Classic Lego Mindstorms Projects and Software Tools

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JOE expands and updates the research and knowledge base for Extension professionals and other adult educators to improve their effectiveness. In addition, JOE serves as a forum for emerging and contemporary issues affecting Extension education. Copyright Policy. Ann Sherrard 4-H Educator anns umd. Figure 1.

Lego Mindstorms Disc Images

The expensive equipment you just bought will soon be upgraded again, or another company will offer a product that will become the industry standard. The cost of the equipment will drop in the future, and you will wish you had waited to purchase. Table 1. EV3 software block parameters can be controlled on the block itself, this gives user ability to see all block parameters at the same time. EV3 software has features that are familiar to the LEGO WeDo software; this will be a plus for those younger learners who will be transitioning in the future. Consider purchasing just the software if your budget does not allow for the investment in the whole EV3 package.

Students will benefit from learning the new software first, be able to adapt the software with their current NXT builds, all while continuing to stay up to date with the new software, even without the EV3 kits. Figure 3 shows that the EV3 has similar sensors as the NXT, with the addition of a new component, the gyro sensor that allows for easy measurement of the robot's rotation and orientation. NXT Sensors Figure 3. NXT comes with three medium motors identified in Figure 4.

Making Mindstorms RCX Work Again

EV3 comes with two large motors and one medium identified in Figure 5. Ball pivot for spinning. Figure 4 and Figure 5 illustrates connections of dedicated ports on the bricks for each sensor and motor provided in each base kit. However, the EV3 brick takes longer to start up than the NXT; this may be something to consider for those who use these for competitions.

EV3 has a micro SD card slot good for loading files and saving data. EV3 can also create basic programs directly on the brick. Figure 6. EV3 Brick Figure 7. Both offer individual purchase of motors and sensors. LEGO Education offers additional resources such as Mindstorms Kit variations, curriculum, software, spare parts, accessories, professional development.

On the education website there are many accessories and add-ons to upgrade and expand your builds. NXT has more resources currently available for learners than the EV3, including free tutorials and building plans.

It could store up to two programs at once. The manual controls could be used to independently control the three motors. To record a program; the controller had to be put in programming mode, and then any manual control would be recorded to the program. Pauses could also be included in a program. When the recording was done, the controller could successfully recall and execute any manual action done during the recording.

The executing program could be set to loop infinitely. It was aimed at an older audience as an early attempt of merging with robotics and Lego.

Lego EV3 Brick

The brick shares many, especially software, features with the RCX but differs in appearance and technical specifications: one output plus two built-in and four sensors. It talks the same protocol as the RCX but cannot communicate directly to it due to IR vs RF but with a repeater a computer with 2 serial ports and a simple program they can communicate indirectly. Sold as part of the Barcode Truck kit. This unit was the first programmable brick or Pbrick. It features a single motor, a single touch sensor and a light sensor. It is programmed by setting it to 'learn' and using the light sensor to feed barcoded commands.

The command set is very limited. Since barcode is just a series of variances in light, this form of command entry was dubbed VLL Visual Light Link and has been used in several later Lego models.

Lego Mindstorms - Wikipedia

Instead of being based on the RCX, it had its own programmable brick called the Scout. An even simpler version of the Scout would be featured in two Star-Wars themed Mindstorms sets as well. Lego also released a blue computer called the Scout , which has 2 sensor ports, 2 motor ports plus one extra if linked with a Micro Scout using a fiber optic cable , and a built in light sensor, but no PC interface. It comes with the Robotics Discovery Set. The Scout can be programmed from a collection of built-in program combinations.

In order to program the Scout, a user must enable "power mode" on it. The Scout can store one program. The Scout only supports passive external sensors, which means that only touch, temperature and other unpowered sensors can be used.

The analog-to-digital converters used in the Scout only have a resolution of 8 bits in contrast to the bit converters of the RCX. There was a plan for Lego to create a booster set that allows you to program the Scout from a computer with a software such as RCX code. However, due to the complexity of this project, it was abandoned.

The Scout brick must have all of its options set to "off". The Micro Scout was added as an entry level to Lego robotics. It is a very limited Pbrick with a single built-in light sensor and a single built-in motor. Like the Scout, the Micro Scout is also based on a microcontroller from Toshiba. The main core of the first generation of Mindstorms sets were the Robotics Invention System sets.

The RCX is programmed by uploading a program using a dedicated infrared interface. After the user uploads a program, the RCX can run it on its own without needing access to a computer. Version 1. In version 2. Power-adapter equipped RCX bricks were popular for stationary robotics projects such as robot arms or for controlling Lego model trains.

The RCX 1. Both versions can transmit on either frequency. This was necessary to obtain technical support.

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The first RCX produced is marked "" and was on display at the Mindstorms 10th Anniversary event. Six expansion-packs were made for the Robotics Invention System. Most expansion sets contains more parts and instructions, while other expansion sets were more ambitious. These sets include:. Another notable set, Vision Commander, came with a Lego Camera and dedicated software. This software was capable of detecting different lightings, motion, and colors. The Intelligent Brick is the "brain" of a Mindstorms machine. It lets the robot autonomously perform different operations. Software was sold separately but can be downloaded for free now , and the Education Resource Set for the best use.

It includes a light sensor, an ultrasonic sensor, a sound sensor, three lamps and a pair of touch sensors. The first set consists of about pieces, and the extra set consists of about pieces. The Education Version is most suited for those who have older versions of Mindstorms sets around, mostly thanks to its three converter cables.

Classic Lego Mindstorms Projects and Software Tools Classic Lego Mindstorms Projects and Software Tools
Classic Lego Mindstorms Projects and Software Tools Classic Lego Mindstorms Projects and Software Tools
Classic Lego Mindstorms Projects and Software Tools Classic Lego Mindstorms Projects and Software Tools
Classic Lego Mindstorms Projects and Software Tools Classic Lego Mindstorms Projects and Software Tools
Classic Lego Mindstorms Projects and Software Tools Classic Lego Mindstorms Projects and Software Tools

Related Classic Lego Mindstorms Projects and Software Tools

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