we are done with constructing the robot, let’s move on to the software side, which involves the micro:bit on one side and the smartphone that you are going to use as remote control on the other.

On the micro:bit side we have to write and load the firmware; we remind you that it is written using Microsoft Block Editor, a visual language simple enough to be approached even by programming newbies. From the official micro:bit website you can, however, use different languages for programming, but we have chosen Block Editor because it allows for a very simplified Java programming, in order to make the device easy to use; in fact, it doesn’t use lines of code to program, but a system with jigsaw-like interlocking blocks that will make the program much clearer even to those who are complete beginners when it comes to programming.

Of course, you can also use classic code lines, if you feel like it and you have to skills for it.

The program can be seen in figure in the block format of micro:bit, and can be downloaded from our website  along with the other files for the project (you will also find a javascript list, if you prefer). Alternatively you can find it at the web address: https://makecode.microbit.org/28400-70583-92133-46155. In order to load it on the micro:bit board, you first have to connect the board to the computer on which the development environment is installed through a micro USB cable.

If you connect the board correctly, the connection will be indicated by the amber-yellow LED turning on (placed next to the micro USB connector) as shown in figure.

After completing the program, you can download it by pressing the “download” button and finally drag the file on the board’s folder; you will notice that the board, once connected and installed by the operating system, will be identified as a removable mass storage unit.

After having programmed the micro:bit, let’s move on to the smartphone. In order to pilot our robot through a smartphone by using the Bluetooth link, we need two applications: the first one allows to connect, using the Bluetooth link, the micro:bit board to the smartphone and it is actually available for both Android and iOS (as it appears on the download page shown in figure, so if you do not have an Android smartphone but an Apple iPhone, you can use that.

Once the app has been downloaded and installed, in order to connect your smartphone to the board you have to open the micro:bit application, click on the “Connection” icon and, after that, click on  “Pair a new micro:bit” and follow the instructions.

Now, let’s move on to the second application, allowing to control the robot directly through a virtual joystick implemented on the smartphone’s touchscreen.

After connecting the micro:bit through the Bluetooth, you have to open the application, called “bitty game controller” and press the “scan” button in order to find the micro:bit board of the robot, connect it to your smartphone over Bluetooth. Once the connection is established, you will be able to control your robot using the virtual keys on your screen.

Conclusions

Alright, that’s all for the project. The robot on wheels we have proposed in these pages, although essential, can be greatly customized by each one of you and it is a useful support to learn to programme with micro:bit and to get to know all the features of this development board. By adding specific sensors you can put conditions on every detection actions, and you can even allow it to move autonomously. For instance, you can equip the robot with linear IR detectors (LED + photodiode) to make the system move along a track, or add an accelerometer to detect movements and corresponding speed.

You can also take advantage of the onboard sensors to implement functions we haven’t used here (given the instructional nature of the project) such as the measurement of room temperature and other parameters.
We hope you will enjoy this project and have fun experimenting with micro:bit!

From openstore

micro:bit prototyping

Motor Driver 2A Dual H-Bridge L298

Base Robot Chassis + Wheels + Motors + Battery Holder

WalaBeer Tank: Your Beer Always With You!

Created by maker Balázs Simon, the WalaBeer tank is a homemade Alexa-connected vehicle that treks around your apartment with the express goal of delivering you a beer.

There are things that deep inside every man wants to have. Combining beer and tanks is one of these things! This project will be about this thing, a voice controlled tank that delivers beer to you with an autonomous “follow me” function or with an RC control. Let’s build the beer tank of our dreams!

The tank’s electronics are built around an Arduino MKR1000 and Raspberry Pi 3 Model B. The Arduino interacts with the hardware, while the Raspberry Pi processes the data from the Walabot, handles the voice commands of the Amazon Echo, and controls the Arduino in the robot’s “follow me” mode.

WalaBeer also includes a crane system that makes it look like your beer is about to be launched like a ballistic missile.

All the instructions you need to build your tank are available on Hackster.io, but if you haven’t enough skills you’d like to know that a future commercialization cannot be excluded.

NeoSensory and High Fidelity Bring VR to the Next Level

High Fidelity, maker of an open source platform for social VR, and NeoSensory, creators of hardware to extend the human senses, announced they’ve partnered to create a haptic jacket dubbed the ‘exoskin’. Composed of 32 sensory motors, the device generates real-time haptic feedback throughout the users upper body, allowing them to feel physical interacting with other users as well as the environment.

“The promise of VR is in collapsing the distance between people and putting them face-to-face,” said Philip Rosedale, High Fidelity CEO. “Touch is a critical part of the experience of human presence and communication. With their deep neuroscience research and experience with haptic response, NeoSensory has made a virtual skin that solves the absence of touch in VR.”

The device is also directly compatible with High Fidelity’s open source VR platform, so developers can build haptic applications that control the exoskin with JavaScript in High Fidelity, allowing them to add features such as sensing people at a distance, signaling directions or conveying tension as part of an in-world experience.

Preorders for the beta model are available now at $399 via the official website.

Traktorino: the Open Source DIY Dj Midi Controller

Traktorino is a fully open source DIY MIDI controller based on the Arduino platform.

Created by Músico Nerd, the DIY MIDI controller is equipped with a wide variety of different sliders and knobs as well as LEDs which can provide customised feedback.

All the electronic components are safely protected in a laser cut wooden outer and the system has been specifically designed to house an Arduino Uno shield which controls Traktor DJ software by default. It also supports other MIDI programs, and perhaps could even be adapted to work with additional applications.

“The Traktorino is a MIDI class compliant device, designed for controlling Traktor. It has several features and custom made mappings, so you can take the most of the software. However, it can do much more than that. The Traktorino can control any software that accepts MIDI, like Ableton Live, Serato, FL Studio, Logic, etc.”

Check out the video below to learn more about the the DIY MIDI controller which is now available to download from GitHub.