- Paperback: 560 pages
- Publisher: Prentice Hall; 1 edition (March 21, 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0130093645
- ISBN-13: 978-0130093646
- Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.3 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 13 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,417,386 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Core LEGO MINDSTORMS Programming: Unleash the Power of the Java Platform 1st Edition
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From the Back Cover
- Complete 3-D plans for building five unique robots
- Advanced control techniquesincluding distance and compass sensors
- Behavior control programming, the breakthrough methodology invented at MIT
- For LEGO Mindstorms Robotics Invention System, versions 1.0, 1.5, and 2.0
Your LEGO Mindstorms robots can do more than you ever imagined. The secret: go beyond the built-in tools, and leverage the power of the Java platformthe world's hottest programming technology.
Core LEGO Mindstorms shows you how, step by step. Working from beautifully rendered 3-D plans, you'll construct five unique robots-each capable of increasingly powerful navigation. You'll build and program two powerful custom sensors-an accurate distance sensor and the "Holy Grail" of navigation sensors: the compass sensor.
Brian Bagnall, co-creator of the leJOS Java Virtual Machine for LEGO Mindstorms, starts with the absolute basics then teaches you sophisticated, never-before-published techniques for controlling LEGO Mindstorms robots. No matter what version of LEGO Mindstorms you own, this book will teach you how to build robots with remarkable intelligence and amazing power.
- Installing leJOS, the Java Virtual Machine designed for the LEGO Mindstorms RCX programmable controller
- Setting up your Java platform development environment for LEGO Mindstorms
- Programming rotation and custom sensors
- Using behavior control programming, the biologically inspired MIT breakthrough in robot control
- New techniques for improving navigation accuracy
- Gathering map data and transmitting it back to your computer
- For LEGO Mindstorms RIS versions 1.0, 1.5, and 2.0including USB versions
About the Author
BRIAN BAGNALL is a Sun Certified Java Programmer and Developer and co-author of the Sun Certified Programmer for Java 2 Study Guide. He is a key programmer of leJOS, a Java SDK for Lego Mindstorms. Bagnall also develops distributed processing solutions for businesses with supercomputing requirements and has worked for IBM and other leading computer companies.
Top customer reviews
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It is well written with unassuming overtones. The portions on building your own sensors also make electronic assembly easier. The graphics are black and white on flimsy paper giving the book a sense of newspaper style instructional manuals. This said, presentation could be better.
All in all this is a very good tool for the Mindstorms nut, Java programmer, and techy at heart. I highly recommend added it to your tool box!
It is well suited to both beginning and advanced programers. It covers languages basics, but still provides much info to experienced Java developers about robotics Design Patterns.
It also includes detailed instructions and pictures describing on basic robotic construction...things like how to turn a rotary motion to a linear motion, how to change gear ratios, how to build differentials, etc.
There is also a detail chapter devoted to building your own homebrew sensors that even someone with little to no experience in electronics could easily build.
I am very happy with this purchase.
When I first opened my Robotics Invention System 2.0 (RIS 2.0) kit, I found an instruction manual that contained several project descriptions and a summary chart of part quantities available in the kit. However, it was inadequate in failing to satisfy my curiosity about each individual component, and what I can do with it. Brian's introductory sections to LEGO parts and in particular, suggestions on how they can be used, helped jumpstart my knowledge on building Lego robots. A generous number of illustrations in Chapter 1, help guide the uninitiated in naming parts that are included; not only in the RIS 2.0 kit, but that are also found in expansion kits such as Ultimate Builders' Kit and Ultimate Accessories Kit. The author goes on to described other alternative add-ons that you can have in your Mindstorms collection.
The book also provides several projects that you can get yourself started on, providing step-by-step instructions to help you build these robots.
This book has a fair coverage of both Mindstorms and Java. The author does not assume any prior knowledge of Java. Lejos is a limited Java virtual machine - a short insight into Java fundamentals is all that is required to get a beginner started on programming. You can start off with a primer in Java, before proceeding to sections that give a detailed view of packages included in Lejos. If you are an experienced Java programmer you might want to skip the opening chapters entirely, but it is a good idea to take his advice and skim through for any differences in implementations.
Brian introduces the reader to various concepts that help you build a better robot, including Behaviour Control, Navigation and RCX Communications. They are particularly helpful if, like me, you are a novice robot builder.
For those keen in electronics, two chapters provide instructions on building your own sensors, and how you can use them in your projects. A little too advanced for me, but hardcore enthusiasts will likely appreciate the information. And for those who are interested in the low-level concepts of Lejos, Brian gives an overview on these in the concluding chapters.
The author is helpful to include a large collection of utilities that are available to a hobbyist. He also lists several Internet sources for more information as well as locations where you can get those "hard-to-find" Lego add-on parts. This is also one rare publication that injects much humour into technical writing. The author's conversational approach makes the book an easy read..
The style of writing, wealth of illustrations and detailed building tips make this an excellent book. I would recommend it highly to anyone who wants to start in Java programming for Lego Mindstorms.
The book gives you enough elements of the Java language to make you immediately productive in using it with your Mindstorms kit, without including details about the language which would have made the book unnecessarily heavy. It won't make you a professional Java programmer, but it's not its goal.
From this foundation, Brian introduces you to some of the most powerful programming techniques aimed at robotics - like behavior control and navigation - using simple and clear examples.
The robots are nice and very well documented, and I have no doubt you will find them instructive and inspiring. And their code is well tested and ready to use.
Brian's style is very pleasant: he is able to always keep the your attention, never boring you explaining obvious concepts nor entering complex maters without the necessary gradualness. A touch of thin humour here and there makes the reading of this book a great experience.
- If you already know Java and want to learn how to use it for your Mindstorms robots, this book is for you.
- If you don't know Java, but want to push your Mindstorms beyond the limits of the LEGO software and are challenged by the opportunity to learn a new language, this book is for you as well.
This book definitely deserves its place in your bookcase among the best Mindstorms books.
Most recent customer reviews
interfacing a robot to a PC
electronics schematics : light, touch.Read more
1. The tour of all of the parts that comes with a Mindstorms kit is worth the price of the book alone