66% or better

Humanoid Robot + Homebrew Waldo = Big Smiles

Robot enthusiast [Vitalijus Rodnovas] built this rig to allow a humanoid robot to mimic his own body movements in real time. [Rodonovas] refers to his man-machine interface as a “master-slave suit,” but elsewhere this is often called a waldo after a prescient 1942 [Robert Heinlein] novella. This project page is slight on details and is mostly written in his native Lithuanian, but the pictures speak volumes, and with a little help from Google Translate we can learn the essential facts: The robot itself is a commercially-available kit, the Kondo KHR-1HV from Japan. The custom-built harness uses a collection of surplus Soviet-era military potentiometers (acquired on eBay) to read the positions of his elbows and shoulders, then an ATmega8-based interface board translates these readings into motion commands sent to the robot’s onboard controller. Some additional notes and code can be found on the RoboSavvy Forum.

Does it work? Just watch. His grin as the video progresses is infectious!

Hack a Day has previously covered other Waldos, but this latest deserves style points for its lightweight simplicity.

Parts: DS1801 SPI audio volume potentiometer

ds1801

Dallas/Maxim’s DS1801 is an audio volume potentiometer with a simple SPI interface. This chip has two channels of volume control that might be useful in a DIY audio project. We previously looked at the DS1807, a similar part with an I2C interface. This week we’ll show you how to use the SPI version.

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Parts: I2C audio volume potentiometer (DS1807)

ds1807ii

The DS1807 contains two logarithmic digital potentiometers (pots) for audio volume adjustment. Each pot has 64 volume levels plus a mute setting. The volume level of each pot is set over a two-wire I2C serial interface. We’ll show you how to connect and interface the DS1807 below.

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