Hackaday Links April 5, 2012

A Remote Sphero-Control Trackball

sphero drives car

Sphero is a cool little ball that can roll around under the control of a smartphone.  Although super-cool by itself, in this application it’s been hacked into a sort of trackball to drive a remote control car!

Arduino Voice Control

Arduino voice control

[Sebastian] Wrote in to tell us about this article about using the Arduino EasyVR shield to add voice control to your project. Worth a look if it your application calls for voice-control.

OpenBeam Tiny 80/20-Like Extrusion

openbeam extrusion

Openbeam is a Kickstarter project designed to produce an aluminium extrusion for building stuff.  Although we’ve seen lots of this kind of thing, the small 15mm profile is quite interesting, and it’s designed to use off-the-shelf hardware, which should save on costs!

Hexapod + iPad = Fun for All

hexapod-ipad

There’s not a lot of information on this hack, and the price or this hexapod device isn’t even listed, so we’ll assume it’s quite expensive.  On the other hand, it’s got a cool video of it being controlled by an iPad, so maybe it will give you some hacking inspiration!

USB Sound Card Write-Up

usb sound card

[George] wrote in to tell us about his USB sound card write-up. Before you think that this is a dupe of this post, he freely admits to building it nearly identically to the one previously posted. Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but [George] is also requesting some feedback on his blog and the aforementioned post. feel free to let him know what you think in the comments.  Please be polite!

Creating a voice controlled robotic arm

robotic_arm_voice_control

[Arthur] was laid up with a wrist injury, so he decided it would be a great time to hang out around the house and tinker with electronics, since most outdoor activities were out of the question. He picked up a robotic arm kit and assembled it to test out some code written for it that he found online. Since typing commands into a terminal was awfully cumbersome considering his injury, he figured he might as well construct a voice control system for the arm.

He documents his work in a three part series, covering the process from concept to completion. The first part centers around the creation of the vocabulary and grammar for the voice recognition system, along with the how the grammar model was trained using voice samples.

The second and third portions of his tutorial deal with the software’s decoding of his commands and the Python scripts used to translate those commands into something the robotic arm can process.

[Arthur’s] voice control system works pretty well as you can see in the video below, though he already has a wish list full of improvements he hopes to make in the near future.

Continue reading “Creating a voice controlled robotic arm”

Voice recognition system controls everything, hopefully won’t kill us.

[Aaron Bitler] and [Bud Townsend] have been working a natural user system that is, in their own words, “what android@home should have been.”

The video they posted is pretty impressive. The automation system responds to voice and can control appliances, ‘throw a party’, and provide a user with their location. This is just the foundation of a system that can be built upon – developers  can easily integrate a microphone and speaker into a device so it can connect to the system’s server. Apps, too, are pretty extensible – they’re registered on the server with meta tags that provide a wealth of data to be manipulated. It’s a very, very cool project that we really want to try out.

Continue reading “Voice recognition system controls everything, hopefully won’t kill us.”

Voice controlled robot controlled by an Android phone

[Jeff] sent in a build of a voice controlled robot he just finished based on the Android ADK and an iRobot Create.

The robot is able to obey voice commands telling it where to go. Currently the robot responds to forward, reverse, left, right, stop, and ‘whistle while you work.’ It’s a creative use of the Android ADK with some obvious applications, but this project really shines with the write up on instructables. It’s rare that we’ve seen a project so well documented; it’s a great project for someone who wants to get their feet wet in the world of robotics.

[Jeff]’s write up goes through the steps of hooking up the ADK board to iRobot and providing all the electronic necessities. [Jeff] graciously provided the code for his robot if anyone would like to add to his project.

The ultimate goal [Jeff] is currently working towards is something akin to a TurtleBot, while keeping the voice control of the robot. In all, a very nice project.

Voice-controlled rolling robot

rolling_voice_controlled_robot

[societyofrobots] recently posted an Instructable on how to build a voice controlled robot in just a few hours time. This robot isn’t particularly cheap, weighing in at about $230, but it is a fun project if you have the means. The bot is driven around by a pair of servos, taking their directions from an Axon II MCU. A VRbot voice recognition module is used to listen for commands, enabling the user to record up to 32 custom triggers for directing the robot.

All of the source code for the robot is included, as well as instructions on how to get started programing the microcontroller. The code provides some basic functionality, but there’s likely plenty more that can be done with the powerful on-board ATmega460. While this robot would make for a great beginner/intermediate project as-is, it should be noted that [societyofrobots] manufactures and sells the Axon II, so this Instructable is half guide/half self-promotion. Have any of you had experience with the Axon II? Let us know what you think.

Keep reading to see a video of the build process as well as the robot doing its thing.

Thanks, [Bill Porter].

Continue reading “Voice-controlled rolling robot”

Voice controlled lock? Almost…

If you watched the video before reading the article (like we did) and started shaking in your boots at a voice controlled lock system, prepare to be disappointed. His spoken commands are actually to his son to press the appropriate keys on a keypad off screen, the lock is not actually voice controlled.

But still, [Michael Krumpus’] door lock is pretty astounding. By using a torn apart CD drive he easily attains a nice fast and smooth linear motion to bolt and unbolt his door. It wont open his door like some locks we’ve seen, but it will probably be added sometime in the future…right alongside voice commands.

[via DVICE]

Speech controlled garbage can

This speech controlled garbage can was sent in via the tip line by [Amnon]. The garbage can will come to you following a black line and stopping when it sees a cross in the line, then waits for another voice command. It can then return to where it belongs or go outside following the line. The system is based on a microchip PIC 18F4431 and uses three 18 volts cordless drill motors and their batteries as the power source. “In the near future the line sensors will be replaced with UV line sensors and the black line will be replaced with clear UV color.”

When you call the system “Pach Zevel ” (garbage can in Hebrew) the system go to standby and the LED’s light up.  After the previous stage if you say “ELAY” (to me in Hebrew) it will drive on the black line till the first crossing.
This adds new meaning to taking the trash out.