John Fin got a robot arm kit for Christmas, and disappointed in the quality, decided to build his own. He then “got carried away and built an entire voice controlled robot instead.” We all get inspired to build things after realizing that what is available isn’t quite what is needed. This, however, really takes things to a whole new level!
The robot is powered by an Arduino Uno with an EasyVR voice control shield. This allows it to accept simple commands, generally formatted by naming the object to be manipulated (like the arm), what is should do, then a number. The robot makes a friendly beep between each segment of the command, which seems to signify that it understands what’s going on. The number at the end is a timing value that gives the operator “incremental control.”
Making this creation even more impressive is that it was reportedly built from scratch in three months, during which Fin learned how to program. Apparently he also needed to source and/or machine all the parts as well (including parts for interchangeable arm grippers not shown in the video). This would seem to be no small task either.
I though the actuated mast around 1:10 in the video is interesting, and at around 1:50, the ‘bot shows off its ability to answer simple questions. This is accomplished using an onboard Galaxy S2 Smartphone running the Dragon Assistant app.