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Mindstorms NXT

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  • Fred Kerr (usa.net)
    Hi, has anyone evaluated the new Mindstorms kit? I know I want more computing power and control I/O than those bricks, but I don t have much time since I m
    Message 1 of 3 , Aug 2, 2006
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      Hi, has anyone evaluated the new Mindstorms kit? I know I want more computing
      power and control I/O than those bricks, but I don't have much time since I'm
      working 12 hour days too many days a week. I think I would like to get a kit
      and use it as a basis/foundation for more things.

      Is there another route? I like erector-set things. I wish they had a robot
      kit with a powerful computer board. :)

      I just haven't had the time to get my mechanical skills improved, so kits like
      this are very tempting to me.

      I also got a Robosapiens V2 a few weeks ago; it was a demo model so it was
      reduced in price. I'm wondering if I'll ever have time to hack into it. I'd
      like to put a "parasite" backpack on it if it doesn't off-balance it too much.
      Maybe I could put some electronics in the feet to offset it.
    • Mike Payson
      Vex Robotics is almost exactly a Erector set with a powerful computer on board. It s computer is probably more powerful then the lego one-- not certain about
      Message 2 of 3 , Aug 2, 2006
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        Vex Robotics is almost exactly a Erector set with a powerful computer on
        board. It's computer is probably more powerful then the lego one-- not
        certain about raw processing power, but it's much more capable in terms of
        I/O and the number of motors it can drive at least. The prices are also
        pretty good right now since Radio Shack cleared them out recently. You
        should be able to get a starter kit on Ebay for no more then $175 or so, and
        probably less.

        There are limitations, though. The kit is much less versatile then the Lego
        equivalent. It only comes with a few different basic strutcural components,
        a its mechanical component selection isn't a whole lot better. For example,
        it has no sort of linear motion capabilities at all unless you spend a $180
        or more on a pneumatic kit (and RatShack didn't carry them, so don't expect
        to find any deals). I'm hopeful that they will at least come up with
        something as simple as racks to go along with their gears, but who knows if
        or when they'll release such a thing.

        Vex has one thing about it that I really like-- it's a reasonably open
        system. If you're creative, you should be able to easily build your own
        chassis components out of aluminum or steel, and building your own
        electronic & mechanical components should be only a bit tougher (depending
        on your abilities of course).

        http://www.vexlabs.com/
        http://search.ebay.com/vex-robotics

        On 8/2/06, Fred Kerr (usa.net ) <fkerr@...> wrote:
        >
        > Hi, has anyone evaluated the new Mindstorms kit? I know I want more
        > computing
        > power and control I/O than those bricks, but I don't have much time since
        > I'm
        > working 12 hour days too many days a week. I think I would like to get a
        > kit
        > and use it as a basis/foundation for more things.
        >
        > Is there another route? I like erector-set things. I wish they had a robot
        > kit with a powerful computer board. :)
        >
        > I just haven't had the time to get my mechanical skills improved, so kits
        > like
        > this are very tempting to me.
        >
        > I also got a Robosapiens V2 a few weeks ago; it was a demo model so it was
        > reduced in price. I'm wondering if I'll ever have time to hack into it.
        > I'd
        > like to put a "parasite" backpack on it if it doesn't off-balance it too
        > much.
        > Maybe I could put some electronics in the feet to offset it.
        >
        >
        >


        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Mike Payson
        Oops. One important addition to my previous message: The Vex starter kit has a powerful processor, but it does not come with the programming kit. You ll need
        Message 3 of 3 , Aug 2, 2006
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          Oops. One important addition to my previous message: The Vex starter kit has
          a powerful processor, but it does not come with the programming kit. You'll
          need to buy it separately. There aren't many on ebay currently, but if you
          watch, you should be able to find one for ~$50.

          In exchange for not including the programming kit, the Vex include a very
          nice six channel remote. Personally, I find it a reasonable trade off.

          On 8/2/06, Mike Payson <mike@...> wrote:
          >
          > Vex Robotics is almost exactly a Erector set with a powerful computer on
          > board. It's computer is probably more powerful then the lego one-- not
          > certain about raw processing power, but it's much more capable in terms of
          > I/O and the number of motors it can drive at least. The prices are also
          > pretty good right now since Radio Shack cleared them out recently. You
          > should be able to get a starter kit on Ebay for no more then $175 or so, and
          > probably less.
          >
          > There are limitations, though. The kit is much less versatile then the
          > Lego equivalent. It only comes with a few different basic strutcural
          > components, a its mechanical component selection isn't a whole lot better.
          > For example, it has no sort of linear motion capabilities at all unless you
          > spend a $180 or more on a pneumatic kit (and RatShack didn't carry them, so
          > don't expect to find any deals). I'm hopeful that they will at least come
          > up with something as simple as racks to go along with their gears, but who
          > knows if or when they'll release such a thing.
          >
          > Vex has one thing about it that I really like-- it's a reasonably open
          > system. If you're creative, you should be able to easily build your own
          > chassis components out of aluminum or steel, and building your own
          > electronic & mechanical components should be only a bit tougher (depending
          > on your abilities of course).
          >
          > http://www.vexlabs.com/
          > http://search.ebay.com/vex-robotics
          >
          >
          > On 8/2/06, Fred Kerr (usa.net ) <fkerr@...> wrote:
          > >
          > > Hi, has anyone evaluated the new Mindstorms kit? I know I want more
          > > computing
          > > power and control I/O than those bricks, but I don't have much time
          > > since I'm
          > > working 12 hour days too many days a week. I think I would like to get a
          > > kit
          > > and use it as a basis/foundation for more things.
          > >
          > > Is there another route? I like erector-set things. I wish they had a
          > > robot
          > > kit with a powerful computer board. :)
          > >
          > > I just haven't had the time to get my mechanical skills improved, so
          > > kits like
          > > this are very tempting to me.
          > >
          > > I also got a Robosapiens V2 a few weeks ago; it was a demo model so it
          > > was
          > > reduced in price. I'm wondering if I'll ever have time to hack into it.
          > > I'd
          > > like to put a "parasite" backpack on it if it doesn't off-balance it too
          > > much.
          > > Maybe I could put some electronics in the feet to offset it.
          > >
          > >
          > >
          >
          >


          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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