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Robot Locomotion, PiBot

Last night I uploaded the best demonstration of my robot under construction. The raspberry pi, battery pack and wiring components are literally scotch taped together at this point. So there is a lot of work left. As I mention in the video I only get about 10 to 30 minutes at a time to do any actual physical work to the robot. It is coming along though. I manage by doing a lot of planning ahead of time so that when I actually sit down to work I have a pretty good idea of what I’m going to do so I can do it quickly. I don’t have any sensors attached yet and I thought that would be the next step but I think after reviewing this demonstration I need to really consider where the all the larger parts are going to be mounted before proceeding with anything else.

I believe that over the holiday I should be able to find the time to get some really interesting things done with this project. Of course I will update here and have some new video to show when that happens.

Barkley Playing Fetch at Orion Oaks

I figured my blog needed some content here so I’m linking some videos of my dog Barkley playing fetch at my local dog park. Very soon I will also have some posts about my new robotics project. I’ve also created a project page for that, I just need to buy a couple of new parts before I can really get moving on this one. In the meantime here are my dog videos.

Simplified Garduino

I love the Garduino! I really think it is one of the coolest projects that you can make with the Arduino. The full Garduino has some really great features it waters the plants only when needed, turns on supplemental lights based on how much natural sunlight is received, and alerts if the temperature drops below a plant-healthy level. Eventually I’d like to put one of these full garduino systems together and perhaps even add to it. For now though I just have a simple low maintanance desk plant that I just need to remember to water. I took the Garduino concept and simplified it. My super simplified garduino uses the same circuit as the full garduino to measure soil moisture level. When that moisture level drops too low an LED positioned above the plant lights up letting me know it is time to water.  Below is a video I made demonstrating this project in action.

Future additions to this project will include:
1. Replacing the LED with an edge lit “water me” sign.
2. Create LED water level indicator.
3. Make it smaller.
4. More?

The Primal Blueprint

OK so I’m not going to post any silly before and after pictures, but I figured this is something worth talking about. As this blog has become mostly about my creative cooking I thought I should say something about my diet. I’ve recently started The Primal Blueprint. On this diet I have been losing weight pretty fast and I haven’t even been able to make it to the gym as much as normal. It seems that working out alone has not helped much with the weight loss but watching what I eat on the other hand has had a huge impact so far. Anyway, deep fried hot wings are not on the menu for this diet. I could be totally bummed out but instead I am going to channel my culinary creativity into inventing some primal friendly foods. I’ll try and update at least a couple times a month with some new recipes and also updates to my weight loss progress. I’ve restarted my weight loss tracking chart. It should have been restarted sooner when I actually started the diet but I didn’t think of it until now. I started at about 185ish.


So today I went to Frankenmuth to have dinner with some friends.  We ate at the Bavarian Inn and all had the family style chicken dinner.  Before that we also walked around town bought some cheese, and other novelty items.  Oh and we also had beers at the Frankenmuth brewery.  Good times today.  I think Dennay and I are going to go back to Frankenmuth for our anniversary.

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