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SRS Meeting: July 17, 1999.  Renton Technical College, Room J314.

Editors Note:  Some of the web-addresses provided during the meeting
do not work.  I am including them as given.  If you have corrections for
them please let me know so I can make the proper corrections.  Thanks.

Ted Griebling - pres.
New people today?  A few.  Welcome.  Attendance is about 50.  Very good for a Summer meeting (it is raining, surprise surprise).

Consolidated works (www.conworks.com), a non-profit art forum concentration on an artificial-life exhibit.  Wants to know if we would help sponsor bringing Mark Tilden (BEAM, currently in Los Alamos working on small autonomous "insect" robots) in early October. 

Robothon:  Web-site has been updated, check it out! 

Linux:  We will try to do a tech session next month.  Frank brought in a machine today and we will install Linux on it after the meeting.  We will report on the experience.

Swap meet:  Next meeting.  If good weather we can do this in the parking lot.   Stay tuned for more info...

Doug:  Robothon 1999:  Oct 23, 1999, Seattle Center Flag Pavilion, 10:00 - 5:00.  
The web-page has been updated!  Rules for all competitions.  List of sponsors and prizes are growing.  Contact Doug if you are interested.  We are currently
planning a $100 prize for first place for each of the competitions. 

How many robots are ready, new ones in the works:
MicroMouse:  0, 3
Line Following:  3, 5
Robot Art:  3, 1
Lego Robot Wars:  0, 2
Fire Fighting:  4, 8
Sumo:  12, 6
Floor Exercise:  14, 3
Grand Maze: 3, 2
Note:  Bill H. was not at the meeting and has a gaggle of robots for some of these contests.

DROPPED CONTESTS:  RDM (3 working).  Perhaps just have this as a non-contest for people to play with.  Jim Wright will an this as a hands-on demo for kids.
Dropped BEAM, dead-reckoning, and rope-climb.

We really need a minimum of 5 robots for each contest.  Plan to register your robots so we know what to expect.

Money:  Doug is working on more sponsors.  He is thinking about a raffle.   If you have any ideas let Doug know.

Breakdown of expense plan.
Flag Pavilion:  $750
Prizes:  $800
Misc. Expenses (signs, advertising, raffle tickets)  less than $500
total:  $2050
Sponsors:  Have received $650 so far.  $750 estimate in raffle tickets.   About $1400 total.
Options:  Rent only half of the Pavilion for $500.  Robot entrance fees ($10?).   SRS has $2100 in the bank today.  Drop-dead date is Aug 23rd to confirm or cancel this.

It is possible to have new SRS T-shirts.  Looking at options and the best way to do this.  Perhaps having sponsors to buy space on the back of the T-shirts. 
We need someone to run with the T-shirt planning.

Dan:  Last meeting he brought in a home-built injection molding machine.  It works for small parts, but what about large parts?  He is playing with vacuum molding, his new machine is about half built.  By next meeting he should have it done. 

Frank:  Looking for a controller for an erector-set.  Found a controller by Robotix computer, about $80.  Not ultimately what he wants, but it is interesting for now.

Marvin:  Office Depot, $29 label maker (Casio).  Nice quality and all electronic.
Little Ethernet board for 10-base T.  Plan to use with a PIC.   Board and components are less than $20 (with the main chip a free sample).  See crystal.com
Mini Sumo molded tires, which won the mini-sumo 2 months ago.  Check the PARTS web-site for more info.
Jamco has a speech recognition chip for $49.95 from Sensory.  Demo board kit, will recognize 15 words.  Really good for $50!!!
Circuit Cellar, good robot articles.
At Radar, PC parallel-port switch which uses the power from the port (no external power).   Automatic from the PC to select which configuration you want.
Stud Seeker - GB Instruments.  $10 from Home Base.  Has a single wire, a 555 timer and a PIC inside.  See Marvin's web-page for details.   (http://www.rdrop.com/~marvin).

Marvin is currently working as a contractor for MicroSoft on a Windows CE robotic system.   A Robot with a vision system (Newton Labs), Pioneer 2 base, ADS processor board.   Target market is to prove Windows CE works, and for Universities with robotic programs.  Can be programmed using C++ or Visual Basic.

Karl:  Karl's book.  700+ pages, and climbing.  Original target was 300.   Opps!  He needs input from SRS.  Current Title:  "Building your own Robots"  publisher wants:  "Lunt on Robots"   Let's brainstorm on a good title:
* Home robotic workbook
* Core philosophies in robotic design
* More amateur robotics junk than you can build in a lifetime
* Home Robotics Encyclopedia
* 5 years of Amateur Robotics
If you get some good ideas let Karl know.

Jim Cox dropped off boxes of boards and parts for an after-meeting feeding frenzy.   Thanks Jim!

Tom:  Show-and-tell of an old 68HC11A0 in a 64-pin DIP package.
Rather large compared to the current 52-pin PLCC packages.

Gary:  Light seeking, analog controlled robot.  Feelers, light sensors, table sensors.  A fun robot built on a circuit board from Bill Harrison.

Lance:  Box of 8051 processors.  Perhaps unprogrammed?  Can be used as an 8031 (no memory).  Also has other old computers and parts.  He has them today in his truck.  Take them, please!  Also low-tech reader board (letters in felt).

Dan:  Last quarter took a class at SPU.  Some classmates wanting to start a robotics club at Seattle Central.  He built a small "photo-bot" robot for a demonstration for them.  No soldering.  Basic stamp, rubberbands, Velcro, 2 hacked servos. 
Also he has a question on the Polaroid sonar with a Basic Stamp.  See him after the meeting.

Ron:  Wheel chair motors.  Ron found a good web-site for parts, ideas and specifications.  See (http://www.4qd.co.uk).  
Also found a reference for a web-site that hacked the Sharp UV sensor to get analog output (http://catwoman.mil.ufl.edu)  Great site for hacks and information.

R2D2 telephone, about 12" high.  Head moves, R2D2 sounds.  Great start for hacking into a robot.  Cost was $69.  He is looking at using a small servo motors for the wheels.  Also looking into a method to use these servos to drive existing wheels on their existing axles, eliminates the bearing load problem. 

A fellow attended the meeting that is building a real-size R2D2,  He is linked into an R2D2 building group.  Look for follow-on information on the SRS listserver. 

Caleb:  Lego robot base with geartrain, 3 differentials.  Will be mounting servos later today. 

Good meeting, see you at GodFather's for pizza!

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Tom Dickens    thomas.p.dickens@boeing.com