Just though I would drop all of you a note, since I have been on a Mental Vacation for over 6 months and I am just getting back to being focused on Vex Things…
Vex On-Line Code v2.x
The improvements to the Vex On-Line Code v2.x has been “stuck” at v 0.81(B). I am still working on expanding the Protocol to handle Timing Critical Sensors like the Ultrasonic Sensors, the Optical Encoders, and I would assume the Analog Accelerometer. Even the Line Follower and Light Sensor might benefit from the Vex Controller processing the information Locally, verses just reporting the Analog Values.
Along the way, I intend to add support for the DEMOQE TOOLKIT, since this would be a great assistance for Graphing the Data from some of the Vex Sensors, like the Analog Accelerometer, and hopefully the Analog Yaw Rate Gyroscope.
“Robotic Open-Communication Interconnection Protocol”
A Big Work in Progress, but I am “formulating a plan”. I have gotten “redirected” onto other projects that immediately help others… But, I am thinking Big Picture, Long Term, Foundation Making stuff for RO-CIP…
I setup a temporary web site on my Comcast Account in SEP-2008, but now I have a permanent Home for it, RO-CIP. I will make it Interactive and User Driven, sooner or later…
On 28-MAY-2009, Steve Elmer, the owner and founder of the http://www.hobbyvex.org/ web site contacted me about “taking it over”, since he was spending more time on other projects and did not have time to keep it maintained.
So on 08-JUN-2009, I assumed control of the HobbyVex Domain, and will be adding some New Projects, as well as maintaining the Old Projects.
Win32 PC Program for the Vex On-Line Code v2.x
I have been waiting for someone to make an “Available Source” version of the Vex Controller On-Line Window found in the intelitek Loader Program.
I have used that Source Code, to create a Basic Functionality version of the Vex Controller On-Line Window.
I don’t really use Visual Studio, and I never tried Coding any C#, until 23-JUN-2009, so my C# Code is “real bad”, like REAL BAD!!!, so I don’t want to release the Source Code, yet! But I will Release the Executable, Serial Port Reader 0.80ß (VEX On-Line Code Version). This is a Visual Studio, C# 2008 application and requires .NET Runtime Version 3.5 to run. I am going to expand the Protocol of the “Vex On-Line Code”, for the Vex Controller to support reporting Version Number, and report How Many Analog Inputs and Digital Inputs, so that the future versions of Vex Controller On-Line Window, “Available Source” Version, can automatically enable the correct display options.
Vex On-Line Code v3.x
In looking at the Data Stream from the “Vex On-Line Code v3.x” for the Vex, and not seeing any Updates on the “intelitek Loader v3.1”, On-Line Windows, it occurred to me that maybe the Vex Controller Code is “broken”, so I loaded the FRC 18F8520 Code into the Vex Controller, and Discovered an entirely different Data Format…
Vex On-line Program Output
IO 993 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 1 1 1 .... ....
FRC (for 18F8520) On-line Program Output
DIO 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 AI 1006 1022 1022 1022 1022 1022 1022 1021 1022 1022 298 334 1003 1022 1022 1022 .... ....
Note that the FRC Code has Two Different Data Records, and Testing showed I could get the Reported Data to change by Using Switches and the a Line Follower Sensor.
Cricket LOGO Interpreter
I was thinking something like Re: Vex On-Line Controller Code v2.x, ROAD MAP (Post #3), and then found that the MIT Media Lab has some small Robots, with a LOGO Interpreter “on-board”. Better Yet, they (MIT) have a Language Specification for the “Cricket LOGO”.
Micro-Soft Robotics Development Studio 2000 R2
Micro-Soft has had a Couple Updates since “Micro-Soft Robotics Development Studio 1.5”. Unfortunately, the “latest” R2 release still does not support the Vex… I am looking into how that “Support” is done, to see if I can “make it happen”, baring that, maybe someone at Micro-Soft can add that for us Vex(ers). On an very interesting side note, Micro-Soft Robotics Development Studio 2000 R2 does support through a RS-232 Serial Interface, the Kondo KHR-1 Humanoid Robot…
Kondo KHR-1 Humanoid Robot.
Was about $1500.00 (USD), now down to about $1000.00 (USD), and has 17 Servos, two Control Boards, controlling up to 12 Servo Each, but the RS-232 Communication Protocol is Documented, and there is Win32 Software (including Micro-Soft RDS 2000-R2) to communicate with it. I think it will be possible to make a Kondo KHR-1 “emulator” for the Vex Controller, that will let the Vex work with “Micro-Soft RDS 2000-R2”. There could be a Real Big Use for Quazar’s How to drive more motors from a Vex!.
The JVex Project
I still need to thoroughly Check Out all that they have done with the JVEX Protocol Definitions. The Return Values from the Vex Controller are a Hybrid between Full ASCII and Binary, described as “ASCII Encoded Hex”. I want to move toward a Total Binary Protocol. There would be some value in seeing how the Various Sensors were implemented, but there is satisfaction in doing all the work myself, plus I can give the results away, with no fear of violating anyone’s Licensing Agreement.
Other Thoughts (in the back of my brain)
Autonomous Telepresence Robot
dylanjkj19 started this thread, Autonomous Telepresence Robot Help, on 25-JUL-2008.
I started to “sketch out” some ways of Mapping an “Unknown Amount of Space” in the most efficient way into a “Finite Amount of Memory”. That Statement sounds weird, but memory is at a Premium and unless a Bi-Direction Link is required, the Vex will need to Store Data…
I am thinking at the Very Least, an Ultrasonic Sensor and Two Optical Encoders will be needed to Map a Room. Better yet will be Two Ultrasonic Sensors on Movable Servos, or Four Ultrasonic Sensor, and/or an Accelerometer and/or a Compass. As of 17-JUL-2009, I have One Vex Accelerometer and Two Parallax PING))) Ultrasonic Sensors.
HobbyVex.org New Projects
The New Projects for HobbyVex.org I am thinking of are, Cricket LOGO Interpreter, Vex emulation of Kondo KHR-1, and Autonomous Telepresence Robot.
Some “Food for Thought” on HobbyVex.org and my other Web sites.
I originally setup http://vex.markoverholser.com/, because you only have a 24 Hour windows to Edit your Posts at https://vexforum.com/, and I want to be able to Re-Structure my Vex Information over a period of time. The Vex Wiki helps to alleviate that issue now, BUT I am beginning to think that too much of this Hobbyist Usage of Vex posted at the Vexforum will be distracting from the Primary Purpose of Vex, which is Jr/Middle School and High School (and College) competitions.
Maybe I am wrong, but I am still Contributing to https://vexforum.com/ and http://www.vexfan.com/, Working on adding to the Vex Wiki, while adding Projects to http://www.hobbyvex.org/ and http://vex.markoverholser.com/.