- Series: Robot Builder's Bonanza
- Paperback: 736 pages
- Publisher: McGraw-Hill Education TAB; 4 edition (June 13, 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0071750363
- ISBN-13: 978-0071750363
- Product Dimensions: 7.3 x 1.1 x 9.1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 3.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 97 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #101,096 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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About the Author
Gordon McComb has written more than 60 books and thousands of magazine articles―more than a million copies of his books are in print, in more than a dozen languages. Gordon has been called "The father of hobby robotics" by MAKE Magazine. For 13 years, he wrote a weekly syndicated newspaper column on computers, which reached several million readers worldwide. Gordon is still a regular contributor to SERVO Magazine, and most recently completed seven years as writer of their popular Robotics Resources column.
Top customer reviews
The material is organized in a way that makes it easy to jump to a topic of interest, which makes it a useful reference book. With plenty of new information, it's worth a read from the beginning.
The thing that surprised me is that when I built one the projects (the Arduino robot), the instructions were actually complete and correct! (I didn't have to make the usual leaps or go through frustrating trials typical for most hardware/software/builder instructions.)
As a bonus, the jokes and personal asides are pretty entertaining. You can tell the author has really lived with his subject.
I highly recommend it.
A lot of good stuff for someone like me, who is new to robots, but not so new to programming. Here's my experience as far as I got, chapter by chapter.
1. I tried but failed with ubuntu. The install went fine but the system just froze all the time. So I just stuck with the debian install that was there, doing the appropriate upgrades. For the most part, I don't think it's worth it to switch. I did create a partitioned SD card, and mounted it on /home (after a mv /home /home1). This was probably unnecessary, since my BBB came with 4GB, which is certainly enough for the stuff in this book.
2. I just stuck to the Python part, which worked fine.
3. I never managed to get a microphone that worked properly (I tried 3 different ones and 2 difference usb-to-audio adapters). I'm planning to solve this with bluetooth. In the meanwhile, the speaker stuff worked fine with one of those cheap keychain models.
4. worked as per book, with a Logitech HD 720p.
5. I did get the Magician Chassis, just for the wheels and motors. It seemed too small to get all the stuff on there, so I went for a couple of 8x10 Lexan sheets. The hard part was making angle brackets with the right hole spacing to accommodate the holes in the motor gearboxes. I used 1.5x1.5 aluminum angle bars cut pretty small. I got the Pololu simple motor controllers. Their software didn't install, in fact some of the dependencies didn't install, but I was able to get the Python program working. The instability he refers to in the book was really due to bugs in the code. I'll post my version later.
That's as far as I went in the book. I'm planning add an arm and do some more advanced image processing, so most of the rest of the book is not for me.
I do appreciate that he wrote this - it helped me ramp up very quickly. After two weeks (including waiting time for parts!) I have something is untethered and will walk around the room based on my commands as typed from a Mac ssh session into that rcrobot.py, slightly modified.
It has a lot of great projects and it explains all the basics from the different types of hardware, batteries, and configurations to electronics to programming to where to get parts. It really is a reference book though so do keep that in mind! It's very readable and understandable though and I think is a useful resource for anyone from a hobbyist to an experienced robot builder.
Lot's of good information to trigger ideas with.