Can you hear me now?

Frank is not one of a kind. There are plenty of robots just like it. The tutorial for using the ultrasonic range sensor is basically the core of a robot like this (the sensor plus some logic and servos). With that, I wanted to add some special touches.

As other people have commented, there are some personal touches that give Frank some personality. It begins with the smile on his face!

One of the features that made it into the project is the speaker. Like I said in the last post, the speaker was from a lab kit from school that we never used. With the speaker, Frank can now give some audible feedback. At this point, he sings a couple snippets of songs with the push of a button, which is a little unintuitive since you have to chase after him to push it. This is a result of when things don’t work out the way you wanted or expected.


Arduino is easy to shop for with plug-and-play boards readily available. I bought that sound sensor pictured above. The description for the product said where to plug in three wires and you’re off. Unfortunately, I haven’t found it to be that simple. Maybe I’m missing something, but I can’t get any change in analog readings unless I blow air at it. In tutorial videos, a simple snap is enough for it to detect a change in sound, so I’m kind of stumped. Some quick searching leads me to believe that these aren’t the greatest sensors to work with. My hope was that a clap would start and stop Frank, and a double clap would have him sing. I hope to eventually get it working. Eventually.

Other than that, that was more or less the plan with my budget being $100 (which I used almost completely on budget).

With what Frank is now, I want to work on making him a little more aware of his surroundings, particularly a wall that he will hit on one of his corners. I hate to say it, but other than some code clean up, I haven’t really worked on it since I released that video of him. I also want to work more with the speaker, add some additional songs, maybe give some personality feedback (like “hello” in tones or screaming).

I’m currently back at my LED shows, hoping to have a new one ready for Friday. There’s a minor change that has created additional sequences for me, but I haven’t even covered the original hardware configurations here yet! Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more!


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