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Robot Club Minutes

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  • Paul F. Grayson
    Hi everyone, This Robot Club s past meeting on 1/9/01 was well attended. There were more than fifteen people there for the meeting at the robotics classroom
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 14, 2001
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      Hi everyone,

      This Robot Club's past meeting on 1/9/01 was well attended. There were more
      fifteen people there for the meeting at the robotics classroom and lab.
      Most were first timers discovering what robotics is all about and finding it

      There were kids, teachers, hobbyists, and professional engineers in the

      Back issues of robot related magazines were passed out for free. Machine
      Vision, Sea Technology, and NASA Technical Briefs were very much in demand.
      (They are great sources of information on how machines see, underwater
      robots, and robots in the space program.)

      Two member's projects were demonstrated. The walking dinosaur was quite a

      A lot of networking was going on - questions people had were being answered.
      Problems were being solved.

      One question many people had was how to get started. For those of you who
      were not able to be there, the recommended starting point for people
      interested in how to get started in robotics is a terrific book :

      Robot Builder's Bonanza: 99 inexpensive Robotics Projects. by Gordon McComb
      (Paperback) Second Edition, $24.95, c2001 McGraw Hill. ( The projects are
      modular so that they work alone or can be combined, what do you suppose a
      robot would look like that had all 99 modules ? )

      The poster presentation was spread around the room and made a great mixer as
      people moved around the room to see the different parts of it. Many people
      were talking, taking notes, trading business cards, and the impression was
      that a lot was getting done.

      Some remarkable things have happened in the world of robots since the Dec.
      meeting. Honda Humanoid Robotics Lab released information about a new
      model ASIMO called ASIMO 2, which is a foot shorter than ASIMO 1 ( the
      result of farther progress in the area of miniaturization ) . It comes in
      three colors and the blue one looks like a kid in a baseball cap with a
      back-pack. They also said that they are not taking orders for them yet but
      would be selling them for about $100,000 (which is a fraction of the price
      of an industrial arm) and that they will be renting them for trade shows and
      conventions by the end of 2001. Great picture - and if you read Japanese a
      description at : http://www.honda.co.jp/ASIMO/ If you know how, the web
      page translator translates 2/3 of the words on the page.

      It was proposed that the club start a robot construction project of some
      kind. Any suggestions as to what you want to build first? ( The BattleBot
      people were absent from this meeting ) Personally I would like to build a
      working copy of ASIMO 2, just to see what it can do.

      There was some disappointment, I forgot to bring the box of machine parts I
      have been saving up to give away. I will be sure to bring them to the
      2/13/01 meeting so you have a reason to be sure and not miss the next

      As a result this meeting, from what one of the teachers said, it sounds like
      one of the elementary schools is going to be build robots as a way to learn
      about all the science and engineering that goes into them. Building robots
      is certainly a broad education considering variety of skills that go into
      their design, construction, programming and operation. And they certainly
      are a lot of fun.

      Next Meeting:
      6 PM
      M-TEC Building - robotics lab

      Remember, it is the dues you pay that make all of this possible. Join today
      and get a friend to join ... share the benefits of membership.
      $15 for one year
      $28 for two years
      $40 for three years
      $300 for life time membership

      Paul F. Grayson - Chief Engineer
      1892 Pinewood Ave.
      Traverse City, MI 49684-9022
      (231) 946-0187, FAX (231) 946-1122
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